From Seafood to Southern-Style Cooking: The Best Restaurants in Crystal River, FL

Best Restaurants in Crystal River
Photo by Zachary from AdobeStock

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Crystal River, located on the Gulf Coast of Florida, is a wonderful destination for nature lovers and foodies alike. With its freshwater springs and diverse wildlife, there is always something to see and do in this beautiful city. And when it comes to dining options, Crystal River does not disappoint. After a long day of exploring, you’ll want to grab a bite to eat at one of these top restaurants in town.

Indulge in a diverse array of mouth-watering flavors, ranging from fresh crab and seafood straight off the boat to hearty home-style cooking and a tempting selection of international and Florida cuisine.

Vintage on 5th

14 NE 5th St, Crystal River, FL 34429

For a unique dining experience, head to Vintage on 5th, a top restaurant in Crystal River that’s housed in a renovated 1940s cottage-church. This elegant eatery serves up an array of delectable dishes including seafood, steaks, and some Southern favorites, alongside a wide selection of wines to complement your meal. 

The menu features classic Italian cuisine with a modern twist, prepared with fresh and locally sourced ingredients. Whether you’re planning a romantic date night or a fancy dinner with friends, Vintage on 5th is the perfect spot to enjoy a sophisticated evening out in the heart of downtown Crystal River.

Seafood Seller & Cafe

300 SE US Hwy 19, Crystal River, FL 34429

A must-visit restaurant in Crystal River is Seafood Seller & Cafe – a colorful, New Orleans-themed eatery located in the Crystal River Mall. This vibrant restaurant serves up delicious Cajun-style seafood along with a variety of beers to quench your thirst. You’ll be impressed by their fresh seafood and an extensive menu that caters to all taste preferences – including their gluten free menu. The staff is known for being friendly and accommodating, making it an ideal spot for groups looking for a casual and relaxed dining experience.

West 82° Bar & Grill

9301 W Fort Island Trail, Crystal River, FL 34429

If you’re looking for a great dining experience in Crystal River, FL, West 82° Bar & Grill at the Plantation on Crystal River is definitely worth a visit. This bright and airy restaurant offers a delicious menu of fine American surf ‘n’ turf dishes, as well as breakfast options. With stunning views of the Florida wildlife and water canals, you can enjoy a relaxing meal in the bright veranda space. 

The menu features fresh seafood and local ingredients that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. And for a truly unique experience, you can even have the chefs cook your own catch! So whether you’re stopping by for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, West 82° Bar & Grill is the perfect spot to enjoy some great food and beautiful views.

Amy’s On The Avenue

539 N Citrus Ave, Crystal River, FL 34428

If you’re looking for a place to grab a bite to eat while exploring downtown Crystal River, be sure to check out Amy’s On The Avenue. This American restaurant and café serves up a delicious all-day menu, with plenty of outdoor seating to enjoy the Florida sunshine. The vibrant wall murals add to the lively atmosphere, and the bakery items and coffee drinks are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. Plus, the attached boutique offers a unique shopping experience you won’t find anywhere else. Amy’s On The Avenue has been a local favorite since 2014 and is the perfect spot to relax and refuel during your Crystal River adventure.

Taverna Manos Mediterranean Grille

5705 W Gulf to Lake Hwy, Crystal River, FL 34429

For a unique and upscale dining experience in Crystal River, look no further than Taverna Manos Mediterranean Grille. This reservations-only restaurant offers limited seating to ensure every guest has the best possible experience. Their menu is a fusion of Mediterranean and American cuisine, with dishes inspired by Greek, French, and Italian cooking, as well as some of the freshest seafood in town.

Each day, the restaurant prepares special, handcrafted dinners using only the highest quality ingredients. The result is a dining experience that is both casual and refined, and at prices that won’t break the bank. Remember to call ahead to make your reservation and secure your spot at this popular Crystal River eatery.

Tea House 650 Cafe

650 N Citrus Ave, Crystal River, FL 34428

If you’re a tea lover, then Tea House 650 Cafe in Crystal River, FL is the place for you! With over 70 different loose-leaf teas to choose from, including herbal, green, white, black, and chai, you’re sure to find your perfect cup. And if you’re a fan of organic and fair-trade teas, they’ve got you covered with a variety of options available. You can even purchase teas by the gram to try out a variety of flavors. But that’s not all! 

Tea House 650 also boasts a unique wine selection from the Murielle Winery, featuring Tropical, Traditional, and Vintners Series wines made from grapes grown in California, Washington State, and Canada. The kitchen serves up fresh and delicious food made from scratch. They have vegan and gluten free options available. So come on in and relax with a cup of tea and some amazing food at Tea House 650!

Dan’s Clam Stand

2315 N Sunshine Path, Crystal River, FL 34428

Dan’s Clam Stand is a charming New England-style seafood spot located in the heart of beautiful Crystal River, Florida. This easygoing clam shack serves up heaping baskets of delicious fried seafood, with picnic tables available for casual outdoor dining. With almost 30 years of experience in the same location, Dan’s Clam Stand is the go-to spot for steamer clams, fried whole belly clams, and lobster or lobster rolls. 

If you’re out scalloping in the nearby waters, bring your catch to Dan’s Clam Stand and they’ll cook it up for you. Don’t miss out on this gem of a seafood restaurant in Crystal River.

The Crab Plant

201 NW 5th St, Crystal River, FL 34428

Looking for fresh seafood in Crystal River? Look no further than The Crab Plant, an eatery adjacent to their seafood market that serves up freshly prepared fish and crab in a no-frills space. You can’t go wrong with their Grouper, Snapper, Hog Fish, Mullet, Flounder, Sheepshead, Sea Bass, Calamari, and Squid. The fish is so fresh that it’s almost like you caught it yourself.

The Crab Plant also loves their crabs, with Stone, Snow, and Blue Crab always on the menu. With a large variety of fresh Stone Crab, Snow Crab, and Blue Crab to choose from, you can find Mediums, Large, Jumbo, and Stone Crab Floaters, as well as fresh Boat Run and Male Blue Crab. The restaurant is open Tuesday through Saturday, so come on in and get your fresh seafood fix.

Peck’s Old Port Cove

139 N Ozello Trail, Crystal River, FL 34429

Peck’s Old Port Cove, Crystal River, is a beloved waterfront restaurant that has been a staple in the community for decades. Nestled along Kings Bay, this charming eatery offers not only delicious food but also stunning views of the water. From the moment you step inside, you’ll be greeted with warm hospitality and a cozy, rustic ambiance. Peck’s Old Port Cove is renowned for its fresh seafood, serving up a delectable selection of blue crab, fish, shrimp, gator, and more. Whether you prefer your seafood grilled, blackened, or fried to perfection, there’s something to please every palate. With its generous portions and reasonable prices, Peck’s Old Port Cove is a fantastic choice for a satisfying meal.

Backwater Fins

13982 W Ozello Trail, Crystal River, FL 34429

A hidden gem in Crystal River, Backwater Fins is a seafood lover’s paradise. This quaint restaurant is a true haven for seafood lovers, offering a delectable selection of dishes bursting with flavor and freshness. Each plate, from the zesty ceviche to the blackened grouper, is expertly crafted and presented as a culinary masterpiece. The cozy and intimate setting of Backwater Fins further enhances its appeal, creating the ideal atmosphere for a romantic dinner. 

Don’t miss the opportunity to savor their mouthwatering smoked fish dip, shrimp scampi, and fresh mullet. And to complete your meal on a sweet note, indulge in their homemade key lime pie, a tangy and creamy dessert that will leave you yearning for more.

Discover the Delights of Crystal River, FL

Whether you’re craving seafood, southern, or homestyle comfort food, Crystal River has a restaurant to satisfy every appetite. Indulge in the local flavors, immerse yourself in the friendly atmosphere, and make memories with every bite. Bon appétit!

In addition to its culinary delights, Crystal River, FL, is renowned for its breathtaking natural beauty and unique aquatic experiences. The crystal-clear waters of Crystal River provide the perfect playground for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. 

**Disclaimer: There is a good chance that this post contains affiliate or sponsor links. If you make a purchase through them, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you (for which we are extremely grateful).

Also, while we do our best to highlight LGBTQ-friendly destinations and businesses, info provided is based solely on personal experience and recommendations by community partners. We hope that nobody experiences discrimination or homophobia while visiting Florida, but we make no guarantees. Please inform us if you experience discrimination or homophobia while visiting any destination so we can make updates to our recommendations.

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june, 2024

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