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Serendipity 3 – It’s Not Just a Sweet Shop!

April 12, 2012 by Joan Nova in "Foodie" Activities, Florida, Restaurant Reviews | 14 Comments

Do you know the history of Serendipity 3? The origin is really amusing. From one tiny place in midtown Manhattan in the 1950s, they now have multiple locations, including a prime spot on Lincoln Road in Miami’s trendy South Beach.

I, of course, knew of the restaurant from living in NY although I never went there. When they recently opened in South Beach, the buzz around town was good — so I was happy to receive an invitation from their PR person to have lunch there.

First off, it’s a visual treat – whimsical (you all know how I like whimsy). Everywhere your eyes wander, there’s something interesting to look at from the many Tiffany light fixtures to settees to Alice in Wonderland-like art. Ice cream parlor tables and chairs outside and in the center while the walls are lined with attractive, upholstered banquettes.

The restaurant has indoor and outdoor seating and a varied menu with something for everyone. While I normally go for the healthier choice, I threw caution to the wind and tried a couple of the dishes they’re famous for. But, I hung on to a modicum of moderation. We shared. :)

Crab Cake Salad – Maryland jumbo blue crab cake with red grapefruit, avocado, fresh corn niblets, red onions, mache-frisee salad with herb vinaigrette.

When one of my friends heard I was going to Serendipity 3, she said “you must have their chicken & waffles!” So I did.

Chicken & Waffles, breakfast potatoes, maple syrup and honey mustard.

And this is what they’re best known for … desserts!

The carrot cake was more like a whole cake than a slice. Sort of Cheesecake Factory size. Ginormous!

Serendipity 3 is definitely a fun spot. It’s no wonder the brand has lasted so long. And, it’s not just for families and desserts. A large full-service, sit-at bar is always an attractive lure for adults — and this one has a very nice wine list and specialty cocktails.  Note: food portions are generous and best shared. Even shared, we left with a shopping bag of leftovers.

And what’s a restaurant review without a photo of the bathroom? The whimsy continued into the stalls which were covered with their artful menu. I just couldn’t resist. 

NOTE: Some recipes found on FOODalogue are offered without ingredient quantities. They're meant as a guide to food pairings and techniques to be experimented with … in your own kitchen … to your own spice and taste levels … to your preferred portion sizes … and to however many people you’re cooking for. A perfect meal has multiple levels of flavor and textures, bright colors and tastes, and healthy(ish) choices. It's all about enjoyment. Enjoy the process, the presentation and the just rewards...eating!


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  1. cinzia says:

    You know what, Joan, Serendipity has such an attraction to me just because of the name, I mean the sound in English of this name is fabulously enchanting for me :-) … you may think I am a little crazy but that’s it, and your pictures about the place give me the same feeling!
    And you remember the movie with the same title? … about the feeling you get when you discover something unsought and unexpected as looking for something else :-)

  2. What a lunch!! It all looks amazing – and BIG! I’m headed to NYC next month and will put this on my list of places to try.

  3. My memories are of my father taking me to the New York location when I was young then bringing my children and now my grandchildren. Three genrations of Serendipity.
    Platanos, Mangoes and Me! recently posted..COD FISH, MY WAY – BACALAO, A MI MANERAMy Profile

  4. chicken & waffles!!!
    South Florida Food and Wine recently posted..In the News, food, drink and the South Florida LifestyleMy Profile

  5. Love the name, love the concept. And the crab cake salad–that’s what appealed to me most. Though this Southern girl secretly would like the chicken and waffles…and the carrot cake extravaganza.

    Great review.
    Flavors of the Sun recently posted..Middle Eastern Salad with Allspice VinaigretteMy Profile

  6. Joan says:

    From Queen Bee Annie:

    I used to go to Serendipity in the city alot. You brought me back to a long time ago and a really fun place. It looks like it did in Manhattan i’m guessing it still looks the same and of course all the food still looks marvelous thank you for a trip down memory lane. have a great day

  7. Dorothy says:

    Do they have the delicious frozen hot chocolate there?
    That’s what I remember most about Serendipity. It was big enough for three to share.

  8. Ben says:

    I’ve heard of the restaurant, but never ate there. Beautiful pictures!

  9. Whimsy is right. I felt a bit like Alice when I saw that sofa. I think I’ll just take a seat there and have a place of chicken & waffles.

    Great place Joan and wonderful pictures. I feel like I’ve been there thanks to you.
    Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen recently posted..Tomato & Crispy Prosciutto Bruschetta – a Small Plate Lunch or a Filling AppetizerMy Profile

  10. Ivy says:

    I’ve heard about it but it’s nice to see how it looks and what it serves. The food looks amazing and love that sofa!!
    Ivy recently posted..Braided Savory Cheese TsourekiMy Profile

  11. Marie says:

    Oh wow that crab cake salad looks crazy good! I want to go eat with you Joan!
    Marie recently posted..Grilled Vegetable Tart with PhylloMy Profile

  12. Love the concept of that place! I bet one feels totally relaxed and indulges!! Love that salad!

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