Seven unexpected music venues in South Florida

South Florida is a hub for a variety of cultural and arts experiences, ranging from Art Basel to the South Beach Wine & Food Festival to Miami Spice. In a city with a million things to do, it’s often hard to find something special, but there are many places waiting to be discovered. Here is a compilation of the top seven live music venues you may not know. 

The lively patio area at Lagniappe where customers can enjoy their Wine and Cheese boards. (Photo by Jonathan Casaverde Maimon / Caplin News)

3425 NE Second Ave.
Miami, FL 33137 

Hidden on the border of the Design District you will find a small venue with a large outdoor patio. There you can enjoy a charcuterie board and wine. Head inside and you will find local bands like Hymn For Her, which play everything from country blues to punk. It all happens every single night.

Prices for cheeses and meats range from $2 to $20, wines go from $20 to $200 for a bottle and $10 to $20 for a glass. If wine and cheese isn’t really your speed, Lagniappe also offers a full kitchen with salads and a variety of hot plates such as grilled chicken.

Lagniappe doesn’t take reservations, and inside seating near the band is limited, so you might find yourself standing. If you’re going during the week, most people come and go as they please. But if you’re visiting during the weekend, make sure to get there early and secure a place. Parking can be tough to find.

The large patio area features the stage that is used when weather permits. (Photo by Jonathan Casaverde Maimon / Caplin News)

Chima Steakhouse
2400 E. Las Olas Blvd. 
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
(954) 712-0580

In the heart of Fort Lauderdale, on the heavily trafficked 2.5 mile road named Las Olas Boulevard, lives an exclusive Brazilian Steakhouse featuring rodizio offerings and pricey wines. Passing by this place, you might assume it is out of your budget, but arrive from  5  to 7 p.m. during the week and you will find great prizes and stellar ambiance. 

From Wednesday to Saturday, Chima Steakhouse invites guests for drinks and snacks in their beautiful courtyard. Here, they are serenaded by traditional Brazilian music. You can snag a glass of any house wine for $7 or a caipirinha for $7.

Chima’s kitchen doesn’t only cook steaks. Try the aji chicken skewers with pineapple, which is extremely juicy, paired with an excellent aji sauce for just $5.50. If your taste buds lean toward seafood, the salmon tartare is sure to shock you. A delicious tartare on a bed of homemade guacamole goes for just $12.

Left: Local band La Linea promoting their upcoming appearance at Vivo. Right: Customers participating in Sunset Yoga in front of the Miller Lite Stage. (Photo credits to @vivomiamifl on Instagram)

Vivo! Dolphin Mall 
11401 NW 12th St.
Miami, FL 33172

A venue full of options, Vivo acts as a mini-entertainment district, located directly adjacent to Dolphin Mall. Parking is a nightmare on the weekends due to the mall. Their appropriately-named Miller Lite stage is surrounded by two independent sports bars, all with their own unique selection of liquor.

The first and most standout restaurant when you walk in is PBR Miami. This restaurant boasts an affinity for the late-night scene. Their centerpiece is a mechanical bull, highlighting their Western theme nicely. Visitors only get to party three times a week, since the restaurant is closed Sunday through Wednesday.

Sports & Social provides guests with a great dining experience in front of a 50-foot long television screen. Their freshly-squeezed fruit cocktails and local brews are readily available. They sell margaritas, with the perfect margarita being the price of $16.00. The sports bar’s milkshakes are also divine; the chocolate cookie one in particular is a hit, being priced at only $12.00.

Live music is guaranteed to play at the Miller Lite stage every Wednesday to Sunday. Cup pong tables and Jumbo Jenga sets are scattered around the Blue Moon Garden for kids and adults alike to play. Make sure to visit when a sports game is playing for the best experience!

Customers enjoy open mic night, an event featuring local artists. (Photo credits to @teaandpoets on Instagram)

Tea & Poets 
5701 Sunset Dr. Unit 126
South Miami, FL 33143

Located in the center of South Miami’s most famous mall, this popular café offers a ton of activities throughout the month. The second you walk in, you get a full view of their huge chalkboard titled “This Month’s Tea,” displaying the various events the restaurant has scheduled every month. Wednesdays are reserved for Open Mic Night, a tradition where anyone is allowed to go on stage and perform. The event is family-friendly, so make sure to bring the kids along!

Tea & Poets boasts a variety of beverages in their menu, from tea cocktails to coffee. Most of the beverages are not super expensive, like the lions mane tea, which contains rooibos red tea and African vanilla syrup, only for $4.50. The restaurant also features a section of matcha-infused beverages, like the Matcha Lemonade, a fusion of lemonade and a matcha tea latte, valued at $5.40. Visitors can choose to customize their beverages however they want with minimal charge. 

There are various small shops littered around the restaurant, serving as a mini-market. One corner shop sells handmade three-dimensional pop-up greeting cards, and has notable ones on display throughout the space.

The Fish House’s BackRoom Live stage. (Photo by Anna Trinidad / Caplin News)

Backroom Live Miami
10000 SW 56th St.
Miami, FL 33165

Located inside of The Fish House, Backroom Live is a secluded spot for local bands to perform. The venue is booked at least four times a week, with their most popular events being Jazz Wednesdays and Blues Thursdays.

Enjoy a wide selection of fish-centered dishes while listening to live music. The restaurant’s prices are semi-expensive, with chef specials like the salmon Orleans, which is around $23. Every fish served is guaranteed to be caught fresh for cooking. Try a local Florida favorite, the key lime pie, while chilling to some blues for only $8. 

Allapattah residents enjoying the Dominican nightlife. (Credits to @clubtipico on Instagram)

Club Tipico Dominicano 
1344 NW 36th St.
Miami, FL 33142

Founded in 1985, Club Tipico Dominicano is a classic Latin restaurant located in the Allapattah neighborhood. Frequented by locals, the community is what keeps the restaurant thriving. This restaurant is perfect for a true Dominican experience right here in Miami.

During the late evening hours on weekends, the restaurant turns into a nightclub, where the centerpiece dance floor becomes packed with customers dancing mercilessly to Latin hits. In the daytime, visitors enjoy a casual dining experience with specialty Dominican food!

Club Tipico Dominicano provides a multitude of drinks, including whiskey, vodka, wines, and champagne. There’s also a page on their menu entirely dedicated to cocktails. Familiar favorites are featured, like the Blue Long Island cocktail, valuing at only $10. A Dominican twist is also added to some of the drinks; the Passion Fruit Mojito is made from passion fruit, a beloved Dominican fruit, valued at only $12.

Customers enjoying the newest spot in Miami for parties. (Credits to @zeyzeymiami on Instagram)

Zey Zey Miami 
353 NE 61 St.
Miami, FL

Opened just two months ago, Zey Zey Miami is a rapidly rising cultural hub found in the Upper East Side neighborhood. You will be asked to scan a QR code to access free admission when walking in. This is to monitor how many people are in the venue at once. 

The main attraction is the Zaku stage, located in an open area a short walk from the entrance. A rotating band of artists are shown every day the venue is open. For instance, on Sep. 15, the venue hosted the DJ Nickodemus to celebrate the release of his new album Soul & Science.

Inside the building lies a disco ball as the standout object, surrounded by a stand for a DJ and a few feet of space to party. This space is called Tima, and it’s only open for some scheduled activities. On September 22, the space will be hosting a free Salsa class at 8:00 p.m.

The venue’s cocktails, crafted by the world-renowned mixologist Esther Merino, are able to be purchased in the Casita, found to the right of the main entrance. The cocktail stand isn’t open immediately when the area opens, but it is open in the later hours. 

Zey Zey offers rotating food vendors to customers. As of now, there are three food vendors: The Maiz Project, Maná Table, and Dale Street Food. Each food vendor offers multiple Latin-fusion foods. For instance, the Maiz Project offers homemade arepas for around $15. Maná Table also features famous Latin desserts, like their delicious cooked tequeños with guava dip for $12.

Jonathan Casaverde Maimon is a senior majoring in Digital Communications with a track in Digital Journalism as well as a minor in International Relations. When they graduate, they plan on obtaining a master’s in political communications and continuing to work in Washington DC.


Anna Trinidad is a junior majoring in digital journalism. In the future, she wishes to become an editor at a book publishing firm.