Experience a Taste of Italy in Grand Boulevard

Experience a Taste of Italy in Grand Boulevard

With a craving for some Italian food, we decided to venture out into the cool January Florida night to sample the fare at the just-opened Emeril’s Italian Coastal restaurant here in Grand Boulevard.

Reservations were made ahead of time via the online service OpenTable, which was a very painless, straight-forward process. We arrived there at our reserved time of 5:30 pm and was immediately greeted and seated by a very pleasant employee. The decor is very clean and chic featuring an abundance of white offset with a subtle variety of selected art pieces and wall sculptures. The main eye-catching feature is a centrally located bar area, with plenty of seating and visually exciting layout.

We were seated by the windows located near the open kitchen area, situated near the rear of the restaurant but easily visible to most of the restaurant’s patrons. We were promptly greeted within a few minutes by our servers who took our drink orders and explained to us along with the Daily Menu Specials available on this Monday night. This night we decided to order a few small plates to sample a variety of foods since it was our first visit. Our dining guests ordered a couple of the larger entree plates accompanied by a couple of ala-carte sides.

First up, we picked the Avocado Bruschetta – a lightly toasted baguette, covered with sea-salt radish and olive oil. It was a very light and refreshing start with a slight lemon flavor.

Next up was the Wise Guy Flatbread Pizza – which was a pretty good size consisting of about 7-8 pieces. It was cooked to perfection, not too crispy not too soft, with Italian sausage, roasted bell peppers, and crushed red pepper. A little heads up…it was on the spicy side, not sure if it was the sausage, the crushed red pepper or a little of both.

Our next dish arrived at the same time as the Flatbread, it was the Pasta dish called E.J.s Rigatoni – a decent sized bowl of shrimp, broccoli, house-made Italian sausage ragout and firmly cooked Rigatoni. This dish was very good…the sauce was really thick and meaty, featuring the Italian Sausage, again on the spicy side so take note. The 6 large shrimp really complimented the sauce and the broccoli brought it all together.

Avocado Bruschetta

Our guest’s first taste of Emeril’s Coastal Italian was the Mixed Green Salad. It was a nice mix of greens with white balsamic vinegar, arbequina olive oil, and juicy grape tomatoes. The Tuscan Steak was next and melted in your mouth as it was perfectly cooked to our medium rare request. The dish also featured a side of arugula, roasted garlic, lemon, and olive oil.  This dish was fantastic!

The Tuscan Roasted Chicken was served and it too was a very good dish. Consisting of a split half chicken, lightly roasted and seasoned with rosemary, lemon, and garlic, it too was a pleasant surprise of flavor from such a seemingly simple item. We then added a side of the Romano Potatoes which were covered with a sprinkle of Parmesan Cheese and featured a slight peppery taste.

The overall atmosphere of Emeril’s is of a very relaxed nature, precisely what Emeril was going for, this, after all, is a beach tourist destination. The service was spot on and the employees were very attentive and knowledgeable.

So if you find yourself in Destin and start to crave a bit of Italian food with a side of Emeril thrown in….this is the place for you. Located in the Miramar Beach at the Shops of Grand Boulevard in Sandestin.

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Destin Commons

Destin Commons

Looking for some great Shopping and Dining in Destin FL? Destin Commons opened it’s doors in 2003 and is a  500,000 square foot shopping center that has set the standard as the premier open-air lifestyle center offering the best in the shopping, dining, and entertainment on the Emerald Coast. With favorites like Bass Pro Shops, Belk, H&M, Charming Charlie, Express, AMC Theaters, Uncle Buck’s FishBowl & Grill, Chipotle and World of Beer, Destin Commons currently offers 90+ stores and restaurants with something for everyone.

Destin Commons

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Where to Enjoy the Happiest of Hours

Where to Enjoy the Happiest of Hours

When you’ve had a tough day at work and looking to finally relax and maybe enjoy some beverages…why not save some money at the same time?

So when you are looking for the “best” happy hour in and around Destin where is that special place to be found? The answer is not a straight-forward one as there happen to be plenty of great Happy Hours here and we are going to tell you about a few of them.

If you’re close to the “middle” area of Destin – between Destin Commons and Harborwalk Village – you need to stop in an see the fine people over at the Marina Cafe! Not only are they known for their amazingly delicious food and spectacular Harbor view, they also know how to throw a great Happy Hour. Happening every day from 5 – 7 pm and featuring – Half Price Drinks, Half Price Sushi, and Specially Priced Select Appetizers.

Another Destin favorite Happy Hour also features amazing waterfront views and unique Happy Hour menu items as well. 790 On The Gulf, is located at the beautiful Crystal Inn at the Beach…located in…you guessed it… the Crystal Beach area of Destin. 790 offers their Happy Hour daily from 3-6 pm and offers a wide variety of bar menu items along with very nice drink specials such as Reduced prices on select Fall and Winter menu items, as well as special HH prices on well drinks, martinis, wines., mimosas, margaritas and more.

cocktails

Venturing a little farther to the east in the world-class Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort we will find a gem of a place tucked into the beautiful Baytowne Marina..Baytowne Marina Bar & Grill. Here they feature HH from 4-7 daily, showcasing reduced prices on beer, wine, cocktails along with reduced prices on select appetizers. And of course one amazing view of the Choctawhatchee Bay.

This, of course, is just a small sampling of the Happy Hour choices available to you in and around Destin. We are always on lookout for other great deals to pass along to our readers, so if you have a recommendation,  let us know and we’ll give them a shout out!

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Hog’s Breath Saloon – Destin

Hog’s Breath Saloon – Destin

 “HOG’S BREATH IS BETTER THAN NO BREATH AT ALL!”

Hog’s Breath is located in the heart of Destin, just a ½ mile east of the Destin Bridge.  They offer great seafood, fresh smoked BBQ, live music, handmade specialty drinks, and a kid’s menu.  You can sit inside, or dine outside on t the spacious patio while enjoying the beautiful Emerald Coast weather and listen to our live, local entertainers.  Fun will be had by the entire family. See for yourself why Hog’s Breath has been a local favorite since 1976.  Don’t to forget to visit our Key West location or enjoy our hogcams located in Key West.

Hog's Breath Saloon Destin

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The Crab Trap Destin

The Crab Trap Destin

The Crab Trap Destin a local fixture sitting on a prime piece of real estate, oceanfront on Scenic Hwy. 98.  With uncompromised views of the amazing beaches of the Emerald Coast, The Crab Trap offers a wide range of menu options including Fresh Seafood, it’s signature Hot Crab Dip and She Crab Soup along with daily specials ranging from Bronzed Grouper or Grilled Filet to Alaskan Crab Legs.The Crab Trap Destin is the original Gulf front seafood restaurant. It is an excellent spot for a gathering of friends, that perfect date night, lunch after a day at the beach or to grab a drink at the tiki bar. Open air windows, sun-bleached wood, local art, and hand carved seaside sculptures – on your next visit to Destin make sure to include a stop at The Crab Trap.

The Crab Trap Destin

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Funky Blues Shack Destin

Funky Blues Shack Destin

Funky Blues Shack in Destin are BIG supporters of art and live music. The Funky Blues Shack prides itself on carefully choosing some of the best local and national bands around, that’s why they have been recognized as the BEST LIVE VENUE, 3 years in a row! Don’t let the name fool you into thinking this a strictly a place where Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughn are the only musical blueprint allowed! They feature ALL types of music, Blues, Reggae, Rock, Alternative, Zydeco, etc… So, if you are ready to get your groove on, just sit back, or get up and boogie the night away! FBS offers two fully stocked bars with 28 beers on tap. Backed up by a highly trained staff that is full of personality and ready to offer you a great time. Be sure to follow FBS on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to see our monthly schedule of events and specials!

Funky Blues Shack Destin

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