Really 3.5 stars (Alaskan King Crab gets 5 stars - the rest not so much)
I have been living in Miami for five years now, and for five years I've been waiting to eat at Joe's Stone Crab. So I think it's fitting that I use this as my 200th review. There has always been a reason why I didn't go - either that we didn't want to be surprised by a tremendous bill or we didn't feel like waiting three hours to be seated somewhere. But thankfully, I talked my boss into taking us here for our office's Christmas lunch this year.
Firstly, the wait was not bad at all for lunch. We arrived at 11:45 and were seated by 12:00. The host even told us this was a normal wait, as long as you arrive somewhere between 11:30 and 12:00. After 12:00 and the wait can get substantially longer.
Before I get into any negatives, I want to say that the Alaskan King Crab is worth every penny of the $50 those three enormous legs cost. The meat was sweet, tender and pulled so easily away from the shell. I will absolutely be coming back here, even if just to the take-away, to get those crab legs. I did not try the stone crab simply because I didn't think eating cold crab would be worth it. Maybe I'm being too picky - but I like my seafood hot. I think I made a great decision, I saw my co-worker's meals and think I definitely had the better entree.
We tried the hash browns with onion ($9.25) and the lobster mac 'n cheese ($15.95). The hash browns were just potatoes. Nothing special, nothing I'd order again. The lobster mac 'n cheese was pretty tasty and had large pieces of lobster in it.
The desserts were good, the key lime pie certainly the star. The chocolate mousse cake and the apple pie a la mode were also very good. The presentation on the chocolate mousse cake was amazing.
The biggest let down of the entire experience was the service. The hosts were amazingly friendly and inviting, but our server, Joe, was just bitter the entire time. I think it may be because one of my co-workers tried a joke that he's probably heard a million times "Your name is Joe? Are you the owner?" But seriously, he treated us with such attitude the rest of the meal, that it was hard to believe we were in such an upscale establishment. I'm hoping this was just an off day for them, as I see in other reviews that the service is very good. We just unfortunately did not get to experience this.
I would come back here in a heartbeat if someone else were footing the bill. But if it's on my money, I'd think a little about it. The poor service and average side items just didn't make up for the wonderfully sweet crab meat. I'd rather just pay for the crab and make my own sides at home using Joe's Take-out.