Japanese-born Makoto Okuwa began a sushi apprenticeship at age 15. After 10 years he moved to the United States as head sushi chef for Iron Chef Morimoto. Since 2011, he has partnered with restaurateur Stephen Starr in his own Japanese restaurant, Makoto, at 9700 Collins Ave. in Bal Harbour. Here are his favorite places to eat in Miami:
Simply and beautifully prepared Mediterranean food.
4312 NE Second Ave., Miami; 305-576-6066.
2. Blue Collar
My favorite brunch spot.
6730 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; 305-756-0366.
3. Ironside Pizza
Wood-burning oven cranks out delicious pizzas.
3918 N. Miami Ave., Miami; 786-275-4963.
4. Petit Rouge
Best Caesar salad and French onion soup!
12409 Biscayne Blvd., North Miami; 305-892-7676.
5. Cake Thai Kitchen
Cake worked for me and always showed great talent.
7919 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; 786-534-7906.
6. Drunken Dragon
I love that you could walk by and have no idea it’s there.
1424 Alton Rd., Miami Beach; 305-397-8556.
7. Momi Ramen
Noodles made fresh daily.
5 SW 11th St., Miami; 786-391-2392.
A little off the beaten path but worth the drive from Miami.
4991 N. University Dr., Lauderhill; 954-572-4800.
Polenta is out of this world!
820 Alton Rd., Miami Beach; 305-534-2124.
10. Wynwood Kitchen and Bar
Great for two to 20 people.
2550 NW Second Ave., Miami; 305-722-8959.
Evan S. Benn is Miami Herald food editor: @EvanBenn