Adventures of Gus and Kim: Top 10 Places To Eat in Destin (2018)

We've been vacationing in the Destin, Florida area since 1998. It is by far our most favorite vacation spot, and someday, we hope to retire nearby. Since we've spent so much time in the area, I thought it would be fun to share some of our favorite places to eat. This post was originally written in 2013, so I've updated it for 2018!

two blue chairs and umbrella on the sand at the seashore

pinnable image of top 10 places to eat in Destin - tacos and burger

Here's a little about our picks for the top 10 places to eat in the Destin area!

Harbor Docks restaurant in Destin, Florida
Harbor Docks entrance

1) Harbor Docks

If we could only eat out once while on vacation, it would be at Harbor Docks. The food is out of this world, and you have a great view of Destin Harbor. We've been eating here for at least 12+ years and we enjoy it just as much now as we did then.

view of water and beach homes
view from our table at Harbor Docks

It can be a little pricey depending upon what you order, but it's worth every penny. If you only go to one place on my list - this is the one you should choose. And if they have bread pudding for dessert, you must try it! Lunch is also amazing!

Filet mignon on a plate with green beans and onion straws
Filet mignon with porcini butter, cayenne onion strings, Yukon gold mashed potatoes, and green beans

Bread pudding on a plate with whipped cream and a strawberry
bread pudding

Gus' favorites: filet mignon, bread pudding
My favorites: sushi (try the cowboy roll!), filet mignon, bread pudding

Location: 538 Harbor Blvd., Destin, Florida
Hours: Monday - Sunday 7am - 11pm
Phone: (850) 837-2506
Bar: Yes
Carryout available

older restaurant building with tin roof
Great Southern Cafe

2) Great Southern Cafe

This restaurant isn't actually in Destin, but it's within easy driving distance. Besides, you should visit Seaside anyway! Owned by Chef Jim Shirley, it sits right in the middle of Seaside, and we recommend sitting outside on the covered deck where you can watch all of the activity. You can read a full review at Adventures of Gus and Kim: Lunch in Seaside - The Great Southern Cafe.

tables on covered porch at restaurant
view from tables on the covered deck

I honestly don't think you can go wrong with anything on the menu, but I really love anything served with grits!

grits dish with sweet potato straws
Grits and Grillades

Gus' favorite:
 any fresh fish
My favorite: Grits and Grillades

Location: 83 Central Square, Santa Rosa Beach (Seaside), Florida
Hours: Open daily.
Breakfast 8am - 10:45am
Lunch 11am - 4pm
Dinner 4pm - at least 9:30pm
Phone: (850) 231-7327
Bar: Yes
Carryout available

Another Broken Egg Cafe sign
Another Broken Egg Cafe

3) Another Broken Egg Cafe

Winner of Best Breakfast 11 years in a row, - and it's easy to see (taste) why. This is one of our favorite breakfast spots, and we sometimes eat here more than once during a vacation. There are two locations in the Destin area, but you can usually find us at Grand Boulevard. You can read more in my review, Adventures of Gus and Kim: Breakfast in Destin - Another Broken Egg Cafe.

omelet with English muffins
Sunrise Spinach Scrambler

granola, blueberry quinoa, bananas, coconut, and various berries
Granola, Fruit, and Quinoa

Gus' favorite: The Works Breakfast, City Grits
My favorites: Sunrise Spinach Scrambler with City Grits and the Granola, Fruit & Quinoa

Sandestin Village
9100 Baytowne Wharf Blvd., Suite A-4, Sandestin, Florida
Phone: (850) 622-2050
Hours: Monday - Sunday 7am - 2pm
(closed Thanksgiving, Christmas)
Bar: yes
Carryout available

755 Grand Boulevard, Suite B-107
Miramar Beach, Florida  32550
Phone: (850) 424-3416
Hours: Monday - Sunday 7am - 2pm
(closed Thanksgiving, Christmas)
Bar: yes
Carryout available

tables with red & white tablecloths in Italian restaurant

4) Grimaldi's Coal Brick Oven Pizzeria

Grimaldi's opened their first location under the Brooklyn Bridge in 1990. Their pizzas are New York style (obviously), and baked in coal-fired brick ovens to give them a crisp crust. My favorite! The location we visited is in the Grand Boulevard Town Center in Miramar Beach, right next to Sandestin. As a matter of fact, if you're staying in Sandestin and have a golf cart, you can drive it right over to Grand Boulevard without going out on the main road. Well, you can do that with your car, too, but you get what I'm saying, right? And how charming is the decor?

pepperoni pizza
Grimaldi's pizza

Gus would eat pizza every day if he could. I'm a bit pickier. But we both love this pizza so much that we sometimes get it more than once when we're in Destin. And the desserts...yum. You can read my full review at Adventures of Gus and Kim: Dinner in Miramar Beach - Grimaldi's Coal Brick-Oven Pizzeria.

tiramisu, cheesecake, and cannoli
tiramisu, cheesecake, and cannoli

Gus' favorite: White Garlic Pizza with Pepperoni; cheesecake
My favorite: Pizza with Famous Sauce, Pepperoni and Mushrooms; cannoli

Location: 780 Grand Boulevard, Ste. 100, Miramar Beach, Florida
Hours: Sunday - Thursday 11am - 10pm, Friday & Saturday 11am - 11pm
Phone: (850) 837-3095
Bar: yes
Carryout available

Entrance to The Bay restaurant
The Bay entrance

5) The Bay

This is another restaurant owned by Chef Jim Shirley. And we love this place as much as we love the Great Southern Cafe. You can read my full review at Adventures of Gus and Kim: Lunch in Destin - The Bay.

view of the water from tables in a restaurant
View from our table at The Bay

We always sit on the bay side of the building, which offers fabulous views. They have a huge sitting area out in the sand around a firepit!

Thai Pork Tacos
Thai pork tacos

burger and fries
Bay Burger and fries

Gus' favorites: Bay Burger, Crème Brûlée
My favorites: Thai pork tacos, Peanut Butter Cream pie

Location: 24215 Highway 331 South, Santa Rosa Beach, Florida
Hours: Open daily, 11am - 9:30pm, Sunday Brunch Buffet 11am - 2pm
Phone: (850) 622-2291
Bar: Yes
Carryout available

lighthouse on a building, palm tree
Harry T's at Harborwalk

6) Harry T's

We used to eat at Harry T's when it was at the Yacht Club - now it's in Harborwalk Village, right on Destin Harbor - so you can watch all the boats coming and going. You can't beat the view, and the food is pretty good for standard "bar food". But for us, the view makes the eating here worth it.

view of water from tables in restaurant
view from tables 

It's a little pricey, but I guess you gotta pay for the view! They have some super-humongous sundaes if you want to share a dessert. And they sell pretty cool t-shirts, too.


Our favorites: Nachos, Fish & Chips

Location: 46 Harbor Blvd. in Harborwalk Village, Destin, Florida
Hours: Monday - Thursday 11am - 10pm, Friday 11am - 11pm, Saturday - Sunday 10am - 11am
Phone: (850) 654-4800
Bar: Yes
Carryout available

tables and chairs at covered outdoor area
outdoor seating at Sunset Bay Cafe

7) Sunset Bay Cafe

This is a new favorite for us and I can't believe it took so long for us to try it! We've been staying in Sandestin for many years, and we often drove by the Linkside Conference Center with the sign for Sunset Bay Cafe. I think maybe we assumed it catered to the business crowd. Well, you know what happens when you assume! You can read my full review at Adventures of Gus and Kim: Breakfast in Destin - Sunset Bay Cafe.

What a fabulous view from the outdoor tables!

view of palm trees and water
view at the Sunset Bay Cafe

Breakfast is delicious and the service is great.

croissant with scrambled eggs and fried potatoes
breakfast croissant


Gus' favorite: bacon and cheese omelet, pancakes
My favorite: breakfast croissant, pancakes

Location: 158 Sandestin Blvd. N. (in Sandestin Golf & Beach Resort), Miramar Beach, Florida
Hours: Daily 7am - 2pm
Phone: (850) 267-7108
Bar: yes

Outside of McGuire's Irish Pub
McGuire's Irish Pub

8) McGuire's Irish Pub

This is probably one of the most popular places in Destin. And would you believe that we vacationed in Destin for 15+ years before we tried it? There's no denying that it's a fun place, but be prepared for a lot of noise. The inside is covered with signed one dollar bills! We were there in the evening and it was pretty dark inside - so let me apologize for the quality of the photos below. I need to go back for lunch so I can get better pictures!

dollar bills stapled all over inside of restaurant/bar
signed dollar bills stapled everywhere

The one thing that you MUST get - Irish boxtys! Here's the description from the menu: "An old Irish favorite, “Boxty on the griddle, boxty in the pan; if you can’t make boxty, you’ll never get a man”. Garlic Mashed Potatoes hand rolled in Herbed Bread Crumbs and Flash Fried. Served with Salsa, Guacamole Dip and a Horse Radish Sour Cream Sauce". Um, yes, please!! And you'll pretty much just have to forget whatever type of diet you follow because this place is made of carbs!

fried boxtys
Irish Boxtys

Irish boxtys
who doesn't love fried mashed potatoes?

They also have an on-site brewery. So yeah, I need to go back and sample more of the brews. I had the McGuire's Irish Red and it was pretty tasty with the boxtys.

Gus' favorite: Sharp Cheddar and Bacon Steak Burger
My favorite: Irish Boxtys

Location: 33 E. Highway 98, Destin, Florida
Hours: Open daily 7am - the wee hours (usually 2am), Lunch 11am - 4pm, Dinner 4pm - close
Phone: (850) 650-0000
Bar: yes
Carryout available

outside of Dewey Destin's
Dewey Destin's Harborside

9)  Dewey Destin's Harborside

There are two Dewey Destin's locations, but we have only eaten at the Harborside location. If you get a seat on the deck, you get a nice view like the one below.

water and boats
view off deck at Dewey Destin's Harborside

We always get amberjack when we're there. A lot of times it's the catch of the day. One time the waitress told us that it was just brought in that morning. You can't get much fresher than that!

fish and fries on a plate
catch of the day

fish, potatoes, and corn on the cob
amberjack with potatoes and corn

Our favorites: whatever fish they've brought in that day; amberjack

202 Harbor Blvd. (Harborside), Destin, Florida
Hours: Open daily 11am - 10pm
Phone: (850) 837-7525
Bar: yes
Carryout available

9 Calhoun Ave. (Crab Island), Destin, Florida
Hours: Open daily 11am - 9pm
Phone: (850) 837-7575
Bar: beer & wine only
Carryout available

outside the Craft Bar
The Craft Bar at Grand Boulevard

10) The Craft Bar

There are two locations in the Destin area, but we go to the one at Grand Boulevard Town Center in Miramar Beach. It's funny, because I originally only agreed to go here because of the beer menu. I'm not a burger person (it's a texture thing), so when I discovered that I loved the burgers here, I was as surprised as Gus!

burger and fries on a plate
Craft Bar Burger and fries

I also love the vibe here. I don't know if the other location has the same vibe, but this one is just kind of laid back and looks like a cool neighborhood bar. I love that. And I love that they have a great selection of beer (we try to drink local beer or at least Florida beer when we're in Florida).

bar with beer menu on the wall
bar and beer menu

flight of beer
flight of beer

Gus' favorite: Craft Bar Burger with cheddar, fries
My favorite: Craft Bar Burger with blue cheese, fries, hot chicken appetizer

655 Grand Boulevard, Ste. D102, Miramar Beach, Florida
Hours: Sunday - Thursday 11am - 11pm, Friday - Saturday 11am - 12am
Phone: (850) 608-6226
Bar: yes
Carryout available

4424 Commons Drive E (Destin Commons), Destin, Florida
Hours: Monday - Thursday 11am - 11pm, Friday - Saturday 11am - 12am, Sunday 11am - 10pm
Phone: (850) 460-7907
Bar: yes
Carryout available

(Note: The last time we were in Destin, there was a Craft Bar on 30A in Grayton Beach. However, it's not listed on the Craft Bar website, so I don't know if it's still there or not.)

And a bonus restaurant!!

outside the Donut Hole
Donut Hole in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida

11) Donut Hole

They don't have a website, but they probably don't need one. This is another place that is always packed. There are three locations, but we usually eat at the one in Santa Rosa Beach. It's bigger than the one in Destin, and the parking is much better. When we first started vacationing in Destin, we always ate at the Destin location.

eggs, bacon, and cheese grits
eggs over easy, bacon, and cheese grits

omelet and cheese grits
mushroom and cheese omelet with cheese grits

We've done both breakfast and lunch - and the donuts (and other baked goods) are delicious! Get there early for the best selection!

Gus' favorites: Ham and Cheese Omelet, glazed and cake donuts
My favorites: Mushroom and Cheese Omelet, Boston Cream doughnuts!

6745 US Highway 98 W, Santa Rosa Beach, Florida
Hours: 6:00am - 10:00pm
Phone: 850-267-3239
Bar: no
Carryout available

635 US Highway 98 E, Destin, Florida
Hours: Some sites say open 24 hours, but I don't think that is year 'round; 6am - 10pm
Phone: (850) 837-8824
Bar: no
Carryout available

12983 US Highway 98 E, Inlet Beach/Panama City Beach, Florida
Hours: 6am - 10pm
Phone: 850-213-3127
Bar: no
Carryout available

Would you like to have a printable list of these restaurants - including the location, hours, contact info, and our favorite dishes from each? It's available (for free!) to subscribers on our members-only page! Click here to become part of the ETV community!

Do you have a favorite place to eat in Destin or the surrounding area? If so, would you let me know? We're always looking for new places to try! Tell me in the comments, on Instagram or Snapchat


No comments:

Post a Comment

I love reading your comments!!