Doya might just be the best restaurant in Wynwood right now, maybe even Miami. That’s right, we said what we said! Ever on the quest to find an eatery that checks all the right boxes, this modern Aegean meze bar–from one of the original owners and former executive chefs of the beloved Mediterranean hotspot, Mandolin–passes that test with flying colors. Luscious outdoor seating? Check. Easy accessibility? Check. Friendly and knowledgable staff? Checkitty check. Surprisingly affordable prices for an increasingly exorbitant neighborhood? Mhmmm. Music not booming in your face? Oh, thank god, check. Out-of-this-world food? Plot twist: CHECK!

All jokes aside, Doya is bringing back the magic to a neighborhood that seems to have lost a little bit of its whimsy along the path to development. The breathtaking outdoor patio, made intimate through abundant landscaping and shimmering bistro lights, immediately calls to you from the sidewalk. The spaces–both indoor and out–ooze with a relaxed charm so authentic, you really can’t find it in many places around Miami, let alone the surrounding arts district.

How satisfying it is to discover that the authenticity isn’t just a pretty facade to draw you in. The quality of culture and attention to detail is magnified through the carefully curated menu. Cultivated to deliver Miami the true essence of the Aegean region for the first time, Doya embodies the food, lifestyle and experiences of Greece and Turkey, with Mediterranean and Middle Eastern influences. And all of that starts with a drink menu subtly-infused with flavors of the region–from turmeric to dill–and boasting a rare selection of imported wines to boot.

To honor the Aegean tradition of sharing delectable food with good company, Doya’s menu items are meze style – a plethora of dishes with a variety of diverse flavors and textures designed to be savored. Doya’s cold meze menu, presented in a marketplace style, features beloved dips bursting with flavor. Usual suspects include muhammara, roasted eggplant, and beetroot dips served with succulent pide; and other favorite characters offering unconventional twists like their hummus boasting a thick topping of Turkish pastrami.

Prepared in wood fired ovens and over a charcoal grill, Doya’s hot mezes feature kofte, traditional Turkish meatballs; succulent lamb chops from the grill; Grilled whole branzino, with lemon, and extra virgin olive oil; and Fisherman’s Seafood Stew for two, from the wood fired oven. Much like restaurants in Turkey and Greece, the colorful meze bar greets guests upon arrival, displaying a variety of dishes for patrons to gaze upon before they are seated.

A rotating dessert menu features treats, such as Mastic pudding, served with mixed berries compote, sable cookies, fresh berries and balsamic honey caviar. Looking for something more decadent? Try Doya’s chocolate delicacy, made with a Turkish tea biscuit, pistachio praline, chocolate cremeux and sumac ice cream. But don’t forget that the Turkish are celebrated for their ice cream, so make sure to get a scoop–or three. Complement it all with after-dinner drinks, like Turkish coffee or an espresso martini.

The next time you’re looking for an elevated dining experience with a casual ambiance, look no further than Doya. We guarantee that their eclectic space–with its art and textile sourced from Turkey–will fit any occasion, special or otherwise. And if that’s not enough, we know Executive Chef Erhan Kostepen’s sumptuous selection of dishes will. Remember to share at this family-style spot; or just do what we did and order two of everything!

Address: 347 NW 24th St, Miami, FL 33127
Hours: Sun – Thurs: 12pm – 10pm | Fri & Sat: 12pm – 11pm.

Photos courtesy of Doya.