Key West, Florida is home to some of the most colorful, unique and unforgettable restaurants and bars. From fresh seafood to succulent BBQ, you’ll find a variety of palate-pleasing dishes during your trip to the Southernmost City. Grab a drink, relax and get ready to sample the island’s signature cuisine at the top Key West restaurants.
The Half Shell Raw Bar
Nestled on Key West’s historic seaport, the iconic Half Shell Raw Bar is the place where locals and visitors go to “eat it raw.” All of the Half Shell’s fresh seafood is sourced locally and daily from the neighboring Half Shell Fish Market. This freshly harvested fare is then delivered right to your plate. Sample some of the Half Shell’s raw gulf oysters, conch ceviche, peel and eat Key West pink shrimp, steamed stone crab or fish and chips. Top it all off with some libations at the bar, and you’re in for an authentic Key West dining experience that can’t be found anywhere else. Be sure to snap a picture with the Half Shell’s mascot, Edith, before you move on to the next island adventure. The Half Shell Raw Bar is located at 231 Margaret Street.
Turtle Kraals Bar and Restaurant
Right next door to the Half Shell Raw Bar, you’ll find the island’s best Cuban-Caribbean cuisine at Turtle Kraals. The restaurant is known for its award-winning ceviche bar, where guests can dine on deliciously fresh, Peruvian-inspired ceviche. Turtle Kraals also hosts live turtle races several nights per week, where locals and visitors bet on which turtle will be crowned champion. Guests can also play bocce ball and enjoy the restaurant’s daily happy hour. If you’re looking for an intimate spot to watch the famous Key West sunset, the Tower Bar at Turtle Kraals offers panoramic views of both the brilliant sunset and lively historic seaport. Turtle Kraals is located at 231 Margaret Street.
Charlie Mac’s 404
Charlie Mac’s 404 offers a one-of-a-kind dining combination: smoked BBQ and flavorful seafood. Stop by the restaurant to try entrees fresh from the sea and the smoker. With a unique twist on traditional BBQ, the restaurant’s smoked meats are simmered and slow-cooked to perfection. You can also give your BBQ a kick with one of Charlie Mac’s signature sauces, from the tropical Mango Jerk BBQ Sauce to the bold South Carolina Yellow BBQ Sauce. With 8 big screen TVs surrounding the bar and 24 craft beers on tap, Charlie Mac’s is also the perfect spot to sit down and watch some sports. Dig in to their award-winning BBQ pork belly sliders, snap a picture for Charlie Mac’s infamous mugshot wall and enjoy the game. Charlie Mac’s 404 is located at 404 Southard Street next to the legendary Green Parrot Bar.
The Rum Barrel Bar and Grill
The Rum Barrel Bar and Grill is the island’s local sports bar with Key West flair. There’s something for everyone at the Rum Barrel. Whether you’re looking for a family-friendly restaurant, somewhere to watch the game or a breezy outdoor dining experience, the Rum Barrel offers great food and lots of fun. Check out the rooftop Quarterdeck for live music and order some of the restaurant’s most popular menu items, including Philly cheese steak sandwiches, queen conch fritters and fire-grilled burgers. The Rum Barrel’s expansive bar also offers over 150 different kinds of rum in addition to craft beers and specialty drinks, so there’s no need to go thirsty. The Rum Barrel is located at 528 Front Street in the heart of historic Old Town Key West.
Island Dogs Bar
While Island Dogs is primarily a bar, they also serve up some of the tastiest food around. Island Dogs invites you to “come as you are,” which means you can stop here for lunch after a morning at the beach and be welcomed in your flip-flops and casual wear. Sample some of Island Dogs’ Baja fish tacos and authentic pub pizza or build your own exotic hot dog. They’re also famous for their signature Key Lime Pie Martini, complete with fresh lime and a sweet graham cracker rim. The bar’s breezy front porch is ideal for relaxing and people watching in island paradise. Island Dogs Bar is located steps off Duval Street at 505 Front Street in downtown Key West.