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New Miami restaurants to try: Botánico Gin, Taqueria Hoja, and Día De Los Muertos at Toro Toro



Photo: Maria Lucia Venegas

Miami’s latest round of restaurant openings includes a new gin-inspired cookhouse from Ricardo Ordoñez and chef/co-owner Gerardo De Negri, a taqueria in Miami Beach, and a Día de los Muertos pop-up from Chef Richard Sandoval at Toro Toro.

Shrimp lollipops at Botánico Gin & Cookhouse (Photo: Maria Lucia Venegas)

Botánico Gin & Cookhouse

3015 Grand Ave., Coconut Grove

A new gin-centric restaurant and bar has opened its doors on Coconut Grove’s CocoWalk.

As the name suggests, the bar will offer an extensive gin-focused cocktail menu.

Guests can choose from 15 gin-and-tonic botanical variations, from a green apple and thyme infusion to grape and crystalized ginger or lavender and lemon.

The brainchild of co-owner Ricardo Ordoñez and chef/co-owner Gerardo De Negri, Botánico features a globetrotting menu in an airy indoor-outdoor setting for an upscale, approachable dining experience.

The opening menu includes highlights like octopus carpaccio; arepas topped with duck confit, short rib, and pulled pork; grilled branzino with roasted vegetables; and a French-themed burger served on a croissant bun.

Don’t miss the Ecuadorian ceviche, a family recipe passed down to De Negri from his mother, prepared at Botánico with shrimp marinated in a flavorful tomato-lime base accented with onions and cilantro.

Open 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

Taqueria Hoja is now open in the Ingraham Building in downtown Miami. (Photo: Taqueria Hoja)

Taqueria Hoja

3120 Collins Ave., Miami Beach

Nestled inside the Generator hotel in Miami Beach, Taqueria Hoja is Miami’s newest neighborhood taqueria.

Hand-made tortillas use corn sourced only from family farms and imported directly from Mexico.

The result is a small but varied assortment of tacos, quesadillas, flautas, and burritos that are both tasty and affordable.

Classic tacos include carne asada and a heritage pork al pastor, and a creative vegetarian option shines with koji-seasoned sweet potato smothered in an almond crema and topped off with a peanut, almond, and morita salsa.

Don’t miss the housemade salsas, peppery takes infused with chiltepin, morita, or burnt habanero — then wash it all down with a house-made smoky pineapple or watermelon margarita.

Open Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 10 p.m.

Read more from the Miami New Times.

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South Beach

Halloween 2021: The seven best ghost and cemetery tours in South Florida



If you ain’t afraid of no ghost, October is filled with opportunities to mingle with the spirits of South Florida’s past.

As the days toward Halloween dwindle, brave souls can avail themselves of ghost and cemetery tours at some of Miami and Fort Lauderdale’s oldest haunts.

Deering Estate (Photo: Ryan Holloway/Miami-Dade County)

Some tours even welcome ghost-hunting equipment for those who happen to have a pendulum, dowsing rod, and EMF meter lying around the house.

Below is a randomly ordered list of South Florida’s best ghost and cemetery tours.

Yesteryear Village (Photo: South Florida Fairgrounds)

Happy spirit stalking!

HistoryMiami’s Ghosts of Miami City Cemetery tour with Dr. Paul George (Photo: Ali Goebel)

Read more from the Miami New Times.

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South Beach

South Beach businesses put up big money against Miami Beach’s effort to change last call



Miami Beach voters will decide this November whether to stop the sale of alcohol at 2 a.m., moving last call at bars and clubs up from 5 a.m.

South Beach nightclubs will put up hundreds of thousands of dollars to stop a ballot referendum.

They face off against the political teams and supporters of the current and former mayor, who hope voters limit partying hours. 

The measure on the ballot in November is non-binding but would be a clear sign of public opinion to the city commission.

The nightlife on South Beach generates millions of dollars and employs a few thousand people.

It also brings crowds, rowdiness, and crime, disturbing neighborhoods on the barrier island.

Read more from NBC Miami.

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South Beach

‘Save jobs’: South Beach hospitality workers protest 2 a.m. booze ban outside Miami Beach City Hall



Photo: Pedro Portal/Miami Herald

As city commissioners took steps Wednesday to create more regulations for clubs and bars, more than 100 South Beach hospitality workers marched to City Hall to speak out against a citywide referendum that seeks to gauge support for a push to roll back alcohol sales to 2 a.m. from 5 a.m.

Adriana Perez and Adrienne Trinidad, who both work at Mango’s Tropical Cafe, join a group of hospitality workers protesting outside Miami Beach City Hall on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, against the proposed 2 a.m. rollback of alcohol service across the city as part of a Nov. 2 referendum. PEDRO PORTAL PPORTAL@MIAMIHERALD.COM

The protesters, who work at late-night clubs like Mango’s Tropical Cafe and the Clevelander, waved signs, wore matching T-shirts and shouted their opposition to any attempt at shutting down booze sales early.

A group of hospitality workers protested outside Miami Beach City Hall against the proposed 2 a.m. rollback of alcohol service across the city as part of a Nov. 2 referendum. PEDRO PORTAL PPORTAL@MIAMIHERALD.COM

Mango’s owner David Wallack led the crowd — estimated to be at least 170 workers and business leaders — in chants of “Stop the Lies” and “Vote No, Save Jobs.”

David Wallack, owner of Mango’s Tropical Cafe, joined a group of hospitality workers including his employees gathering outside Miami Beach City Hall on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, to protest the proposed 2 a.m. rollback of alcohol service across the city as part of a Nov. 2 referendum. PEDRO PORTAL PPORTAL@MIAMIHERALD.COM

Read more from the Miami Herald.

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