1. Great Southern Cafe
Our favorite restaurant, we love their award winning Grits à ya ya and their Balsamic salmon. Don’t forget to sample their mojitos! Peach, strawberry, classic, mango, guava … you really can’t go wrong. They have a wonderful happy hour for drinks from 3:00 to 5:00!
2. Amici Italian Kitchen
Italian for “friends” and fondly known as Amici 30A, the Italian Kitchen specializes in authentic Neapolitan pizza pies made in a pizza oven known for its crispier, brick-oven styled crust. All made with locally-sourced ingredients, this eclectic family-friendly concept serves everything from belly satisfying pastas and entrees perfect for one to delicious Italian small plates that can be shared. They also have one of our favorite happy hours from 3:00-6:00 which includes pasta, pizza, beer and cocktails!
3. Nanbu Noodle Bar
If you’re looking for comforting Japanese ramen with Southern flair while visiting 30A come to Nanbu Noodle Bar! You can taste the love they put into their noodles. Nanbu’s ramen bowls are fresh and filling – loaded with noodles, vegetables and protein. Chefs prepare their daily selection of dumplings by hand and they are delicious! Nanbu is the perfect family dine in OR take out spot. The menu has something for everyone! Starting with the shishito peppers, dumplings, and pork belly buns (my personal favorite) to the light flavorful ramen broths, or poké bowls you really can’t go wrong when paired with a cold or hot sake. Definitely a must-stop spot when visiting 30A!”
4. Bud and Alley’s
Bud & Alley’s, Seaside’s beloved beach-front restaurant and bar known for its casual fine dining has been a Seaside icon since 1986. Overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, the award-winning menu features Gulf Coast classics paired with Southern-style cuisine. We love to have drinks, lunch or dinner in the open-air upstairs bar area, overlooking the Gulf. Amazing views!
5. Seagrove Village Market Cafe
If you have not had a fried or grilled grouper sandwich at Seagrove Village Market Cafe, you haven’t had the best one we have ever tasted. A local institution, the Grouper Sandwich at Seagrove Village Market Café was named one of the “100 Things You Must Eat Before You Die” by Garden & Gun magazine, and it’s consistently voted as one of 30A’s hot spots for deep fried seafood. A no-frills diner and souvenir shop that’s just a short bike ride or car ride from Sea-esta and anywhere on Seagrove Beach.
6. The Bay
Chef Jim Shirley’s family-friendly waterfront restaurant features mouth-watering Southern gulf coast cuisine, sushi, a 12-draft beer system, excellent wine selections, and inventive bar-crafted cocktails. Table and bar seating is available inside and outside on the deck overlooking Choctawhatchee Bay, and you can stroll on the sand while awaiting your food.
7. Cafe 30A
Café Thirty-A is a casual fine-dining restaurant featuring grilled and fire roasted seafood, meats and poultry, wood-oven pizza, vegetarian fare and hedonistic desserts. The menu changes daily according to availability of ingredients. Fine wines and cocktails–including the best martinis in the area–complement the meal. We like their daily by one entrée and get the second half off 4:30 to 5:00. This restaurant is only a five minute drive from Sea-esta.
8. Red Bar
A newly rebuilt local institution that’s not to be missed, Grayton Beach‘s Red Bar is quintessential 30A. It has our favorite crab cakes on all of 30A. It is known for its fun and funky bohemian beach shack vibe, The Red Bar’s is a great spot for food, cocktails and live music (usually great jazz courtesy of the house band, or the ever-popular Dread Clampitt). The wait at the Red Bar may be a long one, but it’s always worthwhile.
9. North Beach Social
Formerly the North Beach Tortilla Company, and occupying the space below the popular Farm & Fire Southern Pizzeria and Speakeasy, North Beach Social has some of the best sunsets overlooking the bay in South Walton. Outside seating is aplenty at the bar and deck with a large white sand beach where kids and adults can play. Their menu showcases favorites from across five restaurants that are part of the group — along with some specials of their own. Among the locals’ favorites are the Great Southern Café’s famous Grits a Ya Ya, the Bay’s Bomber Burger, fresh raw oysters, and 45 Central’s poké bowls.
10. Perfect Pig
Breakfast, lunch or dinner, we love this place all day long. At breakfast you have to try their brown sugar bacon and their Parmesan Crusted breakfast sandwich. For dinner, the Pork Tenderloin Medallion are wonderful…and the salmon is also very good. And a great thing about this restaurant….it is a 9 minute walk from Sea-esta or a 2 minute drive!
11. Airstream Row in Seaside
We had to add a number 11 to our top ten list! While food trucks are anything but new, Seaside joins the popular urban trend with classic silver Airstream trailers offering a variety of fare. Illustriously known as “Airstream Row”, the grouping of food trucks are at the center of Seaside directly on Scenic Highway 30-A. Airstream trailers are as much a part of the landscape and style of Seaside as any of the other elements.
The Airstream restaurants in Seaside are unique in style and cuisine making them stand out among the other more traditional dining establishments.
“Airstream Row” includes:
- Frost Bites – Hawaiian shaved ice, homemade frozen custard, fresh squeezed lemonade and cold drinks.
- Barefoot BBQ -Specializing in beachside BBQ in retro, tiki-style atmosphere. Meat is hormone, steroid & antibiotic-free.
- The Meltdown on 30A – Everyone loves a traditional grill cheese sandwich! Now you can also try specialty. Serving traditional and specialty grilled cheese sandwiches.
- Wild Bill’s Beach Dogs – Best hot dogs on the beach! No antibiotics, hormones, nitrates, filler or junk.
- Crepes de Soleil – Made-to-order crepes: either sweet or savory
A few restaurants that we also like but did not make our Top Ten list are Pescado in Rosemary Beach (an adult casual fine dining, seafood grill & rooftop bar), Surfing Deer in Seagrove Beach, Chanticleer Eatery, George’s in Alys Beach and our favorite pizza place, Bruno’s Pizza in Watersound.
You may also want to see our Top Ten Things to Do on 30A!