Duck NC Restaurants including Southern Shores
For such small towns, Duck and Southern Shores have a good number of restaurants and some pretty sophisticated dining options.
Whether you want delivered pizza or upscale cuisine matched with a Wine Spectator award-winning wine list, you’ll find what you’re looking for. Most Duck NC restaurants, like so many on the Outer Banks, stick to American fare, with an emphasis on seafood. That doesn’t mean there aren’t creative chefs here; you’ll find some very innovative preparations of seafood, meats, fresh produce and traditional ingredients. Southern Shores restaurants include a couple of chains (ever heard of a little place called Starbucks?), a great pizza place and a wonderful gourmet foods market/cafe.
Duck NC restaurants can boast of three of the top food and wine destinations on the Outer Banks. You can sip coffee in a front porch rocker, have a romantic dinner with a sound view, savor wine under a canopy of live oaks, eat al fresco while listening to jazz, catch sports on a bar TV, grab a slice of pizza, lick an ice cream while feeding ducks or take the whole family out for a seafood dinner.
In the summer, when there are way more people than there are Duck restaurant seats, you may want to eat out early or late or make a reservation (where possible). The least crowded nights at Duck restaurants and Southern Shores restaurants are, maybe surprisingly, Friday and Saturday nights. That’s because of scheduled arrivals and departures at the vacation rental companies. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are typically the busiest nights in the summer, local restaurateurs say. In the off-season, Duck dining is much more relaxed and accessible. Some restaurants close in the dead of winter, but there is always something open. Several Southern Shores and Duck restaurants are now staying open year round. Both towns have full ABC permits, so you can order beer, wine or liquor at restaurants that have those options.
We’ve arranged the Duck NC restaurants in alphabetical order. When they are located in a collection of shops, we give the shopping center’s name for the address; if it’s a stand-alone establishment, the address is given as Duck Road, which is the same as N.C. Highway 12. All the Southern Shores restaurants are in The Marketplace or Southern Shores Crossing, on the northern side of N.C. Highway 158, near the intersection where you turn north to head to Duck. Click on the Restaurant Featured Plates link to the left for detailed, information that’s updated daily by the restaurants themselves—what’s featured today, reservation policies, large group accommodations, pricing, payment options, hours of operation and more.
Viewing 1 - 30 of 33 total listings on page 1 of restaurants.
- 1174 Duck Road
- (252) 261-9700
Aqua Restaurant, with fabulous waterfront views, a commitment to great food and an organically inspired menu, is a must-stop restaurant while you are out and about in Duck. Enjoy lunch favorites such as a crab cake sandwich, Mahi “BLT” and darn good burgers. The view from the patio is just a bonus! Sushi, live music, a waterfront bar and an award-winning wine list make Aqua a sunset and dinner destination. From the bean bag toss to a peanut-free kids menu, families can relax, have fun and taste the local, fresh and sustainable ingredients that make Aqua a Duck favorite. And there’s a spa upstairs ... seriously.
- 1240 Duck Road, The Waterfront Shops
- (252) 261-8090
Blue Point established Duck as a dining destination when it opened in 1989 and has since put the tiny town on the foodie map. The restaurant is lively and busy and offers fantastic views of the Currituck Sound, while the menus are creative, upscale, Southern and coastal, changing seasonally to reflect the fresh local and regional ingredients that are available. The dinner menu offers salads, soups, starters and entrees of seafood, beef, pork, duck and pasta. Lunch is a civilized mix of salads, sandwiches and entrees with an emphasis on dining, even if it is only lunch. The wine list and other bar offerings are extensive and well thought out and can be enjoyed this summer as the sun sets on the recently added patio bar. Lunch and dinner are served daily year round (no lunch on Mondays). Reservations are accepted for dinner only.
- 1171 Duck Road, Scarborough Lane Shopping Center
- (252) 255-0099
Duck Pizza Company’s menu features a huge selection of creative pizza combinations with 24 varieties to choose from. The West Coast Pie with sun-dried tomato pesto, roasted red peppers, artichoke hearts, spinach, garlic and feta and the Southwest Pizza-Q with grilled chicken, barbecue sauce, cheddar, bacon, onion and pineapple are two of the most popular. You can also create your own or choose from subs, calzones, stromboli, salads or wings. They offer three sizes of pizza—small, large and their extra large one that’s really huge at 18” and 12 slices—and make the crust fresh daily. They also offer a variety of ice cold beer. Eat in, take out or take advantage of free delivery from Pine Island to Southern Shores. It’s open for lunch and dinner daily in season.
- 1240 Duck Road, On the Pond at The Waterfront Shops
- (252) 261-5510
Located in one of Duck’s oldest buildings, Duck’s Cottage has been making coffee history for 10 years. Daily coffees represent the freshest seasonal offerings from an artisanal roaster. Also on the menu are espresso drinks (hot or iced), herbal teas and chai lattes, the best biscotti, pastries and a selection of East Coast newspapers. An alluring array of books can provide hours of sipping and reading pleasure out on the front porch of this former hunt club. Duck’ s Cottage opens every day at 7a.m. (except Christmas).
- 1177 Duck Road, Scarborough Faire
- (252) 261-6145
The proprietor of Elizabeth’s Café, Leonard Logan, has a passion for wine and food — and the combination of the two. With a vast selection of wine offerings, Elizabeth’s focuses on pairing incomparable wines with the perfect foods for the ultimate palate pleaser. Logan’s efforts, with the help of Chef Brad Price, have been widely recognized by the dining industry. This restaurant has won a list of awards so long it’s impossible to list them all here; the most impressive may be the “Best Fine Dining Wine Restaurant in the United States” for 2003 by Santé Magazine. The staff makes an effort to be approachable and welcoming to all levels of wine enthusiasts. Elizabeth’s offers six-course prix fixe wine dinners, or you can order a la carte items off the menu and make your own choices from the wine list. Reservations are recommended. You can also sample wine and champagne at the Wine Bar or taste wines in the Wine Gallery, where appetizers and wine are served amidst Chef Price’s original oil paintings. On Wednesdays from 2 to 7 p.m. in the summer months, during Scarborough Faire’s Faire Days, join Elizabeth’s on the shaded porch for jazz music in the courtyard.
- 1171 Duck Road, Scarborough Lane Shopping Center
- (252) 261-6991
A good place to gather your friends, Fishbones has a friendly, laid-back atmosphere that will have you lingering over a beer long after you’ve finished eating. Starters will get you going with favorites such as wings, calamari and coconut shrimp. Then you can choose from amazing conch or clam chowders, salads, sandwiches, burgers, fried seafood baskets, seafood from the raw and steam bars, daily specials or entrees including fish, shellfish, beef, pasta and chicken. Fishbones is open for lunch and dinner daily. The bar area has seven TVs running for the people who are hanging out.
- 1264 Duck Road
- (252) 261-3901
This restaurant comes by its name honestly. It’s on the Currituck Sound, perfectly oriented to those nightly sunset shows. To better enjoy the sinking sun, you can dine outdoors on the huge, newly renovated waterfront deck if you choose. Sunset Grille has a Caribbean theme: Jimmy Buffet, tiki lights, colorful décor, island drinks and fare … you get the idea. It comes together as casual and fun and very family oriented. The lunch and dinner menus are focused on seafood with many Key West and Caribbean-inspired dishes. Raw and steamed seafood, salads, chowders, a variety of appetizers, lunch entrees, burgers, sandwiches and dinner entrees of seafood, beef, chicken, pasta and ribs are available on the menu, along with tempting desserts, and this year they have a new breakfast menu. Sushi is served nightly. Sunset is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and later for the nightlife crowd. There is a DJ or karaoke Monday through Friday nights in season.
- 1564 Duck Road
- (252) 715-2220
The Paper Canoe is the latest creative venture of Tommy Karole, proprietor of Corolla’s popular restaurant The Fin & Claw. An ale house and wine bar with a wood-fired oven, The Paper Canoe features fresh, simple food in a polished casual atmosphere with a stunning waterfront view. Entrees and Old World wood-oven pizzas are prepared with local seafood and locally grown vegetables. An ever-changing chalkboard features daily selections like homemade pasta, locally caught seafood and rustic wood-oven specialties. Ten craft beers on tap and an extensive wine list will have you lingering well after dinner. The Paper Canoe is located on the Currituck Sound on the north end of Duck, across from the Sanderling Inn. It’s open for dinner daily.
- 5581 North Croaton Highway, The Marketplace Shopping Center
- Southern Shores
- (252) 261-2660
With a recent move to The Marketplace in Southern Shore, Baldie’s new location has brought about positive change. Serving quick, delicious meals at lunch and dinner year round, Baldie’s can satisfy all day long with hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken and fish sandwiches and baskets, cheesesteaks and hand-cut French fries. While they no longer serve hand-scooped ice cream, you will find milkshakes and malts on the new menu along with a chicken Philly sandwich and chicken wings. You can now enjoy Baldie’s rain or shine as indoor seating and delivery service have enhanced the once take-out-only establishment.
- 5549 N. Croatan Highway, MP 2, The Marketplace
- Southern Shores
- (252) 255-2888
Outer Bankers have come to love the delicious bagels, spreads and sandwiches at Bonnie’s Bagels. Even New Yorkers agree the bagels are fantastic — they are made from scratch on the premises every day and served with hand-blended cream cheese flavors. The baked goods don’t stop there — Bonnie’s serves hand-made cinnamon rolls, fresh muffins and apple and cherry turnovers. Coffee, cappuccino and lattes are available as is WiFi service in the cafe and plenty of comfortable seating for hanging out. For lunch, choose from salads and spreads (featuring house made hummus) or made-to-order deli-style sandwiches and subs with Boar’s Head meats and cheeses. Choose from bagels, bagel chips, a freshly made baguette (or another loaf of homemade bread baked on the premises) and pick up some salads to go with it — chicken salad, tuna salad, potato salad or fruit salad. Deli trays are available if you call ahead.
- 1240 Duck Road, The Waterfront Shops
- (252) 480-0024
This open-air restaurant overlooking the sound is a fabulous place to enjoy a great sunset and end-of-the-day drink and the only place in Duck to enjoy an authentic Tex-Mex meal for lunch or dinner. Gather around the Mexican tile bar for beer, wine or Margaritas and feast on fresh-made guacamole, fried tortillas, burritos, quesadillas and many more favorites concocted by the talented and trusted chefs at Coastal Provisions Market and Wine Bar Cafe in Southern Shores and Cravings Steak & Seafood in Duck. Every Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday in the summer, there’s live music from 6 p.m. to sunset. Coastal Cantina opens daily at 11 a.m.
Coastal Provisions Wine Bar & Cafe
- 1 Ocean Boulevard, Southern Shores Crossing Shopping Center
- Southern Shores
- (252) 480-0023
Coastal Provisions Market has long been a local favorite for prime and natural meats, award-winning crab cakes, artisan cheeses, house-roasted deli meats and chef-prepared meals to go. Now they offer their delicious fare and select wines in house, in the intimate 36-seat Wine Bar & Cafe inside the market. The cafe serves dinner only, and it’s a relaxed, candlelit affair focusing on reasonably priced small plates and entrees. Think crab cakes, natural beef, seared scallops, shrimp & grits, grilled lamb chops and oysters Rockefeller and you’ll get the picture — top-quality ingredients expertly prepared in their contemporary yet unpretentious style. The menu features several small plates to enjoy with more than 20 wines by the glass or half glass. Or, shop the wine racks for a bottle at retail (with no restaurant markup). Reservations are strongly encouraged.
- 5591 N. Croatan Highway, The Bypass, MP 2, The Marketplace
- Southern Shores
- (252) 261-8388
Cosmo’s offers great Italian-style food that’s worth seeking out. We think the crust is dandy — perfectly crisp on the outside and soft on the inside and with just a hint of sweetness. Choose from any of their fabulous pizza concoctions or create your own. Cosmo’s also offers salads, pasta dishes, subs, beer and wine. You can eat in or take it out.
Cravings Steak & Seafood
- 1209 Duck Road
- (252) 480-0032
Cravings Steak & Seafood is a full-service restaurant and bar serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. With the only drive-through window in town, it’s convenient for meals to go from steamer pots to breakfast and coffee. Breakfast features Cravings coffee & cappuccinos in addition to hearty breakfast sandwiches ranging from bacon, egg and cheese to the Crab Cake sunrise. Lunch and dinner menus vary slightly, featuring Coastal Provisions’ famous crab cakes, fresh local seafood, and prime steaks & burgers. The restaurant has about 40 indoor seats with patio seating outside. They also feature live music and have a full bar. Hours are 7 a.m. to past dinner daily in season. Call or visit their website for off-season hours.
- 1223 Duck Road
- (252) 261-3354
When you’re in the mood for something different, Duck Deli offers a departure from the standard Outer Banks seafood menus. Barbecue is the specialty of the house. It’s cooked on site, so just follow your nose to the rich, smoky aromas. Duck Deli makes North Carolina-style pork barbecue and Kansas City-style beef and chicken barbecue with red sauce along with ribs, chicken and wings. The full range of traditional sides and salads is here, including baked beans and cole slaw. They also offer a good selection of sandwiches, soups and salads. Seafood is not big on the menu, though you can get a crab cake and some of owner Ken Forlano’s stellar smoked fish to top off a Caesar salad. Duck Deli serves breakfast, lunch and dinner daily in season. Everything is available for take-out. This spot has been a fixture in Duck for more than 20 years with the same owners. They do not serve beer or wine.
- 1190 Duck Road, Osprey Landing
- (252) 480-3304
Make a beeline for Duck Donuts where you will find warm, delicious and made-to-order doughnuts. Duck Donuts makes its doughnuts fresh on site, and you have the option of each one being dipped in vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, lemon, peanut butter or maple glaze then sprinkled with your favorite toppings. You can watch your doughnuts being made then have the warm doughnuts boxed up to take home — if they make it home! Locally roasted premium Kill Devil Hills coffees, orange juice and other beverages are offered. There are also locations in Corolla, Kitty Hawk at MP 1 on the Beach Road and in Kill Devil Hills at MP 8.5 on the Bypass. All shops open at 7 a.m. and offer expanded hours during the summer.
Hawaiian Island Coffee and Ice Cream
- 1190 Duck Road, Osprey Landing Shopping Center
- (252) 261-1666
At Hawaiian Island you can cool down with a snowball – shaved ice doused with flavored syrup – in one of an amazing number of flavors. Hawaiian Island also sells ice cream, homemade fudge, drinks, smoothies, coffee and espresso-based drinks, and you have to try their signature espresso shake. Take your treats down to Osprey Landing’s soundfront deck for a great view.
- 1461 Duck Road, Sanderling Resort
- (252) 261-8419
Overlooking the tranquil waters of the Currituck Sound, Kimball’s Kitchen (formerly The Left Bank) offers spectacular panoramic views and directly faces the best sunsets the eastern seaboard has to offer. Kimball’s Kitchen strives to serve the bounty of local farmers and fishermen by serving grass-fed prime steaks and fresh, locally caught seafood that changes daily. Daily pasta and risotto specials as well as an extensive raw bar and Wine Spectator wine and champagne lists are also offered. Children are welcome and served smaller portions of the regular menu at half off. Call for seasonal hours and information on private events.
- 1187 Duck Road, Loblolly Pines
- (252) 261-8822
Pizzazz is a pizza favorite on the Outer Banks. They’ve been around since 1986 because they make consistently great pizza with generous toppings and the service is friendly. Choose from gourmet menu creations or stick with the traditional. Pizzazz also makes hot subs, salads and wings. You can eat in for lunch or dinner or have your pizza delivered anywhere from Southern Shores to Sanderling. Call for off-season hours.
Red Sky Café
- 1197 Duck Road, Duck Landing
- (252) 261-8646
Red Sky is an inviting café with a creative menu of contemporary coastal cuisine. Chef Wes Stepp turns out some incredible fare from his wood-burning oven, including filet mignon, crispy duck and seafood. Beyond the wood-fired oven, the kitchen prepares seafood, pasta and chicken creations plus sandwiches, salads, soups, appetizers and desserts. The daily specials are always worth trying. Top-quality, flavor-rich ingredients round out all the offerings, and the sides are usually as show-stopping as the featured dish. Sandwiches are only available at lunch. Red Sky is open for lunch and dinner, and it has a full bar with an exciting wine list. Red Sky Café offers full meals to go, and they also have a “Chefs On Call” service in which they cook for you at your place. Red Sky opens at 11 a.m. daily.
- 5597 N. Croatan Highway, The Bypass, MP 1, The Marketplace
- Southern Shores
- (252) 441-4237
Rita’s Ice is a great place to cool off with a refreshing treat. They serve such favorites as Italian ices, cream ices, frozen custard and a variety of signature specialty frozen drinks and Blendinis. You’ll also find sugar-free ices and gelatis, low fat, no fat and real fruit options and over 30 topping selections. Check out their other location when you are in Kill Devil Hills.
Roadside Bar & Grill
- 1193 Duck Road
- (252) 261-5729
In a charming 1930s cottage right along N.C. Highway 12, The Roadside is a Duck institution. You can dine al fresco, enjoying the sights in the heart of Duck, or settle into a booth or up to the bar in the cozy interior. The Roadside’s cuisine is contemporary, and many dishes have a decidedly Southern influence. For example, shrimp and grits with red-eye gravy is a staple on the starter menu. Fresh seafood, of course, is a highlight here. You can order from the steam bar, slurp up some fine clam chowder, sink your teeth into a fish sandwich or swoon over lobster stuffed with crabmeat. Lunch is casual, with soups, salads, sandwiches and a variety of starters. Dinner takes it up a notch with entrees of seafood, chicken, pasta and vegetarian options. The menu changes often and with every season. A full-service bar is available. Some nights in season you can catch a band playing outside at The Roadside.
- 5537 N. Croatan Highway, The Bypass, MP 2, The Marketplace
- Southern Shores
- (252) 261-5099
Shun Xing is one of only a few Chinese restaurants on the Outer Banks. They offer the full range of Chinese specialties for taking out or eating in. You’ll find beef, pork, seafood and vegetarian entrees, soups, fried rice, noodles and delicious egg rolls. The restaurant opens at 10 a.m. daily year round.
- Scarborough Faire
- (252) 449-2271
Owned and operated by fifth generation Dare County locals, Sooey’s BBQ specializes in authentic eastern North Carolina pork barbecue, slow-smoked ribs, beef brisket, pulled barbecue chicken and Southern fried chicken. Their savory pulled-pork BBQ and ribs are made from an Outer Banks recipe with roots as deep as those on their own family tree. All the favorite homemade sides are here too, including potato salad, cole slaw, baked beans, mac and cheese, corn bread, onion rings and killer hushpuppies. Appetizers, wings, burgers, sandwiches, salads and kids’ favorites are also available. You can sit down and eat in the restaurant, but Sooey’s excels at take-out, prepared family meals and catered events; call ahead for large orders. They also have locations in Corolla and Duck. Sooey’s will make barbecue a tradition in your family too.
- 5597 N. Croatan Highway, The Bypass, MP 2, The Marketplace
- Southern Shores
- (252) 255-0790
We think you know what you’ll find here. Starbucks offers coffee and espresso-based drinks, Chai, tea and pastries, snacks, coffee accessories for sale and WiFi.
Sunset Ice Cream and Cappuccino
- 1240 Duck Road, The Waterfront Shops
- (252) 261-3553
Sunset Ice Cream is strategically located so that when you’re ready for a break from shopping at The Waterfront Shops, you’re there. In its waterfront location, with a great view of the sound and marsh, Sunset serves Edy’s ice cream, a great selection of fresh fruit smoothies, milk shakes, sundaes, drinks, coffee and espresso. Kids love it here because they can watch the ducks while they eat. Sunset has expanded hours for the summer months; call ahead.
Sweet T’s Coffee, Beer & Wine
- 1211 Duck Road, Duck Common
- (252) 480-2326
Sweet T’s Coffee, Beer & Wine is a great casual place to just hang out in Duck. It’s a full-service coffee shop, so you can expect all the coffee drinks you love plus pastries, muffins and bagels and, of course, free WiFi. As the day goes on, come here for more coffee or a draft beer or glass of wine. Sweet T’s serves appetizers and light snacks, so it’s the perfect place to come before or after dinner. Sit inside or out on the tree-shaded deck. They often have live music in the late afternoon and evenings. Hours are 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m to 7 p.m. on Saturdays and until 6 p.m. on Sundays.
The Lifesaving Station Restaurant
- 1461 Duck Road, The Sanderling Resort and Spa
- (252) 449-6654
The Lifesaving Station is the Sanderling Resort’s family-oriented, casual restaurant, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Sanderling Resort, under the culinary direction of Executive Chef Jeffrey Russell, is making a serious effort to establish the resort as a dining destination. Russell is reinventing the Sanderling Resort’s two restaurants (The Lifesaving Station and Kimball’s Kitchen) into places to enjoy the best of the locally grown produce and seafood with a farm-to-table approach. The Lifesaving Station menu features contemporary American Cuisine. Breakfast and Sunday brunch are available with traditional fare and beyond-the-ordinary touches. Lunch includes salads, soups, appetizers, sandwiches and entrees. Dinner focuses on Coastal Carolina Cuisine with creative preparations of local seafood and natural beef. Children are welcome for all meal periods with kid-friendly menus. The restaurant is housed in an 1899 U.S. Life Saving Service Station, and the decor pays homage to the building’s unique history. A family-style cookout with live entertainment is available every Wednesday during the summer at the Soundside Pavilion, and large parties are welcome.
The Pizza Stop
- 5385 N. Virginia Dare Trail, Sandy Ridge Shopping Center
- Southern Shores
- (252) 261-STOP (7867)
The Pizza Stop bakes fresh, New York–style pizzas in its own stone oven. All dough is made in-house with bottled mineral water. Choose from a variety of specialty pies or create one of your own with the fresh, often organic, veggies and toppings. They also serve subs, pasta dishes and salads and beer. You can eat in, take out or get free delivery in Kitty Hawk, Southern Shores and the Town of Duck.
The Wave Pizza Cafe
- 1190 Duck Road, Osprey Landing Shops
- (252) 255-0375
On the soundfront at Osprey Landing Shops, The Wave Pizza Café is a family-run operation offering 30 years of culinary experience. Made-to-order pizzas with only the freshest ingredients are the specialty here, but there are also sandwiches and salads made from quality ingredients. A local favorite, The Wave is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner, and you can enjoy your meal either inside or out on the waterfront deck. Time your visit for sundown and you’ll get a free sunset show with your meal along with free WiFi! Take-out and delivery are available.