#38 of 159 Panama City Beach Restaurants

Boon Docks Restaurant

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Boon Docks Restaurant – The Best-Kept Secret Along the Intracoastal Waterway
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

From their historic site under the West Bay Bridge, Boon Docks Restaurant offers incredible homecooked meals along with delightful views of the Intracoastal Waterway. You will love how they make all their dishes with fresh, locally-sourced ingredients and serve every last one with a smile. Their generous portions will fill you up fast, as the wildlife along the waterways keep you entertained through every bite.  

- The FloridaPanhandle.com Local Expert Team

When you want to gaze upon the beautiful Intracoastal Waterways and dine on fresh seafood of all kinds, Boon Docks Restaurant is definitely the place to go. They operate from a landmark location that was once a cherished bait store, fish house, and more, keeping the traditions alive and well through the modern-day. They aim to celebrate just what makes this region so special in all they do by serving tasty dishes made from fresh, local ingredients.

For the most part, Boon Docks uses locally-sourced ingredients brought in fresh on fishing boats that wander the Gulf of Mexico and beyond. Their menu regularly boasts all the fan favorites, from crab claws and gator bites to catfish and grouper. They use time-honored cooking techniques to prepare the ingredients to perfection, creating dishes that will keep you coming back for more day after day.

Their service matches the quality of their ingredients, ensuring you always feel at home at this restaurant. The wait staff is attentive and friendly, as they provide the meals hot out of the kitchen and offer drink refills the second they are needed.

Boon Docks must-try menu items include:

Spicy Gumbo
Made with fresh, authentic ingredients, the Spicy Gumbo is sure to whet your appetite and get you ready for the main course. You can order this appetizer in a cup or a bowl, depending on how hungry you are. Just remember to leave enough room for all the other tasty things on the menu.

Devil Crabs
With Boon Dock’s sweet and savory flavors that go on for days, the Devil Crabs are out of this world. Like their egg counterparts, these crabs have their meat scooped out of the shell, mixed with amazing accompaniments and stuffed back inside. Then, they are baked to perfection, creating the tantalizing treat you never knew you wanted so badly.

Fried Catfish Poboy
Made using fresh catfish caught in local waters, the Fried Catfish Po’Boy promises to delight your taste buds with every bite. This sandwich starts with hand-battered and fried catfish that comes out a rich, golden brown. Then, they pile the fish high on a warm bun and add lettuce, tomatoes, and pickles over top.  

Bay Scallops
In the fried favorites section of the Boon Docks menu, you will find a true local treasure, the Bay Scallops. These sweet, little scallops provide a powerful punch of flavor with every bite. They are served with two sides of your choice along with their iconic hushpuppies.

Grilled Grouper
Another local favorite, the Grilled Grouper, comes seasoned with an awesome blend of Cajun spices that highlight the fish’s rich flavors. They cook it just right on the grill while sautéing bell peppers and onions to go alongside. To round out your meal, you will have a choice of two side dishes plus receive hushpuppies to remember.

As you dine, you will hear fish tales for days and watch barges come and go as they traverse their routes. You might even catch a glimpse of local wildlife having the time of their lives, as they flit to and fro along the waterways. It is not uncommon to see dolphins leaping in the air, alligators swimming by, and ducks and geese stopping in for a bite to eat from time to time.  

Insider Tips:
– Boon Docks does not take reservations. So arrive early and be prepared to wait hours for a table on busy days.
– If you face a long wait for a table, ask to order drinks and an appetizer to hold you over. You can also go to the dock out back to feed the fish and take in the beautiful views to kill some time.