#38 of 198 Destin Restaurants

The Surf Hut

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The Surf Hut: Delectable Seafood with Fabulous Views
Local Expert's Rating:
4.5 / 5
The Bottom Line:

Everything , from its cheery exterior to an interior that offers fabulous views of the Gulf, makes The Surf Hut a "must visit." It's the perfect place to sit back, enjoy the view, and dine on tasty fare. If you're traveling with children you will be impressed with the way staff goes out of its way to entertain them.

- The FloridaPanhandle.com Local Expert Team

The Surf Hut is the quintessential beach restaurant with a breezy open-air interior and stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico. Families are right at home at The Surf Hut due to a great children’s menu and kid’s meals served on souvenir Frisbees. In addition, they’ve set up a custom game area on the beach where you can take part in a rousing game of corn hole while enjoying the cool sea breeze on your face.

We were particularly impressed with the full bar and signature libations. As far as the menu goes, it was full of pleasant surprises and gulf-inspired culinary delights.

Here are some of our favorites:

Smoked Tuna Dip
It’s the combination of smoked tuna stuffed into sweet peppers and served with fresh cucumber slices that makes this appetizer so special. Not only is the texture perfect, but the juxtaposition of smoky and cool makes it all the more memorable.

BBQ Sliders, Open Faced
We rarely mention more than one appetizer, but it would be a shame to omit The Surf Hut’s delicious little slider. This pulled pork slider topped with pickled onions and coleslaw is worthy of Kansas City barbecue joint.

Endless Summer Seafood Salad
We have never had a salad quite like this one. Endless Summer is  a tasty combination of chilled Gulf shrimp, crab, domestic sea scallops, mixed greens, mandarin oranges, honey roasted pecans, marinated red onion, grape tomatoes, and raspberry walnut vinaigrette. It manages to be both cool and savory — and is undeniably unforgettable.  

Taco Trio
If you suffer diner’s remorse the moment meals are delivered and you begin to wonder if you should have ordered something different, you’ll love this trio of tacos – shrimp, fish, and pulled pork. It’s a smorgasbord of flavors.  

Blackened Shrimp
Blackened shrimp is simply blackened shrimp until it’s served with cabbage, pico de gallo, chipotle aioli, and guacamole. Then, it’s head and tails above the rest. One of the things The Surf Hut does so well is to combine flavors we would not necessarily think to combine ourselves. 

Create Your Own Catch
We love it when a restaurant allows us to imagine our own meals. With Create Your Own Catch we were able to pick our own fish, choose how we wanted it prepared, and which signature sauces we wanted to pair it with. Blackened grouper with citrus beurre blanc was just right for us, but you get to pick what’s right for you.

Captain’s Platter
If you’re someone who just can’t get enough seafood, this platter of fried fish, shrimp, oysters, scallops, and gumbo is sure to satisfy your craving. It may also leave you with a desire to take a long walk along the beach after your meal. 

Fried Stuff Shrimp
If you’re looking for something filling and delicious, we recommend the fried stuff shrimp — six large Gulf shrimp stuffed with house made jumbo lump crab meat dressing, wrapped in bacon, and fried. It is served with mashed potatoes and veggies. On the side there are three sauces, including sweet Polynesian chili sauce, tartar sauce, and citrus beurre blanc.

Insider Tips:
-If time is not an issue, order a drink from the bar and take a stroll along the beach as you sip. It’s a nice way to wait for a table to open or to enjoy an after dinner drink.
-Absolutely great atmosphere for children so don’t be afraid to bring the kids along. 
-If you’re not one to stand in long lines,  plan to arrive early to avoid the wait.