Best Outdoor Dining

October 2018
Written By: 
Julie Flanagan

Frank’s Outback

10434 Ocean Highway, Pawleys Island, (843) 237-3030. franksandoutback.com

Nestled behind the beloved Frank’s in Pawleys Island is Frank’s Outback, which opened its doors in 1992. What started as a lunch spot transformed into another high quality restaurant as the demand grew. The cozy eatery seats 100 outside in a garden setting under a canopy of trees. Tables are adorned with white cloths and hand-polished silverware, so even though you are dining outdoors you don’t lose any of the high standard of quality that Frank’s is known for. The outdoor seats are covered so they are not affected by the weather and infrared heaters and the large outdoor fireplace warm the candlelit atmosphere in the cooler months. Standard of service and food do not vary between Frank’s and Frank’s Outback. Executive Chef Pierce Culliton, who has been with Outback since its opening, serves a menu of mixed flavors, from local to exotic, all with the freshest ingredients. Offerings include the G.O.O.P. appetizer, which consists of roasted garlic, olives, capers and extra virgin olive oil with freshly baked bread. There are a variety of small plates (like the slow roasted beef short rib), salads, entrees (the duck two ways is a standout) and even a lineup of wood fired pizzas (from the traditional four cheese to the Mediterranean lamb). While water views are coveted along the Grand Strand, there is something to be said about this unique and romantic outdoor spot. Frank’s Outback is open for dinner daily but closed on Sundays.

Wahoo’s Fish House

3993 U.S. 17 Business, Murrells Inlet, (843) 651-5800. wahoosfishhouse.com

A MarshWalk staple, the two-story Wahoo’s serves dinner nightly with delicious food and drink in a stylish (yet completely unpretentious) setting. The large windows make dining anywhere in the place a panoramic treat, but the outside dining area, with its breezes and marshfront setting, is the place to be when the weather is right. The menu is full of creative and innovative cuisine, and the outside deck is full of gorgeous views. Dining offerings range from fresh Murrells Inlet seafood to unique sushi options. Choose from a traditional fried seafood platter, deep sea scallops over cheese grits and the filet mignon with a red wine demi. Sushi options include specialty rolls like the Victoria Roll with spicy crab, cream cheese, asparagus, salmon and avocado topped with a spicy seaweed crab aioli. After dinner, stroll next door to Wahoo’s Bar & Marina to enjoy a cocktail or beer and some great live entertainment. If you’re coming by boat, don’t worry—there is plenty of dock space.

Greg Norman Australian Grille

4930 U.S. 17 S. (Barefoot Landing), North Myrtle Beach, (843) 361-0000. gregnormansaustraliangrille.com

Opened in 1999 by the great golfer from Down Under, Greg Norman Australian Grille serves up innovative cuisine, with each wonderful dish flavorfully and artistically presented. While the exquisite interior is comprised of hand-crafted woods and rich grain leather, it’s the outside dining that takes the win for this favorite Barefoot Landing spot. A 130-foot canopy allows full use of the 96-seat patio area in any weather, and the views of the Intracoastal Waterway are picturesque. Enjoy a great meal while also enjoying beautiful views of glistening waters, passing yachts and stunning sunsets. The quality of the food matches the quality of these views. The mouth-watering wood grilled steaks cooked to order are a great place to start. Other options include the blackened chicken breast served over linguine or the fresh fish of the day served Oscar-style. Don’t forget to take a look at the dessert menu, which includes a daily chef’s selection of homemade bread pudding. Greg Norman Australian Grille is open for lunch and dinner daily.

Crab Catchers

4474 Water Front Ave., Little River, (843) 280-2025. crabcatchers.com

Crab Catches has been a staple on the Little River waterfront for more than 20 years. And though you come for the view, you will keep coming for the food. Specializing in delicious seafood prepared fresh and made to order every time, the menu is filled with amazing offerings from the sea. Crabs are (obviously) a big item here, whether served as legs, soft shell or in the crab cake sandwich. Conch fritters and oysters are also favorites, but there are offerings for those who aren’t seafood lovers as well, like the sirloin steak entree served with hushpuppies, coleslaw and a side (the deep fried corn on the cob has rave reviews). Open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. with great weekday lunch specials and happy hour deals, there’s little not to love about Crab Catchers, but the outdoor dining views are at the top of the list.


Dead Dog Saloon

4079 U.S. 17 Business, Murrells Inlet, (843) 651-0664. thedeaddogsaloon.com

The Murrells Inlet MarshWalk is a favorite spot to stroll or grab a bite to eat, and Dead Dog Saloon is among the favorite eateries to do so. With amazing views and great seafood and entertainment, taking in the tidal marshes and creeks from the Dead Dog deck is a Murrells Inlet must. The restaurant opened in 2002 and is full-service and family-friendly, as well as boasting three bars, several HDTVs and live music. Whether you are having a full meal, drinking and having apps during the game, enjoying happy hour or dancing to a band, the outdoor option allows for the perfect side of relaxing waterfront breeze. If you’re dining and not just sipping a cocktail alfresco, favorite appetizers include Boo Boo’s Tender Bites, sliced beef tenderloin on garlic toast. Choose from entrees like Rex’s Ribeye Steak or the Grouper Stack, two pan-fried grouper filets with a crab cake in the middle served over sautéed spinach topped with a basil cream sauce on rice. Dead Dog is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily.