While Cote NYC is undeniably a game-changing icon of the elevated Korean dining scene, Cote Miami is the cooler younger sibling that is assuredly stepping out of its elder’s shadow. Awarded a Michelin Star only a year after opening, Cote Miami was again awarded the well-deserved honor last week for the second year in a row.
The beef-centric menu is the vision of restaurateur Simon Kim who imagined combining the best elements of Korean barbecue and American steakhouse. Stylish but not stuffy, Cote Miami is romantic enough for a date night, fun for a group, and exciting enough to impress a business contact. Dark neon pink sets the tone, and the red-hued dry-aging chamber gives the elegant dining area a noir-like twist. The lively neon-lit bar is visible from all seats.
An exclusive private room hides behind a covert entrance and includes a two-way mirror that looks out into the dining room. For those in the know, karaoke is also a possibility in this room for VIP guests.
What to Order at Cote Miami
With a variety of Prime cuts that are dry-aged and seasoned with the restaurant’s own combination of Himalayan and Korean sea salts, beef is the uncontested headliner here. The most affordable option is the Butcher’s Feast, which at $68 per person gives diners a taste of the restaurant’s best dishes and four carefully chosen cuts of COTE’s most famous USDA Prime and American Wagyu beef.
In place of the often heavier conventional steakhouse sides, beef here is served with a variety of pickled seasonal vegetables and salads, red leaf lettuce with Ssaam-jang, a fluffy, flavorful egg soufflé, two stews with rice, and soft serve ice cream with soy sauce caramel for dessert. For the die-hard beef lover, a 10-course Steak Omakase is available.
Cote Korean Steakhouse is a carnivore’s paradise and each table is inlaid with state-of-the-art charcoal grills. Meats and vegetables are expertly cooked at the table with flair by knowledgeable servers who entertain with information as well as cook and serve.
The staff works in harmony, taking turns grilling at each table and picking up where another has left off. For those unfamiliar with Korean cuisine and the impressive variety of meat and wine selections, knowledgeable servers are ready to make recommendations.
Cote Miami draws a diverse crowd, ranging from tables ordering seafood plateaus and steak omakase to traditionalists participating in an elevated but authentic Korean experience. The crowd is decidedly fashionable with many diners carrying shopping bags from the upscale boutiques that flank Cote Miami. Although there isn’t a dress code, the restaurant unsurprisingly attracts an impressive, fashion-forward set that isn’t afraid to stand out.
In line with all the wonderful aspects of the restaurant, it is clear that a lot of thought and consideration went into the beverage program at Cote Miami. The wine list includes local wine producers who are committed to sustainable practices and there are options for every budget. All of this is a tribute to Victoria James, director of beverage, who was nominated twice for a James Beard Award for Outstanding Wine Program. Fun cocktails are plentiful and you might want to try the signature “frosé”, which is spiked with campari and decorated with a pink flamingo.
If you were to choose one or two appetizers, the caviar on Korean milk toast is not to be missed and the oysters are always fabulous. For non-carnivores, there are simply prepared fish options as well as a terrific noodle dish called bibim gooksu.