The Black Pearl-Okaloosa Island

5 Shell-ey’s

Whoa, how in the world could I possibly miss out on this hidden “pearl” of a restaurant (haha, do you like my cheesy play-on words?)  The Black Pearl has been at The Boardwalk on Okaloosa Island as long as we’ve owned a condo here.  I honestly would pass it up because the logo and sign looked expensive and I was looking for something more casual down on the beach.  So, we would always head to The Crab Trap upstairs.The other night, ol’ Pops, me, and my little boy headed across the street for dinner.  Dad saw a sign out front that said Sun-Thurs. $29.99 dinner for 2.  2 glasses of wine, 1 appetizer, 2 entrees, 1 dessert.  Then Dad said a tenant of ours raved about The Black Pearl during their stay at Destin West.  They at there TWICE!  So Dad and I looked at each other and said we’ll spend that much at The Crab Trap.  But the next deciding factor….ahhh, I have a kid.  How nice is it inside?  So Dad popped his head inside and said there were lots of kids inside! Score!!  We looked at each other and said, “Let’s give it a shot!”  Am I glad we did.It was amazing.  The inside has a great feel.  It’s a very narrow restaurant with huge open windows all along the back facing the sand and ocean.  What a view.  There are these cute little old retro black and white photos along the wall behind us.  Huge west indies looking fans all pulled by a large pole the length of the restaurant on the ceiling swayed to and fro.  There were many kids crying, talking.  Oh great! Mine fit right in :)Our waiter Daniel was perfect.  Professional, fast, and kind.  We had a house chardonnay and the shrimp bruschetta for an appetizer.  Hmm, it was topped with fresh basil and had a great flavor.  They brought out a fresh loaf of bread and poured sea-salt and fresh rosemary mix on a tiny plate and poured olive oil and balsamic vinegar all over it.  We dipped our warm bread all in it. Yum!I got the pecan crusted trigger fish which is a light flaky white fish that is not fishy at all.  Whew, it was good.  There was a light white sauce on top.  It was served with fresh veggies that were fire-roasted.  Man, they had the best flavor.  Broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, and squash.  I also opted for the coconut rice.  Not my favorite….the rice seemed a little like minute rice, but it was good.My Dad ordered this amazing shrimp and scallop pasta dish with a light cream sauce.  Sun-dried tomatoes and crispy pieces of fresh asparagus were all throughout.  It was delicious.We had to get the creme brule’ “to-go” because we were stuffed and my little boy was dying to go to the beach after staring at it for an hour.  I don’t know if it was because I ate it later, but the custard was a little bitter, or tart.  But I am sure not eating it fresh had something to do with it.

My little boys chicken fingers were so delicious.  Large moist chicken and the breading was crispy and great.  We also ordered the side fruit cup for him which was a nice change.

We met the manager, Lynda Miller, and told her honestly why we never made it to the restaurant.  She said she gets that often and has changed the kids menu to help.  She also said people have a hard time finding it.  but that sign sure did help to pull us into this wonderful new find.  Oh, and she reminded us to ask for the locals discount.  Thanks Lynda!  I always forget to ask for my locals discount!! A help in living in a touristy location.  And well, a help in this economy.After dinner, we had an amazing sunset.  Do I need to even type more?  Just look at the pictures and you can see what a beautiful evening we had on Okaloosa Island.  We’ll be back Black Pearl!  You are now officially a Shelley’s Favorites!!


  1. What a great review, I am so happy to have found this…and even more pleased that you enjoyed everything so much! I am the Marketing Manager for the company, and finding things like this about our restaurants makes my day! Thank you so much for the review, and we hope to see you back in soon! We’ve got some awesome Sunset specials right now starting at $9.99!!!

  2. Mark Radtke says:

    My wife and I ate the Pearl for the 1st time about 7 years ago. I love King crab legs and they have the best that I have eaten anywhere. They are huge and they split them for you. My wife had the snow crab and thought they were the best of anywhere she has had also. There service is second to none along the Emerald Coast. We will be eating there when we visit in March 2014. My wife mentions the Black Pearl any time we stay in the Northwest FL region.

    • That’s great to know Mark. I haven’t tried their crab legs yet. I almost ate there again last night, but we opted to try the new Fudpuckers they built right across the street (a little more kid friendly since we had a 3 and a 4 yr. old with us).
      Thanks for the comment about the Black Pearl and have a great vacation!

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