The Pelican Cafe at the Pelican Hotel offers guests a truly unique getaway with quirky themed guest rooms dressed up in jungle prints or campy Vegas glam. Celebrating La Dolce Vita, the hotel is owned by Diesel Brands and sets itself apart with a casual vibe and a flip-flops dress code. Lauded on the FoodTV network for Giada de Laurentis’ favorite brunch, Executive Chef Stefano Zan has reworked the menu to reflect his contemporary Italian style. Sitting on the busy sidewalks of Ocean Drive, the people watching is some of the best on the beach.
Popular at sunset, the happy hour vibe at the Pelican creates an ideal stop after a day in the sun. Appetizers, pizza, or panini sandwiches on homemade bread make it easy to pass on the fried food and frozen drink vendors who hustle the sidewalk scene. Creating a party atmosphere, the restaurant is filled with candles, large floral arrangements and a whimsical lighting fixture covered in tiny dangling butterflies. Content to attract business without the brassy come-ons, the Pelican is one of the few cafes where an attractive crowd gathers on the strength of the buzz.
Breakfast entrees at the Pelican hover around the $10 mark and feature classic egg dishes, omeletts as you like and pancakes, waffles or French toast with berries. The Italian-inspired cuisine kicks off at lunchtime with choices of crisp calamari, pizza, focaccia sandwiches and pastas. With a well-edited wine list, evenings spent sipping a bold red wine and sharing an antipasto, a variety of imported Italian cheeses or a mixed grill of salmon, tuna, shrimp and calamari can be perfectly romantic. House made pastas and freshly baked bread set the Pelican apart from neighboring cafes where the emphasis is on quick turnovers and discount dining.
826 Ocean Drive
Miami Beach, FL
Cuisine: new Italian
Appetizers $7-$14, Entrees $10-$40