Aqua Restaurant and Spa - Duck, NC

4.6
1089 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
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!
What 1089 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.7
service
4.6
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
96% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Western NC
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great environment and phenomenal food. Loved the duck and shrimp and grits.

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MM
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very beautiful and peaceful with amazing great food. Definitely will be recommended and coming back.

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MW
1 review
Dined on July 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We arrived 20 minutes early for our reservation. We went to the bar and there was live music that matched the vibe perfectly. Aqua has a nice cocktail menu however, some of them are extremely overpriced. The sound side Manhattan for example was $17! I believe the base was Basil Hayden which you can get a bottle of for around $23. With dinner I had the Sazerac which was $15 but it was the best Sazerac I have ever had. After 30 minutes, we were sat at our table. CJ provided great personality and knowledge. The service was a little slow to get started but probably still a 9/10. Food was very good. I enjoyed a nearly perfectly cooked medium rare filet. The outside was a little charred in spots on the outside. The volume level while the dinning room was full was very loud, but it calmed down as it got later in the evening. We will be sure to return with our next visit to the coast and would recommend to friends.

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M
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on July 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dinner was exceptional, as was our server, Olena. We try to come here every time we visit the Outer Banks, and you never disappoint us. This time, I was only able to eat soft foods due to dental accident. Our server was able to substitute a sublime cheesy grits/woodland mushrooms for the vegetable portion of my entree. The Tile fish entree was amazing! Thanks so much!

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AC
New England
12 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This restaurant is fantastic! Food is so delicious!! Also, great quality for the money. (I was surprised how low the bill was!) Views are awesome! Right on the water!

Our only regret was that we went to the restaurant so late in our vacation and could only go TWICE before we left town!

Give Aqua a try! You will not be disappointed.

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LM
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 5

Aqua is a great place for drinks, they actually have a happy hour (which I am not sure is legal in NC).
It is right on the sound so the sunset view is excellent.

Love everything about it except the dinner prices are pretty high and you have to pay for any sides.

Paid $28 for Shrimp and Grits which was decent though portion could have been better. At that price, you would think that they could throw in a few potatoes and a vegetable.

Now that is dinner which is entrees only, they have sandwiches at lunch which would be a better choice.

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LP
Philadelphia
19 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love Aqua! We always book months in advance before our annual trip to the OBX. Sometimes we eat there twice! Specials are thoughtful, local fish/seafood and vegetables.

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D
Pittsburgh
186 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We loved it here!

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CA
New York Area
17 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Beautiful view and delicious food! We had the crab dip and crostini appetizer which was out of this world! For dinner we both had the pasta with scallops and shrimp. Too full for dessert!

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DC
Cleveland
4 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

The setting was perfect, service was great. They could not cook a steak for the life of them. Two tries, just didn’t work out. No sweat maybe just a bad night. The sunset and location was near perfection

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DR
Richmond
3 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great view, choice of inside or outside seating. Menu is diverse and everything we have had over the years has been very good. A number of GF options. Nice bar. Open for lunch and dinner. service is not rushed.

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OT
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The staff at Aqua was amazing. 40th birthday from my wife’s sister in law. Awesome Massages and an outstanding lunch with exceptional service. I don’t write a lot of reviews but four of my favorite women were super pleased. Lunch diversion from Pine Island in July and nothing but 5 star!

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CS
Richmond
14 reviews
Dined on July 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great shrimp and grits! Wonderful service, and a fantastic sunset!

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DV
Las Vegas
5 reviews
Dined on July 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Year by year we find this spot our favorite for either casual or fine dining. Staff is excellent. View of sound perfect at sunset

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l
Detroit
6 reviews
Dined on July 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and an awesome location. Will do it again soon

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TM
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food, service and sound views were all outstanding!

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SR
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved our dinner at Aqua. Always a great meal. Keep coming back year after year.

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LR
1 review
Dined on July 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food is of outstanding quality and super fresh. The restaurant staff and wait staff are very friendly, helpful with suggestions and very attentive to each of their tables. We have been going for many years and Aqua never disappoints us. Lunch is also very fun to sit outside and enjoy eating on the water with great views. Highly recommend this as a must go during your vacation!!

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OT
1 review
Dined on July 4, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

One member ordered the tuna (the daily special) asked for it to be cooked and it was not fully cooked

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on July 2, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Another great, memorable dinner out with the family during our annual Corolla vacation. Food was great, ambiance was excellent and the service was outstanding!

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SR
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on June 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Been going here since it opened. Always a great meal and fantastic atmosphere.

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t
Dallas
94 reviews
Dined on June 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Our annual family dinner at Aqua. Always nice. The food and service are excellent. We truly enjoy going here every year. Thanks!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exceptional service!

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JM
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

We visit the Outerbanks yearly July 4th week and always have a dinner @ Aqua. The food is always unique and delicious.
Amazing Atlantic Bluefin Tuna over veggies and a Beet Purée.
Gorgeous plating and it was one of the best Tuna dishes I’ve eaten.

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SW
Raleigh
7 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exceptional service and great food/drink for lunch. Most if not all tables have a great view of the water. Would definitely go back.

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JC
New England
14 reviews
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food fantastic service and beautiful view. Highly recommend it. Always excellent for any occasion.

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OT
1 review
Dined on June 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food was very good. Not a huge menu but our group of six enjoyed everything we tried very much. Service was good and the sunset views were amazing.

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on June 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely wonderful meal!

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HH
Wilmington
22 reviews
Dined on June 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I had the tuna special, which was rare tuna over a combination of sautéed local veggies...and it was one of the best dishes I’ve ever had at Aqua! Great service, as always, from Alice. Thanks, guys!

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CJ
Pittsburgh
1 review
Dined on June 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Alway a great time

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MR
1 review
Dined on June 24, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The service was wonderful. The food was delicious; The portion size did not match the price. While the restaurant seemed loud it was still very easy to Gabe a private conversation. Overall it was a pleasant experience.

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AM
Raleigh
5 reviews
Dined on June 22, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

The sunset views from the deck can't be topped, and the food is really great!

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LP
Washington DC
19 reviews
Dined on June 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved this place so much we ate here twice in 3 days. Friendly service and great food. The special was tilefish and it was amazing. Shrimp and grits were also fantastic. Waited in the bar for a table near the windows and bartenders were super friendly, drinks were great and unbelievable view of the sunset. Most beautiful sunset of our lives right here. Highly recommend, just love this place. Can’t wait to go back.

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DM
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on June 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My wife and I reserved a window table at AQUA, and our request was honored to the letter. We had a gorgeous view of the sunset as we enjoyed our pre-dinner cocktails and then our appetizers. We both started with the seared ahi tuna appetizers, which were superb. For our entrees, my wife had the "catch of the day," and I had the Scottish salmon. Both were perfect. Our first choice of wine was sold out, but our server suggested a very good substitute in the same price range. After dinner, my wife had a sauternes with her Tres Leches cake, and I had a Graham's 20-year Tawny Port with the chocolate tart.

In all, it was an elegant meal served in a lovely space with an upbeat but subdued atmosphere. This was our second time dining at AQUA, and it has become one of our favorite establishments in the Outer Banks.

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DD
Richmond
8 reviews
Dined on June 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was great as was the service. Couple of the specialty drinks were disappointing but overall would return!

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OT
New York Area
19 reviews
Dined on June 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Fabulous views, great food and nice ambience. Place got very busy and service declined as a result.

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JM
Philadelphia
20 reviews
Dined on June 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

This was our third or fourth time at Aqua. We have always had excellent meals and service. They have a good wine list and some interesting drink specials. Their fresh fish entrees are always done just right - great seasonings without overpowering the natural flavor of the fish. We will return.

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P
Washington DC
16 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Agree with many others that Agua food pricing is on the high side, but I’m willing to pay extra for great food and service. Free parking on their lot. Nice water views. Entertainment some nights, one man band, outside seating area.

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OT
1 review
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience and a beautiful ocean view!

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D
Western NC
50 reviews
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Family celebration of beach week. Food was outstanding! Service was enthusiastic, helpful, and witty. Beautiful view of the sunset. A perfect evening. Best meal of the week.

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