Every local is asked the question by famished and parched tourists ready for some fresh fish, and something delicious to drink, “where should we go?”
The Key West Weekly often suggests they head to the Southernmost Beach Café! The dining is casual, the staff is superb, and you feel as though you’re on Spring Break any day or night of the year!
“We’re staying in Fort Lauderdale, but this is the second time we’ve drove down. Six hours of traveling, but it’s worth it!”
Seated at the bar is a big wig in the Burlington, Canada school district. An elementary principal on, what our northern neighbors call, “March Break.”
“They call it “Spring Break here, ey?” Julie Angiolillo inquires to the Key West Weekly.
She’s no longer gazing at gray, concrete walls, instead, aqua, calm water.
Her former thoughts of detention and curriculum are clouded; since, she’s sipping a tropical drink and mingling with other vibrant vacationers.
She’s placed an order for the “Fresh Catch.” This day, local fisherman netted Mahi Mahi.
“If it’s not off the boat, we’ don’t use it,” chef Ben Schneller exclaims, “the process is pretty cool. We get a phone cal in the morning and that’s what goes on the menu!”
Served with a side of sweet potato fries and an aioli, red puree tartar sauce, the fresh catch is the recommended cuisine.
“That’s what you come to Key West for, the local fare,” explains Schneller. A man who hails from America’s Dairyland. “I’m from a town 45 minutes from Wisconsin. While our burgers and chicken wings are good here at the café, I recommend to anyone, you have the fresh catch.”
The Fresh Catch can be Snapper, Mangrove Snapper, Swordfish, or another salt-water species.
Assistant manager Jeff Merritt, a Toledo, Ohio guy, knows the restaurant business. Toledo has the highest concentration of eateries in the nation. The zone is a testing ground to see what places and plates please the palates of America’s middle class.
“Our scallops are out-of-this-world,” Merritt sets the table “and the Surf n’ Turf, our signature dish, is a flat-iron steak with a six ounce tail and chimichurry sauce. It’s pretty tasty.”
The signature drinks are the Key Lime Margaritas and the Pina Colada. Made with real ice cream and Sailor Jerry, a spiced rum, the sound of the blender and the sweetness of the cocktail is the perfect cabana companion as you sink into the sand and salt at the Southernmost Beach Café.
“This is awesome. I love what I do, but I love to get away,” Angiolillo raves. She’s obviously in awe of the Atlantic, and under the spell of her umbrella drink. As she chats away, her Canadian accent compounding her excitement, the Key West Weekly decides this is one destination we’re delighted to suggest.
The Southernmost Beach Café is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner from 8 am – 10 pm. Just head down Duval until you reach the end! 305•295•6550 is the number to call for reservations or more information.
Connect with the Southernmost Hotel Collection and Café through new media. @SomoKeywest for the latest menu items and specials.
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The Southernmost Beach Café where the view is “pretty fantastic!”
Julie Angiolillo is an elementary school teacher and on what the Canadians call “March Break.” She says, “this is half the price of a cruise, and just as nice. We just love it. We’ll be back!”
The eatery’s executive chef Ben Schneller (left) with assistant manager Jeff Merritt. He’s showing off a fresh tuna salad he’s just prepared. “We’re on the beach, so you can bet we serve what just came off the boat fresh fish.”
The Southernmost Beach Café’s Fresh Catch Sandwich served with sweet potato fries and aioli sauce. This diner believes blackened is best.
A friendly sign as blue as the sky welcomes diners and beach go-ers off of Duval for a dining experience guarantees to be truly blissful.