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Food with a view

When al fresco dining and good food entwine, the effect can be intoxicating — even before the cool beverages arrive. If you visit the Mississippi Gulf Coast this summer, you won’t have to travel far to find a restaurant that offers the best view of the back waters or Gulf courtesy of an outdoor seating area.

Warm sunshine chases away winter blues at lunch and a cool breeze wafts over the moonlit water at night, making al fresco dining at restaurants extending from Pass Christian to Ocean Springs reason enough to stop and stay awhile.

Over in Pass Christian, Shaggy’s Harbor Bar and Grill is famous for its “open air” two-story outdoor dining areas located not just above the harbor, but as close to the water as you can get. Surrounded by boats docked in the nearby harbor, Shaggy’s prides itself on offering guests an authentic Gulf Coast experience courtesy of an “up close and personal” view of the water. During the warmer months, guests are treated to live music under the sun and later, the stars, as they dine on Shaggy’s wide range of fresh seafood dishes.

A great view of the Jourdan River is found at the appropriately named Jourdan River Steamer in Kiln, where diners can sit in the River Room and watch the river roll by. A memorable dining experience compliments the scenic view, courtesy of what the restaurant bills as some of the “largest seafood platters on the Gulf Coast.”

In Biloxi, the Ole Biloxi Schooner offers a glimpse of the city’s bygone era thanks to the renovated craft that is now put to good use serving up today’s latest seafood catch. Sit out on the patio in the warm sun and enjoy their signature breakfast or delicious lunch. If it’s mid-day, a plethora of delicious shrimp po-boys, crab claws, seafood platters and sandwiches can be enjoyed while taking in the sights of the renovated area.

One of the best meals in Gulfport can be enjoyed while gazing down at the peaceful Bayou Bernard. The Blow Fly Inn, a long-time Gulf Coast attraction, offers a large second-floor deck with comfortable seating and breathtaking views of the bayou.

A long-time family restaurant that was recently featured on the Food Network, the Blow Fly serves fresh seafood along with steaks, barbecue and other regional delicacies.

Located on the third deck overlooking the Ocean Springs Harbor, the Harbor Landing Marina & Deli claims it offers diners the “best view in town.” Diners enjoy po-boys, signature burgers like the “Isla Mujeres,” specialty sandwiches, salads and appetizers while soaking in the view. After a delicious meal, guests can stretch out on one of Harbor Landing’s many hammocks and relax in the sunshine.

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