18 Waterfront Restaurants in Sarasota [2022]

18 mins read

This is a list of the best Sarasota waterfront restaurants.

These are best places to eat on the water and watch the sunset.

Sarasota restaurants on the water

Let’s dive right in.

Here are the places to eat with the best water views:

  1. Jack Dusty
  2. Dry Dock Waterfront Grill
  3. Chart House
  4. Lido Key Tiki Bar
  5. Drift Kitchen & Bar
  6. O’Leary’s Tiki Bar & Grill
  7. Marina Jacks
  8. Phillippi Creek Oyster Bar
  9. Ophelia’s on the Bay
  10. Turtles On Little Sarasota Bay
  11. The Old Salty Dog
  12. New Pass Grill & Bait Shop
  13. Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant
  14. Shore Longboat Key
  15. The Boatyard Waterfront Bar and Grill
  16. Spanish Point Tiki Bar (Evie’s)
  17. Bearded Clam Waterfront Restaurant
  18. Ridley’s Porch

Jack Dusty

1111 Ritz Carlton Dr, Sarasota, FL

Jack Dusty is a coastal cuisine restaurant in downtown Sarasota with outdoor seating. It has spectacular views of the water. Their famously delicious brown bread is baked in a can and smeared with rum butter. From their dinner menu, you have to try…

Jack Dusty Menu Favorites

  1. Ceviche
  2. Crab and fried green tomato appetizer
  3. Seafood cioppino
  4. Filet mignon

Jack Dusty Dress Code

Depending on what’s going on there, you’ll see everything from casual pants to sundresses to semi-formal.

Jack Dusty Outside Seating

Their patio has lots of outside seating with everything from dining tables to alfresco furniture. Order something from their lunch menu and watch the boats go by in Sarasota bay. Valet parking is complimentary and they do offer convenient online reservations.

Jack Dusty Popular Drinks

  1. The Siren
  2. The Prisoner
  3. The Pain Killer

Dry Dock Waterfront Grill

412 Gulf of Mexico Dr, Longboat Key, FL

Dry Dock Waterfront Grill

Dry Dock Waterfront Grill is one of the most beautiful Sarasota waterfront restaurants. Located in Longboat Key, just 15-20 minutes from downtown. Since their outdoor dining area is right on the water, they offer incredible water views of Sarasota Bay. They also have indoor seating upstairs and a bar downstairs where you can wait for your table.

Dry Dock Hours

Dry Dock hours are from 11am-11pm.

Dry Dock Happy Hour

Happy hour menu is usually on weekdays from 3-6pm.

Dry Dock Popular Appetizers

  1. Grouper bites
  2. Lobster bisque
  3. Seafood chowder
  4. Crab cakes.

Dry Dock Best Menu Items

  1. Grouper tacos
  2. Shrimp tacos
  3. Blackened red snapper
  4. Chilean sea bass
  5. Lobster rolls
  6. Seafood linguine with white clam sauce.

Considering it’s one of the best seafood restaurants on the water, you should definitely make online reservations. Dry Dock is an excellent restaurant for an engagement.

Chart House

201 Gulf of Mexico Dr, Longboat Key, FL

Chart House

Chart House does have waterfront outdoor seating, but most of their tables are inside. If you want a beautiful view of New Pass and the Gulf of Mexico, you have to request to sit on the outside deck. Their indoor seating is air conditioned and has fantastic views of the water. Located in Longboat Key about 15-20 minutes from downtown Sarasota.

While their prices are on the higher side, their early dining menu is a terrific value. If you want to have an excellent time, order their clam chowder and cedar plank salmon.

While many people love their prime rib, others have complained it was extremely rare or overcooked. End the night with their lava cake or mud pie and have a few cocktails on their outside deck watching the sunset.

Lido Key Tiki Bar

1234 Benjamin Franklin Dr, Sarasota, FL

Lido Key Tiki Bar

Lido Key Tiki Bar is the perfect fairy tale tiki bar. Imagine looking at their menu while sitting in a chair around the bar. The bartender is making drinks while you check out their awesome happy hour specials. The sun is shining and you feel a cool breeze from the Gulf of Mexico on your back.

You turn your chair around and your kids are safely playing in the sand 20 feet away from you. If you want to sit closer to the water, there are wooden picnic tables with their own palm thatched roofs.

This is one of the best Lido Key bars with a waterfront view to watch the sunset. Parking is exclusively reserved for guests staying at the Ritz. So park on Benjamin Franklin Dr. and look for a path that leads to the beach.

Drift Kitchen & Bar

700 Benjamin Franklin Dr, Sarasota, FL

Drift Kitchen and Bar

After a complete renovation of Lido Beach Grille, Drift Kitchen reopened with an attractive new dining experience. Since it’s on the 8th floor of the Lido Beach Resort, the views of the Gulf of Mexico are remarkable.

The inside is modern contemporary and very well air conditioned. Come for the sunset and expect the best views of Lido Key beach and the water.

Start your meal off right by ordering the New England clam chowder, shrimp cocktail or one of their tasty flat bread pizzas. The most popular menu items are the pan-seared grouper or the cioppino. Don’t forget to make an online reservation to avoid a wait.

O’Leary’s Tiki Bar & Grill

5 Bayfront Dr, Sarasota, FL

O'Leary's Tiki Bar

O’Leary’s is one of the best Sarasota restaurants on the water. It’s also 5 minutes from downtown. There’s a tiki hut with a live band playing, a separate tiki bar that offers draft beers and cocktails, picnic tables with outdoor seating and air conditioned indoor seating. It’s safe to say, there’s something for everyone.

If you’re coming for the live band experience, check O’Leary’s band schedule first. They have a perfect location in Bayfront Park. Since they are one of the closest Sarasota waterfront restaurants, the emphasis here is not on their food.

However, if you’re feeling hungry go for the burger, curly fries or quesadillas. You can’t go wrong. Check their bar menu for the draft beer selection and awesome margaritas. Grab a beer and a picnic table on the sand and enjoy the waterfront views with the skyline in the back.

Marina Jacks

2 Marina Plaza, Sarasota, FL

Marina Jacks

Want to have best waterfront view? Request outside seating on the Blue Sunshine Patio. The outside patio offers the best casual dining experience by the water. However, if you’re looking for something a little more fancy, they have an indoor dining room on the second floor (no formal dress code).

Request seats by the window to get the best views of the water. On the first floor, you’ll find the Deep Six Lounge, a lounge and piano bar. They also made our list of the best restaurants in downtown Sarasota! Try their Grouper tacos or sandwich.

Check out their live band calendar if that’s something you’re interested in. In case your GPS takes you to O’Leary’s, the Bayfront Park parking lot connects to Marina Jacks. Since it is one of the best Sarasota restaurants on the water, we recommend making an online reservation.

Phillippi Creek Oyster Bar

5353 S Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL

Phillippi Creek Oyster Bar

Known for their fresh seafood and beautiful water views of Phillippi Creek. It’s considered one of the best seafood restaurants in Sarasota on the water. Locals love them and their online reviews reflect that!

If you want to sit close to the water, request a table in their outside seating area. You’ll find many rustic style picnic tables right by the water. They also have indoor seating with tables right by the water.

While their lunch menu and bar prices have increased, it wasn’t unexpected. They’re always busy and have a decent wait. If you’re looking for Sarasota waterfront restaurants with the best happy hour menu, make sure to check them out.

Happy Hour Menu Hours

Phillippi Creek Oyster Bar runs their happy hour from 3-5pm.

Phillippi Creek Oyster Bar (Our Favorites)

  1. Stuffed grouper
  2. Fish tacos
  3. Soft shell crab sandwich
  4. Fresh oysters on the half shell
  5. Parsley potatoes
  6. Hush puppies
  7. Crab cakes

Ophelia’s on the Bay

9105 Midnight Pass Rd, Sarasota, FL

Ophelia's on the Bay

Ophelia’s restaurant offers a fine dining experience with outdoor seating right on Little Sarasota Bay. Considering it’s a very nice restaurant in Sarasota, you should definitely make a reservation ahead of time. Then call to request a table outside. You don’t have to worry about parking, since they offer complimentary valet. It’s one of the nicest Siesta Key restaurants with outside patio dining.

Ophelia’s on the Bay Best Menu Items

  1. Eggplant crepes
  2. Scallops and grits
  3. Crab cakes
  4. Habanero mashed potatoes
  5. Lobster mashed potatoes
  6. Steak tartare
  7. Duck breast with potato hash.

End a good night with their signature key lime pie. Make sure to check out Ophelia’s on the Bay brunch buffet on Sunday’s and their great wine list.

Turtles On Little Sarasota Bay

8875 Midnight Pass Rd, Sarasota, FL

Turtles Restaurant is a casual family friendly Sarasota restaurant on the water. It’s a nice place to have a breakfast on Siesta Key. They offer great views of Little Sarasota Bay on their outside patio. Check out their reviews to see what they’re all about. We would recommend the blackened grouper off their lunch menu.

The Old Salty Dog

1601 Ken Thompson Pkwy, Sarasota, FL

Old Salty Dog

The Old Salty Dog is a simple Sarasota restaurant on the water with a fun atmosphere. Since they have multiple locations, the one that’s water front is on Longboat Key. Near Mote Marine Aquarium. If you want quick, great lunch and a water view of Sarasota Bay, this is it. Try their grouper sandwich, fish tacos, shrimp tacos, steamed mussels, deep fried hot dogs.

New Pass Grill & Bait Shop

1505 Ken Thompson Pkwy, Sarasota, FL

New Pass Grill

If the Old Salty Dog is busy, try the New Pass Grill since they’re next door. It’s a no-frills spot to get a quick bite to eat and watch boats come in and out. There’s no table service, so you have to order at the window and pick up your food at another window. Fishing the New Pass Inlet in Sarasota? You probably need a bait shop on Longboat Key. Well you’re in luck because the bait shop is connected.

We loved their burger and fries, tuna salad sandwiches and breakfast sandwiches.

Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant

760 Broadway St, Longboat Key, FL

Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant

Mar Vista is a beautiful, romantic and waterfront restaurant in Longboat Key. Imagine tables spread out on the sand with Buttonwood trees and twinkle lights flickering in the air. This restaurant takes outdoor dining on the water to the next level. It is a dockside restaurant, so expect boats to come and go. Expect excellent views of Sarasota Bay.

Mar Vista Best Appetizers

  1. Brussel sprouts
  2. Tater tots
  3. Crab cakes

Mar Vista Best Entrees

  1. Grouper tacos
  2. Grouper risotto
  3. Stone crabs
  4. Burger

End the night with their signature key lime pie. Definitely one of the best sarasota waterfront restaurants that’s not too far from downtown.

Shore Longboat Key

800 Broadway St, Longboat Key, FL

Shore Longboat Key

Don’t confuse the Longboat Key location with the St. Armands location. While they both share almost identical menu’s, the Longboat Key location has a great waterfront view of Sarasota Bay. It’s a beautiful modern contemporary restaurant with open-air breezy seating. Since it is a dockside restaurant, you’ll also be able to watch boats come and go.

Shore Best Menu Items

  1. Beet salad
  2. Black grouper
  3. Wood grilled Branzino
  4. Fried chicken, crab
  5. Lobster sliders
  6. Crab cakes
  7. Kung Pao Calamari

For dessert, try their creme brûlée cheesecake and gelato. For cocktails, order a blood orange margarita and mai tai. Don’t forget to make a reservation to avoid a long wait.

The Boatyard Waterfront Bar and Grill

1500 Stickney Point Rd, Sarasota, FL

The Boatyard is situated on the intracoastal waterway and is accessible by boat. It is the last place to eat before you cross the bridge to Siesta Key on Clark Rd. While they do offer food, they’re more of a bar than a restaurant. But if you like looking at boats go by, this is the place for you. They offer outdoor, indoor seating and live music.

Spanish Point Tiki Bar (Evie’s)

135 Bayview Dr, Osprey, FL

Spanish Point Tiki Bar

Evie’s Spanish Point Tiki Bar offers a beautiful view of Little Sarasota Bay in Osprey, FL. While they do offer food, this is more of a full bar with appetizers that’s accessible by water. They also have live music Wednesday through Friday. Pull up to the docks of this water front tiki bar and grab a drink.

Bearded Clam Waterfront Restaurant & Tiki Bar

7150 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL

Bearded Clam Waterfront Restaurant

Beared Clam Waterfront Restaurant has a laid back atmosphere with a great view of the marina. You can grab a beer and watch boats come and go. They have really cute colorful chairs right by the water. Almost at the edge. Drinks are a must, but not so much the food. They also offer live music.

While they are considered one of Sarasota waterfront restaurants. They’re more of a bar on the water with food options.

Ridley’s Porch

1234 Benjamin Franklin Dr, Sarasota, FL

While you do have to be a member or stay at the Ritz to dine at the Ridley’s Porch, it does have beautiful views of the water. If you are not a guest, they will politely ask you to visit the Lido Key Tiki Bar. While it’s a little further inland than the tiki bar, you’ll still have a beautiful view and air conditioning. If you’re staying at the Ritz, this is one the best Sarasota waterfront restaurants you can visit during your stay.

Sarasota Restaurants on the Water

If you’re looking for waterfront restaurants near you, we created a convenient map of Sarasota restaurants on the water.

Waterfront Restaurants near Sarasota, Florida

Related: List of the best Bradenton restaurants on the water

Related: List of Anna Maria Island waterfront restaurants

Related: List of waterfront restaurants in Venice, Florida

Related: List of Sarasota restaurants on the beach