On the Road in The Florida Keys

The Lobster Reuben from Keys Fisheries.
The Lobster Reuben from Keys Fisheries.

In the Keys, you are then only 90 miles from one of the world's most mysterious countries, a place that until recently you could not visit legally. Plus you get to party with Hemingway's famous six-toed cats, and they are always good for a laugh.

Keys Fisheries (3502 Gulfview Ave.) One of the great perks to hanging in the Keys is the ethereal sunset. The Keys Fisheries provides one of the best views of this transcendent example of natural beauty. The restaurant is basically just a service window located in front of a full bar offering up good beer and wine options. The tables are all outdoors, mere feet from the calm blue waters of the gulf. Keys Fisheries brings in fresh seafood every day and prepares it in simple but delicious ways. It's most famous for its"Lobster Reuben," which is a giant sandwich stuffed full of sweet lobster meat, melted cheese and sauerkraut inside buttery grilled toast. It's more than big enough to share, making it one of the best bargains around at only $15.

A cocktail by the pool at The Sunset Grill.
A cocktail by the pool at The Sunset Grill.

Blond Giraffe Key Lime Pie Factory (802 Duval St.) Who could visit the Keys without a tangy sweet bite of key lime pie? Almost every restaurant, market and even bar has its own version, but the Blond Giraffe, with several locations stretching from Miami down to Key West, is certainly the most famous and award-heavy. The place was started by a Brazilian couple who wanted to offer healthy smoothies to tourists. The healthy stuff didn't take off, but the homemade key lime pie sure did. Made with cream, sugar and fresh key lime juice topped with meringue or whipped cream in a graham cracker crust, this pie is seriously good stuff. The Blond Giraffe offers bite-size cookie versions as well as frozen pie slices dipped in chocolate. Yum.

Sunset Grill & Raw Bar (7 Knights Key Blvd) The Sunset Grill is nothing fancy when it comes to food, but what it lacks in cuisine originality, it more than makes up for in delicious tropical drinks and fantastic ambience. Besides the standard selection of daiquiris, piña coladas and margaritas, there's also a huge array of beverages made with various rums, fruit juices and coconut milk. The restaurant has no walls to obscure your enjoyment of the crystal-clear green waters of the Atlantic. There's even a cute swimming pool, a perfect place to lounge while you get tipsy on Bacardi.


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