Florida’s Panhandle is known for its gorgeous beaches and golf courses located just steps from the sandy shores of the Gulf of Mexico. People flock from all over the country to places like Destin to enjoy the famous Florida sunshine without some of the humidity that you’ll find down in Miami or Tampa.
A long day of soaking up the sun or working on your short game can really build up an appetite, though. So what do you do when you want to go out to dinner in Destin? Well, if you’re looking for the city’s top-rated restaurants, all you have to do is keep on reading.
As a Florida local, I’ve spent a great deal of time in cities all across the state where I’ve had the pleasure of visiting countless amazing restaurants. In order to help out my fellow food lovers out there enjoy the same delightful experiences I’ve had, I decided to put together a complete ranking of the best restaurants in Destin, Fl all on one convenient list to make things easier. So, check them all out below and pick your favorite ones!
Best Restaurants in Destin
- McGuire’s Irish Pub
- Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House
- Cafe Thirty-A
- Louisiana Lagniappe
- Pazzo Italiano
- Vin’Tij Food & Wine
- Mimmo’s Ristorante Italiano
- Dewey Destin’s Harborside
- Beach Walk Cafe
- Marina Cafe
- Fudpucker’s Beachside Bar & Grill
- Vinny McGuire’s
- Callahan’s Restaurant & Deli
- Ruth’s Chris Steak House
- Burrito del Sol- Destin
- Bric à Brac
979 US-98 E, Destin, FL 32541
First up on my list of Destin’s best restaurants is a place called Crackings off of U.S. Highway 98, right in front of the Winn-Dixie supermarket and across the street from the Shoreline Village Mall. It’s the perfect location for breakfast before a day at Big Kahuna’s Water & Adventure Park just down the road.
I love Crackings because they’ve been a fixture in Destin for a very long time and they’re not going anywhere. They serve homestyle breakfast and lunch in a comfy, inviting setting that you’re going to love.
I highly recommend their eggs Benedict, but the menu here is absolutely full of both breakfast classics and some”Destin Exclusives” that are hard to pass up.
McGuire’s Irish Pub
33 US-98 E, Destin, FL 32541
Up next is McGuire’s Irish Pub, a great place for Irish fare and fun atmosphere, not to mention beer straight from their on-site brewery. Looking for live music? Check out their sunset deck for some entertainment most nights of the week!
My favorite thing to order from Mcguire’s is a burger. They use nothing but 100% Certified Angus Beef to ensure the best flavor possible and there are 25 different specialty burgers to choose from so you’re bound to find something you like.
Check out McGuire’s Irish Pub off of Harbor Blvd before the Destin Bridge, right across the street from the Harborwalk Village shopping center.
Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House
414 Harbor Blvd, Destin, FL 32541
Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House is another family-friendly establishment that should be an absolutely essential stop on anyone’s list of restaurants in Destin. This place is a haven for seafood lovers everywhere.
As the name suggests, Oysters are the specialty and boy do they do it well. The oyster bar has several options, including cornmeal fried oysters, raw oysters, oysters Boshamp, oysters Rockefeller, and even oysters Bienville.
Check out Boshamps off of Harbor Boulevard, right across the street from the Motel 6 Destin and just down the street from the popular fishing charter Pelican Adventures.
The Local Market
950 Gulf Shore Dr, Destin, FL 32541
This next place, The Local Market, is another one of the top Destin restaurants that I think everyone needs to try. The Local Market is half-way like a vintage general goods store and a restaurant. The walls are lined with shelves stocked full of various goods, but they also serve breakfast and smoothies over-the-counter-style, as well.
My go-to breakfast here at The Local Market is usually their corned beef hash which comes with 2 fried eggs. Sometimes I’ll even throw in one of the peanut butter cup smoothies, too. Everything is charmingly old-school here, and their entire menu is on a colorful, hand-written chalkboard.
775 Gulf Shore Dr, Destin, FL 32541
Up next is Louisiana Lagniappe, a restaurant with a tongue-twister for a name and some mind-blowingly delicious food. If you want a great place to watch the sunset in Destin, this is it.
This is the ultimate dining destination if you are in the mood for some authentic Creole cuisine. I recommend anything off of the “Chef’s Selections” menu. Some of my favorites include the blackened redfish and, of course, the live Maine lobster if I feel like splurging a bit.
Look for Louisiana Lagniappe in beautiful Sandpiper Cove, just a 5-minute walk from the pristine sands of Destin Beach.
34904 Emerald Coast Pkwy #114, Destin, FL 32541
Everybody needs a good slice of pizza, no matter what city you’re in. When I’m in Destin and I want to grab some delectable pizza in Destin, I head straight towards the Crystal Beach Plaza, right next to the Holiday Inn Express & Suites off of Emerald Coast Parkway.
Pizza isn’t the only thing they do here at Pazzo Italiano. They have every Italian delicacy you could ever imagine. Some of my favorite things to order are the lasagna, fettuccine Alfredo, and, of course, a classic pepperoni pizza.
Just be sure to save room for dessert. They offer tiramisu and cannolis, two of my absolute favorite sweet treats.
The Harbor Tavern
306 Harbor Blvd, Destin, FL 32541
The Harbor Tavern is a bar and grill that will totally delight anyone searching for a beachy, open-air restaurant to hit on a beautiful day. They’re located just behind the Crab Island Information Center, right next to Boathouse Oyster Bar.
What I love most about this place is that you get a view of the harbor so you can watch all of the boats pass by, which I find very relaxing. The Harbor Tavern also has a great selection of Mediterranean cuisine to choose from.
My favorite things to order from here either have to be their Mediterranean bowls or the gyro pita. Both of these options are to die for.
Mimmo’s Ristorante Italiano
979 US Hwy 98 E, Ste. 5, Destin, FL 32541
This next place is called Mimmo’s Ristorante Italiano and it’s where I think everyone should go out to eat in Destin for a refined Italian meal in a sophisticated setting. The food here is divine, and you can tell that there is so much care put into every dish for a true Italian dining experience.
They have fantastic lunch and dinner menus here at Mimmo’s. I honestly prefer their lunch menu most of the time because of the amazing sandwiches like the chicken parmesan sub and the meatball sub.
Check out Mimmo’s off of US Hwy 98, right across the street from the Shoreline Village Mall and in the same plaza as the Walgreens and the Winn-Dixie.
Dewey Destin’s Harborside
202 Harbor Blvd, Destin, FL 32541
Up next we have a place called Dewey Destin’s Harborside and it’s one of the best places to eat in Destin for a beautiful waterfront view of Destin Harbor and Norriego Point.
Seafood is the name of the game here at Dewey Destin’s, but that’s not all they do well. They also serve USDA Choice Black Angus steak if you’re not in the mood for seafood.
What I recommend is either one of the fried seafood platters or one of their incredible seafood steam pots with your choice of shrimp, snow crab legs, or even royal red shrimp. No matter which one you go with, you won’t regret it.
Beach Walk Cafe
2700 Scenic Hwy 98, Destin, FL 32541
Very few other restaurants in Destin, Fl live up to their name quite as much as Beach Walk Cafe. You really can’t get any closer to going out to eat on the beach without getting wet.
Beach Walk Cafe is all the way at the end of Scenic Hwy 98 inside the Henderson Park Inn, across the street from The Henderson Beach Resort & Spa, nestled in the sugar sand, literally steps away from the water.
This upscale beachfront restaurant is perfect for a romantic night out or even just a quality family dinner. I highly recommend the New Zealand farm-raised venison or the New Zealand Lamb chops.
404 Harbor Blvd, Destin, FL 32541
Marina Cafe is the ultimate destination for steak in Destin, especially if you want a picturesque view of the water to accompany your meal. Check them out right in between Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House and the Inn On Destin Harbor-Ascend Hotel Collection.
They serve my all-time favorite cut of steak here at Marina Cafe: the USDA Prime, bone-in New York strip that weighs in at a hefty 18 ounces. It’s more than enough for me even when I’m at my hungriest.
Got the little ones with you? No worries! They have a perfect little menu for kids, so you can bring the whole family to Marina Cafe.
Fudpucker’s Beachside Bar & Grill
20001 Emerald Coast Pkwy, Destin, FL 32541
One of the most interesting things about Florida is its massive population of gators. Some restaurants, like Fudpucker’s Beachside Bar & Grill, have gone as far as incorporating these living dinosaurs into the theme of their restaurant. It may have something to do with being located inside The World’s Greatest Alligator Park, Gator Beach.
If you’ve never tried gator tail, then you are seriously missing out. Here is your chance, though, because they serve fresh gator here like nowhere else. My favorite thing to order is their shrimp and gator grits. It’s the ultimate Florida delicacy. Don’t worry, if you’re not into trying gator, they have tons of other options.
29 Harbor Blvd, Destin, FL 32541
Next up is another great restaurant located just before the Destin Bridge called Vinny McGuire’s. This is where the magic happens as far as pizza is concerned.
I very rarely go anywhere else when I am in the mood to build my own pizza and enjoy a few beers. One thing I love the most about Vinny’s is that the first 3 toppings on your pizza are free when you build your own, and after that they’re only $1.75 each. No overpriced toppings here!
They also have a full liquor bar here at Vinny’s, in addition to lots of different kinds of beer. Be sure to try their signature drink, The Godfather. It’s a powerful drink, though, so make sure you pay your respects.
Callahan’s Restaurant & Deli
791 Harbor Blvd, Destin, FL 32541
Next up is Callahan’s Restaurant & Deli, one of the best places to eat in Destin for classic American food in a cozy diner setting. It’s a great place to get take out from, as well.
As you would hope to expect from a restaurant located this close to the Gulf of Mexico, they have superb seafood that comes in fresh every day. Some of my favorite seafood dishes from here are the grilled mahi-mahi and the blackened tuna.
Check out Callahan’s Restaurant & Deli off of Harbor Boulevard, right across Main Street from the Target and Starbucks.
Ruth’s Chris Steak House
15000 Emerald Coast Pkwy, Destin, FL 32541
This next one is a name we all know and love, Ruth’s Chris Steak House. They’re Known across the country for high-end steaks and top-notch service, with tons of premium wines to boot.
This particular location can be found inside the Silver Shells Beach Resort & Spa, so if you want to visit one of the best places to stay and eat in Destin, it’s right here. It’s also conveniently located just east of The Track Destin and literally steps from June White Decker Park.
Of course, I recommend steak here at Ruth’s Chris Steak House, but the cut is up to you. They are pretty much all of the highest quality, it just comes down to preference. Mine would be the bone-in New York strip.
Burrito del Sol- Destin
517 Harbor Blvd, Destin, FL 32541
Time for one of my absolute favorite Mexican restaurants, Burrito del Sol. They’re located over off of Harbor Boulevard, right around the corner from the Destin Brewery and just across the street from the Destin Harbor.
They have burritos, tacos, quesadillas, nachos, and taco salads here at Burrito del Sol. I’d have to say my favorite is the burrito because everything inside is all so conveniently wrapped up in a handheld meal. For protein, I usually opt for the barbacoa, but I’m also a huge fan of their shrimp and fresh fish. Just be sure to try their guacamole and chips or the chips and queso!
Bric à Brac
824 Gulf Shore Dr, Destin, FL 32541
This next place, Bric à Brac, is located over in the Shoreline Village Mall next to the Capriccio Cafe and the Ice Cream Shoppe of Destin, FL. You can grab coffee, dinner, and dessert all in one plaza!
Bric à Brac is an upbeat American restaurant that hosts live music nightly and boasts a big dance floor for anyone feeling the need to get down.
What I recommend most from Bric à Brac is either the shrimp scampi or the manicotti. It’s very hard to find a restaurant that actually serves a delicious manicotti, and this place is one of the few.
Destin is popular for a long list of reasons, but my favorite part about it is the restaurant scene. There are so many different cuisines and atmospheres to choose from, so no matter what you’re looking for, you’re bound to find something you love.
Is there anything missing from my list? Let me know in a comment below and I’ll check it out ASAP!
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