6 Tasty Gulf Shores Restaurants
The best seafood in the country comes from the Gulf Coast. Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama are two exceptional examples. From the moment I tasted my first bite in these family-friendly beach destinations, I knew I was in for a treat! I sampled a variety of restaurants, from upscale to casual, famous to not-so-well-known, and the verdict was always the same—delicious! Here are six tasty restaurants that we think you should try on your visit to the coastal area.
Lulu’s is a highly-popular restaurant and destination in itself. With seating on the Intracoastal Waterway, a huge playground, shopping emporium, seasonal events, and nightly live music, you will feel like part of an extended family here. Lulu’s was recently recognized for its efforts in creating allergy menus that are normal in appearance and allow the guests with food allergies to not feel different. It is no secret that Lulu’s owner, Lucy, is musician Jimmy Buffett’s sister. For those who like to cook, pick up one of her fabulous cookbooks, featuring the best Southern recipes and then some.
#2 Bill’s by the Beach
Bill’s by the Beach caught my eye with its menu specials, enticing wrap-around deck, and water views. What a delight! This casual eatery serves both upscale and everyday seafood with a wide array of sides (rice, goat cheese grits, succotash, collard greens) and sauces (tomato onion jam, Citrus Beurre Blanc, house steak sauce). Bill’s Fried Shrimp was not one bit greasy and there is so much food that you probably cannot finish it all. Lunch prices are incredibly affordable! Locals swear that Bill’s makes the best Bloody Mary in Alabama.
Recommended Dishes: Comeback Shrimp, Oyster Bienville, Blackened or Fried Shrimp Basket with fries and coleslaw, sweet tea (the best of my trip!)
#3 Cosmos Restaurant and Bar
Cosmo’s Restaurant and Bar is a sophisticated restaurant in Orange Beach that, like their tagline, is anything but ordinary. The menu features an enormous range of classic seafood dishes with an eclectic spin. Options range from sushi to pasta, hand-cut steaks to mouth-watering appetizers, and a huge offering of craft beers. Works by local artists decorate the walls of the restaurant and are available for purchase. Save room for dessert; they are as sure to please as every other morsel you will taste at Cosmo’s.
Note: Sister restaurants Buzzcatz Coffee and Luna’s Eat and Drink are also located at this complex.
Recommended Dishes: Savory Cheesecake (this is an appetizer, not dessert, and it was life changing!), Cheese Dip (topped with feta and roasted tomato relish, served with pita chips), Roasted Red Pepper Caesar Salad, Filet Mignon (garlic & smoked bacon grits, lemon garlic asparagus), Banana Leaf-wrapped Fish
#4 DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen
Year after year, award-winning DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen is one of Gulf Shore’s favorite family restaurants; a timeless tradition. The two-story nautical looking restaurant fits in with the coastal Alabama scenery perfectly and the service is commendable. With comfort food favorites and a dozen yummy side dishes, this no-frills eatery delivers a great plate of food satisfaction. Pick your protein and have it blackened, cajun, fried, broiled, grilled, or steamed. Save room for a homemade dessert.
Recommended Dishes: Fried Shrimp (the best in Alabama!), green beans, Macaroni & Cheese
#5 Anchor Bar & Grill
Experience waterfront dining in a casual al fresco setting on Terry Cove at Anchor Bar & Grill, serving the best bar food on the island. The menu consists of mostly burgers, wings, Short Rib nachos, salads, and fish tacos, made with the local catch. I always love a Southern eatery that uses Mason jars for the drinks. Anchor Bar & Grill’s happy hour offers discounted beer, wine, and mixed drinks.
Recommended Dishes: Spring Vegetable Salad (add tuna poke), More In than Out Burger (caramelized onions and tomato jam), Tater Tots, Blonde Buckwacker, Raspberry Beret
#6 Cobalt, The Restaurant
This chic and modern Orange Beach eatery, near the Perdido Bay Bridge, has fantastic waterfront views. Arrive at Cobalt by boat and enjoy a revered happy hour ($5 apps) and impressive patio. Service and delicious food are the restaurant specialties, while live music is another attractive offering. Cobalt’s dining room is open and airy with attractive decor and a relaxing atmosphere; a perfect place to hang with friends or celebrate a special occasion. Sundays feature a brunch buffet that sounds awesome—omelet station, salads, carving station, and a dessert station to name a few.
Pleasantly Pleased By The Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Food Scene
Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are fantastic family-friendly vacation destinations where you can get a really good meal for a decent price.