Who needs an escape to paradise? Music and Key West go hand in hand! From the King of Margaritaville himself, Jimmy Buffett, strutting his stuff on Duval Street all the way down to local steel drum bands making waves everywhere they go. Even your guilty pleasure 90’s cover band has found its very own piece of paradise here. As you explore this tropical utopia take time out for some amazing live music – from singer-songwriters crooning their stories under a starlit sky to rockin’ bar tunes that will have everyone up dancing – there is something special waiting around every corner in The Keys (especially when it comes to discovering awesome music!). Today we are going to talk about singer-songwriters with none other than the host of Songwriters Island Radio, Sam Densler.
Songwriters Island Radio Host Sam Densler
Sam has been showcasing singer songwriters for over 12 years and has a passion for putting on great live music events throughout Florida. Sam loves to showcase singer-songwriters from grass roots fireside gatherings to big songwriter shows in Key West. Sam’s show specifically features original music recorded by singer-songwriters and serves as a great place to find new up-and-coming acts. Check out our interview with Sam below as he walks us through the singer songwriter scene and why Key West is such a beautiful place to connect with new artists.
Interview with Sam Densler
We really appreciate Sam sitting down with us and talking about his passion for music. In the near future look for new interviews with singer-songwriters who frequent the Keys and Key West. Looking to plan your next trip to the Keys? Check out Sun Outdoors Sugarloaf Key opening in October of 2023 and check out the The 27th Annual Key West Songwriters Festival – May 3rd-7th, 2023.
Thanks for reading all about singer-songwriter’s in Key West from Sam Densler’s perspective. Click here and you will find a lot more articles on the region.
When choosing where to go for dinner in Key West, there is no shortage of options. On this night we were in the mood for something relaxed yet refined. It was not going to be a happy hour place or a tourist trap, we needed something a little more elegant yet still relaxed. Is this possible in Key West? Enter… the Blackfin Bistro at 918 Duval St. The first thing you see is a small dining room, the bar, then a doorway to the back patio garden. While the dining room looked great, the patio is my favorite!
Upscale Dining in Key West
While I did mention that the atmosphere is elegant yet relaxed, the menu is definitely upscale and elevated compared to your typical fried food hole in the wall you might find in the Keys. Not to say that there isn’t a time an place for that, but the Blackfin Bistro provides something a little different. Side Note: If you like it here, I would also recommend checking out the Thirsty Mermaid.
The Blackfin Bistro drink list includes a nice selection of beer and a great wine list. I started things off with a glass of red and the soup of the day, a lobster bique. Soup can always be hit or miss but this was really good. The flavor was on point, a sign of things to come with the rest of my visit.
Blackfin Bistro Menu
While the soup of the day and the complementary bread were a great place to start, next was the menu. The Blackfin Bistro chef offers a menu with everything from classic bistro cuisine to locally sourced seafood. I am a fan arancini so the Goat Chesse Croquets caught my eye right away. While arancini is typically made with rice balls that are stuffed with a mixture including mozarella, coated with breadcrumbs and deep fried… these croqets featured goat cheese and topped with a red onion confit and a honey drizzle. A couple chips rounded out the flavor, providing salt that paired perfectly with this sweet and tart ensemble.
For entrees they offer everything from gourmet bugers to local seafood, I opted for the Grilled Yellowfin Tuna. It was plated with a ginger & sweet soy emulsion, soba noodles and tempura French beans. Being a fan of seafood, I really enjoyed this combination of flavors. The fresh fish, sweet sauce, and the crunch from the tempura French beans… I am getting hungry again just thinking about it! This was a large portion after the appetizer round so I ended up bringing some home.
To finish things off we shared the tiramisu dessert which was uniquely plated in a bowl. It was one of the best tiramisu desserts I have ever had! I am always truly grateful to enjoy a special dining experience and the Blackfin Bistro was excatly that. You can tell when a chef cares about what he is doing… a great menu, the service, the curated wine list, the thoughtfulness throughout all courses… this is why you should visit the Blackfin Bistro on Duval St in Key West!
What is better than discounted bookings for your next trip to the Keys? Check out this deal from our friends at Sun Outdoors Sugarloaf Key! They are building a tropical oasis minutes from Key West, with an opening scheduled for December 2022!
Special Offer Details
Sun Outdoors Sugarloaf Key is celebrating Santa’s summer break by offering 25% off ALL STAYS at participating resorts during our Christmas in July Flash Sale. Sale ends July 25, so book today!
Being an explorer and reviewer of Key West brunch spots is a tough job but somebody’s got to do it! If you are a brunch lover and Key West traveler this post is for you… I don’t know about you but when I explore on vacation I am always searching for a brunch spot to add to my “must brunch” list. In my recent travels to the Keys I found another one to add at Rams Head Southernmost.
But first let me ask you… What makes a good brunch spot? There are a few key essentials that come to mind when searching for the “perfect brunch” but it all depends on your preference(s). Whether it’s a well made 3 egg omelette with sauteed local veggies or center cut crispy bacon with homemade spuds and toast smothered in butter, or waffles as big as your head and fruit to boot…the list goes on and on.
While that gets my mouth watering for sure… Rams Head Southernmost, located in Key West, has set the bar much much higher. Today we are going to define what makes Rams Head Southernmost one of the best brunch spots in Key West if not the entire universe. And how they even pull off a “make your own bloody mary” bar 🤤 .
Side Note: Key West Travelers is a great resource for travel tips and insider information on your journey to and through the Key’s. Be sure to subscribe to their newsletter for more information so you can stay in the know when you travel to Key West.
Rams Head Southernmost, Key West, FL
Rams Head Southernmost is located at 804 Whitehead Street in Key West, Florida only a few, “steps from Duval, at the entrance of the historical Bahama Village.” It features an open outdoor tropical setting with a tiki bar offering an eclectic Caribbean cocktail list which is home to their signature “Rum Punch”. I found myself ubering home during the day so let’s just say the Rum Punch lives up to its name.
The colorful walls mixed with a unique weathered wood bring it all together as the local live music plays on daily. The beachy signage behind the bar and the palm ceiling fans pull it together to be the perfect setting for a vacation beach brunch.
Their website says, “Rams Head was founded in Annapolis, Maryland and has been family owned and operated since 1989. With roots in Key West, Rams Head is proud to be part of the local community and is committed to providing the best in food, fun, and beer.” You can, “enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner, among lush foliage, water fountains, and the Key West sunshine.”
Located in the Bahama Village which, “is a 12-block area between Whitehead and Fort and Angela and Catherine Streets, you’ll be able to see the original area in which the first black Bahamian settlers arrived in the 19th century.” (Source)
The hours of operation are 9:00 a.m. -11:00 p.m. every day with food being served until 10 p.m. The “Happy Hour” is 4:00-6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and features $4 drafts, domestics, $2 off wine and liquor, and half price apps.
Let’s talk about brunch in Key West…
A great brunch comes in all tastes and sizes and at Rams Head Southernmost they have put a tropical twist on their menu that makes this place so special. Who can turn down an Eggs Benedict right? For me in my travels Eggs Benedict is like cole slaw…every restaurant has it but not everyone knows how to make it.
That being said, you won’t ever turn down the “Annapolis Benedict”. This spread features, “Lump crab cake, sliced tomato, poached eggs, hollandaise, English muffin, island style home fries.” Or if you want to tickle your southern bone try the Pulled Pork Benedict, “Slow roasted pulled pork, poached eggs, English muffin, hollandaise, island style home fries.” Both a brunch must and that’s just the Benedicts!
“Chorizo & Egg Tacos” and the “Southernmost Omelet” both delivered a unique take on classic dishes with chorizo sausage, and Gruyere cheese leading the way to greatness. They offer a strong variety with the not to be forgotten – pancakes (three buttermilk pancakes with whipped cream and strawberries) and they even have a Seafood Omelet. Needless to say I made a few trips to Rams Head while in the Keys. Be sure to check out the full menu here.
Key West knows how to get it’s brunch on. Later on in our post we will be talking about some other brunch spots you have to carve out some time for. But first we have a bloody meeting with Mary.
Make Your Own Bloody Mary’s = Peak Brunch Life
When I brunch on vacation the food needs to be special for sure but the most important piece of this equation is… the libation. Right? Rams Head Southernmost figured this out with a simple solution… A Bloody Mary Bar where you can build your own Bloody Mary. That’s right… Whatever crazy topper you want for your beverage, or however spicy you want to make – it’s up to you to customize it…for you. If there was a Heaven on earth I think I just found it.
For those of you who have not yet acquired a taste for Bloody Mary’s – you need not worry. Rams Head features 100+ beers including their very own “Fordham & Dominion Brewing Company which was founded at Rams Head Tavern in Annapolis, Maryland in 1995.”
They have a list of amazing frozen cocktails including the Bushwhacker In Paradise Which features “Bacardi Coconut Rum, Absolut Vodka, Baileys Irish Cream, Amaretto, cream of coconut, chocolate syrup, nutmeg.”
A Rams Head mixologist was on hand to make us any “Tropical Conchtails” we desired. Currently they are featuring the following options: Blue Macawrita, Bahama Village Mama, Mai Tai, Tropical Migration, The Naked Beach, and the classic Dark & Stormy.
And for that Aunt who you have never seen without a glass in her hand they have an extensive white, red and sparkling carefully curated wine list. Be sure to check out the menu before you stop in: Rams Head Southernmost Drink Menu.
Winner Winner, Lunch and Dinner
We have exhausted the Brunch side of Rams Head but we can’t overlook the amazing options for lunch and dinner. Their caribbean inspired seafood options will leave you wishing you had more room.
The Starters shine with Conch Fritters, Half Rack of Ribs, Crab Dip and more. Rams Head salads feature the Tomato and Watermelon (Heirloom tomatoes, watermelon, feta cheese, arugula, aged balsamic, olive oil) and the Southernmost (Mixed greens, fried avocados, peppadew peppers, Bermuda onion, heirloom tomatoes, bleu cheese). The culinary choices will keep your taste buds satisfied for sure. The street tacos, flat breads and sandwiches are legendary and the entrees pull out all the stops. My favorite was the Lobster Mac & Cheese featuring, “Caribbean lobster, creamy four-cheese sauce, cavatappi pasta.” Be sure to check out the full menu here.
Key West Nightlife at Rams Head Southernmost
All food aside Rams Head has made a name for itself with not just the daily live music but the huge acts it has brought in over the years under the name “Rams Head Presents”. They are currently bringing in national acts into: Maryland, Key West, Delaware, and New York. The Beach Boys are playing in March at a Rams Head Presents event at the Coffee Butler Amphitheater! As a music lover this is one of those things to have on your radar as you plan your next adventure to the Keys! Be sure to check out the full list of artists here.
Buzzy Brunch Spots In Key West
Be sure to check out these “buzzy brunch spots” when you visit the Keys. I didn’t get a chance to visit all of these yet so do some research and schedule one for each day!
Thanks for joining us for this Key West brunch feature at Rams Head. We will be reviewing many more in the posts to come! Don’t miss our next adventure by subscribing at the bottom of this page and check us out on Instagram or Facebook. Also, share your Key West adventures with us for a chance to be featured by using #keywesttravelers on Instagram. Safe traveles!
PS: We like to take photos… Check out some additional shots from our visit!
The Southernmost Point of the continental United States of American is Key West, Florida. At the beginning of the historic Whitehead Street we visited the large concrete buoy where thousands go to take pictures to say “I have been to the Southernmost Point!.” You can check out the webcam to get a peak of the view.
Key West has a lot to offer in the clear waters from snorkeling to sailing to dolphin watching the list goes on. When you are in town strolling through Duval street you can hear the sounds of live music being played at the various tiki bars and restaurants. We rented some bikes and scooters to get around with ease so we could take as much in as possible.
Only 90 Miles To Cuba & Bursting With Caribbean Culture
The Southernmost Point is only 90 miles to Cuba. So this was a running theme we saw in our travels in the shopping district. “90 Miles to Cuba” signs were hung in a lot of the bars we strolled by. Shirts, stickers and more feature the tagline. The Caribbean culture is evident in Key West. There many great Caribbean restaurants like Kaya Island Eats, “Serving delicious Caribbean, South Pacific and pacific rim cuisine.” (Source) Mo’s Resturant boasts of a, “Chill, inviting eatery with classic Creole & island comfort eats, including renowned Key lime pie.” (Source) Frita’s Cuban Burger Cafe features traditional Cuban and fusion sandwiches including the delicious Frita Garlic Shrimp Burger described as a, “Frita burger topped with garlic shrimp, and Caribbean slaw.” (Source)
Music In The Southernmost Point
If you want to find a nice bar with entertainment then you don’t have to go far to find it in Key West. We did a bart crawl one of our days in the Key’s and here are some spots to put on your list…
The Schooner Wharf Bar is located at the end of Williams Street and on the water’s edge. The daily entertainment schedule is booked out with music starting as early as 12 pm. The second door deck provides a beautiful outdoor view of the waterfront making this rank high on the list! This bar serves every meal and offers an extensive food and drink selection. There we were humming Buffet’s classic, “there’s booze in the blender and soon it will render… That frozen concoction that helps me hang on.” The fan favorite frozen concoction of the day for us was the “Schooner Vice” which was half pina colada and half strawberry daiquiri!!!
Sloppy Joe’s was the next stop on the crawl and we found out it was Ernest Hemmingway’s second favorite bar. The live music was spot on and this bar features a good size stage so it can be pretty loud and fun – if that’s your jam. Be sure to check out this bar and more. I plan on doing a feature on our pub crawl so I will pause there.
As you can see Key West, the Southernmost Point of the US is worth the trip and the stay. There is a lot to explore and there is something for the whole family.