The Ultimate Guide to Barefoot Beach Dining Options
If you’re anything like the typical Barefoot Beach homeowner, you enjoy a good meal out.
Luckily for you, over the last 20 years a seemingly endless array of dining options have opened their doors, all within minutes of Barefoot Beach.
This guide is here to walk you through some of the highlights, but nothing beats experiencing the real thing for yourself! So if you’re ready to make the move to Barefoot Beach, get in touch today and we’ll help you find your very own Piece of Paradise. Bon Appetit!
The Club at Barefoot Beach
Forget being within minutes of Barefoot Beach…you can find fine dining without even leaving the neighborhood!
The Club at Barefoot Beach is a private, member-owned equity club featuring a variety of different offerings for its members. Located in the back of Barefoot Beach directly along the Gulf of Mexico, members can enjoy casual dining on the first floor dining room, along the edge of the pool, or even directly on the beach.
Looking to try on that new suit or dress? The second floor dining room offers members fine dining with a world class view over the Gulf of Mexico. Featuring a modern American menu, guests can enjoy everything from fresh seafood to a steakhouse quality ribeye.
Our family has been members here since it opened over 20 years ago, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Doc’s Beach House
No guide to Barefoot Beach dining options would be complete without mentioning Doc’s Beach House.
Odds are, if you’re at all familiar with Barefoot Beach, you’re already in-the-know with respect to Doc’s. But in case you’re not, here are the basics.
Doc’s is a family-owned, Chicago sports-themed beachfront bar just a quarter mile West of the entrance of Barefoot Beach. They serve a variety of American cuisine, but are best known for their Chicago-style pizza. Another fan favorite is their Jerked Chicken Wings, seasoned with an out-of-this-world Jamaican Jerk seasoning.
For the adventurous, right in back of Doc’s you can rent Jet Skis, water bikes, play beach volleyball, or even go parasailing! If you’re just looking to relax, rent a beach chair, grab a beer and kick your feet up! There’s truly something for everyone.
In 2011 we had one of the biggest changes our area had seen in recent memory. The longstanding Italian restaurant Vincenzo’s closed its doors, paving the way for Coconut Jack’s to open for business.
The response was immediate and undeniable. Whereas Vincenzo’s had sometimes struggled to keep customers coming in, Coconut Jack’s barely had enough room, with customers often not even being able to pull into the parking lot and instead forming a line on Bonita Beach Rd.
Featuring bayfront views, fresh seafood and occasionally live music, it quickly became a fan favorite. Located directly across from the entrance to Barefoot Beach, this waterfront retreat is never out of reach – walk, take your golf cart or drive!
If you’re a seafood lover, look no further than the Fish House.
Fish House features fresh seafood grilled, fried or blackened to your liking and compliments it with some of the best (and most reasonably priced!) drinks around. The laid back atmosphere and quality food makes it a real staple for locals. In fact, it’s become so popular that they had to buy the lot next door just to get more parking spots!
Be sure to try their coconut shrimp and golden fried lobster bites – they’re the best around!
C Level Bistro & Wine Bar
Alright, let’s kick things up a notch. Looking for somewhere to take your date? Look no further than C Level Bistro & Wine Bar.
The second you walk in the door you’ll notice this isn’t your average restaurant. Every detail of the ambiance has been carefully thought out to create a one-of-a-kind experience. From the subtle mood lighting to the big screen TV behind the bar featuring anything from Classic Rock to Smooth Jazz concerts, no aspect of the atmosphere was left to chance.
Now, you might think that all the effort they put into the aesthetics could be to cover up for sub-par food. Fortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. They’re the only place I’ve ever been that can hold a candle to the Miso Glazed Chilean Sea Bass that U.S.S. Nemo serves (we’ll get to them in just a minute). They also feature a number of unique appetizers and entrees that are great for sharing.
Pro Tip: Check out their happy hour specials – thank us later!
If you’re a fan of Mexican or Cuban food, it would be borderline heresy not to stop into Taco Mix.
I’ll admit it – I’m not the biggest fan of Mexican food. There, I said it. But I know how good this place is because my son, Alex, who is a fanatic for Mexican food, has been going there on an almost daily basis for as long as I can remember.
His favorite dishes are the Steak Breakfast Burrito and the Cuban Sandwich (which he will tell you is the best Cuban Sandwich he’s ever had, despite having lived in Miami for 4 years).
A Table Apart
Just because Bonita Springs might seem like a quiet beach town in the corner of the map doesn’t mean you can’t get a taste of the world here.
That’s especially true at A Table Apart, where you can get a truly global sampling of different cuisines. Featuring dishes from Hawaii, France, Mexico, Tahiti, Japan, Thailand and more, the menu is sure to leave nobody out.
All this just minutes from the entrance of Barefoot Beach. So go ahead, cancel that vacation and just head down the street!
Talk about a hidden gem! Serving modern American cuisine in a fine dining setting, all while leaving behind the stuffy, character-less feeling that the big chain restaurants come with, Wylds Cafe offers a truly unique dining experience.
Tucked away in the somewhat nondescript plaza just East of A Table Apart, even many locals haven’t yet discovered Wylds. That certainly isn’t for lack of a great menu, though. Featuring a wide array of seafood, steaks and everything in between, you’re sure to find something to satisfy everyone in the family.
Unfortunately Wylds only opens their doors during season, so be sure to stop in during the winter months!
Looking for Asian Fusion with a twist? You’ve found your spot in Komoon Thai.
Featuring a unique blend of Thai, Sushi and Peruvian food, Komoon offers diners a unique sampling of different cuisines, all under one roof.
After opening their first location on Pine Ridge Rd. in 2011, they quickly realized they were onto something and were soon able to open the location on Bonita Beach Rd. (just minutes from Barefoot Beach), and recently opened their newest location on Immokalee and Goodlette Frank Rd. Some of the fan favorites include the Triple Play Roll and the Drunken Noodles.
Lobster rolls…they can be hard to get right. That is, unless you’re Doug’s Seafood.
When they opened in 2012, Doug’s was simply a fish market that served lobster rolls as a bit of an extra. Lo and behold, though, the lobster rolls quickly became the main attraction and have since paved the way for not one, but two separate expansions.
They’ve also slowly and thoughtfully added new items to the menu as they’ve grown. Try their incredible clam chowder or fried seafood baskets!
If you’ve spent any amount of time in Barefoot Beach you probably already know that there’s no shortage of Chicago transplants. And if you know anything about Chicagoans, it’s that they like – okay, love – their deep dish pizza.
Luckily for them, they don’t have to go far to get a quality deep dish pizza anymore. Instead, they can pick up the phone and order delivery from Rosati’s Pizza.
And this isn’t some cheap knock off – Rosati’s has roots in Chicago dating back to 1906. So whether you order their thin crust (which many Chicagoans will tell you is the “real” Chicago pizza – not deep dish), deep dish or one of the many other options on their menu, you’ll get a meal that’s based on recipes that have been passed down through generations of the family.
And let’s be real – what could be better than Chicago food without the Chicago weather?
Breakfast lovers rejoice! Skillets has been satisfying those who know how to start their day the right way since 1995.
They’re best known for their quaint atmosphere, thick-cut bacon and of course, their world-renowned “Skillet browns” (a twist on hash browns where they’re mixed with sour cream – an absolute must-try).
Diners beware, though – Skillets is without a doubt the most popular spot in town for breakfast, so it fills up quickly and can often have a lengthy wait. If you’re going on a weekend (or even a weekday during season) you’ll want to consider going a little earlier than normal so you can beat the crowd.
Still have room after Skillets? No better place to grab a post-breakfast dessert than at the famous Trackside Donuts!
This family-owned and operated bakery does one thing and one thing only – donuts. And boy, do they do them well. And as the daughter of someone who owned 7 bakeries, I don’t say that lightly.
Be sure to try their famous apple fritters.
Dolly’s Produce Patch & Eatery
Why not enjoy a piece of history with your breakfast? That’s what you get when you dine at Dolly’s Produce Patch & Eatery.
The land that Dolly’s is built on has been in their family since 1950. Originally their family home, it later became a rental property, then a motel, and ultimately a produce stand which then expanded into a full service breakfast restaurant.
Known for their intimate customer service (most Dolly’s customers are locals and are on a first name basis with the wait staff, which often includes the famous Dolly herself), American breakfast, fresh produce and Dolly’s famous homemade pies, this is an absolute must-try.
If you’re anything like me you love a good Italian restaurant. But DeRomo’s isn’t just an Italian restaurant.
DeRomo’s is a family-owned gourmet market, restaurant and catering company. For those who are familiar with the blockbuster success Eataly, think of a boutique version of that.
Go grab an incredible dinner and let their menu inspire you to go do your own cooking! What better place to get the necessary ingredients than their market – it features the finest wines, cheese, bread, produce and more.
Their attention to detail and quality has even gained them national recognition, having had their signature entree, Vitello Schantinella, called the “Dish of the Year” by the New York Times! This is my son’s favorite dish and he gets it pretty much ever time we go.
Carnivores will feel right at home at Jimmy P’s. Featuring 3 different locations, each of which has a different feeling and experience, Jimmy P’s focuses on high quality and often exotic meats.
Their original location in downtown Naples offers fast-casual lunch featuring cheeseburgers, Philly cheesesteaks, Reubens and more. That location quickly grew so popular that they knew they could expand. They first decided to expand into the space next door and started serving dinners of gourmet steaks, lobster, scallops, salmon and chicken. But before they knew it, even this new space wasn’t enough to satisfy the demand.
Luckily for Barefoot Beach homeowners, their second location opened much closer to home. This location originally started as both a restaurant and a butcher shop, where you can often find the exotic and high quality meats like alligator, venison, buffalo and elk. Soon after opening, though, they again realized they had a success on their hands and could grow even further. That led them to recently shutting down the restaurant portion of that location (while keeping the deli open) and opening up their most daring location yet!
Jimmy P’s Charred Steakhouse is a steak-lover’s paradise. Every steak they serve is Wagyu beef, which is prized for its tenderness and flavor, and is cooked in their 1200 degree broiler. If you’re looking for a high quality steak and are tired of the same old chains, this is the spot you’ve been looking for!
While there are still countless other options throughout Bonita Springs, the above list captures some of my personal favorites.
But that doesn’t mean that’s all that’s within the reach of Barefoot Beach residents. In fact, if you’re willing to travel just slightly farther, a whole array of different options becomes available. These are some of my favorite options in Naples and Estero.
New York Pizza & Pasta
Nobody does pizza quite like New York City…
And for the authentic New York experience in Naples, you have to check out New York Pizza & Pasta.
This family run business knows a thing or two about Italian food. The owners, brothers Max and John Maffei, were raised in Brooklyn, New York and were brought up in their family restaurant.
Their father taught them everything he knew about the business, and as the name implies, that also included cooking incredible pasta dishes.
Their full menu and great service will be sure to leave you satisfied.
Talk about standing the test of time…I can remember taking my family to Daruma when my kids weren’t even 10 years old yet. Now they’re 28 and 26 and we still love going there to this day!
Daruma is a traditional Japanese steakhouse where you’re seated with other guests at one large teppanyaki cooktop. They offer great steaks, seafood, sushi and most of all, great times with family and (maybe even some new) friends.
Pro Tip: Daruma is located just steps from Vanderbilt beach, so if you catch an early enough reservation, you can time it perfectly to catch a post-dinner sunset!
Tacos & Tequila
Some things are just meant for each other…peanut butter & jelly, wine & cheese, and of course, Tacos & Tequila.
If you’re like most Barefoot Beach residents and don’t like to “color inside the lines”, then you’ll love the menu at Tacos & Tequila. They’re constantly pushing the bounds of what can go inside a taco…and a margarita! Gone are the days where you’re relegated to just beef, chicken or steak. No…Tacos & Tequila is here to lead us to a brighter future – a future where you can demand more from your tacos, and your tequila.
Po’ Boy Shrimp taco? Check. Korean Beef taco? You bet. Philly Cheesesteak taco? Why not? All that and I haven’t even gotten to the Tequila.
Their creativity from the taco menu wasn’t lost when they started working on the margaritas. From their seemingly endless selection of premium tequilas to their avant-garde margarita options, even the most experienced margarita drinkers are sure to be satisfied.
The Bay House Restaurant
This place gives new meaning to the term hidden gem…You’d have no idea it was ever there without someone mentioning it to you.
Despite that, The Bay House Restaurant still manages to have a line out the door even during summer, much less the busy season of winter. That’s thanks to their diverse menu, Tommy Bahamas-like atmosphere (somewhere between casual and fancy), the live music they often feature, and their bay views.
When you put it all together you get an incredible dining experience that’s sure to stand out in your mind. Give them a try but try to keep them on the hush hush – it’s already hard enough to get a reservation (we know, this post probably didn’t help 🤷♀️)!
Did we mention The Bay House has an amazing older sister who lives on the beach?
Luckily for Southwest Florida, the owners of The Bay House actually got their start at The Turtle Club, a restaurant started by the Moore family in 1998. Over 20 years later, they’re still serving up happiness on a plate to their seemingly endless line of customers.
Offering a similar vibe to The Bay House, but located directly on Vanderbilt beach (meaning incredible sunsets), The Turtle Club treats its guests to a combination of a casual Old Florida environment, sophisticated cuisine, and outstanding service.
It’s no wonder the success they had there led them to open The Bay House.
If you’re looking for a centrally located restaurant where you can enjoy shopping, dinner and drinks all in one place, BrickTop’s is a sure bet.
Offering the perfect blend of a vibrant atmosphere and a broad, approachable menu, BrickTop’s has become one of Naples’ hottest restaurants. Trust me when I say be sure to try the Deviled Eggs & Millionaire’s Bacon combo – you won’t be disappointed.
Their location in the heart of Waterside makes BrickTop’s the perfect place to start a night out. But don’t forget that they’re also open for brunch and lunch, so if you didn’t get enough on Saturday night, you can go back for more Sunday morning!
M Waterfront Grille
Known for 20 years as Maxwell’s on the Bay, M Waterfront Grille has been serving up fine dining and cocktails with a view for as long as I can remember.
Featuring a broad menu including seafood, pasta and steaks, there’s truly something for everyone here. Before Doug’s Seafood opened, this used to be where we’d go for lobster rolls (they’re just as good as Doug’s, just not as close!). But even as incredible as their food is, you’ll have a hard time focusing on it thanks to the incredible views of Venetian Bay.
If you’re looking for ambiance, a view and a high quality meal, M Waterfront Grille never disappoints.
Best seafood dish ever? Yes, that’s a bold claim, but I don’t make it lightly.
I’ve been fortunate to have eaten seafood all over the world, but I mean it when I tell you that the Miso Glazed Chilean Sea Bass U.S.S. Nemo’s serves up nightly is quite possibly the best piece of fish I’ve ever had. But don’t just take my word for it – Nemo’s has countless awards to prove it.
I could write an essay on the dish, but you need to just go try it for yourself. And if you’re not particularly keen on Sea Bass, they have a wide-ranging menu that even includes steaks. All that and I haven’t even mentioned the unique aesthetics that make you feel like you’re eating dinner inside a submarine!
Yes, it’s a little bit of a hike from Barefoot Beach, but you can’t afford to skip this one-of-a-kind experience!
Writing this post reminds me just how far Bonita Springs and Naples have come from when I first moved to Barefoot Beach all those years ago.
It used to be that moving down to Barefoot Beach from, say, Chicago, meant a bit of a sacrifice in the dining arena. These days, there’s really no sacrifice at all – you can have some of the best food in the world just minutes from your front door. And the best part is, as Southwest Florida continues to grow, the dining options will only continue to grow with it.
So, if you’re ready to start enjoying the unique combination of incredible year-round weather, spectacular dining and, of course, the unparalleled beauty of Barefoot Beach, get in touch today!
Call The Susan Owens Team Today!