We’ve been to Sharkey’s at least a dozen times over more than a decade. I guess we like it, eh? We have seen many changes, and there is massive construction under way right now. Who knows what the next iteration will look like? When a place is so heavily dependent on atmosphere, let’s hope the owners know what they’re doing. They have made all the right moves thus far. The popularity of this place is rather astounding.
A dozen times to Sharkey’s, yes, and we have never sat inside! I think the interior could be any seafood restaurant in Florida. The entire west side of the restaurant opens to the ocean, however, and that is where you want to be. Don’t start at the hostess stand out front (unless this is all changed with the renovation.) Walk around back by the pier and ask one of the wait-staff or bartenders which tables are reserved and which are first-come first-served. Put your name in, or scout the unreservable tables. The story seems to change from year to year, but you can always keep an eye on the unreservable tables and watch for diners that look like they’re about finished. It may sound impolite, but go over to their table and say, “Can we have this table after you are done?” They will reply one of two things, “Sure, we’ll be done in about five minutes.” Or, “Sorry, someone else already asked.” When you eventually score a table, I can guarantee that someone will ask you the same thing. Maybe it will be me.
We have also had luck doing a late lunch thing @ 3:00. Park @ Caspersen Beach, a mile to the south, walk north to the pier, then get something cold to drink @ Sharkey’s . . . now that’s a good plan.
You can wander in bare-footed, or you can dress up a little bit for the evening. The pier is right there, so you can walk out there while you wait for a table.
The food? Look at the menu; ask your server. I have found the servers to be very honest about what is good from visit to visit. There are some fun flavors on the menu; maybe you can find better fish elsewhere. For us, the whole scene has become a tradition.
Sharkeys on the Pier. Gotta do it. Expect a crowd.
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