People from the US and from around the world tend to connect Mississippi with foods such as fried chicken, biscuits and gravy, and cornbread. While these typical southern dishes are exceptional and widespread throughout the state, some foods might surprise you.
Mississippi also happens to be one of the biggest seafood harvesting and processing states. This industry brings around $377 million each year to the state and employs 8,500 people. With this amount of seafood on hand, it’s no wonder that chefs from around the state have decided to get Mississippi on the map of states with some of the best seafood restaurants.
Due to the high number of restaurants to pick from, picking the right seafood place to visit might be an impossible task. For this reason, we’ve created the list of the eight best seafood restaurants in MS. Enjoy taking a virtual stroll through them!
The Best Seafood Restaurant in Mississippi
Even though the now-famous Mississippi Seafood Trail includes more than 80 restaurants that are spread from the Mississippi River Delta to the Gulf Coast, there’s only one place that can be crowned the best seafood place in MS:
White Pillars Restaurant and Lounge
- Location – 1696 Beach Boulevard, Biloxi, MS 39531
- Website – https://biloxiwhitepillars.com/
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/white_pillars/
Austin Sumrall, a classically trained chef, and his wife Tresse are the faces, minds, and hands behind the White Pillars Restaurant and Lounge. Famous for his Wild American Shrimps, Austin is a JBF Awards nominee and a Best Chef: South semi-finalist.
In addition to seafood, you can find plenty of meat lovers and vegetarian options at this restaurant. You can see their menu here for more info.
White Pillars tries to do everything locally. All of the seafood comes from the Gulf of Mexico, while other types of meat and vegetables are sourced from local farmers. Even their serving dishes and hand-made tables were created in the area. Chef Austin says that he takes immense pride in the fact that everything you see, touch, and taste is likely to come from Mississippi.
Awards such as Best Chef, Best Restaurant, Best Happy Hour, and many others stand as proof of White Pillars’ quality and dedication to making some of the best food in the US. Check out their website, make a reservation, and visit them to see for yourself why this place deserves the title of the best seafood restaurant in MS.
7 More Best Seafood Restaurants in Mississippi
In case you find our top pick for the best seafood spot in MS to not be up to your standards, have no worries. There are seven more Mississippi seafood restaurants that we considered for this flattering title. You can’t go wrong with whatever restaurant from the list below you decide to visit:
1. Taylor Grocery
- Location – 4 First Street, Taylor, MS 38673
- Website – https://taylorgrocery.com/
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/taylor_grocery/
Around since 1889, Taylor Grocery has been repurposed multiple times. From a dry goods store to a catfish restaurant, this place has a charm that few can provide. Currently operating as a family business, Lynn, Debbie, and Sarah Margaret Hewlett are the faces behind one of the best seafood joints in America.
Famous for their catfish, Taylor Grocery also offers plenty of sea and land food options. From the southern standards such as Shrimp Gumbo to steaks and various salads, their menu is guaranteed to satisfy even the pickiest visitors.
This small restaurant offers a cozy atmosphere that’s guaranteed to make you feel at home and take you back to a more relaxed era. However, this also means that Taylor Grocery has limited space to accommodate its guests. You are almost guaranteed to wait in line unless you give them a call and make a reservation first.
Known across the South as the best catfish restaurant, Taylor Grocery is one of the few places people are willing to stand in line for insane periods of time. Visit them, have some of their specialties, and get back to us with your impressions of their food and service. We guarantee that the experience will be positively overwhelming.
2. Mary Mahoney’s Old French House
- Location – 110 Rue Magnolia, Biloxi, MS 39530
- Website – https://www.marymahoneys.com/
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/marymahoneys/
Situated in a house built in 1737, Mary Mahone’s has been one of the best upscale seafood restaurants in the US ever since 1964. Still operating within Mary’s family, this restaurant has been a place of pilgrimage for presidents, celebrities, and regular people for more than half a century.
Gumbo is what Mary Mahoney’s is known for. However, their other Southern specialties are not something you should miss out on. In addition to seafood delicacies, other meat options are available. Unfortunately, vegetarians won’t have many options to choose from. You can take a look through their menu here.
If you’re looking for an upscale seafood restaurant that has an old-world appeal to celebrate a special occasion, you should look no further than Mary Mahoney’s Old French House. With photos of Ronald Regan, Denzel Washington, Usher, and many other public figures proudly displayed on the walls, this restaurant proves its quality and influence.
With awards such as the 2018 Don Jacobs Lifetime Achievement Award for their dedication and contribution to tourism, Mary Mahoney’s proves that it’s much more than a restaurant. This spot is a piece of American history and one of the must-sees of the South.
3. Half Shell Oyster House
- Location – 2500 13th Street #1, Gulfport, MS 39501
- Website – https://www.halfshelloysterhouse.com/
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/halfshelloysterhouse/
Cooking for Gulfport residents and visitors since 2008, Half Shell Oyster House has become one of the gulf area’s staples. Affordable, elegant, and casual at the same time, this spot manages to encapsulate the energy of the South and combine it with some of New Orleans’ flair to create the ultimate dining experience.
As the name suggests, Half Shell Oyster House specializes in all types of oysters. You can also choose from a vast selection of Southern specials, pasta, and various other dishes. You can discover their dinner menu by following this link.
Visit this contender for the best seafood restaurant MS has to offer for your special occasions, date nights, and casual meals. You’ll see why when asked for the best oyster spot, locals most commonly point in Half Oyster House’s direction.
Half Shell Oyster House has grown into a chain that you can visit across Mississippi. They also have locations in Biloxi, Hattiesburg, Flowood, and Madison, as well as restaurants in Alabama and Louisiana. Visit any of them and see why this seafood restaurant chain comes so highly recommended and praised.
4. Bozo’s Seafood Market
- Location – 2012 Ingalls Avenue, Pascagoula, MS 39567
- Website – None
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/bozoseafood/
Keith Delcambre opened Bozo’s Seafood Market on Valentine’s Day in 1969. He still runs one of the most popular quick lunch places in Mississippi. Here are just some of the items that made his tiny store one of the best and most popular seafood places around:
While their signature shrimp and grits are to die for, Bozo’s Seafood Market is famous for its shrimp po’boys. Bozo’s also offers various seafood dishes, burgers, tacos, and pasta. Take a look through their menu here and find your ideal meal.
Although lines are not that common, tourists are prepared to spend an entire day in front of this place to get their taste of the famous po’boy. No website, no reservations, and quick turnaround are just some of the things that keep people interested in Bozo’s Seafood Market.
Situated just a few blocks away from the beach, Bozo’s is the ideal place to grab a quick bite. You can confirm this with any locals who keep visiting this place for their daily dose of Bozo’s Seafood Market flavors and charm.
- Location – 875 Beach Boulevard, Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, Biloxi, MS 39530
- Website – https://beaurivage.mgmresorts.com/en/restaurants/stalla.html
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/beaurivage_official/
Operating under the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, Stalla is one of the finest additions to the Mississippi’s restaurant scene. This restaurant specializes in Italian cuisine and offers plenty of seafood options for all of those who are in love with these flavors.
Sea scallops, shrimp scampi, and red snapper are just some of their seafood specialties. For those who’d like to switch things up, plenty of pizza, pasta, beef, and chicken options are available. American-Italian classics such as spaghetti and meatballs are something we’d not recommend skipping. Read through the Stalla menu for more info.
If you’re into a true Tuscan ambient that offers plenty of spa and casino-related entertainment options, then Stall and the Beau Rivage concept are made for you. Make sure to call or make a reservation online beforehand, as resort guests and visitors can easily flood the restaurant.
Visit this resort and its restaurant to enjoy some of the best and finest things that the gulf area has to offer.
6. Sal & Phil’s
- Location – 6600 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, MS 39157
- Website – https://salandphils.com/
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/salphils/?hl=en
Sal & Phil’s has been one of the Ridgeland staples since 1989. In 2020, one of the restaurant’s former employees, Casey Waggener, is now the person in charge of running the place.
A wide variety of starters, soups, salads, po’boys, and main dishes is what keeps customers returning to Sal & Phil’s. There are also plenty of options for meat lovers and vegetarians. See the menu by following the highlighted link and try not to drool.
The exceptional quality of food, great service, and a wide selection of food that ensures all tastes are satisfied is what kept this place in business for more than 30 years. In addition, 30 different taps with beers from all over the world have also helped Sal & Phil’s thrive.
If you’re looking for a great meal in a casual setting, you should look no further than this spot. Sal & Phil’s shares all of the best qualities that sports bars and cozy taverns have. Visit them and see for yourself why so many people keep coming back.
7. Drago’s Seafood Restaurant – Jackson
- Location – 1005 East County Line Road, Jackson, MS 39211
- Website – https://www.dragosrestaurant.com/locations/
- Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/dragosrestaurant/
Drago’s Seafood Restaurant is another chain restaurant on this list that we deemed deserves to be considered as one of the best seafood spots in Mississippi. Drago and Klara Cvitanovich started this place in 1969. Klara is still one of the faces you can see commonly around the spot, while their son Tommy took over most of the family business responsibilities.
Unlike most other restaurants on this list, you’re unlikely to find anything else than seafood and steaks on Drago’s menu. Their specialties include seafood pasta, stuffed shrimp, lobster, and bone-in ribeye. You can take a peek at the menu through this link.
Even though it’s grown into a restaurant chain, Drago’s Seafood Restaurant still offers the original family atmosphere it’s had since its inception. The restaurant is the perfect spot to spend Sundays with your family.
Visit their Jackson, MS location today and find out why it’s one of our favorite small restaurant chains. You can also check them out in Louisiana, where they have five more locations.
How We Picked the Best Seafood Restaurants in MS
Here’s a brief explanation and some of the criteria we used when making this list of the best seafood restaurants in Mississippi:
- Awards and Recognitions – whether it’s chef’s awards or the awards that recognize the restaurants, this was one of the major criteria considered when creating this list.
- Online Reviews – online reviews and impressions on each of the listed restaurants’ food quality, service, and ambiance were another key factor in this ranking of the best seafood places MS has to offer.
- Customer Service – most restaurants listed were contacted over Instagram and asked a simple question about their establishment to determine how they treat potential customers. We’re happy to say that all of the listed restaurants responded quickly and in a friendly and accommodating manner.