Basmati's Asian Cuisine A Local Favorite For 20 Years

August 25, 2015 by Sarah Robertson

Gary and Penny Hunt are a perfectly balanced, serene team. The couple is about to celebrate 20 years as the hands-on owners of Basmati’s Asian Cuisine in Blue Mountain Beach. It's a local favorite for delicious dishes that mirror Gary and Penny's harmony.

Through twists of fate, these former New Englanders became the self-described “keepers” of Basmati’s in 1997, and take that role seriously to this day. The carefully-crafted menu is mostly intact from the vision of the original chef and owner. The dedication to quality and a high level of consistency has kept Basmati’s thriving all these years.  

Gary and Penny were among the first to offer sushi in the South Walton area, and they're glad that the healthy fare has become more popular. Their seafood comes from local waters and is delivered fresh from our gulf waters daily.


Full bar, beer and wine. It's so small you might call it mini.


Lunchtime favorites for the SoWal staff are Thai Beef Basil stir fry with jasmine rice and vegetables, Chicken Lo Mein, and the Thai Chicken Salad wrap. The lunches are simple, tasty and filling - without making us feel too heavy. But dinner is where Basmati's really shines. It's a treat to be served a stunning plate on the softly-lit porch on a summer evening. Many locals choose the spot for special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries.

While known for their Asian-influenced menu, Basmati’s also marries dishes with Gary and Penny’s New England roots. Take the Maryland Style Crab Cake - it is comprised of‎ local crab, pan fried, and then finished with a superb kaffir lime vinaigrette and wasabi aioli drizzle. That’s fusion from the Gulf Coast, the East Coast, and the Far East!




The winning creation of the Firecracker Grouper uses fresh, local grouper, tempura battered and fried, and served with a spicy sweet and sour sauce. The tempura batter is expertly executed and the fry time quick to keep the fish tender and perfectly cooked. It is a star dish and a customer favorite.

Another preferred plate is a regularly offered special: the Panko-crusted Red Snapper. The local fish is delicately encrusted in the light airy breadcrumbs and fried, and served with a sweet chili beurre blanc.

Basmati’s is right on Scenic 30A on a beautiful, lush property in Blue Mountain Beach. Slow down or you'll miss it. Dine inside or on the screen porch overlooking the grounds. Intentionally small and intimate, they do have plans to expand one day to the second floor deck. For now, they recommend reservations.




Be sure to leave room for dessert. Basmati’s confectionery creations are all made in house and are quite creative. Their Spiced-banana Spring Rolls are not to be missed - bananas sautéed with cinnamon and five spice, enclosed in spring roll wrappers, fried, and finished with a vanilla crème anglaise and caramel sauce. Oh and be sure to sample the Yuzu Pie! Described as a Japanese version of key lime pie, it is tart from the citrus yuzu fruit and fills a buttery graham-cracker crust.

A sumptuous menu and Zen atmosphere make up the perfect formula for Basmati’s long
success. With their quiet charm and creative cuisine, Penny and Gary are truly the epitome of Eastern Hospitality! Basmati’s is a SoWal staple and our frequent visits prove it.


Basmati's Asian Cuisine is located at 3295 Highway 30A in Blue Mountain Beach. Enjoy lunch Monday-Friday from 11 am - 2:30 pm, happy hour daily from 5-6 pm and dinner nightly from 5-10 pm. For reservations please call 850-267-3028. For more information see Basmati's in the SoWal Dining Guide where your comments and ratings are welcome.


Sarah Robertson's picture

After years of May and October visits to South Walton, Sarah Murphy Robertson and her husband and young son made the leap to become locals in March 2011. Along with long lazy days spent beachside, Sarah also loves watching documentaries, voracious reading, spinning a witty pun, and homemade bread just out of the oven.

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