Top Places To Eat In Destin Florida

Known for its stunning beaches and vibrant culinary scene, Destin, Florida, is a food lover’s paradise. Whether you’re a seafood enthusiast or crave international flavors, this coastal town has something to satisfy every palate. In this article, we’ll take you on a gastronomic journey through the top places to eat in Destin, ensuring you have an unforgettable dining experience during your visit.

The Back Porch

If you’re looking for a quintessential beachfront dining experience, The Back Porch is the perfect spot. Located right on the sandy shores of the Gulf of Mexico, this restaurant offers not only stunning views but also a menu brimming with fresh seafood delights. Start your meal with their famous seafood gumbo, packed full of Gulf shrimp, blue crab, and Andouille sausage. For the main course, indulge in their Gulf Grouper Sandwich, a local favorite. The perfectly grilled grouper is served on a toasted bun with lettuce, tomato, and tartar sauce, creating a harmonious blend of flavors. If you’re in the mood for a seafood feast, their Seafood Platter is a must-try, featuring a generous selection of shrimp, oysters, and fish, all expertly prepared and served with classic Southern sides like hushpuppies and coleslaw.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

The Back Porch offers a laid-back and casual atmosphere, perfect for a beachside dining experience. Whether you choose to sit indoors or on their spacious outdoor deck, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico. The restaurant’s charming beach-house vibe, complete with wooden décor and nautical accents, creates a relaxed and welcoming ambiance for diners.

Signature Dishes

One of the highlights of The Back Porch is their Gulf Grouper Sandwich. The grouper, sourced locally from the Gulf of Mexico, is known for its mild flavor and firm texture. The sandwich is served with a side of fries, and the tartar sauce adds a delightful tanginess to each bite. Another must-try dish is their Seafood Platter, which showcases the best of Gulf seafood. From crispy fried shrimp to succulent oysters, this platter is a seafood lover’s dream. The platter is accompanied by classic Southern sides like hushpuppies, coleslaw, and fries, creating a hearty and satisfying meal.

McGuire’s Irish Pub

For a unique dining experience in Destin, head to McGuire’s Irish Pub. This local institution combines traditional Irish pub fare with American classics, creating a menu that is both comforting and delicious. As soon as you step inside, you’ll be greeted by the pub’s charming interior, adorned with antique memorabilia and thousands of dollar bills hanging from the ceiling. Start your meal with their famous Senate Bean Soup, a hearty and flavorful dish that has been a customer favorite for years. For the main course, indulge in one of their mouthwatering steaks, cooked to perfection and served with your choice of sides. Pair your meal with one of their handcrafted beers, brewed on-site, for the ultimate dining experience.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

McGuire’s Irish Pub offers a warm and inviting atmosphere, reminiscent of the traditional pubs found in Ireland. The pub’s rustic interior, complete with dark wood accents and cozy seating, creates a welcoming and intimate setting for diners. The lively atmosphere, often accompanied by live music, adds to the overall experience and transports you to an Irish pub right in the heart of Destin.

Signature Dishes

One of the must-try dishes at McGuire’s is their Senate Bean Soup. This hearty soup is made with navy beans, smoked ham hocks, and a medley of vegetables, creating a rich and comforting flavor profile. Another standout dish is their steak selection. From tender filet mignon to juicy ribeye, McGuire’s offers a range of cuts to satisfy any steak lover. Each steak is cooked to perfection and served with your choice of sides, such as mashed potatoes or sautéed vegetables. Don’t forget to pair your meal with one of their handcrafted beers, brewed in-house using McGuire’s own brewing system.

Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House

Nestled on the shores of the Choctawhatchee Bay, Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House is a seafood lover’s paradise. This waterfront restaurant not only offers stunning views but also a menu that celebrates the culinary heritage of the Gulf Coast. Start your meal with their Oysters Boshamps, a delicious appetizer that features freshly shucked oysters topped with a blend of cheese, bacon, and spinach, all baked to perfection. For the main course, indulge in their Shrimp & Grits, a classic Southern dish with a Boshamps twist. The dish features plump Gulf shrimp sautéed with Andouille sausage and served over creamy stone-ground grits. The flavors meld together beautifully, creating a dish that is both comforting and satisfying.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House offers a laid-back and casual atmosphere, perfect for enjoying a meal by the bay. The restaurant’s spacious outdoor deck provides unobstructed views of the Choctawhatchee Bay, creating a serene and picturesque setting. The interior is cozy and inviting, with wooden accents and nautical-themed décor that reflects the area’s coastal charm.

Signature Dishes

One of the standout dishes at Boshamps is their Oysters Boshamps. The fresh oysters are topped with a flavorful mixture of cheese, bacon, and spinach, then baked until golden and bubbly. The combination of creamy cheese, smoky bacon, and tender oysters creates a harmonious blend of flavors and textures. Another must-try dish is their Shrimp & Grits. The Gulf shrimp are cooked to perfection and served over creamy stone-ground grits, creating a dish that is both comforting and indulgent. The addition of Andouille sausage adds a hint of spice and depth of flavor to the dish, making it a favorite among locals and visitors alike.

The Donut Hole

For a delightful breakfast or brunch experience in Destin, look no further than The Donut Hole. This beloved local spot has been serving up delicious donuts and hearty breakfast options since 1978. Start your day with one of their famous glazed donuts, made fresh daily and perfectly sweet and fluffy. If you’re in the mood for a savory breakfast, try their Southern Benedicts. This twist on the classic Eggs Benedict features fluffy biscuits topped with your choice of protein, poached eggs, and a rich Hollandaise sauce. Another popular option is their Country Fried Steak, a hearty dish that features tender steak smothered in country gravy and served with eggs and your choice of side.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

The Donut Hole offers a cozy and welcoming atmosphere, perfect for enjoying a leisurely breakfast or brunch. The interior is adorned with vintage-inspired décor, creating a nostalgic and charming ambiance. The friendly staff adds to the warm and inviting atmosphere, making you feel right at home as soon as you step inside.

Signature Dishes

One of the highlights at The Donut Hole is, of course, their famous glazed donuts. These light and fluffy treats are made fresh daily, ensuring that each bite is a heavenly experience. Another must-try dish is their Southern Benedicts. Choose from options like the Country Ham Benedict or the Crab Cake Benedict, each featuring a perfectly poached egg, a flavorful protein, and a rich Hollandaise sauce. If you’re in the mood for a heartier breakfast, their Country Fried Steak is a delicious choice. The tender steak is breaded and fried to perfection, then smothered in a savory country gravy, creating a dish that is both comforting and satisfying.

Camille’s at Crystal Beach

For a taste of the Mediterranean in Destin, head to Camille’s at Crystal Beach. This charming restaurant offers a diverse menu inspired by the flavors of France, Italy, and Greece. Start your meal with their wood-fired pizzas, made with fresh ingredients and cooked to perfection in their brick oven. If you’re a seafood lover, their seafood pasta is a must-try. Featuring a medley of fresh seafood, including shrimp, scallops, and mussels, tossed in a flavorful tomato sauce and served over al dente pasta, this dish is a true culinary delight. For a lighter option, try one of their Mediterranean-inspired salads, such as the Greek Salad or the Caprese Salad, both bursting with fresh flavors.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

Camille’s at Crystal Beach offers a cozy and intimate ambiance, perfect for a romantic dinner or a gathering with friends. The restaurant’s warm and inviting interior, adorned with rustic accents and soft lighting, creates a charming and relaxed atmosphere. The outdoor patio, surrounded by lush greenery, offers an enchanting setting for al fresco dining.

Signature Dishes

One of the standout dishes at Camille’s is their wood-fired pizzas. The thin and crispy crust is topped with a variety of fresh ingredients, from classic Margherita to more adventurous options like the Mediterranean Pizza, which features feta cheese, Kalamata olives, and sun-dried tomatoes. Another must-try dish is their seafoodpasta. This flavorful dish combines a variety of fresh seafood, including shrimp, scallops, and mussels, with al dente pasta and a rich tomato sauce. The combination of the tender seafood, perfectly cooked pasta, and the tangy tomato sauce creates a symphony of flavors that will transport you to the shores of the Mediterranean. If you’re in the mood for something lighter, their Mediterranean-inspired salads are a great choice. The Greek Salad features crisp lettuce, juicy tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, and tangy feta cheese, drizzled with a zesty vinaigrette. The Caprese Salad is a refreshing combination of fresh mozzarella, ripe tomatoes, and fragrant basil, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic glaze. These salads are the perfect way to start your meal and awaken your taste buds to the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean.

Harbor Docks

With its prime location overlooking the Destin Harbor, Harbor Docks is a local institution that has been serving up fresh seafood since 1979. This waterfront restaurant offers not only picturesque views but also a menu that showcases the best of Gulf seafood. Start your meal at Harbor Docks by indulging in their fresh sushi. Their sushi bar offers a wide selection of rolls, nigiri, and sashimi, made with the freshest fish and expertly prepared by skilled sushi chefs. If you prefer your seafood cooked, their raw oyster bar is a must-visit. Feast on a variety of oysters, shucked to order and served with classic accompaniments like horseradish, cocktail sauce, and lemon. For the main course, feast on their Gulf Coast specialties, such as the Blackened Red Snapper or the Grilled Mahi-Mahi. Each dish is cooked to perfection, allowing the natural flavors of the seafood to shine.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

Harbor Docks offers a casual and laid-back atmosphere, perfect for enjoying a meal by the water. The restaurant’s spacious outdoor deck provides panoramic views of the Destin Harbor, creating a serene and picturesque setting. The interior is cozy and welcoming, with nautical-themed décor and large windows that allow for natural light to fill the space.

Signature Dishes

One of the highlights at Harbor Docks is their fresh sushi. Their sushi bar offers a wide variety of rolls, nigiri, and sashimi, made with the freshest fish sourced from the Gulf of Mexico and beyond. Whether you’re a fan of classic rolls like the California Roll or more adventurous options like the Spicy Tuna Roll, you’re sure to find something to satisfy your sushi cravings. Another must-try at Harbor Docks is their raw oyster bar. Feast on a selection of freshly shucked oysters, served with classic accompaniments like horseradish, cocktail sauce, and lemon. The oysters are plump, briny, and full of flavor, a true delight for seafood enthusiasts. For the main course, their Gulf Coast specialties are a must-try. The Blackened Red Snapper is a flavorful and perfectly cooked dish, with the blackened seasoning adding a hint of spice and a crispy crust to the tender fish. The Grilled Mahi-Mahi is another standout dish, with its moist and flaky texture and a light citrusy flavor. Pair your meal with one of their refreshing cocktails or a glass of wine to complete your dining experience at Harbor Docks.

The Craft Bar

If you’re a fan of craft beer and innovative cuisine, The Craft Bar is a must-visit in Destin. This gastropub offers an extensive beer selection, with a focus on local and regional craft breweries. The menu at The Craft Bar showcases the best of regional ingredients, with dishes that are both creative and delicious. Start your meal with their Duck Fat Fries, a unique twist on a classic dish. These crispy fries are cooked in duck fat, resulting in a rich and flavorful treat. For the main course, indulge in their Beer-Braised Short Rib. The tender and succulent short rib is slow-cooked in beer, creating a melt-in-your-mouth texture and a depth of flavor. The dish is served with creamy mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables, creating a hearty and comforting meal.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

The Craft Bar offers a modern and trendy atmosphere, with its sleek interior and industrial accents. The bar area is the centerpiece of the restaurant, showcasing the extensive beer selection and inviting guests to explore the world of craft beer. The dining area is spacious and comfortable, with a vibrant and energetic ambiance that is perfect for socializing and enjoying a meal with friends.

Signature Dishes

One of the standout dishes at The Craft Bar is their Duck Fat Fries. These crispy and flavorful fries are cooked in duck fat, resulting in a unique and indulgent treat. The duck fat adds a rich and savory note to the fries, elevating them to a whole new level of deliciousness. Another must-try dish is their Beer-Braised Short Rib. The short rib is slow-cooked in beer, resulting in a tender and succulent texture and a depth of flavor. The dish is served with creamy mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables, creating a well-rounded and satisfying meal. Pair your meal with one of their carefully curated craft beers to enhance the flavors and complete your dining experience at The Craft Bar.

790 on the Gulf

If you’re looking for a dining experience with stunning beachfront views, look no further than 790 on the Gulf. This restaurant offers a picturesque setting, with its location right on the beach, and a menu that highlights fresh seafood and locally sourced ingredients. Start your meal with their Crab-Stuffed Grouper, a mouthwatering dish that features locally caught grouper stuffed with a flavorful crab mixture and baked to perfection. The dish is served with a side of seasonal vegetables and your choice of potato. Another must-try at 790 on the Gulf is their Gulf Coast Shrimp & Grits. This classic Southern dish combines plump Gulf shrimp with creamy stone-ground grits, creating a comforting and indulgent meal. The dish is flavored with bacon, scallions, and a touch of spice, adding depth and complexity to the flavors.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

790 on the Gulf offers a relaxed and laid-back ambiance, perfect for enjoying a meal with a view. The restaurant’s outdoor seating area provides unobstructed views of the beach and the Gulf of Mexico, creating a serene and picturesque setting. The interior is warm and inviting, with large windows that allow for plenty of natural light to fill the space.

Signature Dishes

One of the standout dishes at 790 on the Gulf is their Crab-Stuffed Grouper. This dish showcases the best of Gulf seafood, with locally caught grouper stuffed with a flavorful crab mixture. The grouper is perfectly cooked and flaky, while the crab adds a delicate sweetness to each bite. Another must-try is their Gulf Coast Shrimp & Grits. The plump Gulf shrimp are cooked to perfection and served over creamy stone-ground grits, creating a dish that is both comforting and indulgent. The addition of bacon, scallions, and a touch of spice adds depth and complexity to the flavors, making it a favorite among visitors and locals alike.

Dewey Destin’s Seafood Restaurant

Step back in time at Dewey Destin’s Seafood Restaurant, a family-owned establishment that has been serving up delicious seafood since 1946. Located right on the harbor, this historic restaurant offers a taste of Destin’s rich fishing heritage. Start your meal with their famous Destin Grouper Sandwich, a true local favorite. The grouper, sourced locally from the Gulf of Mexico, is perfectly grilled and served on a toasted bun with lettuce, tomato, and tartar sauce. For a classic seafood experience, try one of their flavorful seafood baskets, such as the Fried Shrimp Basket or the Oyster Basket. Each basket is served with fries and coleslaw, creating a satisfying and filling meal.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

Dewey Destin’s Seafood Restaurant offers a charming and rustic ambiance, reminiscent of the old fishing shacks that once lined the shores of Destin. The interior is cozy and intimate, with wooden accents and nautical-themed décor that pays homage to the area’s fishing heritage. The outdoor seating area provides a beautiful view of the harbor, creating a serene and picturesque setting for dining.

Signature Dishes

One of the highlights at Dewey Destin’s Seafood Restaurant is their Destin Grouper Sandwich. This local favorite features locally caught grouper, known for its mild flavor and firm texture. The grouper is perfectly grilled and served on a toasted bun with lettuce, tomato, and tangy tartar sauce, creating a harmonious blend of flavors. Another must-try are their seafood baskets. Choose from options like the Fried Shrimp Basket or the Oyster Basket, each featuring perfectly breaded and fried seafood. The baskets are served with a generous portion of fries and coleslaw, creating a classic and satisfying seafood meal.

Vin’tij Food & Wine

For a sophisticated culinary experience in Destin, visit Vin’tij Food & Wine. This upscale eatery combines exquisite food with an extensive wine list, creating a dining experience that is both refined and memorable. Start your meal with their Dry-Aged Ribeye, a tender and flavorful cut of beef that has beenaged to perfection. The ribeye is cooked to your preferred level of doneness and served with a rich red wine reduction, creating a luxurious and indulgent dish. For seafood lovers, their Pan-Seared Scallops are a must-try. The plump and succulent scallops are seared to perfection and served with a delicate lemon beurre blanc sauce, creating a dish that is both elegant and bursting with flavor. Pair your meal with a glass of wine from their extensive selection, curated to complement the flavors of each dish and elevate your dining experience.

Ambiance and Atmosphere

Vin’tij Food & Wine offers an elegant and sophisticated ambiance, perfect for a special occasion or a memorable night out. The restaurant’s sleek and modern interior, with its soft lighting and contemporary décor, creates a refined and intimate setting. The attentive and knowledgeable staff adds to the overall experience, providing impeccable service and ensuring that every detail of your dining experience is taken care of.

Signature Dishes

One of the standout dishes at Vin’tij Food & Wine is their Dry-Aged Ribeye. This premium cut of beef is aged to perfection, resulting in a tender and flavorful steak. The ribeye is cooked to your preferred level of doneness and served with a rich red wine reduction, adding depth and complexity to the flavors. Another must-try dish is their Pan-Seared Scallops. The plump and succulent scallops are perfectly seared to achieve a golden crust while maintaining their delicate texture. The scallops are served with a delicate lemon beurre blanc sauce, creating a dish that is both elegant and bursting with flavor. Pair your meal with a glass of wine from their extensive selection, curated to complement the flavors of each dish and enhance your dining experience at Vin’tij Food & Wine.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Destin, Florida, offers a culinary scene that is as diverse as its beautiful beaches. From beachfront seafood shacks to upscale eateries, the top places to eat in Destin mentioned in this article are sure to satisfy every food lover’s cravings. Whether you’re in the mood for fresh seafood, international flavors, or classic American fare, these restaurants showcase the best of what Destin has to offer. So, plan your trip, bring your appetite, and get ready to embark on a gastronomic journey through the top places to eat in Destin, Florida.

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