The beautiful blue-green waters of Miami’s Biscayne Bay beckon from every angle and the sky blue Atlantic Ocean waves at you from A1A – in Miami dining on the water is a must.

Trio On The Bay

Trio, owned by a Miami nightclub impresario, is a perfect date place. Trio boasts expansive views of the bay and an upbeat, clubby atmosphere. Reserve an outside table if you can, or come early for cocktails al fresco. Outside, there are comfy wicker lounge chairs, umbrella tables perched right next to the water, and a large bar and patio space. Inside, there are multiple entertainment spaces, bars and large-screen TVs. There is something for everyone on the menu, which features a wide selection of appetizers, pizza, pastas and entrees. Dancing and live music round out the fun at this waterfront restaurant and lounge. $$


The Miami outpost of this internationally acclaimed Japanese restaurant boasts stunning views of the Miami River and the downtown skyline. Zuma is located at the EPIC Miami Hotel. The restaurant’s izakaya style menu features grilled items, sushi and sashimi, fresh vegetables and meats, and an extensive sake selection. Yachts dock outside and from your table you can watch the drawbridge go up over the river. Cheers (with sake, of course) to that. $$$

Rusty Pelican

This recently renovated waterfront restaurant offers one of the best views of the Downtown Miami skyline. The menu features Modern American cuisine with small plates perfect for sharing, a wine list filled with unique varietals and an impressive raw bar with fresh ceviche’s and fresh-from-the-docks shellfish. In the lounge and outdoor patio, enjoy cocktails under the stars with a selection of specialty libations, microbrews and wines by the glass. $$

Lido Restaurant & Bayside Grill

Hotel guests at The Standard Miami and locals alike congregate at the Lido Restaurant & Bayside Grill. Bright umbrellas on the deck, a fresh Mediterranean menu, and sweeping views of Biscayne Bay are just some of the visual inspiration and meticulous design that make this a top outdoor dining spot in the city. Inspired by the traditional Mediterranean diet and lifestyle, healthy, sun kissed, whole and natural, Chef Mark Zeitouni has created a menu with an emphasis on high quality and organic meats and fish, olive oil, fresh herbs, grill cooking and organic and biodynamic wines. $$

Lighthouse Café

Located on Key Biscayne, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park is the home of a historic lighthouse built in 1825 and reconstructed in 1846. The lighthouse is the oldest standing structure in Miami-Dade County, and is perched on one of Miami’s most beautiful beaches. Steps away from the lighthouse is the aptly named Lighthouse Café, where you can enjoy a fresh fish sandwich and other simply prepared dishes including pastas, paella and grilled sandwiches. Open for breakfast and lunch. $

Garcia’s Seafood Grill & Fish Market

This casual seafood restaurant is located right on the Miami River and boasts its own fleet of fishing boats. The menu features a wide array of fresh seafood including stone crabs, grouper, snapper, lobster and shrimp. Eat alongside the historic Miami River while boats glide past on their way out to sea. $$


Why not escape to a private island for dinner? You can do just that at Grove Isle Resort & Spa. Gibraltar is Grove Isle’s elegant restaurant, surrounded by the waters of Biscayne Bay. Daytime is nice, but the twinkling city lights are a bonus if you come at night. Here, you can relax in a comfortable chair while surrounded by luxurious décor. The menu is equally pleasing. Pan seared branzino, roasted Chilean sea bass or potato-crusted black grouper will compete for the seafood lover’s attention while landlubbers can dive into an 18-oz. Black Angus bone ribeye, double lamb chop or dry aged New York strip. Service is prompt and professional. Desserts are dreamy. You may be reluctant to cross the bridge back to the mainland. $$$

Red Fish Grill

Tucked inside of Matheson Hammock Park, this is another one of Miami’s hidden gems. While you’re surrounded by a beach area and a lagoon that connects to Biscayne Bay, you may think you’re dining somewhere in the Caribbean. Water views? Check. Gently swaying palms? Check. Tiki torches? Check. It’s easy to understand why this pretty little restaurant is a popular wedding spot. $$

Smith & Wollensky

This is one of the best places to watch the sunset in Miami. Located adjacent to South Pointe Park on Miami Beach, Smith & Wollensky offers prime steaks and an award-winning wine list. Regulars enjoy cocktails on the patio and watch the sun set, filling the Miami sky with dazzling shades of tangerine, lavender and pink. Cruise ships sail by as they leave PortMiami. An after-dinner stroll through one of Miami’s prettiest parks is the perfect way to wrap up a meal here. $$$

Scotty’s Landing

Locals head to Scotty’s on weekend afternoons for cold beer and fried platters of fish, shrimp, chicken and conch. This tiny bar and outdoor restaurant in Coconut Grove is perched right on Biscayne Bay adjacent to the Chart House. Park in the Miami City Hall parking lot and walk towards the waterfront. Scotty’s is popular with boaters, and dogs are welcome here, too. Live music on weekends rounds out the casual, fun atmosphere of this friendly waterfront hideaway. $

Chart House

This restaurant overlooks Dinner Key Marina in Coconut Grove, one of Miami’s most scenic neighborhoods. Sailboats and yachts float outside while diners inside enjoy hearty portions of prime meats, fresh fish, pastas and salads. Chart House has long been Miami’s go-to place to impress business clients, out of town friends, or for a special “date night” with someone special. There’s a lovely walkway outside where you can stroll under the Miami moonlight or catch a fresh bay breeze before or after your meal. $$