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Conch Republic Seafood Co.

MMMMmmmm! Rum drinks, fresh seafood and a view.  Sound good?  Get on down to Conch Republic Seafood Company.  You won’t regret it.

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Directly on the harbor at the end of Greene Street in Key West sits an old turn of the century ice house. In this tourist town, ice manufacturing is a thing of the past, but the building makes a great location for a classic, character filled seafood joint with a million dollar view. Now, add a nice rum selection to the mix and there’s really no reason to go anywhere else.

The Conch Republic has been in operation for a number of years and is always ranked one of the best restaurants on the island. It has an open, airy feel with high ceilings and giant overhead doors that remain open throughout the day.

Outside, there is a nice sized patio with a great view of yachts that dock nearby at harbor-side marinas. You can usually catch a bit of live music here during the late afternoon and early evening. The flavor seems to be “island rock”, which suits the patrons just fine.

As you may have guessed, the menu is seafood. It’s all fresh and likely came off one of the fishing boats docked outside. They have great lunch and dinner specials and a 2-for-1 happy hour which draws a big crowd. The conch fritters and stuffed shrimp I had lived up to the “best of” status that this place has gained.

The rum selection at the Conch Republic is impressive, especially for a place that doesn’t brag about it. They have about 40 premium brands behind the bar and an assortment of the usual swill for well drinks. A generous (to the rim) pour of the more interesting flavors will cost you 8 bucks and a standard cocktail made with anything from the Cruzan line-up is a mere $5. The bartenders here all seem to be into rum and can make a nice recommendation if you’re feeling a indecisive. They had everything from 1919, Mount Gay XO and Zaya to Pampero, Pyrat XO and Gosling’s Old Rum. They also carry two rums from the Pirate’s Choice label. I’m personally not familiar with them, but they are popular in the Keys and throughout Florida.

The Conch Republic Seafood Company is a great spot to spend the afternoon soaking of rum and sun with friends. The staff and food are top notch and it’s good to see a place offer a worthwhile selection of rum (and micro-brews and scotch) without becoming too quaint about it. Bravo!

Conch Republic Seafood Co.
631 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040
(305)294-4403
www.conchrepublicseafood.com