Whiffs of fruit and oak season the air in the Village of Baytowne Wharf during the annual Sandestin Wine Festival, a three-day event now in its 26th year. Vintners uncork more than 700 wines aged in America and abroad, including rare and specialty varietals parceled out during charity wine auctions. Novice tipplers learn basic wine styles and pairings as they explore the Grand Tasting and special events such as “Winemakers and Shakers,” which matches wines with gourmet meats and cheeses. As live music floats across the grounds, special lectures enlighten curious festivalgoers on topics such as biodynamic wines. New cooking demonstrations in the culinary tent include a Sunday session led by Stinky’s Fish Camp’s executive chef, Jim Richard, who will divulge the secrets of Spanish paella—a dish renowned for its compatibility with red wine, white wine, and grape-flavored Juicy Juice ($20 per demonstration). When guests empty their stemware, they can track down their favorite wines of the day in the onsite retail tent and take bottles home to savor and share.
Only a short walk from Miramar Beach, Fajitas Grill whips up authentic Mexican family recipes with a menu of sizzling fajitas, seafood, and specialty dishes. Heaping foothills of beef or chicken nachos ($6.99 for half order; $8.99 for full order) solicit tortilla excavations beneath a steaming layer of melted cheese. Waiters sidle up to tables, arms meticulously stacked with tacos, enchiladas, or sirloin-steak fajitas ($15.99 each), still sizzling beside sautéed gardens of grilled bell peppers and tomatoes. As diners head-bob to the sweet notes of mole poblano ($13.99), a Seven Seas soup ($18.99) offers a peek into a dolphin’s sombrero with a steaming crock of shrimp, clams, and seasonal fish. Modern hanging lights and a rolling yellow ceiling canopy encircle the eatery’s fully stocked bar, where patrons can sip house-made sangria or bob for limes in a 60-ounce margarita pitcher.
Cuvee Bistro takes its name from the French word that refers to a blending of ingredients. It's fitting for the eatery, which combines its southern roots with worldly inspirations to create sophisticated culinary dishes. To accompany this eclectic cooking, the restaurant features an internationally sourced list of wines, which earned an Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator for the last four consecutive years, adding to the restaurant's already impressive award collection that includes a spot on OpenTable's Top 100 Hottest Restaurant Bars and Florida Trend's Golden Spoon Award.
Meet the Chef
From a young age, many chefs know they want to spend their lives cooking. But not very many chefs begin working in kitchens at age 14. This is exactly how Cuvee Bistro owner and executive chef Tim Creehan began his career. After being promoted to executive chef, he spent decades showcasing his culinary skills in kitchens from Atlanta to Hong Kong. He also opened multiple restaurants, many of which still serve his signature dishes long after his parting.
His vast experience earned Creehan celebrity status on the Emerald Coast culinary scene. This status only increased after he appeared on regional television programs, was featured as Cooking Light's Shining Star Chef, published three cookbooks, and cooked for celebrities such as Bruce Willis, Cybill Shepherd, and Danny Glover.
It’s barely an exaggeration to say that Marlin Grill is a cornerstone of the Baytowne Wharf community—it occupies a grand, two-story corner space in the sprawling Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort, its curving façade giving out on a patio facing the Events Plaza. As might be expected of a resort restaurant, the menu is broad and accommodating—there’s even a children’s menu with fried lobster and crab cakes among the chicken fingers—but creative preparations add zip to the steakhouse template. Filet mignon (dry-aged certified Angus, like all Marlin’s beef) is wrapped in applewood-smoked bacon and itself grilled over hickory just to show trees who’s boss, and a pair of cold-water lobster tails splash into kiwi-honey mustard sauce and mango chutney. Sides tend toward the impossibly rich, the mashed potatoes mixed with ricotta and the macaroni 'n' cheese studded with Tasso ham.
The drinks program is appropriately ambitious, covering more than 600 wines, a deep list of scotches and their allies, and fruity martinis, including a $10,000 version complete with one-carat diamond. The beer selection is a little more down to earth, centering on regional brews such as Georgia’s Sweet Water 420 Pale Ale and Florida’s Grayton Pale Ale.
Enjoy a perfectly cooked steak and a generous portion size at Pandora's Grayton Beach in Santa Rosa Beach.
If you're avoiding fat or gluten, you can still eat great at Pandora's Grayton Beach, which offers a number of low-fat and gluten-free choices.
Ready for a drink to unwind? At Pandora's Grayton Beach, you can pair your meal with something from their full bar.
Bring the whole clan to Pandora's Grayton Beach — kids and parents will love the menu and ambience here.
Don't miss out on the private room at Pandora's Grayton Beach — you'll want to reserve the space the next time you and your whole crew need a place to celebrate together.
Looking for a good happy hour? Head to Pandora's Grayton Beach and treat yourself to a bite or a drink for a discounted price.
If dining outdoors is your idea of a good time, you'll love the gorgeous patio seating at Pandora's Grayton Beach.
Guests may have a hard time conversing, as the restaurant is rather noisy.
The dress code at Pandora's Grayton Beach is as relaxed as the ambience, so wear whatever suits you.
The restaurant offers convenient parking in the connecting lot, and (optional) valet is also provided.
For those who travel by bike, Pandora's Grayton Beach offers bike racks for diners.
Meals at Pandora's Grayton Beach are affordable, with the average tab amounting to about $30 per person.
If you have a hankering for something extra tasty, sample the menu at Miramar Beach's Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill.
Plan to indulge a bit at Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill, though, because they don't offer any low-fat fare.
Unwind with a glass of wine or cocktail with your meal — Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill has a wonderful selection of drinks to accompany your dinner.
You won't need to get a sitter before heading to Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill — kids are more than welcome at this family-friendly establishment.
Time to cheers to another week in the can at Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill.
Parties of any size can easily be seated at Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill.
Business casual dress, tasty food and a classic atmosphere makes this a great place for any occasion.
If you're in a hurry, place an order for pickup instead.
Throwing a big party? Count on Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill to provide top-notch catering with the same great dishes you love.
Drivers can park in the neighboring lot.
Prices at Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill typically stay below the $30 mark, so you can afford to bring along a friend or a date.
Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill accepts major credit cards, including Discovery and AMEX.
Buster's Oyster Bar and Grill serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, so stop by whenever is most convenient for you.