February is Black History Month and there’s no better place to celebrate and honor the contributions of African Americans than in Miami. This city is bursting with black entrepreneurs, creatives, musicians, and businesses, all of whom have played a vital role in shaping the culture and cuisine of this vibrant metropolis.
As a lover of food and travel, I’ve had the pleasure of exploring Miami’s diverse neighborhoods and experiencing the rich flavors that define this city. From the traditional Caribbean and African-inspired dishes of Little Haiti, to the fusion cuisine of Overtown, Miami is a culinary melting pot that tells the story of its diverse community through its food.
So come with me, and let’s explore the streets of Miami during Black History Month. You’ll be amazed by the stories, flavors, and sounds that make this city so special.
Miami Beach Exhibit Debunks Faulty Narrative of Ancient African Kingdoms
Kimpton Angler’s is thrilled to kick-off a new, year-long series of installations by Black artists with this thought-provoking and compelling collection of works by Dr. Sheg Aranmolate. Inspired by the 12th century terracotta sculptures of the Ife Kingdom in western Nigeria and relying heavily on the artistic concept of realism, comes the Obirin Series by Dr. Sheg Aranmolate. Originally from Nigeria, Dr. Sheg’s intention is to debunk a lot of the faulty narratives that surround the concept of ancient African kingdoms as well as give a glimpse into what life looked like in those times.
Hebru Brantley’s BOUND at the Wynwood Walls, Wynwood
American contemporary artist Hebru Brantley, invites the public on his personal exploration of boundaries, expectations, and deconstructing the idea of perfection with BOUND, presented by GGA Gallery at the Wynwood Walls. BOUND takes a hard look at anxiety, generational trauma, and the stress that echoes through our center when attempting to fit into ideologies that aren’t necessarily our own. Brantley utilizes his signature, conceptualized iconic characters to address complex ideas and the physical notion of boundaries, imperfection and explores whether the idea of the “American dream” truly exists. The Wynwood Walls is located at 2520 NW Second Ave, Miami
Yinka Ilori’s Blue Rider Cafe Mural at Superblue, Allapattah
London-based multidisciplinary artist, Yinka Ilori permanently transforms Superblue’s Blue Rider Cafe, a space composed of refurbished shipping containers, through the installation of a mural and design concept comprised of bold shapes, layered patterns, and lush colors inspired by Nigerian parables and West African fabrics. One of Ilori’s first site-specific commissions in the U.S., the installation is an homage to his British-Nigerian heritage as well as the vibrant energies of Miami and reflects the cultural cross-pollination and inclusivity that Ilori promotes throughout his practice. Superblue is located at 1101 NW 23rd St, Miami, FL.
Black-owned Miami Hotels
The Gabriel Miami
The Gabriel Miami is a 129-key lifestyle hotel in Downtown Miami, offering spacious rooms and suites and views of Biscayne Bay. Adjacent to the hotel’s palm-tree-lined sun deck on the 14th floor is a rectangular pool with views of the intracoastal waterway, the Miami Beach skyline, PortMiami and Biscayne Bay, providing guests with the ultimate venue for relaxation and tranquility among the city’s cultural epicenter. Select rooms feature balconies with outdoor seating, providing the ultimate venue for watching the sunrise over the Miami skyline.
The Gabriel South Beach
The Gabriel South Beach is a boutique property located on Ocean Drive in South Beach. The boutique property has with two pools, including a show-stopping, glass bottom pool on the roof overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and is comprised of three individual buildings – including the historic Park Central Hotel, Heathcote Apartments and the Imperial Hotel, presenting travelers with the classic Art Deco design and architecture synonymous with Miami Beach. Guests will find a 30-foot-tall mural by the French-born, Los Angeles-based street artist Mr. Brainwash, known for his large-scale installations and prints of celebrities like Madonna, Kate Moss, and Marilyn Monroe and his practice of subverting cultural iconography similar to Andy Warhol and Banksy. The hotel blends Art Deco modernism with tropical allure.
Black-Owned Miami Restaurants
Rosie’s: The Backyard
Rosie’s: The Backyard, located in Little River was conceptualized and named by power couple Jamila and Akino West. Rosie’s: The Backyard is a well-known, soul food concept known for Southern-inspired dishes with a nod to the couple’s formal culinary training in award-winning kitchen’s across the globe. With a quaint and uniquely beautiful dining and patio area, Rosie’s: The Backyard has an array of traditional brunch and breakfast food dishes with an elevated touch for all to enjoy.
Smith & Webster Restaurant & Bar
Smith & Webster Restaurant and Bar’s founders Starex Smith and Kayvon Webster, recognized the need for an innovative eatery pairing soulful African diaspora food pathways with French cooking techniques. A space of high energy boasting an extensive craft bar focused on seasonal produce, premiere wines and spirits, is at the core of our values. Both the cuisine and vibrant interior design attracts an expansive range of people of all ages, where one could enjoy an elevated gastronomic experience of nostalgic offerings for a more flexible style of dining.
Red Rooster Overtown
Red Rooster, located in the heart of Overtown, serves comfort food that celebrates the roots of American cuisine and the diverse culinary traditions of the neighborhood. The restaurant’s mission is to share the story of Overtown with its guests and offer a platform to celebrate local artists, musicians, and culinary talents. Overtown is a unique and historically rich neighborhood, and Red Rooster is honored to be a part of it. The restaurant invites guests to join them and share in the spirit of Overtown, where Chef Marcus Samuelsson brings his passion for food to the neighborhood.
Fat Ronnie’s Burger Bar
The family burger business began in Harlem in 1972, with Ronnie’s grandmother and her self-named burger joint called MAXINE’S. Maxine was the first black female union butcher in the country. Ronnie comes from 5 generations of burger makers and grew up in the burger business practically his whole life. Working at his Grandmothers restaurant since age 6, he became part of the management team of his father’s burger joint in New York City at the young age of 12. He now has returned to his roots and is building his brand with his daughter.