Our first restaurant stop when we hit the Keys was at Bistro 31. We were exhausted from driving 18 hours with a crying kitty cat from Virginia, but even accounting for the fact that anything would have probably tasted great to us at that point, this place was a surprise delight.
It is harder than you might realize to spot a good place to eat along US-1 because there are more than a few “tourist” traps where the food is lackluster at best and the most interesting thing about the place might be its watered down drinks served in a pirate cup. I was armed, of course, with some insider knowledge, but we didn’t want to “waste” one of our great places on ourselves when we were feeling so tired and eager to get to the house.
So we stopped in this little joint filled with locals (always a good sign) and the dated decor so peculiar to the keys. You can read my review of the place here (yes, I’m a brand new Yelper). Standard fare in the keys is seafood, fry baskets, pasta, and key lime pie – you will find this menu almost everywhere. What set this place apart was the obvious house-made quality of our rather simple lunch picks – Taco Salad and Chicken Fingers. Everything was good from the breading on the chicken to the tortilla holding the salad. This place may have service problems (as other Yelpers note), but our waitress was wonderful.
If you’re heading down the lower keys and need a place to grab a bite, try Bistro 31.