West Blogs from PartyInKeyWest.com
Key West The Right Way
TOP 12 MUST EATS in KEY WEST!
Pack the feedbag, kids, because Key West is where you will surely indulge your every taste bud. We, the staff of Party in Key West, have sampled just about every culinary crumb this gorgeous little island has to offer, so trust us when we say we know where you should be eating!
Belly up and dig in to our Top 12 Must Eats:
12. El’ Sibone
What’s not to love about Cuban chow on the cheap? This family-owned, cozy little eatery is located in heart of Old Town Key West. Escape the craziness of Duval Street and have a seat at a table among locals. Key West is a stone’s throw to Cuba, so there is no better place to sample authentic Cuban cuisine in the U.S. than here. Dig into classic delectable like chicken and yellow rice, pepper steak, oxtail, as well as everyday award-winning dishes like Roast Pork, Paella Valenciana, and Siboney Steak. Go there now, thank us later! http://www.elsiboneyrestaurant.com/
11. Blue Heaven
This is the place you want to go to experience real Key West living. Famous Key West chickens http://www.blueheavenkw.com/
and cats roam the grounds, and you can dine al fresco under a canopy made of a sail and surrounded by cute and quirky décor. There is an indoor dining room as well, if hanging out with the chickens isn’t your thing. Enjoy live music and serious (and we mean serious) island-style cuisine like Jamaican jerk chicken, Caribbean shrimp deglazed with Red Stripe (Um, hello? It is as amazing as it sounds!), and finish off the meal with a sublime Key Lime Pie. There is also a fantastic vegetarian menu that even local meat-eaters drool over.
10. Tavern N Town (located in the Marriott Key West)
You wouldn’t think a hotel restaurant it a must-go, but trust us, you haven’t had a seafood dinner til you’ve sampled the Plancha Pink Shrimp and Sea Scallops, served with bourbon mashed yams. And what about the gourmet pizzas with toppings like lobster in lemon cream or the housemade fennel sausage? The atmosphere is luxurious and simple. When you come, try to get a table in front of the Tapas Theater Kitchen, where you can watch gifted chefs create their works of art. http://tavernntown.com/
9. Grand Cafe
Step back in time as you dine within a gorgeous Victorian mansion. Lunch in the garden, enjoy a dinner looking at the stars on the wraparound porch, or sit in the air-conditioned dining room. Either way, you are destined for a culinary treat with beautifully presented and diverse dishes like tomato bisque with jumbo lump crabmeat, clams in garlic, wine, and butter, spicy Thai Curry, and Steak au Poivre. The beautiful café also hosts weddings, if dinner isn’t the only thing you had planned. http://www.grandcafekeywest.com/
First of all, this place rocks because it is open 7 days a week, 365 days a year. That is something to behold. Secondly, they serve all meals: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Thirdly, they have a kick-butt, daily happy hour with fresh margaritas and oysters. Fourth, they have killer desserts including famous Key Lime pie. Fifth, it’s casual, fun, with huge portions, and a fantastic atmosphere filled with locals. Sixth, what more could you want in a restaurant? We pretty much covered it! http://pepeskeywest.com/
This is your go-to place for Mediterranean delicacies. You can enjoy lunch, dinner, and dolmas (Greek for small plates, which you can share with friends). We are big fans of their beautiful brunch menu. Dig this: Key Lime stuffed French Toast, Crab Cake BLT, eggs of any style served with chewy, thick slices of Ciabatta toast, and a Bloody Mary to die for. The lunch and dinner menus boast fluffy bites of heaven like gnocci with slow braised beef, and some of the most delicious homemade hummus and crispy eggplant chips you will ever taste. http://www.azurkeywest.com/
Here is a not-too-miss eatery located right on Duval Street, so you can enjoy a killer dinner and people watch all at the same time. 915 boasts a beautiful wine list, with pairings for every course. Presentation is taken very seriously at this local’s foodie heaven, and your eyes as well as your tastebuds will feast on specialties like the impressive crispy whole Yellowtail Snapper, luscious, seafood feast called Soul Mama Soup, and Liberty Duck Confit with faro salad and fried kale. The beautiful and elegant eatery has also become a top choice for private parties. http://www.915duval.com/
5. Michael ‘s
The restaurant describes itself as “casual island elegance,” and we couldn’t have said it better. Located in Old Town, among the charming back streets of the city, you will enjoy the quiet oasis that is Michael’s. The famous warm chocolate volcano is out-of-control delicious. Just go there for the dessert and you will have died and gone to foodie heaven. But don’t skip the meal or you will have missed the famous Michael’s veal chop, grilled scallop salad, pepper encrusted tuna, and Allen Brothers Steaks, which are practically celebrity status on this island. Pair it all with a killer wine menu and you will need nothing more than a stroll under the stars to walk off the meal. http://www.michaelskeywest.com/
4. Louie ‘s Backyard
It almost seems too good to be true: a backyard that offer breathtaking ocean views along with http://www.louiesbackyard.com/
some of the most delicious food on the planet? Yes. Trust us. If there is a celeb to be seen in Key West, you will probably see them here. So talk about bang for your buck! The Upper Deck is where you go for wine and small plates like fried artichokes and lemons, Korean pork and duck sliders, and toasted pesto gnocci. Dine in the Backyard for some of the most exquisite seafood entrees in Key West, like pan-roasted Salmon, Sweet Soy-glazed tuna, local Pink Shrimp with grits. This place is on the National Register of Historic Places, so it is an architectural as well as culinary delight.
3. La Trattoria
Come get your grub on Goodfella style with the classic Italian eatery that’s been here for over 30 years. With local seafood, fresh, authentic pasta dishes like Bolognese sauce and seafood ravioli, you can be guaranteed a good, old-fashioned Italian meal in the heart of charming Old Town. The also have a fantastic Martini menu and $5 Martini happy hour. Fuggedaboudit, this is as good as it gets. http://latrattoria.us/
2. Santiago Bodega
Sometimes all you need is a glass of wine and a few tapas to take you to another world. Come with some friends or a special someone to share a menu of small plates to tickle your culinary fancy. This is sensual food, so you can’t go wrong here if you are looking for a romantic dinner. Feed each other bites of goat cheese-stuffed dates, grilled shrimp and chorizo, or bites of cold meats and cheese plates, while you sip some of the most exquisite wines on the island, and consider yourself in Paradise. http://www.santiagosbodega.com/key-west/
1. Cafe Marquesa
This is Zagat’s highest-rated restaurant in Key West for a reason. No visit to this island would be complete without dinner at this upscale, New American eatery, located in the Marquesa Hotel. Do yourself a favor and make a reservation before you even step off the plane. This is special occasion dining to the max (although we consider just coming to Key West a special occasion!) and every bite will make you feel that special. Unique and artistic fare, first-rate service, romantic atmosphere: it’s all here. Chef Susan Ferry selects the finest seasonal and local seafood, produce and other ingredients, so the menu changes from season to season. Some unforgettable staples include Macadamia Crusted Yellowtail Snapper, Proscuitto Wrapped Black Angus Filet, and Conch & Blue Crab Cakes. A nightcap and a stroll around the stunning hotel grounds—complete with richly landscaped pools, rock waterfalls, and peaceful gardens—is the ultimate romantic night out. http://www.marquesa.com/cafe-marquesa.htm
Article by Dianne Ackerman
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