Top Restaurants - 17 min read

20 BEST Restaurants in Destin, FL (You Don’t Know What You’ll Find!)

Stacy Randall

Stacy Randall, Updated October 8, 2022

Destin, FL, is a popular vacation destination thanks to its various attractions, shops, restaurants, and beautiful beaches. Whether you’re going for a romantic couple’s getaway, a family vacay, or a weekend trip with friends, there’s something for everyone. Some of the best restaurants in Destin, FL, are on Highway 98, Harbor Blvd., and Gulf Shore Drive.

You’ll find lots of fantastic seafood restaurants in Destin, from casual to fine-dining experiences. There is also an eclectic mix of other cuisines, including Italian, Mediterranean, and American, showcasing global influences. Whether looking for an all-day breakfast place like the Donut Hole Bakery and Cafe or tasty grub at McGuire’s Irish Pub, come to Destin with a big appetite.

Many restaurants also offer healthy options, vegetarian-friendly dishes, and gluten-free menus. You’ll also discover Mexican, Thai, and sushi, providing a diverse restaurant selection.

If you’re planning your next vacation, determining where you’ll eat is a big part of the agenda. There’s a menu for every craving and a restaurant for every budget in Destin. You can’t go wrong trying out any of the eateries on our list, but it might be tough deciding where to eat first.

1. Crackings

Credit: Crackings

Address: 979 Highway 98 E, Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 650-0499

This family-owned local favorite serves homestyle breakfast, brunch, and lunch options. You can also enjoy a mimosa, sweet treats, or keep things light with healthy options. They’ve been in business since 1998, standing behind the concept that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. 

What To Eat At Crackings

Start your meal with a warm, gooey cinnamon roll or a croisseignet, a delicious cross between a flaky croissant and a beignet. You’ll find all sorts of creative dishes, so indulge in delicious Lobster Gouda or the Crab Cake Benedict. The Bananas Foster French Toast and Crawfish Eggs Benedict are other popular menu items. 

Why Should You Eat Here?

Crackings offers delicious food, a cute and casual atmosphere, a French country vibe, and friendly service. They’re a favorite of locals and visitors and provide a warm welcome to all their guests. It’s the place to go if you want a satisfying meal that makes you feel at home.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Bananas Foster French Toast
  • Cuisine: American, Breakfast, Brunch, Vegan Options, Gluten-Free Options

2. McGuire’s Irish Pub of Destin

Credit: McGuire’s Irish Pub of Destin

Address: 33 US-98E, Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 650-0000

Located on beautiful Destin Harbor, this local pub provides ales brewed in copper kettles and tasty pub grub. It also offers live Irish entertainment.

What To Eat At McGuire’s Irish Pub of Destin

You can enjoy various foods along with excellent cocktails, ales, and coffee. Their steaks stand out, and diners rave about the pork chops and prime rib. Other menu items that make people smile are the Reuben sandwich and a massive Bavarian pretzel with beer-batter cheese.

Why Should You Eat Here?

This casual and friendly pub has a laid-back and fun vibe, complete with dollar bills hanging from the walls and ceiling. The service is excellent and inviting, and live music and entertainment add to the ambiance.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Prime Rib
  • Cuisine: Irish, American, Pub Grub

Related Read: 17 BEST Restaurants in Panama City Beach

3. Pazzo Italiano Destin

Credit: OpenTable

Address: 34904 Emerald Coast Pkwy, Destin, FL 32541| Phone Number: (850) 974-5484

Since 2017, Pazzo Italiano has provided a trendy vibe that serves traditional Italian fare. It’s a great place to unwind and enjoy a meal with friends and family.

What To Eat At Pazzo Italiano Destin

Some of the most popular dishes at Pazzo Italiano include the Pappardelle Dello Chef Dinner with truffle oil,  garlic rolls, and meatballs. But what restaurant-goers love are the incredible desserts. Make sure to save room for a cannoli, tiramisu, flourless chocolate cake, or the Nutella calzone.

Why Should You Eat Here?

The menu aims to deliver authentic flavors, even featuring a wood-fired oven from Naples that creates fantastic artisanal pizzas. The overall feel of the place is a modern, sophisticated look with a casual edge, making it a comfortable place to relax.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Alfonso’s Mussels and Beans
  • Cuisine: Italian, Pizza

4. Bric á Brac

Credit: Florida Panhandle

Address: 824 Gulf Shore Dr., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 424-6369

This locally owned and operated establishment has been in business since 2014. They pride themselves on delivering delicious food in a fun, family-friendly atmosphere.

What To Eat At Bric á Brac

Don’t miss the crab cakes when you come to Bric á Brac. Other dishes guests love are the manicotti, Bric á Brac Chicken, and the smoked tuna dip. They also offer a gluten-free menu with a variety of tasty options.

Why Should You Eat Here?

The artsy vibe of this local eatery makes it a super fun place to kick back and enjoy a meal with friends. It’s also kid-friendly, making it an excellent fit for families, whether locals or tourists on vacation. The service is excellent, and they also offer live music and happy hours.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Crab Cakes
  • Cuisine: American

Related Read: 20 Things To Do in Panama City Beach With Kids

5. Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House

Credit: Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House

Address: 414 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 424-7406

This casual seafood house uses locally-sourced seafood to create Southern-style dishes. Its waterfront location makes it a beautiful place to unwind and enjoy a fantastic meal.

What To Eat At Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House

Start your meal with a platter of raw oysters or the Blue Crab Claws. Other popular dishes are the Oysters Boshamps, the Grouper Sandwich, and Lobster Mac. You also can’t go wrong with a plate of fried shrimp or fried oysters.

Why Should You Eat Here?

If the fresh, locally-sourced seafood isn’t enough reason to eat at Boshamps, there are plenty of others. You can add stunning ocean views and live music to the list, along with accommodating service and a laid-back atmosphere. They also have a nice assortment of delicious cocktails to accompany your meal.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: “The Original” Snapper Destin
  • Cuisine: American, Seafood, Southern

6. The Back Porch

Credit: The Back Porch

Address: 1740 Scenic Hwy 98, Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 837-2022 

This local favorite has been around for over 45 years. It also offers beach access making it a convenient stop for avid beach enthusiasts.

What To Eat At The Back Porch

The Crab Cake Sandwich, Amberjack Sandwich, Crab Stuffed Shrimp, Mahi Mahi, and Smoked Tuna are all favorites. Other delicious picks are the Corn Medley, Fried Shrimp, Crab Claws, and Fish Tacos. You can also take a break from your beach fun and grab an order of Peel-and-Eat Shrimp.

Why Should You Eat Here?

The Back Porch provides a friendly, inviting atmosphere with beach access. These qualities make it a great place to grab lunch or dinner after a day in the sand and surf. 

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Amberjack Sandwich
  • Cuisine: Seafood

Related Read: 20 BEST Things To Do in Pensacola With Kids

7. Donut Hole Bakery and Cafe

Credit: Florida Panhandle

Address: 635 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 837-8824 

You won’t want to leave this bakery just because of how delicious it smells, let alone the tasty food. It’s very popular though, so make sure to arrive early.

What To Eat At Donut Hole Bakery and Cafe

Come hungry when you come to The Donut Hole and try the Eggs Benedict, Key Lime Pie, and French Toast. Grab some donuts to go, like the Apple Fritter, a cream-filled goody, or Vanilla Angels. The Huevos Rancheros is another popular breakfast item that tastes great all day long.

Why Should You Eat Here?

This local cafe has a cozy atmosphere that makes you feel right at home. It’s like eating at the home of a close friend, with comfort food and desserts for days.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Key Lime Donut
  • Cuisine: American, Southern, All-Day Breakfast

8. Vinny McGuire’s

Credit: Florida Panhandle

Address: 29 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 650-0116

If you’re looking for a great pizza, this parlor is the place to be. It’s also got a recently improved look after a fire in May of 2022.

What To Eat At Vinny McGuire’s

The salads are massive, the cheesy bread is a kid’s favorite, and the fried ravioli is tasty. But the star of the show is the pizza. And since you can create your own, you won’t want to miss out on trying some as part of your meal.

Why Should You Eat Here?

You can create your own pizza at Vinny McGuire’s, meaning you’ll get exactly what you’re looking for. You can also indulge in a selection of Irish ales to accompany your specially-curated pizza pie. The casual and laid-back atmosphere makes it a great place to stop in and stay for a while.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: The Pizza
  • Cuisine: Build-Your-Own Pizza

Related Read: Best Time To Visit Florida

9. Louisiana Lagniappe

Credit: Louisiana Lagniappe

Address: 775 Gulf Shore Dr., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 837-0881

This sophisticated restaurant has served fresh Gulf seafood featuring a Creole-inspired flair for over 30 years. It’s located inside the Sandpiper Cove condominiums.

What To Eat At Louisiana Lagniappe

If you need help deciding what to order, consider the Blackened Redfish, Louisiana Crab Cakes, or Lobster Rangoons. Lagniappe Stuffed Shrimp, Oysters Lagniappe, and Corn and Crab Bisque are other menu favorites.

Why Should You Eat Here?

The upscale atmosphere of this restaurant provides a fine dining adventure along the water, perfect for a romantic dinner. It serves exceptional food with excellent service, making the overall experience one to remember.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$$
  • Specialty Dish: Seafood Lagniappe Platter
  • Cuisine: Cajun, Louisiana-style seafood

10. Thai Tanic Restaurant 

Credit: Uber Eats

Address: 107 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32451  | Phone Number: (850) 353-2954

This family-owned, cozy restaurant offers authentic cuisine that features the flavors of Thailand. The family has years of experience preparing and serving delicious Thai dishes. 

What To Eat At Thai Tanic Restaurant 

Try the Pad Thai Noodle, Yellow Curry, Panang Curry, or Pad See Ew Noodle. Grab an order of Shrimp Fresh Rolls, Papaya Salad, or Massaman to accompany your meal. They also offer a large selection of vegan dishes.

Why Should You Eat Here?

This is the place to be if you’re looking for authentic Thai cuisine. It also offers an extremely casual atmosphere, inviting you to get comfortable and relaxed as you dine. If you prefer a vegetarian menu, this restaurant provides a ton of options to satisfy your appetite.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Pad See Ew Noodle
  • Cuisine: Thai, Vegan Options

11. Dewey Destin’s Seafood Restaurant

Credit: TripAdvisor

Address: 9 Calhoun Ave., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 837-7575

This restaurant is owned by the great-great-grandson of Destin’s founder, Leonard Destin. It’s one of three locations (two in Destin and one in Navarre). 

What To Eat At Dewey Destin’s Seafood Restaurant

Dewey Destin’s prides itself on serving locally sourced fresh seafood and fish. Stand-out menu items are the Fried Shrimp, Stuffed Shrimp, Grouper Sandwich, and Crab Cakes. If you don’t want fried food, grilled and steamed shrimp are also menu favorites.

Why Should You Eat Here?

Many say that this is the best seafood in Destin, well worth going through the traffic. It also serves local beer and boasts friendly service and a casual atmosphere overlooking Crab Island.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: “Today’s Catch” Sandwich
  • Cuisine: Seafood

12. Burrito Del Sol

Credit: Burrito Del Sol

Address: 517 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 424-6269

This no-frills, family-owned-and-operated eatery serves Mexican cuisine with a Baja twist. It also offers a budget-friendly menu without compromising on quality.

What To Eat At Burrito Del Sol

The queso is amazing, nachos plentiful, and menu items are prepared in one of four styles. You can choose from Baja, chipotle, bbq, and southwest. Try fish or shrimp tacos, a shrimp burrito, or a steak and chicken quesadilla.

Why Should You Eat Here?

It’s a hip place to eat and enjoy a laid-back and delicious meal. Whether you want to grab a drink and some nachos or a full dinner, you can find it here.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $
  • Specialty Dish: Fish Tacos
  • Cuisine: Seafood, Mexican

13. Pompano Joe’s

Credit: Florida Panhandle

Address: 2237 Scenic Gulf Dr., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 837-2224

Pompano Joe’s made an appearance on the Travel Channel as one of the best beach restaurants in the world. It’s a favorite neighborhood restaurant that serves fresh seafood daily.

What To Eat At Pompano Joe’s

The main feature of Pompano Joe’s menu is the selection of fresh Gulf seafood. Their gumbo has won numerous contests. Other dishes to try are the Mahi-Mahi, Grouper, Pan Fried Crab Cakes, Coconut Shrimp, and Reggae Rolls. 

Why Should You Eat Here?

You can’t help but feel happy when you eat at this vibrant, lively restaurant. It features fresh ingredients, an affordable price point, and a laid-back atmosphere

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Seafood Gumbo
  • Cuisine: Caribbean-Style Seafood

14. Mimmo’s Ristorante Italiano

Credit: Florida Panhandle

Address: 979 Hwy 98 E, Ste. 5, Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 460-7353

This Italian restaurant features a full bar with amazing cocktails, authentic Italian cuisine, and handcrafted, fresh pasta. It’s been open since 2013, located in the heart of Destin. 

What To Eat At Mimmo’s Ristorante Italiano

Indulge in a plate of Garlic Rolls to kick things off and follow up with some Chicken Marsala or Penne Alla Vodka. Other classics are the Fettuccine Alfredo, Spaghetti Bolognese, and the Brick Oven Mimmo’s Pizza. Save room after your meal for a cannoli or two or a Nutella pizza.

Why Should You Eat Here?

The elegant atmosphere gives your meal a sophisticated edge as you enjoy some of the most mouthwatering Italian dishes in the area. The friendly staff adds to the overall delightful experience, and the portions are ample.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Mimmo’s Pizza
  • Cuisine: Italian

15. Marina Cafe

Credit: TripAdvisor

Address: 404 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 837-7960

Boasting the title of Destin’s most awarded restaurant, Marina Cafe has been open for over 34 years. It provided a fine dining experience on the Emerald Coast.

What To Eat At Marina Cafe

Enjoy delectable filet mignon, Louisiana Redfish, and Lobster Tail along with a glass of wine or cocktail. Other popular dishes are the Grouper Cheeks, Andouille Crusted Redfish, Crab Cakes, and Fried Calamari. Try some Coconut Pie Cake for dessert.

Why Should You Eat Here?

When you eat at Marina Cafe, you’ll not only get exceptional food but also wonderful service and harbor views. The candlelit dining room is the perfect setting to enjoy one of the over 100 wines, a happy hour, and fresh daily seafood options.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$$
  • Specialty Dish: Andouille Crusted Redfish
  • Cuisine: Seafood, Sushi, Steakhouse

16. The Craft Bar

Credit: TripAdvisor

Address: 4424 Commons Dr. E, Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 460-7907

This gastropub gets its name from the handcrafted bar and tables made from 100-year-old cypress pulled from the Chattahoochee River. It has several locations along the Florida coast.

What To Eat At The Craft Bar

Grab a burger with a twist or a fried chicken sandwich with a side of fries. Chow down on fish and chips, fish tacos, or Nashville Hot Chicken or get wild with a Pimento or Tuna Burger. Don’t miss the Craft Bar Mac ‘n Cheese or some Fried Green Tomatoes.

Why Should You Eat Here?

This is so much more than a bar. It elevates the whole experience with creative gastropub fare and an impressive selection of artisan cocktails, premium spirits, and craft brews. Everything is made in-house from scratch.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: The Craft Bar Burger
  • Cuisine: Gastropub, American

17. Red Onion Organic

Credit: TripAdvisor

Address: 529 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 842-2734

Eating at Red Onion Organic is also about experiencing a little bit of history since it’s been around since 1922. They serve timeless Mediterranean recipes.

What To Eat At Red Onion Organic

Grab an appetizer of hummus or stuffed grape leaves to share with the table. Try the Gyro Platter or a Gyro sandwich, along with some fries, rice, or Greek Salad. For dessert, you can’t leave without trying some Baklava or the Creme Brulee Cheesecake. 

Why Should You Eat Here?

This cute and charming restaurant has a Meditteranean cottage vibe with an upscale edge that makes it a great place for a date night or dinner with friends. Its intimate vibe is inviting, and there’s outdoor seating as well.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Gyro Platter
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean, Tapas, Steakhouse

18. Surf Hut

Credit: Surf Hut

Address: 551 Scenic Gulf Dr., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 460-7750

The Surf Hut is one of Destin’s favorite beach hang-outs, open since 2014. Enjoy southern hospitality and beach-front charm, along with refreshing cocktails.

What To Eat At Surf Hut

Try a few things at once with the Taco Trio, or enjoy Alaska Snow Crab Legs or Fried Stuffed Shrimp. The BBQ Ribs and Shrimp Kabobs give you two tasty picks in one, and the popcorn shrimp is another favorite.

Why Should You Eat Here?

When you travel to Destin, it’s all about the beach. If you want to take the beach vibe with you when you go eat, then the Surf Hut fits the bill. It offers amazing waterfront views so you don’t have to go far from the ocean. Plus, its backyard beach provides loads of entertainment options, including cornhole and giant Connect Four.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Shrimp and Grits
  • Cuisine: Seafood, American

19. Bitterroot

Credit: Restaurant Guru

Address: 4463 Commons Dr. W Unit 10-A, Destin, FL 32541  | Phone Number: (850) 460-8881 

Relatively new to the Destin restaurant scene, opening in 2020, Bitterroot has fast-become a top spot for high-end cuisine. It’s a great place to find some creative, elevated dishes.

What To Eat At Bitterroot

Order the Snapper Piccata, Short Rib Gnocchi, or the Shrimp Ranchero with a side of Cauliflower Mash or Flashed Green Beans. Share some small bites with the table; the hummus is a stand-out, or ask for a cheese and charcuterie board.

Why Should You Eat Here?

The upscale atmosphere and creative cuisine make this restaurant a unique dining experience in Destin. They also provide excellent cocktails, happy hour, and a top-notch atmosphere. The service is exceptional, and dessert cocktails and wine make the perfect ending to a great meal.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$$
  • Specialty Dish: Savory Bread Pudding (Brunch)
  • Cuisine: American

20. The Harbor Tavern

Credit: TripAdvisor

Address: 306 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541 | Phone Number: (850) 842-2377

This locally-owned harbor restaurant is a favorite of locals and a hidden gem for tourists. It also has outdoor seating and delicious drinks like Blueberry Lemonade or a Moscow Mule.

What To Eat At The Harbor Tavern

Try different tacos with pork belly, popcorn shrimp, blackened Mahi, or blackened shrimp. Other favorites are the pork belly BLT and the various Mediterranean bowls or a Gyro Pita.

Why Should You Eat Here?

Besides having great tasting food, Harbor Tavern also delivers the perfect hang-out atmosphere with a casual vibe, great service, and live music. Enjoy views of the harbor while you sip a cocktail and chow down on boneless wings made in-house.

  • Yelp Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟 1/2
  • Cost: $$
  • Specialty Dish: Mediterranean Bowls
  • Cuisine: American, Pub Grub, Mediterranean

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