Aaron and Charlene’s MIDAS trip to Miami - Day 1

After bagging back-to-back Sustainability Awards from the MIDAS Network, the pair were rewarded with a trip to Miami for the group's Food Insights Tour

After a 3.30am wake up call, we met our Miami Insight Tour group at London Heathrow. Touching down in Miami just after 3pm local time the first thing that hit us was the heat... 32 degrees, said Charlene.

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An evening of networking followed at The American Social. All 100+ MIDAS sponsors, operators & hosts out together.  Bustling atmosphere, stunning setting.  Food was a served buffet style - no restaurant in Miami is able to take a booking for 100+ so we will be split into groups from tomorrow onwards.

Buffet consisted of pizza, mini cheese burgers,  prawn & cheese and balls & salad.

Our first full day started with a trip to South Beach and a trip to Bella Cuba, writes Aaron.

My first impression was that this place looks nice and authentic! We got a warm welcome; our waiter was knowledgeable and attentive, he had so much passion about the menu and food choices. You could tell this was a family run restaurant, you could feel it in the atmosphere! Our food was really tasted, authentic Cuban food done well, my favourite dish was the Ceviche…. WOW! I have never tasted ceviche like it, it was so fresh, and the flavours were incredible (pictured above).

Next up in South Beach was Naked Taco. This place really stood out for me… the sun was shining… palm trees…  and a nice shaded courtyard which we all needed... It just had such a cool beach vibe going on. Orders were made very quickly and our waiter’s recommendations were spot on. We all ate the tacos, I ordered octopus and the vegan cauliflower, and despite trying some of the others, mine was my favourite. The combination of spices, diced mango, lime, corn, onions, etc were perfect! but the HOLY MOLY LOBSTER AND BELLY PORK was out of this world! Super fresh and a party on my tastebuds, the lobster was incredible!

It was nice to learn that most of the ingrediencies were farm to fork, I did some research on this place and the executive Chef - Ralph Pagano - set it up and has an empire of restaurants all over the US.

For dinner it was Flemings Prime Steakhouse. An All American Steakhouse in a stunning setting,  serving an abundance of fresh seafood, the finest steaks and fine wines. Service was outstanding, the waitress couldn’t do enough for us and was extremely knowledgeable.

I (Charlene) enjoyed a delicious starter of sweet chilli Calamari followed by a very British Chicken, chips and Asparagus Spears for main. 

While Aaron had the tuna poke to start (which is a raw tuna tartar) followed by the miso glazed seabass - truly amazing, cooked to perfection. All beautifully presented and tasted amazing.

Perfect end to a perfect day....