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3 Sizzling Spots in Miami: Chez Le Bebe

chez le bebe miami

Photo by Greg Clark

Longtime chef of Chez Le Bebe Delia Jean cooks up some Haitian goodness.

Chez Le Bebe
Locale: 114 NE 54th St.

Chef: Andy Mayor—whose father, Mario, opened Chez Le Bebe in 1984—owns the place, but Haitian-born chef Delia Jean has been the woman behind the food for 17 years. The kitchen looks like something out of The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover: You order from a counter and wait for your food, but this place has real soul.

Neighborhood: Unless you’re Haitian or have friends in the know, you’d pass this Little Haiti gem without giving it a second glance. But the secret is out: Miami New Times named Chez Le Bebe the city’s best Haitian restaurant of 2008. Expect to see lots of newbies in addition to the regular customers—some known to make the hour-plus  pilgrimage from West Palm Beach weekly—just for a taste for Chef Jean’s food.

Cuisine: Haitian fare melds elements from Spanish, French and African cuisines with Caribbean ingredients. Presentations are simple, often served over rice in a well-worn bowl, but what the dishes lack in appearance, they make up for with big bold flavors, like garlic, onions and hot pepper. 

What to order: Try the griot, chunks of pork fried to perfection—it’s the top seller and the restaurant goes through 600 pounds of it daily.

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