With 10 military performers and 6 civilian air vessels, the Cocoa Beach Air Show delights and awes guests seated in the exhilarating drop zone. Against the ocean’s gentle lapping, the daredevil performers careen into the sun, writing invisible graffiti on the sky with impeccable grace, speed, and cursive. U.S. Navy Seals Leap Frogs launch from passing planes, floating ethereally to the sand just feet away from the drop-zone seating area. A B1B Lancer fighter jet screams across the blue expanse, leaving torn sound barriers and envious seagulls in its wake.
You might notice every group eating a different dish at Crispy’s Beer & Wine Bar. That’s because the bar has BYOF policy—that’s short for bring your own food—which lets guests soak up the 39 craft brews on draft without having to snack on bar peanuts. This policy inspires patrons to linger over pints of hoppy Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA or bottles of fruity Belgian Kasteel Rouge. The deep brown of Gulden Draak hints at its potent Belgian flavor and alcohol content, and light flits easily through the wheat-golden color of Paulaner Hefeweizen. Televisions overhead chatter, providing updates on athletic events or how scary the weatherman says thunder will be this weekend. Those who didn’t bring food snack on the bar’s small selection of locally produced appetizers and desserts such as chocolate-covered potato chips and beer brittle.
Sandbar Sports Grill boasts an extensive menu fit for castaways in an eclectic beachfront bistro. The kitchen stays open until midnight, serving up an array of appetizers such as coconut shrimp, arriving tableside with dip-ready orange marmalade ($8.99), as well as Floridian favorites such as tropical grouper paired with plantains ($21.99). House specialty fish tacos ($3.99) please lighter eaters, and turf-friendly dishes such as the taco burger, served with sour cream, pico de gallo, guacamole, and melted cheese ($10.99), suit those still establishing their sea legs. Libation-seekers can plant their tiny umbrellas in a sandbar hurricane ($4–$9) in five categories of intensity.
Vintage 56 has been described as a tapas and wine bar. The décor is contemporary, with indoor and outdoor dining, cloth napkins and modern art, with music that is fun but not intrusive. The bar offers 56 martinis and a good-sized wine list and the menu features a touch of Mediterranean flair with a little Asian spice!
Victory Casino Cruises' four decks of maritime merriment abound with more than 600 slot machines, 30 table games, and an expansive food selection including hot entrees, meat carving and pasta station. The floating party ship sails out on five-hour morning and evening voyages that combine sweeping ocean views with the interior entertainments of casino games including craps, roulette, blackjack, and Duck Duck Goose. While testing their luck, gamers can request drinks from the Victory Girls, a roving band of waitresses who may just serve up luck alongside cocktails, beers, and tropical beverages. For extra entertainment, the ship’s Club V offers a beat-filled dance floor for celebration shimmies, and the Sportsbook Lounge houses tellers ready to take bets on football, basketball, or baseball. On the first deck, a buffet spread refuels gamers with carved meats, fresh seafood, and comfort foods.
Baja Tavern's fresh menu showcases Florida seafood and salsas made from seasonal fruits and vegetables. Underwater treasures star in appetizers such as Bang Bang shrimp ($8.95), which are fried, tossed in a spicy chipotle sauce, and shot out of a small cannon on to plates. Entrees including the pan-fried tilapia ($12.95), a mild white fish with a flaky texture coated with parmesan breading, sate sea-faring appetites. The signature big fish burrito ($8.95) showers baked white fish in chipotle tartar sauce before dressing it in a flour-tortilla tuxedo for a tableside date with homemade chips and salsa. For land-locked appetites, culinary craftspeople slow roast marinated pork to craft caribbean pulled-pork sandwiches ($6.95). While enjoying the atmosphere or engaging in post-dinner staring contests, patrons treat taste buds to island-themed drinks from the bar.