Looking for the best places to eat in Clearwater Beach? As a long time resident, I’ve eaten pretty much everywhere on the Clearwater Beach tourist strip. So let me save you the trouble with this handy list of my vey favorite Clearwater Beach restaurants.
Frenchy's Rockaway Grill
Frenchy’s Rockaway Grill is a Clearwater Beach icon. Their prime beach front location has a lot to do with that. But they are also famous for their grouper sandwiches.
Story time! I vividly remember this big grouper scandal from when I was a kid. Apparently many local restaurants were passing off cheaper fish as fresh caught grouper. Our local newspaper ran a story where they took samples of the sandwiches and published which ones were actually grouper. And Frenchy’s was one of the only true grouper sandwiches on the list!
This place is very popular and does not take reservations, so go at an off peak time if you can. It does turn into an adults only bar at night, but is very family friendly during the day. There’s even a kids menu!
Clear Sky Cafe
Clear Sky Draught House is a popular beer pub and restaurant in nearby Dunedin. Their Clearwater Beach outpost is a great little spot to eat.
They have a fantastic beer menu and great food as well. It’s especially popular for breakfast and Sunday brunch. In fact, it’s one of the best brunch places on the beach.
We dined here for my son's 7th birthday on a recent trip, and he gave it a big thumbs up. I had some sort of grouper with a risotto that was absolutely delicious.
They do take reservations but only open up the spots about 24 hours in advance, so go online and grab a spot the day before your visit if you want to shorten your wait time.
(P.S. That's my little guy in the picture - waiting for his birthday dinner!)
Palm Pavilion Beachside Grill & Bar
Palm Pavilion is an old school restaurant that’s been on the beach for my entire life. It’s claim to fame is simple- it’s beachfront. On the sand. Perfect sunset views.
They don’t take reservations, so go early if you want a spot on the patio.
I’ll be honest- the food here is good, but perhaps not as good as the options above. But the view is absolutely worth paying for. It’s a popular special occasion place among locals for this reason.
Hogan's Hangout – Hogan's Hangout
This slightly dive-y bar is owned by the famous Hulk Hogan. Yep, that Hulk Hogan.
It’s a fun little bar tucked into the Clearwater Beach strip. The rooftop is lively and it’s a great place to grab a drink and watch a football game.
Plus, you can say you were at Hulk Hogan’s bar.
Caretta on the Gulf
Caretta’s is located inside the beautiful Sandpearl Resort. This is currently my top pick for a “fancy” restaurant in Clearwater Beach.
They focus on seafood and it’s top notch. And I am very picky about seafood. They have great drinks and great service and it’s just an overall really nice place for a special dinner.
Tate Island Grill
Tate’s is also at the Sandpearl- it’s their beachfront bar and grill. The food is simple but tasty, the drinks are great, and it’s literally on the white sand beach.
The best thing about Tate is the fire pit though. They light it up every night around 7:30, and it can be quite the little party spot.
Great place for a cocktail. And for families- they sometimes sell s’mores kits at the hotel activity desk!
Columbia is not actually on Clearwater Beach - it’s on Sand Key. But it’s just a few minutes drive or cab ride away and totally worth it.
The original Columbia restaurant is located in Ybor City, near downtown Tampa, in a drop dead gorgeous historical building. It’s iconic.
This beach offshoot has the same amazing food as the original, and it’s waterfront on the canal.
Be sure to order the guacamole and a pitcher of mojito- both left prepared table side and it’s worth the show.
You will definitely need reservations for dinner here and they often book up a week or two in advance (more for holidays), so plan ahead!
More Clearwater Beach Resources
If you’re planning a trip to Clearwater Beach, be sure to check out these other helpful articles: