When I get a craving for fried chicken, I head straight to Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, one of Miami’s best restaurants, serving up fine crispy fried chicken and deep south staples on Miami Beach. I have been to Yardbird countless times, and each time is better than the last. The food is amazing and the decor is adorable to boot. Yardbird has all of those popular restaurant decorations that are everywhere right now: mason jar chandelier, chicken coup wiring, re-purposed wood, open kitchen, the country linens at every restaurant known to mankind, beautiful chalkboard lettering, and the list goes on. The whole restaurant embodies trendy southern charm.
During this visit my boyfriend and I arrived with a game plan in mind. Of course we are serious restaurant junkies so while en route we were already reading their menu online. I must admit we were stoked to see the actual menu was different than the link to Yardbird menu through Yelp. The options were more diverse with additions like Warm Farmer’s Cheese $5 and Pork Croquettes with fried egg $14.
I figured since we were arriving around 9:00 PM on a Monday night there would be no wait at Yardbird. We actually ended up waiting around 15 minutes at the bar. Just enough time to order, receive, and sip a bit on our cocktails. I ordered the “Honeydew This” $12 a blend of Knob Creek, fresh pressed honeydew juices, lemon, and tarragon. The drink was refreshing, herbal, and perfectly earthy. My boyfriend had the “Strong as an Oak” $18- I would describe this as a reposado Tequila Old-fashioned. (Yes- the price tag of the drinks are insane- that’s Miami for you). The combination of Avion reposado tequila with the orange bitters made the drink taste reminiscent of Grand Marnier, a strong and sweet orange cognac liqueur.
Once at the table, we were greeted by an enthusiastic server- who read our vibe well and was unobtrusive and polite. Whenever a server is enthusiastic about the food- you should be excited. It is hard as a server to feign interest and passion for the product you dish up all day every day, so his genuine service was much appreciated.
To start we enjoyed the Iceberg Wedge with fresh cut corn, tomatoes, plentiful blue cheese, avocado, and thick cut bacon bits with avocado dressing. The dressing was mildly sweet, tangy, with hints of dill, which made you keep on wanting more. This was also the best presented wedge I’ve ever had, in that the wedge itself was divided into thirds making it easier to eat. After the salad we had the Beef Sirloin Tartar $14- served with a crunchy-fried-savory corn bread with icy bbq sorbet on top. The meat was fresh, chopped finely, and the bbq sorbet really brought the dish together.
Next came Yardbird’s tour de force- the Llewellyn’s Fine Fried Chicken $26. The recipe apparently takes 27 hours and it shows- with crunchy skin that is finger-licking-good. I usually douse mine in their signature spicy tobacco-honey sauce. If you want a full experience, I’d recommend getting the blue plate special or the friend chicken dinner that comes with the chilled-spiced watermelon and cheddar waffle. I’m not crazy for the waffle myself- so I ordered their French fries with bacon salt $8. These fries are insanely delicious. The dipping sauce has that nice sweet buttermilk tang along with some fresh citrus. I don’t necessarily taste the bacon salt, but the fries have a good seasoning.
For dessert- with me there is always dessert- I had the Bourbon Bacon Sundae $10! I wouldn’t say the ice cream really tasted like bourbon but that salty caramel tho!! It was superb! I really didn’t need the bacon, which came in a long strip- but it was a nice salty addition to the rich, thick, custard-like ice cream. Chopped bacon might have been a nicer touch. My boyfriend ordered a double espresso which was itsy bitsy teeny tiny! But the server did bring us one more shot because it was truly minuscule.
Well, these are just some of the things we had this visit to one of 50 Egg’s locations, but I have enjoyed their Scarlet O’Hara cocktail (aperol, bourbon, lemon, tobacco, honey- and more shaken deliciousness), the Fried Green Tomato “BLT” $14, Mama’s Chicken Biscuits $14 (ask for more pickles and pickled onions- they are fabulous!), the Chicken Under a Brick, the St. Louis Style Pork Ribs $32, the Mac and Cheese (to die for) $10, their biscuits with honey-butter and homemade preserves $9, the Grasshopper Sundae (served with a giant homemade peppermint patty!), and a blueberry cobbler with marshmallows and a peach ice cream.
I am already excited to come back to Yardbird for our next visit. They always have a crowd generating that Miami ‘vibe’, quality food, and excellent service. It is a place to see and be seen. I am sure Yardbird will be a South Florida staple for years (I also heard they are opening one in Las Vegas)!
Yardbird: Southern Table and Bar
1600 Lenox Ave • Miami Beach, FL • 33139 • (305) 538-5220