#Foodie Friends – #ThankYou Miami

Who doesn’t love Miami, right? For all of us who have the pleasure of calling the Magic City home, we often find ourselves saying “Thank You, Miami!” Well, our latest #FoodieFriend says that pretty much on a daily basis with her blog, wait for it… #ThankYou Miami.

With a focus on fashion, food, travel, and, of course, Miami, Margarita Wells has been publicly thanking her city for the past two years. Through her writing, she hopes to inspire others to live for the moment and celebrate the wonderful features our city has to offer. Sounds pretty good to us!

While Mel was out of town this week, Mitch met up with Margarita the other night at La Gloutonnerie in Miami Beach to get to know each other a little better over a few drinks. See what we found out about her, and her blog, below!

P.S. Speaking of things we found out… Did you know La Gloutonnerie has a nightly happy hour from 6-9pm? Be sure to check it out for $10 drinks and complimentary appetizers at the bar.

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What is your favorite thing about Miami?
I love that Miami is both a city and a beach town. I love that it is big enough to keep you entertained, but small enough to feel like a tight-knit community. From the outside it’s easy to see it as cold and impersonal. As an insider, I can vouch that it is as warm and welcoming as Podunk, USA.

What are your top 3 Miami restaurant/bar picks?
My go-to bar du jour is Ball and Chain in Little Havana. Their Miami-inspired cocktails are delicious and their outdoor patio reminds me of my grandma’s house in Mexico. For a delicious meal in South Beach, I love Ice Box. You can’t go wrong ordering anything off their menu. I also love Little Havana’s Jamon Iberico Pata Negra. The chef and owner serves up exquisite Spanish food in a very welcoming environment. It may just be Miami’s best-kept secret.

Which Miami neighborhood best personifies you?
South of Fifth is my favorite neighborhood and the most like me. It is located close to the intoxicating energy and chaos of South Beach, but it is laidback and quiet. Residents in this area vary from artists and surfers to the rich and famous, but the neighborhood makes this crazy mix work.

Other than Miami, what foodie city would you like to live in?
I recently visited New Orleans for the first time and fell in love with the city, its culture, and its food. The group I traveled with had friends in the area so we truly got to experience the city like a local. We devoured everything from authentic Creole soul food to Asian fusion. Everything was exquisite and we managed to successfully avoid Bourbon Street!

How did you get into blogging?
I had a moment a few years ago where I realized that my relationship with Miami was deteriorating thanks to the small annoyances that come with living in a metropolitan, tourist destination. I started ThankYouMiami.com as a venue to remind myself and other Miami locals why we are extremely lucky to live in this beautiful city. I explain the full “A-Ha!” moment on my blog.

Describe your blog in three words.
Positive. Resourceful. Playful.

How do you stay informed about the Miami food scene?
I stay on top of the Miami food scene by eating my way through Miami with my husband and friends. We add variety to our choices by follow fellow foodies on social media and asking our followers to recommend their favorite spots.

What is your foodie motto?
Our motto for everything is “Love it or hate it, #ThankYouMiami for it all.” If you think about it, all of us owe our outstanding and diverse foodie experiences to Miami.

What are some of your non-food-related hobbies?
ThankYouMiami.com is also a fashion, travel, and lifestyle blog because my life is a combination of food and fashion moments, punctuated by travel. When we visit tropical locales like Panama and Nicaragua, I unwind with surf photography. In colder climes, I enjoy skiing, snow skating, and après-skiing.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
I know it’s cheesy, but my life right now is perfect happiness. If I had to choose a specific moment, it is driving on the MacArthur Causeway at sunset with the windows down, music blasting, and the smell of the ocean in the air.

Which talent would you most like to have?
I would love to speak and understand every language. As a bilingual in Miami, I can participate in most conversations. As such, it is all the more frustrating when I cannot understand a language being spoken in front of me.

If you only could eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
As a Mexican, I have to say tacos because they already make up 99% of my diet.

Who is your favorite chef and why?
Chef Felipe from Jamon Iberico Pata Negra because he makes amazing food, has an infectious attitude, and brings a personal touch to meals at his restaurant. He is extremely talented and transmits his love for his craft.

What food trend are you most into right now and what food trend would you most like to go away?
I am a sucker for spicy cocktails and want to see more of them on cocktail menus in Miami and beyond. The food trend I want to slow down is the “authentic taqueria” craze. Because there is so much competition, many newly opened spots are tweaking my favorite taco recipes to stand out and are insulting my ancestors and taste buds in the process.

Do you cook? If so, what’s your favorite dish to prepare?
I cook everything but proteins because my husband is much better at it. My favorite dish to prepare is a breakfast quesadilla that is made from imported tortillas and cheese and is topped with avocado, salsa, and a fried egg. Is it weird that my mouth is watering?

Cheers to our #FoodieFriends and their own great adventure around our city!

Mitch & Mel

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