New York’s Whitmans brings classic American cuisine to South Beach

This is a restaurant that serves a lot of solid comfort food, but it’s really known for one thing: Juicy Lucy. Born in flyover country, it’s a cheese-stuffed burger that moved to New York City when Whitmans opened there in 2010. Like any smart New Yorker, it then migrated to Miami in early 2022, when a Whitmans landed in the South Beach local. on West Ave. It sports a diner-chic vibe thanks to interior design firm Dekar, which outfitted the place in cream-colored tile flooring that keeps it from feeling too much like a hotel restaurant. A massive second location will soon follow in Wynwood.

It’s all good, and like the Walt Whitman-inspired name, a real slice of Americana.

In both, the headliner will always be a Juicy Lucy which breaks down like this: two short rib mix patties forged together with a piece of chili cheese in the center, a toupée of caramelized onions, a single layer of lettuce iceberg, a few slices of tomato, pickles, a special sauce and a big sesame seed bun that will have everyone wondering how the whole show will fit in a mouth, an Instagram photo or maybe through a standard door.

A bite later and lots of cheese will seep out – onto the hands, the plate and maybe a landslide to the next table. The Juicy Lucy is definitely something someone in your party should order, but there are more that are worth it, like the super crispy fries covered in blue cheese and bacon bits, the tangy fried pickles , Brussels sprout salad with feta and a cheesesteak that leaves Philly behind with the addition of grilled onions. It’s all good, and like the Walt Whitman-inspired name, a real slice of Americana. But it’s still going to be that burger with the cheese in the center, even if half ends up in your lap.

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