The best rooftop restaurants in Miami
October 21, 2020
The best rooftop restaurants in Miami

Dine outdoors with a bird’s-eye view of the city at our picks of the best rooftop restaurants in Miami

 

It’s tough to complain about outdoor dining in Miami. We have loads of waterfront restaurants, cafes with charming patios and a bunch of Miami parks where we can picnic whenever we want. Rooftop restaurants in Miami are another al-fresco dining option we’re blessed with. Choices of places to eat and drink up high are fewer than we’d like but the rooftop restaurants at our disposable are varied in price and vibes. You have the spots that are soaring and sexy, the spacious places where the extra room makes up for the average views and the ones with excellent cocktail programs so they really double as rooftop bars. Miami, ready to take it up a notch? Make your way to these excellent rooftop spots.

 

Best rooftop restaurants in Miami

1. Juvia 

No matter the time of year, sunset dinners at Juvia are marked by candy-colored skies. Consider it a free show or part of the experience when you dine at the Lincoln Road restaurant. Not there for the sweeping views of South Beach? Rest assured, the food doesn’t play second fiddle to the skyline. The Japanese-Peruvian menu impresses with all kinds of ceviches as well as cooked fish, like the tasty Chilean sea bass.

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2. Sugar

It’s the longest ride to the top of any rooftop restaurant in Miami (40 floors up!), but Sugar’s Downtown views—and East Miami’s ‘grammable galactic elevators—make it all worth it. Pockets of Asian-inspired gardens help set the Zen mood, though it’s the flowing breeze that’ll really put you at ease. Known for its swank crowd and high-priced drinks, Sugar recently introduced a daily happy hour from 4 to 6pm that includes two-for-one deals on signature spritzes, rosé and wine. Grab a couple of glasses to go with your sushi rolls, spicy rock shrimp, lettuce wraps and other shareable bites.

3. Watr at 1 Rooftop

Watr owns its stunning view of the ocean with a Peruvian-inspired rooftop restaurant and bar decked in reclaimed wood. The soundtrack is more akin to breaking waves than the usual club bangers you hear in these parts. There’s just something about the laidback vibe of this place that makes us feel like we’re in a spa with frosé on tap—and that ain’t a bad thing. Fill up on skewered meats and seafood or ignore the fact that you’re dining next to a pool and dive head first into Watr’s burger. It’s towering and drippy and ever so worth the price tag ($24) and the calories.

 

4. Area 31

For years, the Epic Hotel’s rooftop bar and restaurant was a magnet for business types grabbing a drink after work in the area. But even without its beat-the-clock happy hour, Area 31 is still luring the locals with its unparalleled views of Downtown and well-priced bites and sips. The food-and-drink menus have been scaled back but the restaurant’s signature salads and seafood dishes made the current list. Cocktails and wine are always in abundance at the 16th-floor spot.

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5. vista

The bilevel restaurant gives it all away with its name: Vista. It’s as much a looker as it is a place to sit back and enjoy the views. The fully exposed space is at once cozy and breezy, enclosed by plants but open to the elements save for the cover of a wooden pergola that’s lit up by bistro lights at night. It’s balmy up there but don’t go light on the food on account of the temps: no meal at Vista is complete without an order of house-cut french fries with raclette cheese or any of the house-made pastas. Indulge, baby.

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6. Dolores But You Can Call Me Lolita

This former firehouse-turned-restaurant and lounge is quite the popular date spot in Brickell. Couples gravitate toward the second-floor dining room, where lots of greenery and fans keep the space airy and private. Downstairs it’s a party but upstairs folks come to linger over affordable two-course meals (every entrée includes a complimentary appetizer) and sip cocktails in one of the several lounge setups.

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7. No. 3 Social

The sister lounge to Wynwood’s excellent restaurant Three doubled its dining area and its dinner menu during lockdown. Now, guests can nosh on dishes from Three as well as the rooftop spot’s list of classics—think sliders and dips. It’s only on the second floor, so don’t expect skyscraper views. But the cocktails are great and taste even better when the breeze comes rushing over the outdoor patio.

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8. The Citadel

The Little River food hall boasts a rad rooftop space, like the kind you imagine cool people in Brooklyn hanging out on. It’s lush and tropical and injected with just the right amount of color and island flair to remind you’re in Miami even if the view below leads you to believe otherwise. Once you’ve found a spot, you’ll be able to order cocktails (Beaker & Gray takes over the bar throughout August) but all food needs to be purchased from one of the eight eateries on the Citadel’s ground floor. Hey, at least you have choices?

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9. Astra

We’re not sure how many people actually dine at Astra, but the rooftop bar does serve a full menu. It’s tasty, too, featuring oysters, grilled octopus and fresh salads like you’d expect to find at a beach club off the Aegean. As far as Wynwood goes, this place is a scene thanks to a steady rotation of DJs and daybeds that attract large groups of people looking to sit around and drink for hours. Lately, the Greek spot is channeling the chill vibes of Ikaria more so than the party atmosphere of Mykonos.

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10. Sky Yard at the Lincoln Eatery

The Lincoln Road food hall’s new rooftop bar and restaurant is a little bit like an open-air, adults-only arcade with food and drinks. The widespread terrace has two large pergolas under which you’ll find all kinds of yard games, golf simulators, pool tables, ping-pong, air hockey and more. Once you’ve burned some calories swinging and shooting, fill up on Sky Yard’s eclectic menu, which runs the gamut from steakhouse fare, to Asian dishes to Latin food.

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