ROAD TRIP: Saltwater Grill, Panama City Beach, Florida
Many times just the view of a restaurant’s parking lot is enough to convince someone that something good is going on inside. Combine that with recommendations from our readers and we were really hedging our bets that Saltwater Grill was going to be pretty spectacular.
Speaking of pretty spectacular, when you enter the restaurant you’ll be greeted by a 25,000 gallon aquarium stocked full of marine life. It’s an eye catcher for sure, but don’t let that distract you! The real good stuff is in the dining room!
Melanie and I aren’t much in the mood for waiting for a table after being at the beach all day, so we got an early start and placed call-ahead seating so that we had a zero wait when we arrived at Saltwater Grill. Our server greeted us and brought refreshments quickly to our table. She confidently answered all of our questions about the menu.
After enjoying the She Crab Soup so much the night before at Firefly, we just had to try the Lobster Bisque. Let me assure you – it was DIVINE! It is so rich and full of flavor. You can taste a touch of sherry and there are small pieces of lobster throughout. The cup, versus the bowl, is just the right amount.
Our bread came next and it made a delight out of the mundane. The homemade sourdough bread is baked with rosemary from Saltwater Grill’s own herb and vegetable garden on the property and you can taste a hint of olive oil as well. The creamy, sweet butter on the bread and we could have eaten the whole basket if it would’ve have spoiled our dinner. Especially with the awesome House Salads we got too!
Melanie chose the Jumbo Gulf Shrimp fried and selected the green beans and sweet potato along with it. The shrimp was delightful but she couldn’t finish her meal. These were awesome though the next morning for my oceanfront breakfast!
I got the Grilled Grouper Imperial, that is topped with jumbo lump crab. The grouper is wonderfully seared so as to provide a crunchiness that blends well with the softness of crab. To top off all of this is a sherry beurre blanc glaze that adds such a pleasant sweetness to this dish. I also chose the green beans which were sautéed so nicely and I particularly enjoyed the presentation of the mashed potatoes from a piping bag. They looked absolutely amazing!
I have to tell you dear readers, that when it comes to bang for the buck Saltwater Grill provides an exceptional value that is unparalleled in Panama City Beach. The food quality is top-notch, the service is exemplary – giving no doubt that Saltwater Grill rates a MUST-VISIT on our list of best restaurants in Panama City Beach. Guten appetit!