“Sports bar meets beach bar”: That’s the tag at the Anchor Bar & Grill, and it’s a pretty apt description. Located in the lobby of the Boardwalk Beach Hotel & Convention Center and open to guests and non-guests alike, the restaurant offers crowd-pleasing pub grub and a whole plethora of drinks amid its lively barroom atmosphere.
There’s quite the spread of starters: good for sharing with table-mates, or maybe just hoarding for yourself—your call! Fresh Gulf oysters, Oysters Rockefeller, crab-cake rolls, Smoked Chicken Nachos, fried pickles, wings, cheese fries, and a half-pound of boneless chicken nuggets help sketch out the appetizer spectrum.
Keep in mind there is actually roughage on the menu, too, including several kinds of salads: a good way to balance out some of those fried, greasy—oh, and irresistible—temptations.
You can exercise your patty-piling creativity with the Anchor Bar & Grill’s “Build Your Own Half-Pound Char-grilled Burger,” or go the sandwich route with the Hurricane Club, the Shrimp or Oyster Po Boy, or the Fresh Catch Sandwich. There’s also a ranch-seasoned Blackened Shrimp Wrap.
As far as lunch and dinner entrées, the Gulf of Mexico takes a starring role in Today’s Fresh Catch, which serves up a poached fish of the day in a lemon, caper, olive oil, scallion, red onion, and garlic herb sauce paired with steamed veggies and rice. Other seafood options include grilled or deep-fried fresh-catch fish or shrimp tacos with flour tortillas and a side of rice and beans, plus English-style Fish & Chips: a lot of beer-battered goodness.
Not feeling fish or shrimp? There’s plenty of “turf” available at the Anchor Bar & Grill, too, including Fire-roasted Cajun Chicken and a flame-kissed six-ounce filet.
Presumably you’re going to be thirsty. There’s a full bar here with a bunch of coastal cocktails, from the Funky Parrot with its blend of spiced and coconut rum to the whiskey- and amaretto-strong Red Snapper, plus margaritas, piña coladas, and martinis. There’s beer and wine as well, plus (of course) non-booze drinks. There are nightly bar specials, plus a Happy Hour.
Here are a few of the menu highlights at the Anchor Bar & Grill:
Wings Your Way
Some days just call for a big basket of wings, right? The Anchor Bar & Grill gives you a grab bag of sauces to get those taste buds dancing: from plain and mild to BBQ, honey garlic, jerk, and sriracha.
Fresh Catch Sandwich
It’s always worth sampling some local, fresh seafood. Along with the entrée version, the Fresh Catch Sandwich served on a toasted bun, is a good way to do so: You decide whether you want that fish fried, blackened, or grilled!
The Boardwalk Specialty drink, the Sun”Shine” Koolaid is a mix of platinum apple pie “moonshine” and cranberry with some sweet-and-sour mixed in. Strap in to your seat for this one and see where the evening takes you!
Less a place to go for some standout dish or drink or another, though, the Anchor Bar & Grill offers a cheery atmosphere, a good perch for watching the big game, and the potential for a fun night on the town in Panama City Beach. Did we mention there’s karaoke and live music on occasion?
– There’s a Boardwalk Beach Hotel Souvenir Mug available at the bar, and if you spring for it you’ll get discounted refills.