About Aqua Restaurant and Spa - Duck, NC

1174 Duck Rd
Duck, NC 27949
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One of the most beautiful waterfront restaurants in Duck on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, AQUA Restaurant offers fresh regional cuisine in a casual and elegant setting. Our mission is to create delicious culinary masterpieces with locally farmed ingredients, fresh locally caught fish and all natural meats for our guests to enjoy. Our innovative wine list, craft beers and creative cocktails are second to none, carefully chosen to complement our Chef’s savory creations. Whether you are looking for a tasty lunch or dinner, live music, a beautiful sunset or good times with friends and family, AQUA is the place to be!

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Contemporary American, Seafood

Hours of Operation:
AQUA Restaurant is currently closed for renovations and will reopen for lunch and dinner on February 11, 2016.

Cross Street:
Route 12 North

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(252) 261-9700

Website:
http://www.aquaobx.com/

Entertainment:
Live music on our waterfront deck in season performed by local artists in a variety of styles.Select weekends during the off season we bring live music into the bar.

Parking Details:
Parking in front of restaurant and across the street. Overflow allowed at Scarborough Faire Shops.

Executive Chef:
Chef Cory Bryant

Private Party Facilities:
Overlooking the Currituck Sound, with an amazing view from every seat. Sunsets light up the sky every evening. Waterfront decks and bar provide an unforgettable and elegant event on the water,in the quaint village of Duck on the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

Private Party Contact:
Event Coordinator: 2522619700x

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Smoking Area, Smoking Area (patio only), View, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar

Special Events & Promotions:
AQUA Restaurant is the perfect venue for your special occasion. The diverse waterfront location and design offers a magnificent view and amenities that appeal to a party of 15 to 100.

The Southern end of the restaurant can be semi-private. A tasteful bamboo screen offers an intimate feel and private restrooms keep conveniences at hand. Available for 30 and fewer guests.

The Main dining area, with vistas of sunsets on the Currituck Sound and wildfowl a flutter, translates the delightful energy of AQUA; while offering waterfront tables where everyone truly does get “a view” of the water. Available for 40-60 guests.

Craving the divine intimacy of AQUA, all to yourself? Be our guest, our only guest…AQUA is available for 65-100 clients, to enjoy, dance, toast and create memories all evening. Wrap around decks, green space, beanbag toss, music inside or out…the flow of the evening is bliss.

Restaurant Photos

Aqua Restaurant and Spa - Duck, NC Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.4

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.3

service

4.4

ambience

4.4

noise

Moderate

85% would recommend it to a friend

Loved For

Best Overall
Coastal North Carolina
Best Service
Coastal North Carolina
Best Ambiance
Coastal North Carolina
2 More
Best Value
Coastal North Carolina
Most Booked
Outer Banks
Best Restaurants in Duck ›

scenic view (26)
special occasion (17)
fit for foodies (15)
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romantic (15)
great for outdoor dining (13)
neighborhood gem (10)
notable wine list (8)
great for lunch (7)
vibrant bar scene (6)
good for groups (6)
great for brunch (3)
hot spot (2)
kid-friendly (2)
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520 reviews
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Fabulous!!!!

Dined 4 days ago

We enjoyed everything, from our delicious dinner to drinks in the bar while listening to music. The service was excellent and genuine which made the experience memorable. The food was delightful to the last bite and we loved the chef's interpretation of common dishes (shrimp & grits; peanut butter pie).

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Great view...food...and wine!

Dined 4 days ago

We ate at Aqua while on vacation and had a wonderful evening. Showed up earlier than our reservation, but had no problems getting seated at a table with a terrific view of the water. The menu had a lot of nice options and we had difficulty choosing our meals. Ultimately went with the Tuna and Crabcakes. Selected a bottle of their Fritz Dry Creek Zin which was very good as well. Service was excellent. Meal pace was perfect. All in all it was a great evening and We would definitely recommend Aqua.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food3
ambience4
service3
value4

Shortribs and Salt

Dined on April 16, 2016

This was our third time at Aqua. The first two were superb to put it mildly, 10/10. Absolutely awesome. This was a special dinner for us and 2 other people. The last time I had the Short Ribs which was absolutely to die for I told one of the group who had never been there how incredible it was so that was what he ordered. I took a picture of our food the last time because it was beautifully presented. When the short ribs arrived, it was not the amount I had before and was basically 1 short rib with half a plate totally bare. This was for 2 orders. I could have lived with this until I started eating it and found it to be INCREDIBLY OVER-SALTED to the point of being (nearly) inedible. Both of us agreed. I love salted food, but someone obviously over-salted and served it anyway or didn't taste the food. I did not send my food back and ate the majority of it and told the waiter to tell the chef when he asked about our food. The other dinners were fine (shrimp and grits and the catch of the day). We will return to Aqua again, but your perfect record fell flat with something as simple as salting the food. Unfortunately I raved so much about the short ribs my friend ordered them which I feel somewhat guilty about since I wanted the experience to be so good.

Tags: scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Food with a view

Dined on April 15, 2016

We were visiting the outer banks from Ohio (our first time here) and luckily found Aqua. We had the rockfish and salmon....both delicious and expertly prepared. If you can get a table by the window it's a special treat.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food3
ambience4
service2
value2

Experience

Dined on April 9, 2016

Spouses entre was OK my entre was so so Service was poor. My entre came out luke warm and only slightly better after it was returned. Had much better meals in the past. This outing was disappointing

food2
ambience3
service3
value1

Birthday dinner

Dined on April 8, 2016

My wife had the rockfish special. The fish was fine, served over popcorn rice. From my view point the plate looked quite dry overall. The wife asked for several lemon wedges. I had the braised short ribs. They were mostly fat, with very little meat attached. I've never had short ribs served like that . I'm accustomed to seeing the fat cooked down until it becomes part of the sauce. there was a tarragon infused creamy polenta which was very tasty. Unfortunately, there was very little of it .

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Superb dinner at Aqua

Dined on April 7, 2016

Our party ranged from grandchildren to grandparents. The menu included something for everyone, and all enjoyed it. Endless mussels on Thursday night were a big hit. Salmon was delicious, as were the desserts. The corn and crab soup is a special favorite. Emily's service was outstanding, friendly, helpful, fun, but never obtrusive. For years, we have enjoyed the varied menu, relaxed atmosphere, beautiful views, and friendly environment. Aqua is a must on our visits to the Outer Banks.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food1
ambience3
service1
value1

Slow, over-priced and not good

vip
Dined on March 31, 2016

Service was very slow. Food was not good. All you can eat mussels and they acted irritated about getting 2nd plate.

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Salmon dish was awesome!

Dined on March 28, 2016

The salmon dish has such an amazing flavor. I had it a year ago and it still holds up as one of my most favorite dishes served. The portion was a great size for me (not a large platter of food) so it was more about quality than quantity. Wait staff was excellent, and view was very good to catch the sunset. A very enjoyable experience!

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5

Great place awesome view and gray food

Dined on March 27, 2016

Great place awesome view and gray food

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great Views

Dined on March 27, 2016

Looks out over the sound. Very fresh seafood and good selection of wines and drinks.

Tags: kid-friendly, great for outdoor dining, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

From the salads to the fish, it was fabulous.

Dined on March 26, 2016

We enjoyed salads and the fresh catch of the day! Will visit again next time in the Duck, OBX area.

Tags: fit for foodies, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5

Trifecta of a nice evening. Great food; ...

Dined on March 22, 2016

Trifecta of a nice evening. Great food; beautiful atmosphere(view of sunset); and, excellent service.

food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Consistently great food & service

vip
Dined on February 25, 2016

We were happy to see Aqua open for lunch on our February visit to the Outer Banks. It's one of our regular stops on each of our visits Spring through Fall. I love that they're on Open Table, so there's no waiting, and the food is always very good. If you've never been, you can't go wrong with the daily specials. I had the soup of the day, which was spinach & broccoli, and it tasted like Spring! I look forward to our next visit in May, thanks for another delicious lunch!

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food1
ambience4
service3
value2

Food not hot

Dined on February 19, 2016

So disappointing as we were really looking forward to eating here. Both entrees came out warm to cold and had to be sent back. When they returned they still were not anything near what he had hoped for. Felt like we were being avoided after the second complaint. They "made it right" by not charging for the meals but we still longed for our go-to stop, The Blue Point.

food5
ambience5
service5

A great place. They just finished renova ...

Dined on February 15, 2016

A great place. They just finished renovations and it looked great. Our waiter CJ was as professional as they come and the food was delicious. We will be back there.

food5
ambience5
service5

Terrific duck! Great meal for valentine ...

vip
Dined on February 13, 2016

Terrific duck! Great meal for valentines day.

food2
ambience5
service5
value2

vegetarian

Dined on February 13, 2016

The online menu indicated an $18 vegetarian meal that was enticing. The vegetarian meal offered was disappointing and not the online entree. It consisted of 1 slice of cauliflower,a few kale chips and a bland starch. That was $24. When the reservation was made,we did indicate that we were vegetarians and we were pleased that you had 1 entree but 1 slice of cauliflower for $24 was laughable.

Tags: great for outdoor dining, romantic, scenic view
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

reliable good food

Dined on January 7, 2016

Eaten here numerous times - always great food at reasonable prices in sensible proportions We were there in January so restaurant was quiet - noise level is more energetic in peak season

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

On my favorite OBX dining list.

Dined on January 2, 2016

Love the food and service. Great views of the Sound. Relaxed comfortable atmosphere. On my favorite list.

Tags: good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We had an awesome experience at Aqua!

Dined on January 1, 2016

We had an awesome experience at Aqua! Festive atmosphere, friendly staff, and great menu!

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, late-night find, scenic view, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great Spot

Dined on December 27, 2015

Another excellent meal. Went for lighter side of the menu and were very pleased with the selections. Service was prompt and attentive. Very nice dining experience.

Tags: scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5

Very pleasant dining experience

Dined on December 5, 2015

We very much enjoyed our dinner at Aqua. All selections were fresh and delicious. Service was friendly and prompt. Would prefer a few more menu selections, however for an offseason visit, we were more than satisfied.

Tags: scenic view, neighborhood gem
food3
ambience4
service5

One of the Best in Duck

Dined on November 28, 2015

Aqua works hard to please. We had excellent service for a large group. The appetizers we tried were all excellent. The entrees were good, but nothing special. A better meal could be put together by selecting three or more appetizers. All in all we enjoyed the meal and will come back again when we are in Duck.

Tags: kid-friendly, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5

Delicious

Dined on November 28, 2015

Everything about this place is great! I highly recommend it to visitors, the views are to die for.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, scenic view, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5

Delicious

Dined on November 25, 2015

Our family met up together for the first time in a year at Aqua. They put our party of 10 in an isolated area where we felt like we had the place to ourselves. Our waiter (and the kitchen) were so accommodating to adjust our meals to our particular individual tastes. Just a stellar experience. The pimento cheese appetizer was terrific. The desserts were yummy. All of our party enjoyed their main course. Great place for dinner!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
food5
ambience5
service5

A New Favorite!

Dined on November 18, 2015

My husband and I had lunch here after I had a massage upstairs....enjoyed the spa and the restaurant very much. I loved the crab and sweet corn chowder...creamy with lots of lump crab throughout. I had the crabcake sandwich with fries...very tasty. My husband ordered the fish special...he liked it very much. Service was attentive and friendly. Atmosphere was tranquil and quiet...just what we wanted. We will definitely be back.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience4
service5

Excellent food

Dined on November 8, 2015

Our meal of rockfish, risotto, salad and mushrooms was delicious and well prepared. A bit pricey, but not unusual for the OBX. Good service too.

Tags: good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view
food2
ambience3
service2

Nice location on the Sound. Fair service ...

Dined on November 1, 2015

Nice location on the Sound. Fair service and fair food. Quality/price ratio disappointing though.

food5
ambience4
service5

Best food we have had in Duck in Duck

Dined on October 30, 2015

Three of went to this restaurant in October We found the service great The food was great even if the swordfish portion was small. My husband loved the fish tacos and our friend said it was the best restaurant of the week. We will go back in April and re visit the Acqua restaurant. Maybe next time I will go to the spa also. Resort towns like Duck do not always have the best food so this Acqua makes up for a few others

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
food5
ambience3
service5

I had the mussels in white wine sauce an ...

vip
Dined on October 18, 2015

I had the mussels in white wine sauce and the duck breast and my wife ordered the sweet corn soup and shrimp and grits. All of the dishes were prepared perfectly. The food was as good as any restaurant we have ever eaten in. The waiter was both knowledgeable and attentive without hovering over the table. That said, the live music was loud and it was difficult to hold a conversation across the table and that is the reason for 4 stars rather than 5. We'll definitely will return - but will ask for a table as far from the bar (and music) as possible.

food5
ambience5
service5

First Time Visit

Dined on October 17, 2015

Regular visitor to Outer Banks, but had never tried Aqua before. Was pleasantly surprised with both the quality of the food and the wine list. Service was a bit slow, but it was off-season and likely a more limited wait staff. Outstanding views to complement the meal.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, scenic view
food5
ambience4
service5

Something for everyone!

Dined on October 11, 2015

I'm vegetarian and chose this place for their originality of their tofu plate. My wife and I had so much fun and all of the food was amazing. We had a nice knowledgeable waiter! Would definitely return!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, late-night find, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5

Consistently Great Food and Service!

vip
Dined on October 7, 2015

We vacation in Duck 3 times each year, and Aqua is on our "must" list each time. I had the shrimp scampi special, and I think it was the best shrimp I've ever eaten. It was tender, fresh, and flavorful. My Mom had the crab cakes, which she said were wonderful also. A lot of crab, not much filler at all. I love that Aqua is on Open Table, because the good restaurants in Duck are small, and fill up most nights. If you make a reservation around sunset, you'll be rewarded with a beautiful view over the sound. Thanks Aqua, we'll see you in the Spring!

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5

Great food, great service and a great atmosphere!

Dined on October 2, 2015

The food was amazing, Brandon was a great server and the guy playing music in the background made for a great atmosphere.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5

Friendly and Delicious

Dined on September 30, 2015

A great evening with friends. We weathered the storm to get there, and so glad we did. The staff and rooms were welcoming. We had a window seat on the bay to watch the weather come in. Drinks were excellent, food fresh and imaginative.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5

We had the shrimp and grits and the stea ...

vip
Dined on September 29, 2015

We had the shrimp and grits and the steak frites. Both dishes were so delish!!! Beautiful atmosphere and the outside dining allows dogs, so that'd a huge plus!

food4
ambience4
service4

When you're in OBX...

Dined on September 21, 2015

Great restaurant, they had wonderful food, great staff and very accommodating for gluten free...even some great dessert choices. Inside is a great space, outside dining is casual (picnic tables) but right on the sound and pretty darn nice.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food3
ambience4
service3

Sunsets are the best time

Dined on September 16, 2015

Decided to give Aqua a shot even though the reviews were mixed. The waitress was pleasant and the food was good. I think it was a little overpriced for what we got. I had scallops and they were cooked very well. It was a special and quite expensive. They don't give the prices for specials. My husband had shrimp and grits. Grits were very bland and shrimp were ok but not exceptional. Crab dip appetizer was good but again not excellent. Coffee was excellent. When I made the reservation we could not get in at 6:45 which was our sweet spot for viewing the sunset. We could only make a 6:15 or 7:30 reservation which would have been after sundown. We took the 6:15 slot and when we got there, about 10 tables were empty! They never filled up, in fact it got emptier. When I asked the waitress she said that's because everybody decided to eat outside. You cannot make a reservation for an outside table. This is just plain ridiculous because most people go there in the evening for the beautiful sunset and do want to sit outside but we did not. I will say I was not disappointed by the sunset it was absolutely spectacular !

Tags: great for outdoor dining, romantic, late-night find, scenic view, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
food4
ambience4
service4

Lovely spot

Dined on September 11, 2015

Aqua in Duck has great ambiance, and what a setting! Just at the start of the boardwalk the views of the sound are amazing (especially if you get there for a sunset.) Two Fridays in a row we arrived early for our reservation and enjoyed drinks in the Adirondack chairs outside and listened to the live music. Our table was inside in a very laid back setting. Food was great, and our server Natalie was a real help recommending both wine and dishes. We will definitely return on future visits to the Outer Banks!

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, scenic view, hot spot

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