La Mar by Gastón Acurio – Miami

La Mar by Gastón Acurio is an incredible Peruvian fusion restaurant specializing in fresh seafood and grilled meats, located in a beautiful waterfront setting in the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Miami.

La-Mar-Miami-Cover

On our most recent trip to Miami we had a great dinner at La Mar – the new flagship restaurant at the Mandarin Oriental Miami. La Mar, which specializes in Peruvian Fusion, is part of the Gastón Acurio restaurant group that includes Astrid & Gastón in Lima, Peru; the 18th best restaurant in the world per the World’s Best list. From the quality of the food, to the excellent cocktail menu, to the first-class service, La Mar is far better than the typical ‘hotel restaurant’ and is a must-visit for Miami travelers and fans of Latin American cuisine. That is, unless you’re planning to strut your stuff on South Beach the next day…

The Mandarin Oriental is located on Brickell Key (a small manmade island right off downtown Miami) and La Mar has a beautiful setting right on the water. In the cooler months, we suggest sitting outside and enjoying a lovely view of the city skyline. However, in the summer, when Miami has the humidity of a rainforest, it’s probably best to sit inside.

Also noteworthy was the excellent service at La Mar. Our waiter, Nicholas, was very helpful guiding us through the menu and made some great recommendations.
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Carbone – NYC

Carbone in NYC | chezcateylou.com

A $55 Veal Parmesan?

There’s no way to assess a meal at Carbone without acknowledging that you’re paying for an experience. For an ambiance lifted straight out of the Mad Men era: white table cloths, old-school tile floors, and a Rat Pack heavy playlist. For waiters with a surly demeanors outfitted in snappy maroon tuxedos. And especially for a menu that’s almost audacious in its simplicity – straightforward dishes that are souped-up versions of Italian-American classics.

So taking this all into account, does it live up to the hype? It sure does.  … 

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Paris Part Deux

Paris Part Deux | chezcateylou.com

We’re back for more Paris discussion.  If you missed the first part of our Paris travelog, check it out here.   Today, we have Bistrot Paul Bert, Le Cinq Mars, steak frites, the best ice cream in Paris, a great spot for an late night glass of wine, and some very French French Toast. 

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Avec – Chicago

avec

I have been dying to eat at Avec ever since I saw it on Food Network’s show “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”.  (I love that show, I wish they would come out with a new season!  Anytime we go to a new city, I scour the list for recommendations.  We have tried some great spots thanks to it. But I digress.)  Then when I saw that it is one of Anthony Bourdain’s favorites, I knew that I HAD to try it.  The other weekend while visiting some girlfriends in Chicago I finally had the opportunity to dine at Avec, and it did not disappoint! … 

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