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Food Dude News: Bandito’s Restaurant to Open near Myrtle Beach BoardwalkBy Terry Massey Jul 12, 2012
The much-anticipated arrival of Bandito's to Myrtle Beach's limited oceanfront dining lineup is a dream come true for lovers of good food and drink with a lovely view. But for the Food Dude, it's more like a flashback.
Rewind to 1989, when a much skinnier version of the Food Dude was on a Virgin Islands getaway in St. Croix. Just across the bay was a small island resort that could easily be reached by swimming, or so we thought.
We reached the island worn out and ready for drinks, and in the distance stood an oasis - a tiny tiki hut called Bandito's serving liquid refreshments. Each bar table had its own blender and the server brought everything you needed to make your own frozen concoctions. That's where I learned rum and tequila don't mix.
After enjoying the best seafood quesadilla of my life and inventing several new drinks that are better left forgotten, we realized the tide had risen and made it impossible to swim back. So we spent the rest of the night at Bandito's (until they closed and threw us out) then passed out on the beach until morning.
So imagine my excitement all these years later when I heard about another beachfront, Mexican-themed bar and grill named Bandito's coming to Myrtle Beach. Unfortunately, I did learn that the two are not related (good thing. I might still be banned), but that's almost all I've been able to find out about this upstart eatery.
For such a prominent place on the Myrtle Beach oceanfront (it's the Spanish-inspired building between 14th and 15th Avenue North on Ocean Boulevard), it's been very hush-hush. The grand opening has been pushed back from Cinco de Mayo until Julio de Something-o, and a sign that reads "Coming Soon" is our only clue for now.
Here's what we do know about the mysterious Myrtle Beach Bandito's. The 268-seat, three-story cantina will feature not only Mexican food, as the name suggests, but also Caribbean cuisine that incorporates fresh, local seafood, so there's a good chance I'll be able to order a seafood quesadilla for comparison.
The menu is not yet available for public consumption but early reports suggest a traditional Mexican and Caribbean lineup - steak fajitas, jerked chicken, Cuban sandwiches - with some local flair and a focus on seafood dishes. Frozen drinks are sure to be a big part of the island theme, with three bars on the premises.
Outdoor seating overlooking the Atlantic Ocean will be available but most of the seats are indoors, giving guests who arrive on foot a cool place to beat the heat. Owners expanded the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk to bring walkers to their front door, and the restaurant was designed to give every table a view of the ocean.
Look for live music on the oceanfront deck during the summer months and get ready to chill out at what is sure to be the hottest spot on the beach. At least this one will be easier to reach than the other Bandito's.
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