Great Southern Café Sets The Breakfast Table

February 9, 2016 by Sarah Robertson

The name says it all. Great Southern Café is consistently a SoWal dining favorite for good reason. Chef Jim Shirley opened the restaurant in 2006 in a perfect spot on the square in Seaside, where he brings his life experiences to the table with great southern food. We recommend beginning your day here for grits and more whenever possible.



The Great Southern breakfast includes all the charming southern hallmarks of their lunch and dinner menus. Warm, cheesy Grits A Ya-Ya is served with perfectly cooked shrimp and a smoky bacon-mushroom sauté starting at breakfast and all day long. Whatever you order for breakfast, be sure to order a side of the famous Gouda grits. They are not to be missed.



Looking to find a new breakfast favorite? Great Southern’s Eggs Sardou is a dish with Louisiana roots traditionally comprised of a poached egg resting on top of artichokes and creamed spinach and finished with Hollandaise. Chef Jim Shirley’s take on this recipe keeps the poached egg but folds earthy, briny artichokes and collard greens together into a creamy Gouda cheese sauce. The poached egg and sauce are then served “Benedict” style over an English muffin. Outrageous.



Start with an appetizer of beignets to go with your coffee. Outside of NOLA, Great Southern makes some of the best beignets around. Airy, bite-sized golden pillows of pastry are dusted with powdered sugar, served with fruit, and can be ordered both as a half or full portion.



Another excellent confectionary pick would be the waffles studded with toasty local pecans and crispy diced bacon. With three waffles per order this delicious meal can be shared but not missed. You’ll thank us, I promise.



The food at Great Southern Café is simply knockout-delicious. Chef Jim and his team are widely respected for their seamlessly quality fare. Whenever possible, the culinary team sources ingredients locally whether getting yogurt and fresh dairy from Ocheesee Creamery or seasonal produce from local farmers. 



This Café is beloved by South Walton locals and visitors alike. If you’ve missed breakfast then lunch or dinner will also impress. You'll find visitors on the porch every day between 4 and 6 pm for Happy Hour cocktails and oyster on the half shell specials - it's a local tradition for SoWal beach lovers. Add Sunday brunch with signature bloody mary cocktails to your food bucket list too. Basically, if they aren’t already, you'll want to add GSC to your regular dining routine.  


Great Southern Cafe serves up meals 365 days a year including a special buffet dinner on Thanksgiving Day. Chef Jim Shirley opened Great Southern Café in 2006 in Seaside, FL (previously Shades restaurant location). Dine outside on the deck or inside for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Sunday brunch is a true tradition year round. 
Located on Central Square in the heart of Seaside, Great Southern Café is open daily from 8:00 a.m. til 10:00 p.m. View the menus online. Follow Great Southern Cafe on Facebook for daily food and bar photos as well as fun local info!


Great Southern Cafe' sister restaurants and businesses: 
The Meltdown on 30A located at Airstream Row in Seaside 
The Bay at the foot of the 331 bridge in Santa Rosa Beach 
The Baytowne Melt at The Village of Baytowne Wharf in Sandestin


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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