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“The Best Pork Chop”
Review of Marina Cafe

Marina Cafe
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Ranked #36 of 399 Restaurants in Destin
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$24 - US$50
Cuisines: Sushi, Seafood, Steakhouse
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Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Romantic, Business meetings, View
Dining options: After-hours, Lunch, Dinner, Delivery, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Description: Experience Adult Contemporary Dining with breathtaking views of the Destin Harbor through a thirty foot window wall in the bar and waterfront dining room. Our extensive international wine collection compliments an eclectic menu of classic Creole, Mediterranean, Pan Asian and American cuisine in addition to gourmet brick oven pizza and sushi selections. Fresh local seafood and USDA prime steaks. Waterfront cocktail deck with sensational sunsets.
Reviewed 24 February 2016

This is a beautiful place to eat and enjoy the bay of Destin. The service was impeccable. Our server was very knowledgeable of the menu items and was very professional. The food that we ate was delicious. We had 23 people eating and we did not hear one complaint, everyone said their food was delicious.

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Thank dshahn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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352 - 356 of 1,101 reviews

Reviewed 21 February 2016

A couple of years ago, the Marina Café was one of our favorites on a trip to Destin, so we were certain to return on this recent trip. An affable gentlemen known as Wally greeted folks. We arrived early for the sunset/happy hour/ early dinner specials. Despite arriving early, we were not given a window table. (They appeared to be reserved for groups of 4.) Once we were seated in the dining room, we were told that we could not order happy hour specials from the dining room. We asked if we could go sit in the bar area (there was a table available next to the windows.) We were informed by our waiter that he would lose his job if we did that. We ordered dinner. My grouper was an uninspired dish with little flavor. My wife ordered the duck breast. It was her favorite duck dish, ever (jerk seasoning, which I tasted and have to admit, it was excellent.) While we were eating we noticed that a LOT of people had opted to stop in the bar area and first order drinks and appetizer specials. THEN they moved to a dining room table, with their drinks. I guess we just did not know the drill, but found it odd that our waiter feared for his job, if we went to the bar after being seated at a table. When our check arrived, our waiter had circled a suggested tip that he wanted. We obliged, but as we were both still hungry, we moved to the bar and got a nice table by the windows. The happy hour appetizers were OK, as were our martinis. But again, the wait staff seemed to be afraid for some reason. (There was a large piece of what appeared to be dental floss in our calamari, but we did not want to get anyone fired, so we did not mention it.) That permeation of attitude certainly flavored our entire experience. Whatever is causing this extremely poor customer service from the wait staff (you can’t scare people into great customer service), I hope the restaurant mgt can solve this. We hope to return next time and find this problem fixed. But we will be prepared to walk out, if it is not.

1  Thank WhirldWind
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 February 2016

After reading reviews and hearing this was a must stop, we went for the Happy Hour 2 for one meal. Our sever was friendly and helpful and told me I could not go wrong with their Signature Grouper Almondine. My wife ordered the Grilled Rib Eye Pork Chop which was edible.
When the Grouper arrived it had to be one of the saltiest fish dish I have ever had and totally inedible. At this point, the waitperson was nowhere to be found. I Flagged a waiter, made my complaint and our waitperson returned and asked what the issue was with my dish. When I explained, she said it might have had a pinch too much salt: no, this was a tablespoon too much. She offer the Grouper in the shell fish broth which was almost as bad as the original dish. Our server had now become less than friendly.
Bottom line is we left the restaurant, picked up Key Lime Pie at the Ocean Club which was the highlight of the evening.

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Thank austinbillgolfer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 February 2016

This is our favorite restaurant. Unfortunately we are only in destin for two months of the year. We eat here once or twice a week. Every night is some special deal on five star food and drink! Red fish is the specialty, but everything is excellent. Wally, our favorite matre 'd, makes customers feel very special.

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Thank gobucksbeatmichigan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 February 2016

Had a wonderful dinner. The new chef they got last year has added some exceptional entrees to the menu. The food is over the top good! You do pay for it though...This is not an inexpensive place to dine, which leads me to my next para.

The facility is really in need of a major renovation. The men's room is just plain gross. My wife said that the ladies room was cleaner, but in need of a complete renovation too. The Bar is dated, the carpet looks old & dirty in the dinning room, and there are even burnt out lights in a couple of the light fixtures. I wouldn't mind if it were at a hole in the wall seafood place (like a couple up the road), but this is a 4-5 star restaurant for food quality, presentation and especially price. The restaurant right next door is definitely putting a hurt on the business Maria Cafe is doing, but it is because it is newer, cleaner & less $ (it also has great food too).

This place can be a great restaurant again, but the owner needs to step up and spend some real $ on it and not just put some new tile outside. Refurbish it and bring it to the 2010's!

BTW we are locals so we go out to eat in the area regularly.

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1  Thank Wildone_Z06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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