The Florida Keys Restaurants

Seafood rules in the Keys, which is full of chef-owned restaurants with not-too-fancy food. Many restaurants serve cuisine that reflects the proximity of the Bahamas and Caribbean (you’ll see the term "Floribbean" on many menus). Tropical fruits figure prominently—especially on the beverage side of the menu. Florida spiny lobster should be local and fresh from August to March, and stone crabs from mid-October to mid-May. And don't dare leave the islands without sampling conch, be it in a fritter or in ceviche. Keep an eye out for authentic key lime pie—yellow custard in a graham-cracker crust. If it's green, just say "no." Note: Particularly in Key West and particularly during spring break, the more affordable and casual restaurants can get loud and downright rowdy, with young visitors often more interested in drinking than eating. Live music contributes to the decibel levels. If you're more of the quiet, intimate-dining type, avoid such overly exuberant scenes by eating early or choosing a restaurant where the bar isn’t the main focus.

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  • 1. Hideaway Café

    $$$ | American

    It's easy to miss this café tucked between Grassy Key and Marathon, but when you find it (upstairs at Rainbow Bend Resort), you'll discover...Read More

  • 2. Baby's Coffee

    $ | American

    The aroma of rich, roasting coffee beans arrests you at the door of "the Southernmost Coffee Roaster in America." Buy beans by the pound or...Read More

  • 3. Chad's Deli & Bakery

    $ | American

    It's a deli! It's a bakery! It's a pasta place! It's also where the locals go. By day, Chad's serves monster sandwiches in pita wraps, rolls...Read More

  • 4. Geiger Key Smokehouse Bar and Grill

    $ | American

    There's a strong hint of the Old Keys at this ocean-side marina restaurant, where local fishermen stop for breakfast before heading out to catch...Read More

  • 5. Harriette's Restaurant

    $ | American

    If you're looking for comfort food—like melt-in-your-mouth biscuits the size of a salad plate or old-fashioned hot cakes with sausage or bacon...Read More

  • 6. Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville Cafe

    $ | Old Town | American

    If you must have your cheeseburger in paradise, it may as well be here. The first of Buffett's line of chain eateries, it belongs here more...Read More

  • 7. Key Largo Conch House

    $ | American

    This family-owned restaurant in a Victorian-style home tucked into the trees is worth seeking out. Seven varieties of Benedicts, including conch...Read More

  • 8. Lorelei Restaurant & Cabana Bar

    $$ | Upper Matecumbe Key | American

    While local anglers gather here for breakfast, lunch and dinner bring a mix of islanders and visitors for straightforward food and front-row...Read More

  • 9. Michaels Restaurant

    $$$$ | American

    White tablecloths, subdued lighting, and romantic music give Michaels the feel of an urban eatery, while garden seating reminds you that you...Read More

  • 10. No Name Pub

    $ | American

    This no-frills honky-tonk has been around since 1936, delighting inveterate locals and intrepid vacationers who come for the excellent pizza...Read More

  • 11. Sarabeth's

    $$ | American

    Named for the award-winning jam-maker and pastry chef Sarabeth Levine, this locally-owned restaurant serves all-day breakfast, best enjoyed...Read More

  • 12. Sixty-One Prime

    $$$$ | American

    This fine-dining restaurant in Hawks Cay Resort serves steaks and seafood in an elegant setting. Chefs work with local farmers and fishermen...Read More

  • 13. Sundowners

    $$$ | American

    If it's a clear night and you can snag a reservation, this restaurant will treat you to a sherbet-hue sunset over Florida Bay. The food is also...Read More

  • 14. The Stuffed Pig

    $ | Diner

    With only nine tables and a counter inside, this breakfast-and-lunch place is always hopping. The kitchen whips up daily lunch specials like...Read More

  • 15. Deuce's Off the Hook Grill

    $$$ | Modern American

    It's a tight fit with only six tables (and six counter seats), but if you don't mind sitting close to fellow diners, you will be rewarded with...Read More

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