Seafood is one of the main ingredients in Key West cuisine.
The appeal of seafood cuisine lies in its taste and colors, which make up most of the menu items at many of the top eateries in Key West.
The local fishermen bring their catches to market each day, and you can find them being sold fresh off the back of a truck near Duval Street.
Get your fill of high-quality seafood in Key West, Florida.
From local eateries to fish markets, this guide lists the very best places to find fresh catches and exceptional seafood.
Starting with the restaurants, some of the best ones where you can taste some amazing seafood are:
Table of Contents
Best Seafood In Key West
Conch Republic Seafood Company
631 Greene St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +1 305-294-4403
Conch Republic Seafood Company is a restaurant and conch bar suited to the historic Singleton Fish House and Ice Plant that serves appetizing, fresh, dock-to-dish cuisine, some of the best seafood in Key West.
Local shrimpers have been unloading, processing, and shipping by hand thousands of pounds of Key West pink shrimp from this location for a long time.
The atmosphere here is pleasant, as you can see the original concrete floor, grates, reclaimed wood, and a nice view of the ocean and the marina in front of you while you relish their mouthwatering food and drinks.
Go for their incredible starters such as Coconut Shrimp, a hand-dipped shrimp tossed in flaky coconut and fried until perfectly crisp with Caribbean Chili Aioli. Or sample some of their main dishes like their Local Fresh Catch that can be pan-seared or blackened, with their signature JuJu slather, and served with island rice and chefʼs fresh vegetables.
Your taste buds will be even more pleased if you pair the dishes with some of their famous Mojitos, including the Mango Mojito or Coconut Mojito, as well as their delicious Margaritas or signature Martinis.
The Conch Republic Seafood Company has been bringing the richness of the seas ashore in the Historic Key West Bight throughout Key West’s illustrious history. A few examples of the weekly cargo that would flow through the Bight were shrimp, fish, sponges, and enormous sea turtles.
The present-day home of the Conch Republic Seafood Company has a rich past of its own.
Many people in Key West were employed by “sponging” in the 1890s, both onboard the fleet and in ashore jobs.
The big, broad sponge market docks of the era were long since superseded by their current docks.
To enable the quality of the sponges to be evaluated, numerous docks were built, including this one.
Eaton Street Seafood Market & Restaurant
801 Eaton St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +1 305-295-3474
Eaton Street is a simple Key West seafood restaurant serving fried fish and grilled lobster tail in addition to sandwiches with crab cake and shrimp salad.
Fresh fish and seafood are available for you to choose from, and you can have them prepared on the spot to get the real experience from the best seafood in Key West.
Other local favorites like grouper, snapper, hogfish, lobster, and stone crab could be found here too.
Do you want some wild-caught, fresh Key West fish, shrimp, conch, or clams?
Prepare to feast by going here for dinner during business hours or ordering online from the comfort of your home.
Key West Pink Shrimp, Royal Red Shrimp, Yellowtail Snapper, Grouper, Cobia, Wahoo, Bar Jack, Mahi-Mahi, Mutton Snapper, Porgy, Triggerfish, and many other native kinds of seafood are among the specialties they provide.
You can purchase grilled lobster tail, stone crab, fish and shrimp sandwiches, and other items.
Or try some of their Lobster Roll, which is classic, made with Maine lobster meat, key lime mustard, mayo, and lemon juice on a traditional toasted bun served with cole slaw and plantain chips.
Fish or Shrimp Tacos are made with fresh fish or pink shrimp, which you can choose to be day fried, grilled, or blackened with spring mix, cabbage, tomato, and key lime mustard sauce served in soft tacos, accompanied by cole slaw and plantain chips. The tacos are available in flour or corn tortillas.
Dine al fresco in their comfortable seating and savor the best view Key West has to offer.
They also have a fish market, and you can even order the best seafood in Key West and American caviar online with delivery to your door with Uber eats or Postmates.
They offer overnight shipping for both cooked and raw fish across the entire nation.
801 Eaton St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13052953474
Thirsty Mermaid is an airy corner indoor Key West seafood restaurant that serves seafood from the area, salads, a raw bar, craft beer, and wine. It’s a small place with simple yet classy decor.
This place is a swiftly paced seafood market in the mass of Key West, which usually has more locals than visitors.
They are only using fresh ingredients which makes this restaurant famous for the best seafood in Key West.
They offer a variety of oysters and other premium seafood delicacies for all those thirsty mermaids, and the menu also includes fresh local fish and a wide selection of wines and craft beers.
Apalachicola Oystersarer is laid over a bed of ice and served on a conventional metal tray; really fresh and flawlessly shucked.
Try some of the Raw Bars, like Mermaid Platter, which includes six oysters, six clams, ceviche, or Crackling Calamari Salad with frisee, chili, and key lime miso vinaigrette.
Taste some of their delish mains like the pan sautéed local Yellowtail Snapper made with fettuccine, roasted cherry tomatoes, and citrus chive butter at this cute little restaurant.
A limited menu of shellfish-centric classics is offered together with beverages in a casual, coastal space.
Drinks like wine and beer are featured in their drink menu to accompany the tasty dishes.
This place is vegetarian-friendly, and gluten-free options are also available.
The Lobster Shack Key West
507 South St., Naval Air Station Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13057417149
Try their famous Key West Lobster Roll, the BLT Roll, the Diablo Roll, the Traditional Roll, or the fan-favorite Lobster Grilled Cheese.
Enjoy the finest Key West Pinks and coconut shrimp, and seasonal fresh salads. They serve Kermit’s Key Lime Pie for dessert. Cold beer, sodas, and fresh limeade are available.
The restaurant’s dining area is placed in an indoor space and is pretty tiny but cute with tall bar tables.
Their Lobster Grilled Cheese is pretty amazing. It is lobster meat along with two nicely grilled slices of cheese. You can choose to add bacon and jalapeno to the dish.
Try their Shrimp Roll, which is Florida Pinks with a hint of fresh key lime and hot butter.
Or give a try to the upgraded version of it, which is the Lobster “BLT” Roll which is actually a traditional roll with applewood, smoked bacon, and fresh tomato.
They also have the Best Lobster Bisque, served with croutons on the side.
Furthermore, their Diablo Lobster Roll is a fantastic option, too, since it is lobster with a touch of Sriracha mayo and a sprinkle of fresh-cut jalapeno.
You can always ask for their seasonal, super-fresh salad with lobster or shrimp.
And along with the beautiful dishes, you can choose between drinks like Fresh Limeade or Cold Hibiscus Tea to refresh your taste buds for the next delicious bite.
To finish off the meal, they are offering their famous key lime pie.
712 Duval St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13054402179
Pinchers is a chain of local seafood shacks famous for its fried fish, crab dishes, and other coastal favorites.
Fresh seafood is essential to every seafood restaurant on the island. Especially here, where they make every effort to serve the best seafood in Key West to your table on each and every visit.
Every day, local crabbers and anglers steer their boats into the Gulf of Mexico to fish for the Pinchers.
Every evening, they bring the best the Gulf has to offer. They are one of the main factors in the success and deliver these great catches straight to the Pinchers.
Their woody, cute space offers regular and tall bar seating tables.
You can settle on the balcony if you want to enjoy the meal with a nice view and a refreshing breeze.
Starters like hot or regular crab and cheese dip are served with an endless bowl of tortilla chips and are a must when in this place. They are absolutely fantastic.
Or have some of their tasty soups and salads, which are available in both classic and authentic styles.
You can continue your unique journey with their Ahi tuna, pan-seared to a cool rare after being coated in tuxedo sesame seeds and served with a side of soy sauce, wasabi, and sriracha glaze over a bed of lettuce.
Conch Fritters are an island classic with a genuine Bahamas recipe! For true island lovers, a basket full of delicate conch paired with conch sauce is a must-have!
Also, the Crab Rangoons, Coconut Shrimp, Buffalo Shrimp, Fried Grouper Sandwich, and Soft Shell Crab Sandwich are all amazing.
Pinchers Crab Cake is hand-picked and shipped fresh blue crab meat every day. It is so fresh that they say you might find some shells and is served with a side of stone mustard and coleslaw.
Cracked conch and raw oysters on the half shell that are being served just naked or already steamy are also available.
They also make beautiful pasta, one of the flavors being the Shrimp Scampi, which has a generous amount of Gulf shrimp sautéed in lots of garlic, butter, and wine with what they claim are secret family spices.
To top off the amazing flavors, you can choose from the following desserts: Signature Key Lime Pie, Chocolate Cake, Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake, Chocolate Mousse Cheesecake, or their refreshing Ice Cream Shakes.
Besides the best seafood in Key West, this restaurant offers refreshing bucket drinks like the Strawberry Sweetheart, Gulf Coast Hurricane, Orange Mojito, and more are also available to accompany the enjoyable dishes.
A&B Lobster House
700 Front St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13052945880
A&B Lobster House is a popular local restaurant, existing for more than 70 years and serving surf and turf. It has two levels, which allow diners to watch the sunset over the water.
And it makes an iconic location in Key West’s old seaport and a night that calls for formal attire.
Enjoy your meal while gazing out at the harbor’s crystal-clear seas and the yachts from all over the world.
You can choose a variety of beverages to drink with your delectable meal as the sun starts to drop while dining on top-notch cuisine and taking in the unmatched waterfront views.
At A&B Lobster House, they say that only the finest cuts of meat and the freshest seafood from the area are used in the preparation of their menu, which is served with a great wine and traditional cocktail list that has been carefully chosen.
Everything they provide is the epitome of Key West’s fine seafood dining, both in terms of customer service and classic design.
Start with their authentic starters like the Rockefeller Oysters that come with Grana Padano, Pernod, Spinach, Applewood Bacon, and Hollandaise Sauce. Or sample their special type of Grilled Octopus, prepared with Edamame Beans, Radish, Wakame Salad, and Sweet Soy.
You can also get some of their incredible soups or salads like the Roasted Beet, which is a mixture of house greens, along with Burrata, Heirloom Beets, Balsamic Reduction, and Candied Pecans.
Then you can continue the unforgettable eating journey with some of their lobster dishes like the Caribbean Lobster “OSCAR,” which is a Crab “Imperial” served with Coconut Pecan Rice, Asparagus, and Hollandaise.
Their fresh fish and seafood menu sections feature fascinating flavors and the freshest seafood ever. Give a try to their Crab Cakes or Shrimp and Scallops dish that is made with Charred Tomato, Pearl Couscous, Broccolini, and Grain Mustard Creme.
Grouper “Oscar” is another amazing dish, made with crabmeat and served with Leek Mashed Potatoes, Asparagus, and Hollandaise.
Their drink menu offers a wide range of choices, including Berlin’s Martini List, Specialty Cocktails, Craft and Bottled Beers, and, of course, good quality wine.
You might not have enough space for a dessert in the end, but if you do, their crème brûlée is truly special. This is one of the best seafood restaurants in Key West; make sure to try it.
921 Truman Ave., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13052962777
Seven Fish is one of the most fascinating and one of the best seafood in Key West. They serve simple but delicious food.
It has grown from little beginnings more than 20 years ago to become a Key West landmark.
It is the ideal way to cap off your day because it serves the freshest local fish in a relaxed, modern bistro atmosphere.
You won’t want the meal to end because it is created from scratch daily with simple dishes and only the best ingredients.
You also might get the urge to order everything on the menu once you see what they’re offering and especially if you see a dish being served on the table next to yours.
Try the Thai Curry Snapper, one of the house specialties, or any other of their fresh fish meals, including the Banana Chicken or even Seven Fish Meatloaf, a local favorite.
Their Crab Cake makes a fantastic appetizer since it is made in Florida style, with ginger garlic sauce.
They also have some refreshing salads with an abundance of greens.
Sushi Rolls are one of the options on the menu, and it would be a lie if I said that they are not pretty incredible.
You can go on with their entrees which include Sea Scallops, served with mashed potatoes, split pea puree, and creamed spinach; the amazing Surf & Turf made with a 16-ounce New York Strip Steak and shrimp skewer, served with roasted potatoes, steamed vegetables, and chimichurri sauce.
And if you want to eat some carbs, their Seafood Marinara Pasta and Housemade Gnocchi make a great choice.
When it comes to the desserts, Chocolate Brownie, the famous Key Lime Cheesecake and Pie, as well as Strawberry Whipped Cream Pie and Banana Flambe are all available to choose from.
Refreshing cocktails, Martinis, bourbon, beer, and more are available to go along with whatever you choose from the menu.
DJ’s Clam Shack
629 Duval St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13052940102
DJ’s Clam Shack was born when two restaurant owners from the lower key islands decided to use their years of expertise to offer easily available fresh seafood on Duval St. in Key West in late 2009.
One partner is from Ipswich, Massachusetts, and the other is from Blue Point, New York. The newly formed partnership is immersed in the rich northeast seafood culture.
Their winning formula started to take shape when they added more than 40 years of living, working, and fishing in the Florida Keys, with all of its diversity and great seafood bounty.
The partners agreed that combining traditional dishes from the north and the south would be appealing to customers, but they would only use the freshest, highest-quality products and figure out a method to keep costs down.
Clams, lobster rolls, and conch fritters are pleasantly served from a bustling counter with outdoor seating in this spot.
Their menu offers some of the best seafood in Key West. It includes a few selections that feature DJ’s Clam Specialties, their Overstuffed Maine Lobster Roll, Garlic Steamed Middle Neck Calms, Ipswich Fried Clams, and more.
Golden Fried Favorites is my favorite section, and it offers Clam Strips, Fried Shrimp, Conch Fritters, Fish Fingers, and more.
Aside from that, they also have some really tasty tacos that come in a few flavors and sides, like garlic bread and sweet potato fries, so you choose your go-to.
In regards to the beverages, they have different types of beer and soda.
B.O.’s Fish Wagon
801 Caroline St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13052949272
If you want to experience one of the best seafood in Key West, B.O.’s Fish Wagon is the place to go! A unique eating spot that serves fried fish, conch fritters, hot dogs, and sandwiches out of a driftwood shack.
Their menu features appetizers like hand-battered onion rings, conch fritters, and sides such as hand-cut fries, homemade slaw, fresh tossed salad, and black beans and rice.
Then for the mains, they have sandwiches with shrimp, soft-shell crab, cracked conch, chicken, and more, as well as lunch plates like fish, shrimp, soft-shell crab, and fish tacos.
Key Limeade, fresh-brewed tea, Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, domestic beer, and premium beer and wine supplement your meal..
If you go here once, you will definitely want to be back for the Mahi Tacos, Conch Fritters, and Key Lime Lemonade.
Markets for the best best seafood in Key West
Considering that Key West is widely recognized for its fresh seafood, it can be tough to figure out where to get the best fish.
If you’re looking for the freshest raw seafood in Key West to buy and make yourself, you’ll want to check out one of the city’s many seafood markets.
To help you make the most of your stay in Key West, we’ve put together a list of the markets for the best seafood in Key West. Here are four of the best:
Half Shell Fish Market
231 Margaret St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13052947480
Half Shell Fish Market is a great place to start.
In Old Town Key West, the Half Shell Fish Market is your local fish market.
At the base of Margaret Street, in the heart of the Historic Seaport, you can find this market within the Half Shell Raw Bar.
There is no better place to get a flavor of historic Key West than The Half Shell Raw Bar.
You’ll see the neighborhood fishermen loading the day’s catch into the Half Shell’s Fish Market as you enter.
Prepare to savor the finest seafood in Key West by taking a seat at one of the wooden picnic tables or on a stool by the bar.
You’ve come to the correct location if you’re looking for the best oysters and best seafood in Key West, so order a dozen and watch as they are shucked from the shell and placed in your bags.
Besides the dominant and fantastic fresh oysters, they offer various types of fish, shrimp, clams and more.
They also deliver. Just call the Half Shell Fish Market at 305-294-7496 seven days a week between 11 AM and 5 PM.
Key Fresh Seafood Market
6840 Front St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13058799335
The Key Fresh Seafood Market is a special place where a group of fishermen sells fish and shellfish right off their boats.
These men are genuine locals who have built up an excellent system for residents and visitors to the island to get access to the freshest fish.
They are excellent, very friendly, and helpful, and the environment is clean and sanitary.
It is literally the catch of the day because the options change daily.
You can always choose from their great selection of what’s currently running and will always get some of the freshest pieces in the entire Key West.
Incredible Pumpkin Swordfish, Yellowtail Snapper, Yellowfin Tuna, Sushi Grade Conch, Pink Shrimp, Red Shrimp, and Lobster are all available to be bought from the Key Fresh Seafood Market.
Grouper, Barrelfish, Rosefish, African Pompano, Stone Crab, and much more can be found here too.
Not a single person regrets getting their seafood from this super fresh and unique market.
Three Hands Fish
3101 N. Roosevelt Blvd., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13052960274
Three Hands Fish is a beautiful market that is fighting an American seafood problem.
They say that a fish can convey a story, a tale from the sea to the plate.
The story given in the early years of our nation was always succinct and just right.
It involved fishmongers, their clients, and fisherman. The fish was always fresh because it only took a few hours to travel from the ocean to the dish and they absolutely provide the best seafood in Key West.
Unfortunately, 90% of the fish we consume today have a different history, one that lasts months instead of hours, and that starts in places like China, Vietnam, and India. There, 50% of all fish are caught in overcrowded fish farms e contaminated with feces, agricultural runoff toxins, and banned antibiotics.
Three Hands consists of their commercial fishermen, whose livelihoods have suffered as America buys more seafood from elsewhere, particularly from foreign fish farms in Southeast Asia and Africa.
Supporting the nation’s commercial fishermen by purchasing their catch and encouraging their efforts is a cornerstone of the Key West Revolution.
The cutters come right after them. Fish is often sliced with a fish cutter.
From the minute their seafood is received from our fishermen until the moment it is sold to us, the Three Hands Fish Fillet Masters attentively take care of our day’s catch.
All fish is always stored on fresh, clean ice, out of the sun, and unfilleted until the customer orders it, which happens right before the fish is sold.
All the while, they bring you up to date on the day’s catch, including who caught it, where it was caught, and how it was caught.
In their Three Hands Fish approach, we are the third and most crucial hand since we all value fresh seafood that is treated with care as soon as it is caught and tastes great.
And we are aware that their species does not live alone on this planet and that living at the top of the food chain necessitates treating all life below it, including plants and seafood, with respect.
Show support for the Florida Keys commercial fishermen – their captains, many of whom are friends – instead of the nameless and faceless foreign fish farms that sell under the guise of being “local” is what means most to them.
Stone Crab, Lobsters, Snapper Fish like Yellowtail, Mandove Snapper, Red Snapper, Muton Snapper, Golden Tile, and Bonita, as well as Black, Snowy, and Yellowedge Groupers, Trigger Fish, and Mahi-Mahi are all available here, depending on the daily catch.
217 Duval St., Key West, FL 33040, United States // +13054402436
The whole team at Stinkin Crawfish comes from humble beginnings in Lincoln Heights, but in early 2014, they managed to open their first location in West Covina. They put in a lot of effort and kept making mistakes, but they never stopped learning.
They were given a small business of the year award by the State of California in June 2019!
And now they are bringing the best seafood in Key West.
They say that they aim to not let you down and bring something unique to this incredible city, which is definitely obvious if you go to their market.
They sell the seafood raw or cooked in their restaurant, where the little market resides.
Here you can find the classics, such as oysters, shrimp, calamari, catfish, crawfish, snow crab, king crab, and some specials like alligator bites.
It is a nice outdoor spot where you can stop for a tasty little treat while you shop for the best seafood in Key West for your home.
Best Seafood in Key West Wrap-Up
Key West has a long history of seafood, and the restaurants, cafes, and food carts here prove it.
You can order oysters on the half shell or enjoy fish tacos, seafood chowder, or anything seafood-related that comes to your mind. Consider Key West as a part of your seafood tour as you drive from Florida to other parts of the country.
Overall, Key West as a destination is fantastic for seafood, and the service at all the locations is remarkable since they are very proud of their establishments and stand behind the quality of the food and service that they offer.
If you want to experience something different, then try some of these restaurants and fish markets.
The list of restaurants and markets above are some of our favorite places to eat when enjoying this area of Florida.
And if you are looking for some more places where you can eat some tasty dishes, make sure to check out our article on 14 Of The Best Restaurants In Key West Florida.
Igor Jovanovski is an aspiring digital nomad, travel blogger and graphic designer who really loves food. He also has a creative side, and he works as a freelance graphic designer in his spare time. He has traveled across Europe quite a few times since he was young and recently started his mission to visit every country in the world! Igor’s favorite thing about traveling is the way he gets to know new people, food, places and cultures.
This exciting experience helps him create his own stories and make memories that will last forever