#75 of 160 Panama City Beach Restaurants

The Craft Bar

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The Craft Bar: Panama City Beach's Upscale Microbrew Gathering Spot
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

A chef-inspired gastropub with 30 craft beers on tap, specialty cocktails and dressed up bar food, The Craft Bar in Panama City Beach is a step above a standard tavern, but not quite fine dining. Sample the fare for less during weekday happy hours when cocktails and snacks are $5 each. Get your favorite draft beer to go in a "crowler," the pub's canned version of a growler that you can take with you to the beach.

- The FloridaPanhandle.com Local Expert Team

Located at the uber-popular Pier Park shopping and dining venue, The Craft Bar offers a refreshing change of pace from traditional beach bars and chain restaurants. With 30 craft beers on tap, innovative cocktails and locally sourced products, beer connoisseurs and foodies alike are certain to be impressed.

The Craft Bar serves high-quality food and drink in a relaxed, fun atmosphere complete with exposed brick walls and plenty of richly colored wooden furniture. The beers on tap can be difficult to find elsewhere in Northwest Florida, so enjoy the opportunity to sample some of these rarities. Don’t want to commit to a full pint? Ask a knowledgeable bartender for a sample or a flight. The cocktail menu changes seasonally as bartenders create new libations using fresh-squeezed juices and house-infused spirits.

Trivia night is held every Tuesday and live music occurs on Thursdays and Fridays. If you’re there on Monday evening, enjoy a discounted burger. Sunday Brunch features special menu items and specials on Bloody Marys and mimosas. The Craft Bar doesn’t take reservations, but the staff will accommodate larger groups. It can get loud at times, but the restaurant is family friendly.

Some of our favorites include:

The Craft Bar Burger
The geniuses in the kitchen at The Craft Bar concoct this burger using local ground beef, caramelized onions and your choice of aged gouda, Tillamook cheddar or blue cheese on a slightly sweet brioche. You can taste the difference in the locally sourced meat — it’s full of flavor! Try it topped with bacon and pimento cheese for a real treat!

Southern Style Fried Chicken
It’s not always easy to do fried chicken well, but The Craft Bar has perfected the recipe! It’s crispy on the outside, moist on the inside and full of flavor. Served with house-made mac and cheese and another tempting side (try the roasted Brussels sprouts), the fried chicken is a menu-standout. For extra kick, get it served hot and spicy Nashville-style.

Pulled Pork Poutine
House-cut fries, topped with tender pulled pork, jalapenos and barbecue sauce? Messy, but delish! Try it with The Craft Bar’s spicy ketchup or malt mayo.

Smoked Old Fashioned
Not only will you enjoy sipping the cocktail, you’ll love watching the bartender make it. Traditional old fashion ingredients are infused with smoke so it tastes like you’re drinking a campfire. Yes, a blowtorch is involved. No, you don’t need to have a fire extinguisher at the ready. These bartenders are pros.

Before you call it an evening, pick up a “crowler” (or two or three.) Select any of The Craft Bars’ on-tap beers, and the staff will seal it in a 32-ounce can. That way, you can take your favorite craft beer to the beach or on the boat! It’s The Craft Bar’s way of ensuing you enjoy your favorite beer even after you leave the restaurant.

Insider Tip:
-Regulars can join The Craft Bar’s rewards club for early access to new products, special promotions and the chance to redeem points for food and drink at the restaurant or at Wine World.