Do you live to eat?
You and your tastebuds will be very very happy in St. Augustine–it’s a foodie paradise!! Not only are there over 260 restaurants listed on Yelp as being near St. Augustine, it seems like almost every week one or more of our restaurants are featured in national publications, and tons and tons of ‘best of’ lists.
Over 120 of the restaurants are an easy walk from the Bayfront Marin House–and when you walk to dinner you’re allowed to order dessert! (At least, that’s how we’ve been told that it works). Other restaurants are within a 10-15 minute drive, but well worth finding your car keys.
The restaurants and attractions listed below are some of our favorite foodie experiences. If you have a specific type of food or restaurant you’re looking for (like one of St. Augustine’s best special occasion restaurants, or our favorite seafood restaurants, best burgers, or restaurants on the water), please let us know and we’re happy to make recommendations for your particular tastes.
But if you want a real foodie stay, consider the following options:
Note: Menus, prices, and tour times are gathered from the respective companies/attractions/restaurants and are subject to change. Please check with the venue before planning your day–or ask us to confirm your preferences for you!
Happy Hour at the Bayfront Marin House. Schedule your check-in to coincide with our nightly happy hour, held 5-7 in our dining room. Enjoy our homemade appetizers (sample items: guacamole, bruschetta, meatball sliders, ham wraps, etc) and relax with a glass of our famous sangria. We also serve various beers, and three kinds of wine. It’s a great way to start your St. Augustine vacation, and a nice way to unwind after traveling.
Insider’s Tip: We bake one homemade dessert each day. Sometimes it’s gone by 6:00, and sometimes there is still some leftover for our morning crew (guess which option they always wish for?) If dessert looks good to you, but you aren’t hungry right then, ask us to wrap a piece for you to stash in your room.
Dinner at Lllama. Right across the Bridge of Lions, Llama restaurant is a very small Peruvian restaurant. How small? about 12 tables, so make a reservation. Don’t know much about Peruvian food? Me either, yet I was happy with everything I ordered (even the items that I couldn’t pronounce). Try the macho, a pan seared grouped over canary beans and rice, and topped with shrimp, calamari and a cream of seafood. We also loved the ceviche–fresh corvina marinated in lime juice and cilantro, and served with sweet potatoes and Peruvian giant corn. Eating vegetarian? Try the mango ceviche, with some of the same flavors, but completely without meat! Who knew? 415 Anastasia Blvd, 904.819.1760.
Insider’s tip: The drinks are as impressive as the meal. Try the flower bomb–a combination of prosecco, elderflower syrup, rose essence, and an orchid, which slowly opens as you drink it. It’s as good as dessert, and truly beautiful!
Breakfast at the Bayfront Marin House. Ask for a copy of the recipe of the day–we are always happy to share our kitchen secrets! What is the most popular recipe we give out? It’s a tie…our french toast for breakfast and our sangria at happy hour. Breakfast is served any time from 8am-10am–sit in our gazebo, on our patio, or in our dining room. Or treat yourself, and ask to have breakfast delivered to your room.
Afternoon Food and Drink Tours. St. Augustine Distillery, San Sebastian Winery, and Whetstone’s Chocolate Tour–three tours within a six block area. Give your afternoon a sweet start with a tour of Whetstone’s Chocolate Factory Tour – 139 King Street, 904.825.1710). Then head to the distillery, to sample St. Augustine-made vodka, gin, rum, whiskey, and bourbon. If you’re hungry, swing by the attached restaurant, the Ice Plant, where the food is great and the drinks are always changing – 112 Riberia Street, 904.825.4962. This farmer’s daughter loved the tour and the movie featuring people who grow the heirloom sugar cane. Wrap up the tours at San Sebastian winery, and enjoy a pre-dinner drink on their rooftop deck. It’s a great view of our downtown area! 157 King Street, 904.826.1594.
Dinner at Collage or Blackfly. If you ask 10 locals for the best restaurant in town, at least half of them will likely say Collage. Diners agree–Open Table recently named Collage one of the 100 best restaurants in the country. We’re definitely not disagreeing with anyone here–the lobster ravioli at Collage is one of our favorite meals in town! But the secret is out, and it can be difficult to get a table at Collage. When Collage is full, we sneak across the bridge to the Blackfly restaurant–it’s owned by the same people, with the same amazing culinary talent! When we go, I have to get the tuna with house pickled vegetables, and the hub finds it hard to resist their decadent lobster macaroni and cheese (despite not being a fan of mac and cheese as a kid). You don’t have to have special occasion food–Blackfly makes a great wood fired pizza as well. (Collage, 60 Hypolita, 904.829.0055; Blackfly the Restaurant, 108 Anastasia, 904.201.6300.
Breakfast at the BMH. Take advantage of our ‘light start’ breakfast this morning, to ensure you have plenty of room for lunch today.
Lunch at Catch 27. When you come to Florida, you want to have some seafood. Catch 27 offers some of the best of the best. My favorite is the BLT appetizer: crispy cornmeal-fried oysters, cooked perfectly and perched atop a deviled egg, which is nestled in a homemade tomato bacon jam and micro greens. It’s perfect for a light lunch, paired with Minorcan clam chowder (some of the original European settlers in St. Augustine were from the island of Minorca, off the Spanish coast). Or try their fish sandwich, or crispy catfish sliders. Reservations suggested, but not taken online–so plan on calling if you want to ensure a seat in this cozy restaurant. 40 Charlotte Street, 904.217.3542.
Foodie Tours. Spend the afternoon sampling many of St. Augustine’s treats with a food or wine tour by The Tasting Tours. You can choose your mode of transportation–do a walking tour, a roadster tour, or a carriage tour. No matter how you get around, tours last 2.5 to three hours, and generally make 4-5 stops. Tours focus on the area’s culinary history, or craft beers, or wine, or desserts. 904.325.3911.
Michael’s Tasting Room. Chef Michael Lugo serves up international food with a flair. His recipes draw on his native Puerto Rico, and include local favorites like the indigenous datil pepper, used on appetizers like grilled oysters, and pinchos boricua (grilled pork skewers). Enjoy a light dinner of small plates, or try one of his masterful entrees–the elegant atmosphere and attentive service will make you feel special. 25 Cordova Street, 904.810.2400.
Insider’s Tip: Chef Michael will also create a private chef’s table, by request. Enjoy multiple courses, each paired with the perfect wine, and introduced by Michael himself. Inquire as to availability.
Drinks at Prohibition Kitchen. It’s Saturday night, and the place to be downtown is Prohibition Kitchen. Grab a seat at the bar and enjoy the live music and friendly atmosphere–you’re sure to meet both tourists and residents. If you have any room after dinner, order one of their tipsy milkshakes to share–we love the hot fudge brownie and bourbon shake. And yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like. Yummmmm. 119 St. George Street, 904.209.5704.
Brunch at Preserved. This southern-style restaurant, located in an old Victorian house, is a great new addition to the Lincolnville food scene. They serve dinner every night, and brunch on Saturdays and Sundays. If you opt for dinner (they call it supper), we recommend the beef short ribs. For brunch, try the Mayport shrimp & grits with crispy bacon and creamed corn. Or get your country on, with biscuits & gravy. 102 Bridge Street, 904.679.4940.
Gifts to remember: Before you leave St. Augustine, grab a couple of foodie goodies to remember your stay (or take home for friends). Buy a sampler pack of four truffles from Claude’s Chocolates at 6 Granada Street–and if it’s a chilly day, grab a seat at one of their tables and enjoy the best spicy hot chocolate you’ll ever have – 904.829.5790. As you head out King Street, stop at Carmelo’s Pizza and Marketplace (146 King Street) to grab a bottle or two of Minorcan Datil Pepper sauce. It’s the sauce we use at the inn (we serve it with several of our appetizers at happy hour), and it uses all locally grown peppers.
Annual Events for Food Lovers in St. Augustine, FL
Plan your next trip around a special foodie event! See specific dates for each at the respective websites.
Mid-March. Lions Club Seafood Festival at Francis Field. Enjoy a weekend of seafood, crafts, rides, and activities.
Early April. Rhythm & Ribs Festival at Francis Field. Pretty self-explanatory–music, ribs, and lots of barbecue.
End of April. A Taste of St. Augustine at the Amphitheatre. A day-long competition for local restaurants, and a great place to sample specialties from all around town.
October: Spanish Wine Month
First weekend of November. Great Chowder Debate at the Conch House. Proceeds benefit Big Brothers and Big Sisters.
Second weekend in December. St. Augustine bed and breakfast tour. Come and see all the inns decked out in their holiday finest! Each inn pairs with a local restaurant, which offers small bites or drinks throughout the day. Food and holiday décor–sign us up! (And we suggest you sign up early, as the event is usually a sell out).