From boats skimming the blue waters to sunsets of rich orange and yellow hues, the sights of Lake Monroe offer a picturesque backdrop for every meal at Nemo's Bar & Grill. Located at the Monroe Harbour Marina, the eatery fittingly specializes in pub-style seafood, from crab cakes and fried clams to sliders made with local gator. Beyond the seafood offerings, cooks assemble chipotle chicken melts, toss wings in lemon-pepper sauce, and prep snacks such as beer-battered green beans. When they're not taking in the lake views, Nemo's patrons stay entertained with a weekly lineup of activities. The night's biggest sports games are broadcast on HDTVs throughout the bar, live musicians and karaoke crooners frequently take the stage, and during weekly poker nights, players go all in on full houses or a series of cards that just look pretty together.
At La Sirena Gorda Cabana?a.k.a "The Fat Mermaid"?you won't get to eat Mexican food with real-life mermaids, but but you likely won't mind. There are better options. The crowd-pleasing cinnamon margarita, for instance, gives palates something to think about with a complex mix of spice and tequila. Then there's the verdant lawn where folks can enjoy favorites such as papas rellenas or smothered burritos in a breezy al fresco dinner setting. The cozy interior gives the outdoor seats a run for their money with live music and convivial karaoke nights, both perfect soundtracks for a flavorful platter of pork-topped nachos.
Though the days of secretive drinking during Prohibition are long gone, secrets still abound during Speak Easy Sundays at The Hourglass Brewery. By whispering each Sunday?s password to the bartender, patrons gain access to discounted craft beers until 11 p.m. and get their name added to J. Edgar Hoover?s enemy list. Other drink specials are available throughout the week, when libations from top craft breweries like Dogfish Head and Lost Coast flow from taps and bottles. Of course, Hourglass also supplies brews made in-house, from traditionally hoppy IPAs to ales flavored with butternut squash and cinnamon. Food trucks complement the pours every Friday; in upcoming months, Hourglass? taproom will even share space with Pape Bee?s and Wako Taco.
When French native Joel Martin was young, his family moved to Africa. While there, Joel learned to stalk many jungle creatures including crocodiles with the help of his Malgache friends. Years later, in 1995, Martin packed up his own family and moved them to Florida, where the heat and humidity reminded him of his beloved childhood in Africa. Today he owns and operates Black Hammock Adventures, located near some of Orlando's busiest attractions, and charters picturesque airboat rides on the gator-infested waters of Lake Jesup. His boat, equipped with Goliath's desk fan, skims earplugged riders past alligators and other lake fauna at speeds of up to 45 miles per hour. During rides, experienced guides pilot the vessel safely through narrow creeks and shallow wetlands, and help tourists to spot sunning reptiles. After zooming by a congregation of gators, guests can stop by Black Hammock's free wildlife exhibit, enjoy a lively libation at the Lazy Gator Bar with live music every weekend, sit down at the full service restaurant featuring Executive Chef Barth that is known for its fried gator tail, or hand over their cameras as they pose for pictures with a live baby alligator or barter for an autograph with hunks of raw meat.
The view of Florida wildlife from the lakeview terrace at The Lazy Gator Bar needs no food or drinks to make it worthwhile. Over buckets of beers and colorful mixed drinks resting on tables, the setting sun casts an orange-pink glow that adds a charming touch to the airboats coming in from a tour. This glow even makes the 8- and 9-foot-long alligators?who soak in a pool at the live gator and bird exhibit adjoining Black Hammock Gift Shop?look friendly. Waiters bring out bar snacks from the restaurant, while guests to linger over drinks as bands play live music on weekends.
Amid the melodies of nightly karaoke, Devaney's marries hearty pub fare with daily drink specials. Signature cocktails and beer—from breweries including Bell's, Lagunitas, Victory, and Stone—wash back burgers, sandwiches, and wings. A surfeit of sports décor represents various teams battling on the flat-screen TVs, which beam down on tabletops and bar seating filled with patrons cheering as their favorite mascot executes a perfect high-five. The bar further engages crowds with Wednesday-night bingo, Thursday-night trivia, and weekly live bands, who are only sometimes possessed by ventriloquist dummies.