One of our favorite Florida Gulf fish is the Grouper. We often travel over 20 miles to find areas that hold good-size fish. In-shore waters usually hold smaller grouper, so the further out you go, the better your chance of catching bigger fish.
Grouper live along the bottom and love to hide in holes and crevices on the ocean floor waiting for food to swim or crawl by. Live or dead bait works great for them, but I have discovered that aggressively working a 4-6 oz. vertical jigging spoon just off the bottom can also produce quality fish.
The key is to fish close to the bottom without getting stuck. This may sound easy but remember that winds and tides usually move your line fast so you constantly have to either let line out or pick line up to just touch the bottom. Once a grouper is hooked it has one goal…to head right back into it’s layer so, it is extremely important to use a strong drag and don’t give them an inch!!