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27 Best Restaurants In Key West Loved By Locals And Tourists

best restaurants in key west

With a plethora of the best restaurants in Key West to choose from, both locals and tourists are spoiled for choice when it comes to dining options. The city’s unique blend of Caribbean, Cuban, and American influences is reflected in its gastronomy, resulting in an exciting fusion of flavors that has captivated countless visitors’ hearts and taste buds.

As you embark on your culinary journey in the Florida Keys, allow this guide to serve as your compass, pointing you toward the 27 best restaurants in Key West that have left an indelible mark on the city’s dining scene.

1. Sunset Pier

Key West Florida – Sunset Pier by Oakland Travel

 

Key West is famed for its laid-back dockside atmosphere, which Sunset Pier perfects. It is located inside the Ocean Key Resort & Spa and features live music and stunning water views. It is a long, extended pier with brilliantly colored furnishings stretching over the warm water.

Tropical influences can be found in the culinary offerings, and the sunsets here are surreal. The surf shack and tiki bar are perfect for taking in the breathtaking views, and their calendar is chock full of local events.

Favorite menu item: Peel & Eat Key West Pink Shrimp – poached in crazy lady beer and spices, cocktail sauce, lemon

We published a whole article for you to have a sneak peek before visiting Sunset Pier, one of the most famous restaurants in Key West. Check it out now!

2. Latitudes

Eating at the most exclusive restaurant in Key West by Travel with NJ Steve & Sue!

 

Latitudes is a popular fine dining restaurant in Key West recognized for its exquisite cuisine and beautiful views of the Gulf of Mexico. It is a part of Sunset Key Cottages and offers flavorful, fresh island fare.

Latitudes is accessible only by ferry, yet it is unquestionably the best spot in Key West to view the sunset. You may eat a delicious dinner here while admiring the sunset over the ocean. Each meal is a work of art made with locally sourced ingredients according to the season.

Favorite menu item: Beignets – salted dulce pastry cream, blueberry jam, whipped cream. A truly sweet ending!

3. Southern Most Beach Cafe

southernmost beach cafe key west

 

In Key West, dining on the waterfront is quite expensive. The Southernmost Beach Cafe is an exception. 

You’ll get decent discounts on casual local food here for breakfast and lunch. The views of the Atlantic Ocean are available to anybody, even if you are not staying at the Southernmost Hotel. This open-air café offers many breakfast items, sandwiches, salads, and starters. You can stroll in from the sand and take a seat!

Favorite menu item: Coconut Shrimp – 5 coconut breaded shrimp with sweet chili glaze

4. El Meson De Pepe’s Restaurant & Bar

cuban restaurant key west

 

With a vibrant and rustic atmosphere, live Salsa music, and authentic food, this Key West Cuban restaurant is a sought-after icon in the neighborhood. El Meson De Pepe has been around since 1985 and is family-run. They are on a first-come, first-served basis only.

They are committed to honoring the culinary traditions of the Conch-Cuban heritage. They’re in Mallory Square, a place well-known for its sunset celebrations, so it’s a fantastic opportunity to join in the fun while savoring some tapas and traditional tropical cocktails from the quaint patio bar.

Favorite menu item: Plantain Chips – almost everything on the menu can be served with these fried ripe, sweet plantains as a side. 

5. Eaton Street Seafood Market

Food tour at Eaton Street Seafood Market by Oakland Travel

  • Location: 801 Eaton St, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: kwseafood.com

 

Nothing is fresher than Eaton Street Seafood Market, where containers of recently caught fish are kept just a few steps from the establishment’s restaurant. They have a variety of locally caught seafood, such as hogfish, grouper, yellowtail snapper, and pink Key West shrimp. Even better, when you visit here, you can choose the catch you want to eat, and it will be prepared before you.

The inviting outside dining is a great place to take advantage of Key West’s bounty of seafood. As one of Key West’s top fish markets, it offers unrivaled cuisine in the city’s famed Old Town. The building was constructed in 1877, and the exhibition case is still a breathtaking sight to behold today. Most of the time, you’ll find a welcoming, informal atmosphere full of informed people who can assist you in choosing the most delectable fish.

Favorite menu item: Lobster Roll – The classic! Maine lobster meat, key lime mustard, mayo, and lemon juice on a traditional toasted 8-inch bun served with coleslaw & plantain chips

6. Conch Republic Seafood Restaurant

Eating at the Conch Republic Seafood Company in Key West, Florida by the altem life

 

Conch Republic Seafood Restaurant is the perfect place for the freshest seafood from the sea, offering fresh dock-to-dish eating at its finest. Some of Key West’s greatest seafood can be found here!  

It was previously known as Singleton Fish House. There were formerly hundreds of pounds of shrimp processed there daily, and some original components from this era are still visible. Meanwhile, the picturesque waterfront patio provides expansive views of the ocean. 

Favorite menu item: Seafood – everybody seems to love all things seafood here! The freshest!

7. First Flight Island Restaurant and Brewery

First Flight Island Brewery by Key West Bar Card

  • Location: 301 Whitehead St, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: firstflightkw.com

 

The setting of First Flight is a striking historical building in Key West, the birthplace of Pan American World Airways. The airlines’ initial tickets were sold here in 1927, making the initial Flight Island Restaurant and Brewery one of Key West’s most historic locations.

This is one of Key West’s top restaurants if you’re seeking some traditional American comfort food. String lights and shaded, swaying palms line the backyard garden. The beers are expertly made on-site at this microbrewery, which is regarded as the southernmost.

It’s a relaxed place with an aviation motif ideal for getting a cool craft beer and some modern pub fare. Sit down on the outdoor terrace, which emanates island charm.

Favorite menu item: Beef Brisket Mac & Cheese – Cavatappi pasta, house three cheese blend, braised beef brisket

8. Bagatelle

Key West Food Tour – Bagatelle Restaurant by Oakland Travel

 

Bagatelle is housed in a stunning 18th-century building close to Mallory Square and all the bustle on Duval Street. It features magnificent Victorian buildings in a tropical environment and was converted into a restaurant in 1979. Today, it serves some of Key West’s best cuisine, with a seafood-heavy menu in an American Caribbean flavor. Everything is sourced locally and ethically.

This is the most famous place to eat brunch in Key West. The beautiful building has enormous wraparound porches for the ideal Florida outdoor dining experience. Eat inside or on the porch while people-watching.

Favorite menu item: Swordfish – “Key West Master Chef Award Winner,” lightly blackened swordfish roaster corn and black bean risotto, broccolini, poblano cream saice

9. Blue Heaven

Eating Breakfast in Key West’s Legendary Blue Heaven Restaurant by ActionKid Extra

  • Location: 729 Thomas St, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: blueheavenkw.com

 

One of the few restaurants in Key West that isn’t solely a seafood destination, the Blue Heaven is a local legend. A writer and artist opened Blue Heaven, a Caribbean restaurant in 1992. It feels like entering a jungle because of the restaurant’s (chaotic) décor.

It’s set in the storied Bahama Village, surrounded by whimsical tropical greenery canopies. To round out the pleasant atmosphere, live music is frequently played. The menu offers American, Caribbean, and vegetarian food, and each dish is meticulously prepared.

At Blue Heaven, you can enjoy country-chic al fresco dining at its best, surrounded by cute animals like chickens and kittens. They have been in operation since 1992 and have developed quite a stellar reputation among foodies in Florida.

Favorite menu item: Betty’s Banana Bread – housemade and highly recommended by patrons

10. El Siboney Restaurant

What you can expect at El Siboney Restaurant by Sailing Sunbums

 

Given its unassuming red-brick exterior, which more closely resembles a post office than one of Key West’s great culinary gems, El Siboney would be easy to pass by without ever giving it a second glance. It’s crucial to remember that this restaurant is much more laid back than many others in Key West. But all it takes is a single taste to understand the fuss. 

This Cuban restaurant is retro, even down to the menu illustrations. Due to its affordable costs and pitchers of homemade sangria, it’s a fantastic venue for small groups.

Favorite menu item: Roast Pork – can be served with your choice of rice, salad, soup, or other sides!

11. Tavern N Town

tavern n town
  • Location: Marriott Beachside Hotel, 3841 N Roosevelt Blvd, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$$$
  • Website: tavernntown.com

 

Another popular restaurant in Key West called Tavern N Town serves Spanish tapas and American cuisine in opulent yet casual settings. Small appetizers and substantial steaks are just a few of the menu options.

Despite being a part of the Marriott Beachside, everyone is welcome to try this restaurant. 

Favorite menu item: Prime Rib – Yukon mashed potatoes, fire-roaster brussel sprouts, au jus, horseradish cream

12. Bistro 245

bistro 245

 

Within the Opal Key Resort & Marina sits Bistro 245. It’s one of the top seaside restaurants in Key West.

The patio is an excellent area to see the famous sunsets because it is close to Mallory Square. The Margaritaville Resort, which has since relocated elsewhere on the island, formerly stood near Opal Key. It is a sister property of the opulent Sunset Key Cottages located close to the harbor.

Favorite menu item: Lobster Quesadilla – tomato, caramelized onions, Manchego cheese, mango salsa, cumin sour cream

13. The Lobster Shack

The Lobster Shack in Key West by Scott Leopold

 

The Lobster Shack performs its duties as you would anticipate but to a very high standard. With dishes like the tantalizing lobster grilled cheese and the Diablo lobster roll with sriracha and jalapenos (although there are occasionally some fried coconut shrimp).

Favorite menu item: Lobster Roll – lobster is a prominent ingredient on this menu with many kinds of rolls available!

14. A&B Lobster House

A&B Lobster House by Key TV

 

There are plenty of seafood establishments in Key West, but the A&B Lobster House is a fine dining institution that has been dishing up some of the region’s most sumptuous delicacies since 1947. 

Although the dining area is pleasant and has an elite steakhouse vibe, you should be on the wraparound balcony with stunning harbor views. The restaurant offers a comprehensive menu of classic cocktails like the Hemingway daiquiri (which seems appropriate given where you are) and an exceptional wine menu, maintaining its timeless flair.

Favorite menu item: (Of course) Lobster – Caribbean Lobster Risotto, Lobster Bisque, Caribbean Lobster Thermidor, and many more!

15. Azur

Key TV report at Azur

  • Location: 425 Grinnell St, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: azurkeywest.com

 

Azur Restaurant is a few blocks from the busy tourist area of Duval Street. It is a Mediterranean eatery serving inventive and modern cuisine in a warm blue dining room on a covered terrace. It can be found on the historic district’s north side.

Every day, the restaurant provides brunch and dinner to residents and tourists. The chefs have the freedom to add their unique spins to traditional recipes. This is one of Key West’s finest examples of a chef-driven, innovative restaurant. 

Favorite menu item: Gnocchi – Either Braised Beef Rib Gnocchi with petite vegetables, button mushrooms, and Pecorino-Romano or Toasted Gnocchi with pine nuts, truffle, and arugula. I heard the pasta melts in your mouth…

16. Garbo's Grill

Trying out Garbo’s Grill in Key West by Meng Lor

 

Garbo’s Grill is a little family-run food truck-like establishment with many characters. They constantly develop creative variations on tacos, burgers, and burritos. The rule in this place is to expect the unexpected because they also sell poke bowls and lobster rolls.

There are a few tables on the covered brick patio, so you can relax and enjoy each bite. As one of the best restaurants in Key West, Garbo’s is a time-honored tradition for tourists and locals alike. Although there is frequently a queue around the block, it is worth the wait.

Simply go to Garbo’s Grill to enjoy Key West the old-fashioned way. Diners, Dive-Ins, and Dives devotees will recognize this seafood restaurant from the episode where Guy Fieri toured the greatest Key West restaurants.

Favorite menu item: Tacos – Yum Yum Shrimp, Korean BBQ, or Cayo Fish

17. Matt’s Stock Island Kitchen

Matt’s Stock Island Kitchen & Bar by South Florida PBS

 

Matt’s Stock Island Kitchen is a spacious restaurant with lovely views of the marina’s shoreline. The vistas outdoors are much more beautiful. Their outside dining space is fantastic. 

The emphasis is on upgraded coastal comfort dishes, and the design is contemporary and simple. Each plate is thoughtfully designed and made straightforwardly so that the amazing ingredients may truly shine. You may even bring your fresh catch in for them to prepare after a day of fishing out in the open Florida Keys waters for some of the finest seafood in Key West.

Favorite menu item: Pancakes – your choice of plain, blueberry, or chocolate chip with maple or cinnamon butter

18. Bo’s Fish Wagon

Best Conch Fritters in Key West – BO’s Fish Wagon by Average Dude Reviews

  • Location: 801 Caroline St, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: bosfishwagon.com

 

Bo’s Fish Wagon is a quirky restaurant housed in a lovely driftwood cabin. This is lowkey one of Key West’s top restaurants if you want to savor some fresh foods that are a little less mainstream.

The restaurant encapsulates the Keys’ “no shirt, no shoes, no problem” mentality, particularly in light of the Friday Night Jam Session. It has a sweetly rustic ambiance with lots of subtly tacky wooden furnishings, and all of the outdoor dining is done on the sidewalk, which enhances the sweet ambiance. 

Favorite menu item: Grouper Sandwich – it’s fried and it hits the spot!

19. Smoked BBQ

Smoked BBQ in Key West, Florida by Travel Thirsty

  • Location: 1801 N Roosevelt Blvd, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: smokedbbqkw.com

 

This laid-back restaurant is housed within an old boat! Smoked BBQ embraces a vintage aesthetic that is only surpassed by the stunning harbor vistas and delectable grilled meats. They offer unrivaled traditional Southern comfort food in the region.

Although a pulled pork sandwich might seem like the most common item you could get, this one is anything but typical (it’s likely their trademark rub, which they also sell for you to take home). The meal belies the rustic appearance that the picnic tables with red and white checkered tablecloths present.

Favorite menu item: Smoked Sliced Angus Brisket Plate – Prime Angus brisket hand rubbed with their signature rub and then slow smoked for up to 12 hrs using a combination of Hickory and Cherry wood

20. Little Pearl

ViewCation lists Little Pearl as among the best restaurants in Key West

 

Little Pearl is the local restaurant that residents and tourists frequently eat at. The restaurant exudes a distinct seaside ambiance with fish, mermaids, compasses, and Edison lights scattered over the dining room. 

The Old Town restaurant offers a chef-curated, four-course menu with alternatives. Without overpowering patrons with tacky pirate garb and SCUBA chairs that stretch as far as the eye can see, this upscale wine bar and seafood restaurant delivers a delightful interpretation of the nautical motif that pays homage to the restaurant’s surroundings.

Favorite menu item: Seafood – super fresh seafood from catch of the day

21. Antonia's Restaurant

antonia's restaurant

 

Fresh Italian cuisine with homemade pasta and sauces and an award-winning wine list are served at Key West institution Antonia’s Restaurant. 

Save space for dessert; the restaurant serves a sublime amaretto coconut cream pie that is wonderfully balanced and not overly sweet.

Favorite menu item: Lasagne – spinach pasta, parmesan reggiano, mozzarella, béchamel, bolognese

22. Santiago's Bodega

santiagos bodega key west
  • Location: 7305, 207 Petronia St #101, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: santiagosbodega.com

 

Although Santiago’s Bodega is hidden behind colorful landscaping in a modest-sized structure, its Spanish tapas are incredibly flavorful. Light tapas are available for lunch, but the meal proportions for dinner significantly exceed what you might anticipate from a Spanish tapas restaurant in the Bahama Village.

This restaurant’s decor is especially soothing, and it has cozy seating and a setting that makes you feel like you’ve gotten away from the bustle of the city. Additionally, it’s very simple to unwind thanks to the unique cocktails and several cuisines.

Favorite menu item: Tapas – cold and hot tapas available that can paired with various combos available from the menu

23. Kermit’s

Eating Key Lime Pie at Kermit’s in Key West by ActionKid Extra

  • Location: 200 Elizabeth Street, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $
  • Website: keylimeshop.com

 

In Key West, Kermit’s has the best Key Lime Pie on a Stick, the ideal tasty and entertaining treat on a hot Florida day. Even the structure is adorable—a tiny Key Lime Cottage on Key West’s breathtaking beachfront strip.

Owner Kermit Carpenter has been in business for more than 29 years. He frequently poses for photos wearing his signature green apron and toque. Back then, a sewage pumping station was directly across from the business. But when the City of Key West moved on with plans for the area (the pumping station is no longer there, just so you know), its great location right at the Key West Bight kept him optimistic.

Although Kermit’s isn’t really a restaurant per se—more of a store—you’ll see why we included it in the list once you’ve been there. Key lime taste and smell are added to cookies, marinades, jams & jellies, almonds, salsa, and even lotion.

There is also a location on Duval Street (335F Duval). However, Kermit’s Café is in its original location on Elizabeth Street and offers a tropical atmosphere with flowers, trees, and a koi pond.

The Food Network, HGTV, The Travel Channel, The Today Show, Good Morning America, and numerous other media outlets have all featured Kermit’s. Give them a try, and let us know what you think!

Favorite menu item: Obviously Key Lime Pie! They come in traditional, strawberry, and coconut flavors. They can be purchased whole or as a delicious frozen dessert covered in chocolate.

24. Café Marquesa

cafe marquesa key west

 

This quaint cafe specializes in inventive New American cuisine and is inside the upscale Marquesa Hotel in Old Town Key West. It is a cherished institution in the neighborhood and a popular restaurant for locals and visitors.

While situated just off Duval Street in the busy center of Key West’s historic district, Café Marquesa has a lovely garden that gives it a sense of seclusion while right next to the busiest tourist area. However, don’t be fooled into believing this is just another upscale restaurant serving expensive fare because of the white tablecloths and dark wood decor. The 50-seat restaurant offers beautifully prepared meats, fresh seafood from Key West, house-made bread, and desserts. The entire meal has a uniquely Southern twist and is welcoming and inviting. 

There is also a welcoming bar where you can have a few drinks or some light fare. They provide a wide variety of premium wines from around the world and inventive drinks.

Favorite menu item: Beignets – powdered sugar, crème anglaise, fresh berries

25. Glazed Donuts

One of the top breakfast places in Key West – Glazed Donuts – by Karriann Graf

 

If you think of a city’s eating highlights, a doughnut store might not be the first place that comes to mind, but that means you’ve never gone to Glazed. At Glazed Donuts, breakfast-to-go is an upgraded experience. What was once a locals-only secret in 2012 has become a dining destination for everyone visiting Key West.

Owners Megan and Jonathan Pidgeon, a husband and wife team, follow classic culinary methods in preparing their dishes. Even though their doughnuts aren’t intended for dipping, a full coffee bar completes the experience.

Favorite menu item: Yep, you guessed it right, donuts! You can get treats like a Key lime pie doughnut with torched meringue on top and other fresh fruit-filled treats like a peach blessed dossant and pineapple upside down brulée.

26. Cuban Coffee Queen

Cuban Coffee Queen in Key West Florida makes the best Cafe Con Leche by Having Fun Wherever We Go

 

Cuban Coffee Queen is Key West’s best place to get Cuban coffee. A bustling counter-service restaurant serving classic Cuban food, it’s a well-known location to visit for both a delectable coffee and one of their delectable sandwiches.

The beans can even be purchased to go, and it is worthwhile to take some with you. It’s the ideal place for lunch or breakfast in Key West. The location is perfect for packing a picnic to go to the beach or to settle under a great shady palm tree because there is nowhere actually to eat there. It’s a little, unassuming white hut with a vibrant, edgy flair. There is a dine-in option at the downtown location.

Favorite menu item: Cuban Coffee – iced, espresso shot, con leche, frappe, etc.

27. Caroline's Café

caroline's cafe key west
  • Location: 310 Duval St, Key West, FL 33040
  • Price: $$ – $$$
  • Website: carolinescafe.com

 

For a reasonable price, you may get traditional American fare like sandwiches at Caroline’s Café, along with some specialty dishes like jerk chicken and jambalaya. Island food is frequently combined with the more popular American cuisine, adding some variety to a restaurant with only one declared theme.

The food selections on the extensive menu enable you to select between hefty meals and something quick to get you through the day. Due to its accessible position right on Duval Street in the heart of the city, the restaurant is always rather busy.

Favorite menu item: Caroline’s Famous Fish Sandwich – Golden brown fried fish with lettuce, tomato, and tartar sauce on a warm bun

Find These Restaurants in Key West

These are just a few snapshots of the culinary delights that await in Key West. Whether you’re craving seafood, Caribbean flavors, or a taste of local specialties, the island’s dining scene has something to offer every discerning palate.

Imagine a gastronomic journey through this tropical oasis, where fresh seafood, vibrant flavors, and a laid-back atmosphere create a memorable dining experience. So, whether you’re exploring Duval Street or seeking a quiet spot by the water, we highly recommend to try the best restaurants in Key West!

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One of the greatest pleasures of visiting this enchanting island is dining with a breathtaking view. Key West restaurants on the water just complete the perfect tropical paradise you might have imagined while planning your vacation. Explore the 12 best Key West restaurants on the water, each offering a unique dining experience that combines exceptional flavors with picturesque surroundings.

To fuel up for the exciting escapades that lie ahead, discovering the finest places for breakfast in Key West is a must. In this guide, we’ll unveil the top 20 places, ensuring that your day starts with a delectable journey through local flavors and a boost of energy to make the most of your full-day escapade.

Have you tried the infamous Key Lime Pie in the Florida Keys? Key Lime Pie is a common dessert served in restaurants all around Florida, where it is a state favorite.

Best Restaurants In Key West FAQs

Key West is famous for its diverse and vibrant culinary scene, offering a range of dishes that showcase the unique flavors and influences of the region. Here are some of the iconic foods that Key West is known for:

  • Conch Fritters
  • Key Lime Pie
  • Fresh Seafood
  • Cuban Cuisine
  • Key West Pink Shrimp
  • Caribbean-inspired Cuisine
  • Fresh Fish Tacos

It’s difficult to determine as it may vary over time due to openings, closures, and new establishments. However, Key West is known for its thriving culinary scene, and the city offers many dining options to cater to both locals and tourists.

To get the most accurate and up-to-date information on the current number of restaurants in Key West, it is recommended to consult local directories, review websites, or contact the local tourism office.

Food prices in Key West can vary depending on the type of restaurant and the specific dishes being served. Overall, it is important to note that Key West tends to be more expensive compared to other parts of Florida, primarily due to its status as a popular tourist destination. This higher cost of living and visitor demand can contribute to relatively higher food prices.

Janelle
Author: Janelle

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