Get carried away at Runaway Bay

Published: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 at 12:08 PM.

PANAMA CITY BEACH — Inspired by a trip to Jamaica, Runaway Bay brings a taste of the Caribbean to the Gulf.

“We just want you to feel like you’re on vacation when you come to eat or go to the tiki bar,” marketing director Mia Howard said. “And you also can park your boat.”

Runaway Bay, named after a town in Northern Jamaica, opened Feb. 1 in Pirates Cove Marina. Boat slips in the back of the restaurant allow guests to pull up for lunch or dinner. And if they bring their swimsuits, they can even go for a swim in the pool overlooking the Grand Lagoon.

“I know what I like and wanted to do something with a Caribbean twist,” said owner Terry Nadeau, who also owns 30 Degree Blue in Bay Point. “I signed the lease in October, the day before we went to Jamaica. … I wanted to make it kind of a destination instead of just going out to eat. Kids can swim and adults can swim, too. It’s a very unique spot — beautiful with a lot of potential.”

During the week, an express lunch is served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., ranging from Monday’s Deep Fried Chicken Breast or Blackened Fresh Catch to Friday’s Seafood Gumbo or Slow Smoked Sliced Trip Tip Steak. And on weekends, Chef David Rushing, with a background in “five-star dining,” offers different specials.

“His dishes lean that way,” Terry said. “He first showed me a white tablecloth kind of menu.”

 Runaway Bay’s final menu has been simplified, but with the same quality of food.

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