It’s not hard to find a good meal along Alabama’s coast. So, it should be no surprise that chefs in Orange Beach and Gulf Shores have extra-special plans for New Year’s Eve. Fish from the Gulf of Mexico covered in Gulf crab at Villagio Grille and Coast Restaurant. Lobster and dick prosciutto gnocchi at Cobalt the Restaurant. The eating is good for New Year’s Eve.
Evergreen celebrates Alabama’s most famous sausage with its second Conecuh brand New Year’s Eve Sausage Drop, while Tacky Jack’s restaurant and tavern will toast the occasion with a beachy favorite, the Bushwacker.
Here are some options to ring in the new year at the beach with a full and satisfied belly.
Villagio Grille (Orange Beach)
Details: Three seatings. The first is three courses ($65 per person); second and third are four courses ($100 per person). Optional wine pairing is $50 for all seatings. Call the restaurant for reservations.
Menu: Extra course for the latter seatings are lobster ravioli or caviar-topped oyster duo. Entrees at all seatings include pistachio-encrusted lamb or crab-encrusted grouper, while desserts are crème brûlée cheesecake, chocolate opera, or lemon meringue tart.
Tacky Jack’s (Gulf Shores)
Details: RSVPs required (call 251-948-8881) for the restaurant’s annual New Year’s Eve Bushwacker Drop, an evening party that includes music by Top Hat and Jackie, a balloon drop, party favors, and a Bushwacker to make a new year’s toast. It’s early, 6 p.m.–8 p.m. Tickets are $35.
Menu: Heavy hors d’oeuvres buffet.
Coast Restaurant (Gulf Shores)
Details: Five-course dinner from 5 p.m.–8 p.m. $125 per person plus tax and gratuity. Reservations: 251-224-3600
Menu: Meat and vegetarian options for three courses (other two are salad and dessert). Second course offerings, for example, are pan-seared American Wagyu short rib or parmesan gnocchi with forest mushrooms. Fourth course is crab-encrusted red snapper filet or gouda grits with asparagus.
Cobalt the Restaurant (Orange Beach)
Details: Special menu is available after 4 p.m. (regular menu until 3 p.m.). Reservations are recommended.
Menu: Appetizer choices include cioppino or pork belly steamed buns. Among the entrees are lobster and duck prosciutto gnocchi, lamb shank, and white barbecue pork tenderloin.
New Year’s Eve Sausage Drop (Evergreen)
Details: Alabama’s most famous sausage will link 2022 and 2023 during the second New Year’s Eve celebration by the City of Evergreen. Festivities including music start at 10 p.m. At one minute to midnight, a large Conecuh Sausage Co. branded box that’s been hoisted into the air will be lowered for the new year countdown, Times Square-style. Fireworks will follow.
Menu: Alas, Conecuh’s box won’t rain sausage at midnight. But the food trucks will have a link or two to sell and serve. Hot chocolate and cookies are available for free.