Food, Folks & Fun: Lunch Hour at The Red Bar
August 3, 2015 by Audrey Johnson
South Walton is a food lover's paradise, and the SoWal crew takes advantage daily. Nearing lunchtime last Tuesday we had just visited Amy Huff of Fashionably Late. After a quick interview and photos at her new boutique at Uptown Grayton, we were starving and our creative juices were flowing. We did the usual, “Where do y’all want to go for lunch?” It's an easy decision when you're so close to "downtown" Grayton and The Red Bar.
The Red Bar is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end. A place where it’s perfectly acceptable to bring the kids in off the beach for lunch, drop them off with grandma at the end of the day, head back for happy hour and stumble out at the end of the night.
It’s a place where people watching is second nature, conversation pieces cover the walls, ceilings and doors and everyone falls silent when the food arrives. That’s how you know it’s good. And it would be SoWal Photographer Molly Parker’s first visit without ordering a beer.
At least one us usually orders a burger (read more about our obsession in the recent SoWal Burger List). But this time Molly and I opted for the blackened Mahi salad with baby gherkins and house dressing. Teresa deviated from the burger norm with the paneed chicken sandwich and fries. Fish and chips is another favorite and the blackboard usually has a special based on what’s fresh and inspiring that day.
Owner Oli Petit was buzzing around hugging old friends, making new ones and picking up slack by telling a certain writer to keep the door closed so I don't let out all the cold air (#facepalm).
Tweens on the other side of the wall kept peeking through the window to see who was behind the velvet curtain while the most mysterious man in the world, a cross between Neil Young and David Carradine a la Kill Bill, perched on a mismatched bar stool wearing snakeskin boots with the heads still attached and a button down dragon shirt.
About halfway through lunch, our cute waiter Wells brought out a cucumber martini for Molly to shoot along with the food, so technically the trip still qualifies as the first time she went to the Red Bar without ordering a beer. Although she was given a drink that tasted like a spa in her mouth.
The Red Bar is located at 70 Hotz Ave in Grayton Beach and is open from 11 am – 11 pm (midnight on Fridays and Saturdays). For more info call (850) 231-1008, visit theredbar.com and join the conversation on Facebook. Cash or check only. ATM on site. Everyone is welcome. See you there!