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09 Jul


The Van Dyke Cafe

July 9, 2013 | By |

One of my favorite restaurants on Lincoln Road Mall has to be the Van Dyke Cafe, located at 846 Lincoln Road on the corner of Jefferson Avenue. From the same purveyors of the famous News Cafe on Ocean Drive, The Van Dyke Cafe, offers up a great vantage point for some serious people watching in a charming European setting.

Happy hour is a great time to give them a try, Monday through Friday from 5-7:00 pm. In my opinion, you won’t find a better plate of fried calamari on the beach. ($6.00)

I love this place early in the morning, for coffee and a light breakfast, but if you are a lover of live Blues and Jazz, head upstairs for some great nightly performances. You are sure to have a great time here, but drinks will run you about $14 each outside of happy hour.

Happy Hour Specials: mojitos $6, fried calamari $6, draft beer $3, Sangria $4


16 May


Café Versailles

May 16, 2013 | By |

Spend any amount of time in South Miami and you will quickly notice that it is very rich in its diversity of cultures. South Beach in particular, is a flavourful mix of cultures that come together in this exotic paradise. As you walk on the beach or go for a stroll, you will hear many of the different languages of the world. This mix of cultures makes this place all the more interesting as it draws in people from all over the world.

One such culture that that adds to the spicy dish that is Miami, and cannot be ignored is that of Cuban Americans. One can’t help but notice the influence Cuban’s have on South Florida and in particular, Miami. In fact, one has to understand the role Cuban’s have played in making up this diverse community called Miami in order to really get a sense for this place. Alongside the blonde, and blue eyed Floridians with permanent beach tans, Cubans are at the heart of Miami.

And there is no better place to get a pulse on the Cuban community, than the Versailles Cuban Restaurant. Soon after it opened its doors in 1971, Versailles quickly became the gathering place for Miami’s Cuban exiles.

Go their for the best Cuban food in town, the best “cortaditto” (espresso with milk), and deserts you just can’t resist. My favourite is the dark caramel flan, which I have on a few occasions driven over the bridge from South Beach into town for.

Upon my first visit to Versailles,I walked into the traditional open window café where you come as close to Cuba while in the U.S.A. I was greeted by a local that immediately welcomed me to this cultural meeting place. “Benvenido” he said, welcoming me to this place, as though he was the owner of the establishment. I later realized that he was just a patron, but that this was no ordinary place. This place was special and was home to the community of Cuban American’s.

I don’t want to sound overly pariotic, I am a Canadian after all, but this place embodies “the American dream’. And although the Cuban men in double pocketed white shirts spend hours in front of the old open café window, talking politics, one can’t help but appreciate the freedom that has made America what it is today.

Every time I am down here, their is a story, still to this day, of the ordeal and danger that Cubans take on as they appear on the local news with images of dozens of Cuban escapees huddled together in makeshift rafts. We see the ones that thankfully make it to the American shore, but Versailles Café pays honour to the men and women that never had the chance to realize their same freedom.

The Versailles restaurant and café is located in Little Havana and worth the visit. On most afternoons, a charming older gentleman dances to the sounds of Cuba with his lovely mannequin partner, that never misses a step.

I recommend the Versailles Classico, and you cannot leave without having a café Bustello cortaditto with a dark mouth watering caramel flan.


25 Mar


Winter Music Festival

March 25, 2013 | By |

History of the Conference

It was founded in 1985 by then DJs and Record Pool Directors Louis Possenti and Bill Kelly. Held annually in Miami Beach, Florida, the Winter Music Conference, or “WMC” as followers of Electronic Dance Music call it, hosts around 100,000 people[citation needed]. The first Winter Music Conference took place at the Fort Lauderdale Marriott February 19-21, 1986 with approximately 80 dance music industry insiders in attendance. The event festivities are presented across Miami Beach andDowntown Miami. A major event is the International Dance Music Awards. The event commands a major international draw with around 38% of attendees coming from outside the United States.[1] The conference serves as a platform for many underground and indie artists from over 70 different countries who spend the conference at events and panels; it is also a medium used by several entrepreneurs and consumer electronic companies to present their businesses and technological developments.[1]

The WMC & The Recording Academy began in 1996 – a partnership presenting The Producers Forum, a gathering of legendary artists.[2] Waxpoetics Magazine, JBL, and Stanton sponsored the first International Record Collectors Show in 2007.[1] In 2009, the WMC introduced the first annual WMC VJ Challenge at The Miami Beach Resort & Spa with celebrity hosts, judges, and VJs from various parts of the world hosted by VJ Psyberpxie and Felix Sama.[2] This inaugural year of the competition resulted in Sergey Lobodln(Moscow, Russia), walking away with the top winner prize.[3] In 2010, the VJ Challenge was expanded into two areas of competition; Video Mixing and Audio/Visual Mixing. The 2010 VJ Challenge winners were AeonChild (Boulder, Colorado) in the video category and Eclectic Method (London/NYC) in the Audio/Visual category.[4] The Miami Beach Resort also received the performance of the RoboMusic Demo in which Funkstar De Luxe and RoboProfessor (Henrik Hautop Lund) create live interactive compositions of RoboMusic.

25 Mar


South Beach Nightlife

March 25, 2013 | By |

Whether you are looking for a casual night on the town or something more exclusive and upscale, Miami Beach has got it all! For a more casual atmosphere, try club BLUE 222 Espanola Way. Here you will find music lovers from around the world, flocking to here what the local DJ’s have in store. Lincoln St. offers “Zeeks”, where you can find $3 beers all day long as you watch other tourists and locals shop and dine!

For a more upscale evening, try DREAM Nightclub. Located at 1532 Washington Avenue, DREAM features a newly remodeled plush atmosphere and VIP bottle service, with two rooms for you to choose from.

Aero Bar will suit the needs of any Night Club connoisseur. Based on a combined three decades of experience and contacts, Aero Bar is the brainchild of nightlife ambassadors Tony Guerra and Smiley Boyd. Located at 247 23rd st., Aero Bar consists of two rooms and upscale VIP Bottle service.

The club scene in the area “South of 5th Street” or “SoFi” as it is called is all right there. Nikki Beach Club at the end of Ocean is a good place to go during the day for an eyeful of tropical atmosphere and an Ibiza vibe.

For local flavor try Ted’s Hideaway. Located at 124 2nd St., this is a storefront bar with pool tables and TVs that locals like to hang out and hide out all day and night. A hole-in-the-wall kind of place.

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