Habitués of South Padre have long wished for a dinner destination to match long-time breakfast and lunch favorite Yummies. That restaurant’s owners heard the call and have surprised their fans with Viva SPI, an open-air bayside cafe with an upscale lunch and dinner menu that goes beyond the island’s (in)famous and omnipresent fried fare. Try a refreshing cocktail featuring freshly pressed fruit juice (we like the Viva paloma) and follow it with the Agua Chile Ribeye, tangy with a topping of pickled onions and avocado slices. The beet and goat cheese salad is excellent too, and there are numerous seafood options to go with it (redfish, flounder, scallops, ahi tuna), but it’s the steak frites (outside skirt steak mounded with chimichurri accompanied by house-cut Parmesan truffle fries) that will bring us back for more.