If you’re a BBQ fan, it may well be worth the drive out to the Dadeland area of Kendall (and a hop and a skip from Dadeland Mall) to sample the finger-lickin’ goodies at this landmark vestige of Miami’s pre-Latin Southern heritage, a roadhouse founded by late Georgia native E. L. “Shorty” Allen in 1951 (who wafted off to that great smokehouse in the sky in 2013 at age 104). All the classics are here in heaping platters—smoky, tender ribs; pulled pork; brisket and chicken, all accompanied by sides such as fried green tomatoes, fried okra, coleslaw, sweet potatoes, and corn on the cob (for dessert, the key lime pie is unusually tart and tasty). The woody, down-home, honky-tonk atmosphere—picnic tables, exposed beams, hanging railroad lanterns, paper towels on spindles for napkins—is of course part of the mystique. Shorty’s has since spawned four other South Florida locations, but naturally, locals swear by the original.
- David Paul Appell