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Dine With a View: 12 Best Key West Restaurants On The Water

key west restaurants on the water

One of the greatest pleasures of visiting this island is dining with a breathtaking view.

Dining in a Key West restaurant on the water is just the perfect image of a tropical paradise. 

From laid-back beachfront eateries to upscale dining, Key West offers a remarkable array of restaurants on the water, where you can indulge in sumptuous meals while captivated by the mesmerizing ocean vistas.

We’re sharing the 12 best Key West restaurants on the water.

Sunset Pier

 

Nestled at the vibrant heart of Key West’s historic seaport, Sunset Pier stands as an oasis where dazzling sunsets, live music, and delectable cuisine converge.

Perched on a pier jutting out into the crystal-clear waters, Sunset Pier is a lively hub of activity that effortlessly blends the laid-back island charm with a vibrant atmosphere. 

From families and friends to couples, Sunset Pier caters to all. Beyond its culinary delights, Sunset Pier is renowned for its live music performances. From lively reggae beats to soulful acoustic melodies, the music at Sunset Pier sets the stage for a delightful evening of entertainment and relaxation

Whether you’re craving fresh seafood, mouthwatering burgers, or tropical-inspired dishes, the skilled chefs at Sunset Pier deliver flavors that are as bold and enticing as the setting itself. Check out their tropical cocktails or their extensive wine list.

Favorite menu item: Pork Belly Tacos Al Pastor- crispy glazed pork belly, pineapple, cilantro slaw, radish, flour tortilla

Bistro 245

 

Bistro 245 in Key West is an elegant waterfront restaurant located at the Margaritaville Key West Resort.

The restaurant’s inviting atmosphere and stylish decor provide a perfect setting for a memorable dining experience.

They offer breakfast, lunch and dinner. The menu features a fusion of contemporary American cuisine with local island flavors, showcasing the culinary expertise of talented chefs who prioritize high-quality ingredients and meticulous preparation. 

The restaurant’s prime waterfront location along Key West Harbor offers breathtaking views of the marina and stunning sunsets, whether enjoyed from the outdoor terrace or through the floor-to-ceiling windows indoors.

Bistro 245 also offers an impressive selection of wines, craft cocktails, and artisanal beers to complement the dishes, with an attentive staff on hand to provide expert recommendations.

Favorite menu item: Lobster Quesadilla appetizer- Tomato, Caramelized Onions, Manchego Cheese, Mango Salsa, Cumin Sour Cream

Latitudes

Latitudes in Key West

 

Latitudes is an exceptional dining destination on Sunset Key, near Key West. This enchanting restaurant offers a harmonious blend of cuisine, a serene atmosphere, and breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico. 

With its open-air design, elegant decor, and choice of indoor or outdoor seating, Latitudes provides a romantic setting for.

The menu showcases the best local ingredients, featuring diverse dishes catering to various preferences, including seafood, steaks, and vegetarian options. 

Complementing the exceptional cuisine, Latitudes offers an extensive selection of wines, cocktails, and beverages expertly paired by knowledgeable staff.

Favorite menu item: Pan Seared Yellowtail Snapper (GF)-
lemon glaze, basmati rice, fennel cucumber salad, citrus vin blanc

Southernmost Beach Cafe

Southernmost Beach Cafe is a waterfront eatery located at the southernmost point of Key West, offering a perfect blend of beachside relaxation and delicious cuisine.

With its open-air setting and proximity to the lively Duval Street, the cafe provides a laid-back atmosphere. 

The menu features a variety of dishes inspired by Key West’s culinary scene, including fresh seafood, burgers, salads, and sandwiches.

The cafe caters to various dietary preferences. Alongside the flavorful cuisine, Southernmost Beach Cafe offers a selection of tropical cocktails and beverages that complement the beachfront experience. 

You’ll also enjoy live music performances, adding to the vibrant atmosphere of the cafe. Whether it’s a leisurely lunch, a romantic dinner, or a relaxing drink while watching the sunset, Southernmost Beach Cafe provides a memorable dining experience in the heart of Key West.

Favorite menu item: Coconut Shrimp Appetizer-  Coconut Breaded Shrimp, Sweet Chili Glaze

Half Shell Raw Bar

The Half Shell Raw Bar is a beloved seafood restaurant in the heart of Key West, Florida.

Located in a charming setting, this restaurant offers a laid-back atmosphere that perfectly captures the essence of the island lifestyle.

The interior has nautical vibe. The walls are covered with photos, posters, and memorabilia that reflect the rich maritime history of Key West.

The highlight of the Half Shell Raw Bar is undoubtedly its mouthwatering selection of fresh seafood.

Known for its outstanding raw bar, the restaurant offers an impressive array of oysters, clams and shrimp. You can order them on the half shell or indulge in gooey Oysters Rockefeller (my personal favorite) or opt for a lighter chargrilled still deliscous.

The chefs at Half Shell Raw Bar take pride in sourcing high-quality ingredients and creating flavorful dishes that capture the essence of Key West’s culinary heritage.

Favorite menu item: Coconut Shrimp- Flash fried, coconut-crusted shrimp with a sweet and sour sauce

Hot Tin Roof Restaurant

key west restaurants on the water hot tin roof

Rated #1 for date night, the Hot Tin Roof Restaurant in Key West is an upscale dining establishment within the Ocean Key Resort and Spa.

Led by talented chefs, the menu combines local ingredients and global influences, resulting in creatively prepared dishes, from appetizers to desserts.

The seafood options are particularly impressive, featuring fresh catches prepared with precision. The menu also caters to different preferences with expertly crafted meat and vegetarian choices. 

A wide selection of fine wines, handcrafted cocktails, and premium spirits complement the cuisine. 

Favorite menu item: Seared Scallops & Colossal Shrimp-
almond mole, maduros, peanuts – (GF)

Louie’s Backyard

Louie’s Backyard is an iconic and highly regarded restaurant in Key West. Situated in a historic mansion with panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean, Louie’s Backyard offers a picturesque dining experience.

The interior is tastefully decorated with tropical accents. The restaurant has a spacious dining area and an outdoor patio where you can bask in the gentle sea breeze.

The Louie’s Backyard menu showcases a fusion of flavors inspired by Caribbean, Latin, and Asian influences.

From fresh seafood caught locally to tender meats and vibrant vegetarian options, there is something to please every palate.

The chefs take pride in using fresh and seasonal produce. Whether you choose the succulent grilled fish, the perfectly cooked steak, or one of the innovative vegetarian creations, you can expect a culinary experience that satisfies and surprises you.

The oceanfront setting adds an extra layer of magic to the dining experience at Louie’s Backyard. The restaurant offers breathtaking views and the outdoor patio is surrounded by lush tropical foliage.

Louie’s Backyard also offers an extensive wine list featuring a curated selection of varietals from around the world. 

Favorite menu item: Shrimp and Grits- Sautéed Gulf shrimp with bacon, mushrooms and stoneground grits 

Salute! On the Beach

Open from noon-8, Salute! On the Beach in Key West offers a unique dining experience with its beachfront location, Mediterranean-inspired cuisine, and warm hospitality.

A late lunch is the best way to enjoy Salute!. 

The menu highlights fresh and flavorful dishes influenced by Mediterranean and Italian flavors, including seafood, pasta, and appetizers.

Salute! On the Beach, a sister restaurant of Blue Heaven offers its own delightful rendition of Key Lime Pie.

The pies feature a luscious key lime custard nestled on a flavorful graham cracker crust, topped generously with fluffy meringue. 

You can dine on the outdoor patio right on the beach, enjoying panoramic ocean views and the soothing sound of waves.

The full-service bar offers a variety of cocktails, wines, and beers to complement the meal.

Favorite menu item: Grouper Cakes- served with shrimp and chipotle aioli 

Matt's Stock Island Kitchen & Bar

A brief introduction to Matt’s Stock Island Kitchen & Bar

Matt’s Stock Island Kitchen & Bar takes pride in supporting local farmers, fishermen, and artisans, ensuring the freshness and quality of the ingredients, and contributing to the region’s sustainability.

This farm-to-table approach results in a menu showcasing the Florida Keys’ vibrant flavors, with dishes highlighting the bounty of the surrounding land and sea.

The menu combines Caribbean, Latin American, and Southern cuisine elements, with innovative twists on classic dishes and bold and unexpected flavor combinations.

The restaurant is in a beautifully restored historic building with rustic and industrial charm. The interior features an open kitchen concept where you can witness the chefs’ culinary magic.

The outdoor seating area offers a tranquil setting with lush greenery and waterfront views.

Favorite menu item: She crab Soup- Blue crab sherry fritter

A&B Lobster House

A&B Lobster House is a celebrated seafood restaurant known for its rich history and iconic location.

A&B is housed in a historic building dating back to the 1800s, exuding old-world charm and a sense of heritage.

Situated right on the Key West Harbor, A&B Lobster House offers stunning waterfront views.

Their commitment to serving the freshest and highest-quality seafood is another aspect that attracts you. As the name suggests, the restaurant is renowned for its superb selection of lobsters and other seafood offerings.

From succulent lobster tails to perfectly prepared crab legs and shrimp, you’ll indulge in the ocean’s bounty, expertly cooked to highlight the natural flavors of the sea.

In addition to its exceptional seafood, A&B Lobster House takes pride in its extensive wine list and upscale atmosphere. The restaurant features a refined and elegant interior adorned with beautiful maritime-inspired decor, creating a sophisticated ambiance. The well-curated wine selection complements the seafood offerings, allowing guests to pair their meals with a perfect vintage.

Favorite menu item: Main Lobster and Escargot- Cremini mushrooms, garlic and clam cream, truffle, puff pastry. Are you kidding me?

Schooner Wharf Bar

Schooner Wharf Bar in Key West is a beloved establishment known for its authentic atmosphere, live music, refreshing drinks, maritime ambiance, and vibrant events.

Nestled in the Historic Seaport area, the bar offers a laid-back vibe and an open-air setting with scenic harbor views. 

The bar is renowned for its selection of cold drinks and cocktails, providing a quintessential Key West experience.

The nautical decor and maritime heritage showcase the island’s seafaring past.

Favorite menu item: Tuna Nachos- Raw sashimi grade tuna served over seaweed salad with crisp wontons, topped with wasabi drizzle

Conch Republic Seafood Company

Situated in the Historic Seaport area, Conch Republic Seafood Company offers picturesque harbor views mesmerizing, shimmering waters, and boats passing by.

Conch Republic Seafood Company prides itself on sourcing high-quality local seafood, including Key West pink shrimp, stone crab claws, and fresh fish. 

You can choose between indoor seating or the outdoor patio. 

Conch Republic Seafood Company embraces Key West’s vibrant spirit with local musicians, ranging from lively island tunes to classic hits.

The restaurant’s commitment to sustainability is another unique characteristic that sets Conch Republic Seafood Company apart. They actively participate in sustainable fishing practices and striving to support local fisheries, ensuring the long-term health of the surrounding marine ecosystem.

Favorite menu item: Conch Fritters- Bahamian style recipe featuring Queen Conch and homemade Key Lime mustard

key west restaurants on the water faqs

Dine At Waterfront Restaurants In Key West

In contrast to the idyllic dining experience offered by Key West’s waterfront restaurants, the nightlife in this tropical haven adds a dynamic and lively dimension to the island experience. While savoring sumptuous meals against mesmerizing ocean vistas is a daytime delight, the evenings unfold an entirely different allure.

So, as the sun sets over the water, embark on a different kind of adventure—one that will fill your tummy and satisfy your taste buds!

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Although Sunset Pier is right in the middle of the activity, it provides a small buffer from the masses that throng Mallory Square every evening for the infamous sunset celebration. Here’s a sneak peek before visiting.

Key West Restaurants On The Water FAQs

Key West offers a variety of exceptional waterfront restaurants. Some popular choices include Latitudes, Louie’s Backyard, Schooner Wharf Bar, and Conch Republic Seafood Company.

Absolutely! Key West is renowned for its fresh seafood, and waterfront restaurants often highlight the bounties of the ocean. From succulent lobster and shrimp to locally caught fish and crab, you can expect a variety of delicious seafood options prepared to perfection.

While policies may vary, many Key West waterfront restaurants do accept reservations. Check with each specific restaurant, as some popular ones might have limited seating and high demand during peak hours or busy seasons. Making a reservation in advance can help ensure a smooth dining experience.

Key West’s waterfront restaurants often provide docking facilities or have nearby marinas where boaters can dock their vessels. It’s advisable to contact the restaurant in advance to inquire about their dock availability, any fees, and reservation requirements for arriving by boat.

Janelle
Author: Janelle

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