Olde Towne Tavern strives to serve as a second home for area residents, providing them with a place to relax and enjoy a drink, meal, and night out with friends. The menu of classic finger foods and comforting pub staples showcases the bounty of the nearby sea. Beer-battered fried clam strips, swordfish tacos with oven-roasted corn and red peppers, and a reimagined blackened-grouper reuben all fill the pages. However, the selection also includes a handful of fare inspired by the land instead of the ocean, such as hefty burgers and wings slathered in a choice of savory or spicy sauce.
Although simply relaxing with a cold drink and a plate of hot food is always an option, Olde Towne Tavern also provides ample opportunities for patrons to entertain themselves. Pool tables, dart boards, and an Internet-connected jukebox are all available amid the wooden tables and stool-lined bar area. Eight high-definition televisions keep patrons caught up with the day's game, although the tavern turns eyes away from the televisions by hosting live rock, country, jazz, and acoustic bands on select nights during the week.
Located at Paradise Ocean Club, Bay Breeze Seafood Company treats visitors to seafood, sandwiches, and crab cakes at a scenic beachfront location with ample outdoor seating. Cooks prepare sundry oceanic favorites, such as fried tilapia-fillet sandwiches, calamari, steamed clams, salmon, tuna, oysters rockefeller, raw oysters, and crab claws.
From the placid repose of its waterfront perch, River’s Inn sates diners with a traditional menu of seafood-centric repasts and a burger-anchored spread of substantive sandwiches. Shareable sea fare occupies hungry hands with underwater finger foods such as the crispy calamari ($9) or the Sarah Creek fire-roasted oysters, which arrive hand-shucked and are prepared with parmesan and romano cheeses ($9.95). The Black & Bleu burger arrives on a toasted potato roll blanketed in lettuce, tomato, and red onion ($8.95), and the Sarah Creek burger pairs Hereford beef with warm lump crab meat ($10.95). Main events, such as the grilled or blackened ahi tuna ($16.95) and the veggie-flanked chicken marsala ($14.95), are chewable search parties for jaded taste buds lost to boredom after relying on flavorless sustenance like unprocessed flour or ice-cube sandwiches.
When The Melting Pot originally opened in 1975 just outside Orlando, the location was cozy and quaint, but diners had only three options: swiss-cheese fondue, beef fondue, or chocolate fondue. However, as the restaurant grew in popularity, so did its menu selection and atmosphere. The restaurant first expanded four years later under the leadership of a Melting Pot waiter and enterprising college student named Mark Johnston, who teamed up with his brothers Mike and Bob to open a new outpost in Tallahassee. This location grew in reputation to pave the way for future franchise expansion. Today, the company?now owned by the trio of siblings?reigns as the premier fondue, wine, and drink restaurant, stretching across North America with more than 140 restaurants linked by underground tunnels. The restaurant's menu has also ballooned, and patrons can now expect six varieties of hot dipping cheese paired with salads, meats, and molten chocolate.
On a given night, groups of foodies gather around tables to nosh on signature four-course meals, from cheese-fondue appetizers and various salads to steaks and seafood cooked in a choice of healthy broth or oil. Birthday revelers and couples can share decadent evenings at private tables, capping off meals with chocolate desserts that have defined The Melting Pot for decades.
Although Keith and Terry Wygant look to the Mediterranean for 905 Cafe & Grill’s culinary inspiration, they strive to use ingredients that are close to home. Locally sourced fish sizzles in the kitchen, homemade burger patties never see the inside of a freezer, and the house chili—which, the menu asserts, should have its own Facebook page—simmers under Keith's careful supervision. Blackboard specials such as popcorn-shrimp po’ boys, meanwhile, add unpredictability to the menu, shifting alongside the bar's catalog of seasonal beers and cocktails.
From breakfast hashbrowns to Cajun tartar sauce, many meal components are homemade, fueling the restaurant's neighborhood charm. This laid-back vibe becomes even more palpable on the outdoor patio, where music often accompanies bites, or on Sangria Saturdays, a popular alternative to other restaurants’ Tap-Water Tuesdays.
Owner and fourth-generation waterman Ray Wicker Jr. scans the briny deep to net some its finest culinary offerings, constantly repopulating his menu with fresh catches every morning. Practice taste bud calisthenics by diving spoon-first into a bowl of Debbie's seafood chili ($4.49–$5.49), then test your shell-cracking mettle with a pound of snow crab legs steamed and seasoned to pincher perfection ($16.99). Diners can enjoy a seafood potpie ($16.99) the way Blackbeard's grandmother used to make it—packed full of crabmeat, scallops, shrimp, diced carrots, and inaccurate maps to buried treasure. The rib-eye steak staves off hunger with a 10-ounce slab of beast ($16.99), while the crabby chicken breast topped with crabmeat pleases palates with a unique pairing ($17.99). On select nights, guests can nourish famished ears with live music or the mumbled ramblings of an unoccupied seashell.