So, you’re visiting sunny Florida? While we’ve certainly got attractions, and beautiful sunny beaches, what we really want to tell you about are some amazing Florida restaurants. The Sunshine State is a melting pot of various cultures, styles, and cuisines all fused together in a tropical paradise. So buckle up and let’s go exploring culinary style, with these fantastic Florida restaurants for foodies!
Enjoy a Few of Our Favorite Florida Restaurants!
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The Conch House, St. Augustine
This state is jam-packed with many amazing waterfront Florida restaurants, but we only know of one where you can get tasty Caribbean cuisine served to you in a personal Jamaican-style grass hut suspended over the water. That’s The Conch House, of course!
Start with the Banana Pepper Calamari (our favorite!). Then choose from a wide variety of fresh seafood, steaks, chicken dishes, and amazing salads. Be sure to grab one of their tropical “signature sips” to match! If you’re lucky enough to have timed a Saturday evening visit, you’ll also enjoy the sweet sounds of the Hawaiian Islands while indulging in an amazing waterfront meal under the swaying palm trees.
Singleton’s Seafood Shack, Mayport
What you’ll quickly learn is that our adventures to Florida restaurants are not always simply food-related. Sometimes they’re more about the experience. Singleton’s Seafood Shack in Mayport is a fun time from the moment you embark on the ferry. (This quaint Florida fish camp is easily accessible by road from Jacksonville, but we discovered it on a visit to Amelia Island and rode the Mayport ferry over!)
Once you arrive, you’ll be greeted with tons of amazing seafood options. Whether you fancy fried shrimp, the fresh catch, or an oyster po’boy, you’ll definitely find something that sparks your interest at this fish camp. Don’t miss the New England Clam Chowder, voted Best in Jacksonville, or the Minorcan Clam Chowder, which was one of the Florida Restaurants featured on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives! While you’ll eat on unfussy disposable dinnerware, what you’re really here for is the great food and the waterfront views.
The Cracked Egg Diner, Daytona Beach Shores
There are some Florida restaurants that deliver in terms of tasty food and feel-good vibes. There’s a lot to be said for a reliable, always delicious meal, pleasant and overly accommodating staff, and friendly locals and vacationers to chat with during your wait. Combine that with the ’50s-style diner decor and toe-tapping oldies playing overhead, and you’ve got The Cracked Egg Diner.
With all of your typical breakfast favorites, including omelets, Eggs Benedict, pancakes, French toast, waffles, grits, bacon, homemade apple fritters, and more, you’ll never run out of things to order. (Especially when you factor in the specials, which have been known to feature delicious Chunky Monkey Pancakes and Fruity Pebbles French Toast.) If you’re feeling splurgy, treat yourself to a refreshing Mimosa or Bellini. While this should be a must-stop breakfast place on every Daytona Beach Shores itinerary, don’t forget that they’re open for lunch, too!
Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe, Sanford
If you’re looking for a taste of Germany with an authentic atmosphere to accompany it (without leaving Florida restaurants), look no further than Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe. Located in Historic Downtown Sanford, the menu features Bavarian pretzels, Schnitzels, German sausages (Bratwurst, Weisswurst, Cajunwurst, Frankfurter, Nürnberger, Knockwurst – you name it!), and many other classic German dishes.
Wash it all down with a crisp Tucher Hefeweizen, Hollerbach Kölsch or Schöfferhofer Grapefruit. If you’ve brought a crowd that’s really ready to celebrate, order up das Boot, a two- or three-liter, boot-shaped glass. But note that Haus Rules do apply: There must be four to five drinkers, everyone must remain standing until das Boot is finished, don’t set it on the table with beer in it (it’s bad luck!), do not clink with other glasses, and, most importantly, point the toe of das Boot towards heaven. Enjoy responsibly, and when you’re done, join in some yodeling, polka dancing, and a tailfeather shaking chicken dance! Prost!
The Old Spanish Sugar Mill, De Leon Springs
Explorers will find a surprise hidden inside of De Leon Springs State Park, and that’s The Old Spanish Sugar Mill. Here, pancakes are cooked tableside on griddles – by you! Since 1961, this rustic, family-operated joint has been serving up pancakes in this fun style. How many other Florida restaurants offer that?
You’ll receive pitchers of two different homemade pancake batters and you pour and flip them right on your table! Order blueberries, bananas, peanut butter, pecans, chocolate chips, or apples to serve up your own custom pancake creations. Of course, they have coffee, sausage, bacon, eggs, and other treats to accompany your delicious pancake breakfast.
This is a Florida restaurants experience that the kids will remember forever. Just arrive early, because it’s popular and does get crowded. When you’re done, explore the sugar mill that the park was named for (originally constructed in the 1830s!).
Fun fact: Make some extra time to enjoy all of the nearby amenities when visiting Florida restaurants, De Leon Springs offers eco-tours, boat rentals, hiking, and more!
READ MORE: 7 Hidden Gems of Florida
Mediterranean Deli, Winter Park
While some of the Florida restaurants we’ve shared focus on ambiance, location, and atmosphere in addition to food, you come to Mediterranean Deli for the food, and that’s really all that you need. You’ll find it situated in a small, unassuming strip mall, away from the fanciest parts of Winter Park, but that’s totally OK and you’ll soon see why.
Prepare yourself for a fresh and delicious lunch or dinner, flavor explosions, and loaded plates. Trust us, they have perfected middle eastern food here. Order all of your faves: gyros, grape leaves, spinach pie, tabouli, hummus, falafel, kebabs, baklava, and more. Add in the incredibly reasonable prices and super-friendly service (with huge smiles!), and you have a foodie find you’ll be craving for years to come.
Rusty Bellies Waterfront Grill, Tarpon Springs
Rusty Bellies Waterfront Grill is a family restaurant, named their love of fishing. Order up some seafood from their extensive menu, and you’ll immediately get it – Rusty Bellies is dedicated to providing fresh, Florida local-caught seafood. Many of the dishes are even named after local fishermen’s beloved fishing boats.
Fun fact: A ”Rusty Belly” is the nickname for a large male gag grouper.
Prepare for a little wait to be seated. (Hey, everyone else likes this place, too!) Pro tip: Get on the waitlist on the Yelp app before your arrival to minimize the wait time. Once you’ve waited and are seated, you’re in for a treat! Sit back and enjoy the tropical tunes, waterfront views, and cool Gulf breeze with a Rusty Bellies Sangria, Margarita, or Frose. Then enjoy the Tuna Poke and Ceviche appetizers, Crab Bisque, Bellie’s Signature Salad with refreshing lemon poppyseed dressing, Blackened Fish Tacos, and more. We’ve tried them all on our visits – each was fantastic and had us coming back trip after trip for more!
Cabbage Key Inn and Restaurant, Pineland
Have you ever had a cheeseburger in paradise? You know, the type that’s “heaven on earth with an onion slice?” If not, then you need to chart a course for Cabbage Key Inn and Restaurant ASAP! This is believed to be the location where Jimmy Buffet tasted the memorable cheeseburger and wrote his iconic tune. It’s also known for its kitschy decor, with dollar bills covering the walls. Grab a sharpie and add yours, too!
The historic, open-air restaurant sits atop a thirty-eight-foot Indian shell mound on a gulf coast island surrounded by one hundred acres of tropical vegetation. With minimal crowds and no cars on the island, this place is tranquility at its finest. Sit on the porch amidst the Cuban Laurel trees dripping with moss, and enjoy breakfast, lunch, or dinner and some panoramic Pine Island Sound views. Arrive by boat and plan to stay for a while.
The next time you’re in the area and looking to visit some of the best Florida restaurants, we hope you’ll try one of the gems featured here. Breakfast, lunch, or dinner, you’ve got plenty of great options. Looking for adventure? We’ve covered that, too. Florida restaurants have it all!
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