By Rebecca Cahilly
City & Shore Magazine
There’s something luxurious about dining by the water. Whether it’s a lobster roll enjoyed from a boat-watching perch on the Intracoastal Waterway or a candlelit plate of scallops savored within sight of crashing waves, South Florida offers every waterfront dining scenario imaginable.
This year’s list of notable waterfront dining restaurants gives nod to the many new or improved establishments that have appeared along the waterways from Highland Beach to Hallandale Beach, along with a few of our all-time favorites.
By the Beach
Brandon’s by the Beach at Tideline Ocean Resort & Spa
Executive Chef Chris Schaefer and mixologist Ivan Ramirez have created a unique and sophisticated yet relaxed dining experience at this boutique beachfront hotel restaurant in Palm Beach. Sip on a delicious “Here’s Your Carrot Cake, Miss High Maintenance” cocktail and dine on exquisite beach fare at an oceanfront table. Don’t miss the house specialty: braised short ribs.
2842 S. Ocean Blvd., Palm Beach, 561-540-6440, tidelineresort.com
Burlock Coast Seafare and Spirits
From the lobby of the Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale, the new Burlock Coast opens onto a large dining patio overlooking the Atlantic. With a large indoor/outdoor bar as its centerpiece, the dining area includes a gourmet market, interior and exterior seating and a wine lounge area. The focus here is sustainable seafood and provisions from local purveyors, and the bread is baked daily by Miami’s famed Zak the Baker.
1 N. Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, 954-302-6460, burlockcoast.com
Chanson at the Royal Blues Hotel
Like music to a foodie’s ears, Chanson – the French word for “song” – is a must-visit when it comes to beachfront dining. Situated on the ground floor of the Royal Blues Hotel in Deerfield Beach – the first, and only, Relais & Châteaux hotel in Florida – Chanson is a symphony of French-inspired dishes in a chic setting just steps from the ocean. But beyond the inventive menu and elegant atmosphere full of original and quirky art works, Chanson has personality – namely that of its hands-on owner, Hollywood filmmaker and Broadway producer/director Edward Walson, perhaps best known as producer of Woody Allen films.
45 S. Ocean Way, Deerfield Beach, 954-857-2929, royalblueshotel.com
Latitudes Ocean Grille at the Delray Sands Resort
This newly renovated restaurant and lounge is quickly becoming a local on-the-water hot spot, offering modern coastal cuisine and a popular Sunday brunch. Enjoy the raw bar or a romantic table for two at the floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Atlantic.
2809 S. Ocean Blvd., Highland Beach, 561-278-6241, delraysandsresort.com
Fresh from a recent multi-million dollar renovation, the oceanfront Oceans 234 in Deerfield Beach continues to reinvent itself. Now with an indoor/outdoor bar, spacious outdoor dining patio, and interior area offering full ocean views, Oceans 234 caters to casual diners and special occasions alike. The new menu features everything from beachfront favorites to gluten-free along with a flavorful cocktail menu and carefully curated wine list.
234 N. Ocean Blvd., Deerfield Beach, 954-428-2539, oceans234.com
SeaWatch on the Ocean
Since 1974, SeaWatch has been delighting locals and visitors with fine seafood and an inimitable coastal New England charm. Request a table near the open windows to enjoy the sea breeze and view, and select from the new menu, which features many happy-hour and drink specials.
6002 N. Ocean Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, 954-781-2200, seawatchontheocean.com
Bring Your Boat
15th Street Fisheries
Arrive by boat or the water taxi to dine at one of Fort Lauderdale’s most iconic seafood restaurants. Dockside offers casual al fresco dining while upscale dining is offered from the upstairs dining room. Enjoy a happy-hour cocktail as the yachts parade to and from the Atlantic inlet. Don’t miss the nightly tarpon-feeding spectacle.
1900 SE 15th St., Fort Lauderdale, 954-763-2777, 15streetfisheries.com
If we could pick one restaurant that has undergone the most radical transformation in terms of atmosphere, menu and local opinion, it would be Boatyard. What was for many years Bimini Boatyard, the new Boatyard retains the same layout, signature rooftop and Bimini bread menu offering, but boasts a completely new, upscale dining experience. Whether seated at a table in the airy dining room, at the stepped interior bar area, or at a coveted outdoor table under the 35-foot tall, imported gumbo limbo tree, you’ll enjoy a menu of the freshest seafood, prepared simply and to your liking. Boatyard now accommodates vessels up to 75 feet at 120 feet of dockage.
1555 SE 17th St., Fort Lauderdale, 954-525-7400,
Boca Landing at Waterstone Resort & Marina
The newly opened Waterstone Resort & Marina features Boca Raton’s only on-the-water dining experience. Executive Chef Matt Mixon has created menus for the boutique resort’s dining options that range from casual poolside fare to elegant waterfront dining dishes. From the handcrafted, truffled sea-salt burrata to the charred prime filet mignon drizzled with a foie gras emulsion and accompanied by a creamy Boursin and goat cheese polenta, the delightful menu hints at Chef Matt’s equal affinity for Italian and French influences.
999 E. Camino Real, Boca Raton, 561-226-3022, bocalanding.com
Juniper on the Water
Open just over a year now, Juniper on the Water is the vision of three industry veterans who combined their years of experience into one charming waterfront restaurant. Featuring a Mediterranean-inspired menu highlighted by the signature seafood paella, Juniper offers a casual beach-like vibe in the spacious interior and plenty of outdoor seating overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway in Hallandale Beach. Call ahead for dock reservations.
1975 S. Ocean Drive, Hallandale Beach, 954-544-3370, juniperonthewater.com
After this architecturally appealing restaurant opened on the Intracoastal Waterway on Commercial Boulevard several years ago, small changes were made to maximize the outdoor dining and bar area which now serves as a coveted and always-busy lunch, cocktail hour and dinner spot. Indoor diners can take advantage of the views through floor-to-ceiling windows, but to get up close and personal with the mid-sized yachts that come and go, ask for a table on the dock.
3300 E. Commercial Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, 954-772-2209, kaluzrestaurant.com
Marti’s New River Bistro
Situated in the Broward Center for the Performing Arts Complex, Marti’s is the newest dock and dine offering in downtown Fort Lauderdale. Offering a fixed-price menu on performance nights, Marti’s serves classic American fare, seafood and decadent desserts at indoor and outdoor tables overlooking the New River.
201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale,
Nauti-Dawg Marina Café
If you’re looking for that casual just-off-the-boat-in-flip-flops vibe but consider yourself a connoisseur of quality, look no further than Nauti-Dawg Marina Café in Lighthouse Point. Offering breakfast, lunch and dinner, a weekday sunset menu and a Yappy Hour menu for “man’s best friend,” Nauti-Dawg specializes in traditional casual seafood fare, great drinks and live entertainment. Closed Tuesdays.
2841 Marina Circle, Lighthouse Point, 954-941-0246, nautidawg.com
The Rusty Hook Tavern
This hidden gem off Atlantic Boulevard in Pompano Beach boasts a charming boatyard atmosphere overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway. Offering 360 feet of free dockage, The Rusty Hook has a “you catch it, we cook it” policy for any fresh catch you bring in — and that’s quite a treat, considering the trio behind this recently revamped restaurant, Chef Nader “Ned” Jaouhar and proprietors Andy Patton and Kareem Lakchira, hail from Gordon Ramsay’s Cielo in Boca Raton.
125 N. Riverside Drive, Pompano Beach,
Since undergoing a radical décor and concept transformation two years ago, Shooter’s Waterfront restaurant on the Intracoastal Waterway in Fort Lauderdale is one of the area’s prime waterfront dining restaurants. With 340 feet of dockage and offering a casual dockside menu of seafood favorites, great service and an unrivalled outdoor bar, dining and lounging area, Shooter’s is not only a great spot to tie up for a light bite, but also a stellar location to celebrate a special occasion with a group of friends.
3033 NE 32nd Ave., Fort Lauderdale,