Romantic and cozy French restaurant with spectacular food and pastries

Miami Beach is full of expensive and trendy places to eat and go out but it’s places like Otentic Miami Beach which keep the locals happy. Otentic Miami Beach is a cozy romantic French cafe. They feature French inspired dishes and a very nice assortment of pastries. One block north of 5th and Washington in the heart of South Beach Otentic is what I would definitely would refer to as a hidden gem.

The Food
When I describe a place with great food, big portions, great service and affordable prices, I am usually not referring to a place in South Beach. Otentic breaks the mold of the typical overpriced trending restaurant here. The portions are perfect for a main course to be a complete meal but are also fairly priced. This is why so many people continue to recommend this place by word of mouth rather than Otentic having to run ads on the radio or on the streets like other local places. First, they seat you with an olive tapenade and bagel chips paired with a glass of white wine. For an appetizer we got the Soupe a l’Oignon which is I guess the French name for French onion soup. One of my favorite soups, this one was especially great. The cheese was covering the bowl and the croutons were crunchy.  The onions were cooked perfectly to go with the broth. My wife ordered the “Seared Back of Salmon” for the 15th time. While she lacks sometimes in an adventurous appetite, she does know when to stick to a dish that is very very good. The dish comes with a hefty portion of salmon paired with linguini and basil cream sauce. I have never seen her finish half of this meal, which is great for me the next day for lunch usually! A newcomer to the menu is the Pork Filet. A pork tenderloin (more like 5 or 6) are coated with a grainy mustard sauce and sautéed green beans. The pork was juicy, the mustard sauce was sweet yet tangy, and the green beans were fresh and cooked to perfection.

The Drinks
Since this is a cafe the drinks are mostly wines. To no surprise all of these dishes go great with a bottle of French wine. For this dinner we got a pinot noir which wasn’t too expensive but came recommended by our waiter. A little on the lighter side the wine was very easy to drink and had a great taste to it. Nothing too exciting but it worked very well with our dinner.

The Service
We were seated immediately and our complimentary glasses of wine were served. English may not have been our waiter’s first language but he was able to take our orders and make suggestions without any difficulty. The food came out quickly and if we needed anything they were able to provide us with what we needed in a timely manner. Nothing extraordinary but rock solid service at Otentic.

Would I go back?
Definitely. This is one of the best places I can recommend to most people interested in eating dinner in South Beach. For a bottle of wine, 2 entrees and an appetizer our bill was still under $100. Not only is affordable but Otentic is also decorated very nicely. There is a nice French theme for the tables and walls, plus they play French music to round out the effect. It is definitely a great place to take a date without breaking the bank.

*Photo taken from http://www.otenticrestaurant.com/