Best Place To Eat Seafood In Destin – Smell the salty air of Destin’s coast, squint at the sunlight shimmering on the turquoise waves of the Gulf of Mexico, and watch from afar the fishing boats returning to shore. There’s no doubt that if you start craving some seafood, it’s only a matter of time. Located in the heart of the Gulf Coast and referred to as “The World’s Luckiest Fishing Village,” Destin, FL, is gearing up to offer a great selection of seafood to hungry audiences. Destin’s seafood restaurants and markets await, whether you’re craving comfort food at a fish shack, refreshing the mood with a candlelit meal, or planning a cozy night out cooking at your vacation rental.
One of Destin’s seafood mainstays, Dewey’s may seem like every inch of it is a tourist trap – visitors to the Panhandle consistently fill this cozy diner. Of course, there’s usually a reason why restaurants become iconic, and yes, Dewey does. There are a few important things to remember though: stay away from fried plates (they’re not the freshest) and don’t pin your hopes on french fries (totally poor). Instead, opt for a light or spicy prepared pound of steamed seafood or the fresh catch of the day, usually grouper, sea bass or triggerfish. Whether you order fresh fish, grilled or blackened (come on, why not take things a step further?), it won’t disappoint. Other big wins include daily specials. Always fresh and creatively prepared, the latest specialties include grilled mahi-mahi topped with tomatoes, olives, garlic, fresh basil and feta, reduced balsamic and seared grouper topped with dried artichokes and shrimp, complete with a lemon butter cream sauce. . . For starters, dip in the over-the-top creamy hot crab sauce and cap off the night with a slice of homemade Key lime pie.
Best Place To Eat Seafood In Destin
An easy drive from downtown Destin, Shrimp Shack is located in Seaside, possibly one of the most beautiful beach communities on Earth. Once you’ve tasted Shrimp Shack’s amazing seafood, any doubt you might have about the quality of food from a counter service “shack” will be shattered. Start with a plate of oysters sourced from Louisiana on recent visits and you’ll be overcome with salty delight. Follow this with a pound of steamed shrimp mixed with spices and dipped in cocktail sauce, and then – wait – enjoy the splendor of a steamed Royal Red. This type of deep-water shrimp is seasonal and packs a heap of buttery flavor—think lobster, but it’s softer (and some claim to be tastier). If you’re still craving your fill, there’s also a decadent lobster roll on the menu. Wash down your meal with a glass of fresh sauvignon blanc as you enjoy views of the Bay from the Shack’s beach pavilion.
Family Friendly Restaurants In Destin
There’s no reason why eating at home in Destin shouldn’t be as boring as a night out. Most vacationers in Destin choose to stay in apartments or summer houses and often travel as part of a multi-family group. Eating out at night can increase quickly given the conditions, so take advantage of your rental’s fully equipped kitchen and great fresh seafood markets like Destin’s Sexton’s. A favorite with locals and tourists for over 30 years, Sexton’s sells an abundance of fresh seasonal catch, including grouper, snapper, shrimp, Red Royal shrimp and stone crab claws. Sexton even distributes a selection of the coveted local Apalachicola oysters. The seafood here is always freshly caught and in season, so if you’re into something specific, contact Sexton’s for availability. In addition to fresh seafood, try Sexton’s smoked tuna dip, corn and crab bisque, or boathouse gumbo. Still not enough? Maybe an order of their jalapeño hush puppies will fill up.
Maybe you’re tired of eating in your swimsuit and sand in your hair at one of Destin’s many casual restaurants. When a special occasion – or just the desire to dress up a bit – strikes, head to the much-loved Marina Cafe. A prime beachfront location guarantees a romantic sunset location; In fact, diners can arrive early for happy hour on the restaurant’s waterfront deck. When it’s time to eat, you’ll be greeted with a menu wedge filled with expertly crafted seafood entrees such as jumbo pieces of crabmeat and stir-fried yellow-rimmed grouper, orzo pasta salad and champagne dip. Not all Marina Cafe’s seafood is locally fished, but it’s all fresh—we recommend simmering in seared Maine submersible scallops served over navy beans, sautéed spinach, and roma tomatoes in parmesan thyme juice. Save room for the rum raisin bread pudding soufflé garnished with caramelized bananas, bourbon caramel, and vanilla ice cream.
Louisiana Lagniappe has been delighting Destin’s locals and visitors for nearly 30 years with impeccable service and creative Creole-inspired seafood preparations. Fair warning: A night out eating here will be expensive but well worth it. Widely recognized as one of Destin’s best restaurants, Lagniappe serves classics like grouper meuniere and Maine lobster and shrimp etouffee. Still, the chef’s selections like braised jumbo soft-shell crab, honey-roasted hazelnuts, and grouper sautéed and topped with Hollandaise sauce really shine. Plan accordingly when considering the menu: you’ll want to warm up with an appetizer like the blackened scallops served with pineapple rum butter sauce or a bowl of Cajun seafood gumbo. Wash those flavors down with one of Lagniappe’s signature cocktails, such as the authentic French Quarter Hurricane, a dizzying mix of Myer’s rum, Bacardi rum, grenadine, orange juice, and pineapple.
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Restaurants In Destin & Fort Walton Beach
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The emerald-green water along Heart of Florida’s Emerald Coast is not only beautiful but also full of adventure – the kind you might encounter on fishing boats and restaurants alike. These legendary waters attract those who love to fish, those who love fresh seafood and those who can’t get enough of both. Whether you’re planning to buy a fishing reel or just a fork, you can’t help but catch the excitement.
Best Seafood Restaurants In Florida,’ Per Trips To Discover
While Native Americans fished in these pristine waters along the Emerald Coast in the early 7th century AD, the fishing industry here did not begin until 1835, when Captain Leonard Destin from New Long, Connecticut, moved to the area. “The World’s Luckiest Fishing Village” became Destin’s official nickname on October 15, 1956. Florida Governor Collins drove out with a rental car and came back in 15 minutes with a 19-pound King Mackerel. When a reporter said it was hard to believe he caught that fish in 15 minutes, “Not if you’re fishing in Destin. Those kids live by fish. Destin is the ‘Luckiest Fishing Village in the World’.’”
The first restaurant in Destin was opened in 1960 by Vernon “Bud” and Joyce La Fountain. At that time a seafood platter was only $2.50. Today, Destin is home to America’s largest fishing fleet and dozens of one-of-a-kind restaurants serving fresh, gulf-to-table cuisine.
Fried, grilled, blackened or tanned, nothing beats the taste of fresh fish caught on the Emerald Coast. There is no catch of the day here – there are several. From rustic oyster bars and outdoor cafes to candlelit restaurants, all of our local eateries offer the freshest and most diverse seafood.
All fish taste pretty much the same, right? False. The chefs at the Emerald Coast are doing great with a wide variety of fresh local fish. There are 20 types of edible fish to sample at any given time. Something magical happens when you combine fresh fish with fresh ideas.
Top 10 Seafood Restaurants In Destin, Fl
From the depths of the Gulf of Mexico to the sleepy coves, beautiful lakes and pristine waters of the Choctawhatchee Bay, there’s plenty of fish to be caught here year-round.
Join Captain Pam for a day trip aboard our new Trimaran, Nice Tri. All day trips offer the ability to swim, snorkel, look for dolphins or watch the sunset in the Gulf of Mexico in Destin, Florida.
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