The sheer number of delicious eateries on Florida’s Historic Coast has skyrocketed over the last couple of years. St. Augustine is now a city to visit for the food scene, as well as the family-friendly attractions and historical offerings. From Southern fare to international cuisine, you will find it all. Here is where to eat in St. Augustine at nine restaurants we thoroughly enjoyed.
The Floridian serves delectable Southern cuisine, from pimento cheese to pulled pork BBQ waffles. Try one of their craft cocktails or a punchbowl of a creative concoction. Start your dining experience with Company’s Coming!, an appealing appetizer of mouthwatering pickled vegetables, pimento cheese, fried green tomatoes, and a toasted baguette.
If you are looking for a unique dish, the Brisket Pozole Verde is full of flavor and absolutely delicious. Datil jam (a local staple) and pickled onions take the meal to the next level. A second specialty menu item is the ‘N Waffles, with pulled pork, bourbon brown sugar fruit, and buttermilk ricotta over a savory cornmeal waffle. Candied pecans add extra sweetness. The Floridian has several vegan options, too.
For tasty Mexican street food and specialty cocktails, go to pink and purple neon-clad Cantina Louie. Start your dining experience with Queso dip and warm tortilla chips, or Shrimp Ceviche, full of bold flavors and fresh shrimp. Make your main course an old favorite (quesadillas, fajitas, enchiladas, or nachos), or try something unique like the SoCal Avocado Chicken with pineapple salsa. My family swears by the jalapeño and Guavarita Margaritas. It is all fabulous to eat in St. Augustine at Cantina Louie!
The most sought after place to eat in St. Augustine is the Columbia Restaurant, a prominent Florida eatery since 1905. Here you will find fantastic Spanish and Cuban food, tasty sangria, perfect Cuban coffees, and delightful service. While the menu has a bunch of delicious-sounding dishes, the traditional Cuban sandwich and Columbia’s original 1905 Salad were my pick. The sandwich was good, but the salad was off the hook! I’m telling you, the flavors of this “not very attractive salad” will floor you. I loved every bite. Don’t skip the cordadito—my favorite coffee drink with loads of caffeine.
If you like the sangria, you can purchase packet mixes and the gorgeous pitcher in the restaurant’s retail shop.
You’ll find incredible international eats while visiting St. Augustine, and Athena, the premier Greek taverna, is a do-not-miss restaurant in the heart of the historic district. It serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Start your meal with Saganaki (flaming goat cheese) and join in as the staff delivers it to your table with the traditional “Opa!” cheer as it is flambéed. The Greek salads are on point, and the shaved lamb gyro is lip-smacking good.
FYI: Lunch and dinner prices are the same.
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Old City House Inn & Restaurant
Old City House Inn & Restaurant, on the Old Town Trolley route, is a must. This 1873 historical gem has a gorgeous courtyard with fragrant orchids and quaint tables. While it looks and feels exceptionally romantic, it is also casual and relaxed. Old City House has a lamb dish served on a bed of cabbage risotto that is utterly mouthwatering; it melts in your mouth. I went here as part of the Savory Faire Food Tour on my first trip to St. Augustine, and it made a big impression.
Another local’s favorite eatery is Catch 27 (Florida is the 27th state). Here, you can have an appetizer, the 27 Trio, with guacamole, datil pepper pimento cheese, pico de Gallo, and warm fried tortillas. Exquisite margaritas made a great accompaniment.
While freshly-caught seafood is a large portion of the menu, my husband and I went with picture-perfect plates of a Cuban Rice Bowl and Blackened Fish Tacos. My rice bowl was freaking delicious, piled high with blackened chicken, black beans, pico, brown rice, and aioli. I could barely walk when I left from being so pleasantly full.
Inside the Moorish Casa Monica Resort & Spa, an iconic hotel in the heart of downtown St. Augustine, you will want to visit the gorgeous onsite restaurant just to awe over the furnishings. Feeling like you are on the set of Game of Thrones, lovely white chairs and seating groups invite you to sip a tasty cocktail and snack on a Mediterranean tapas plate from Costa Brava. I can attest to how enjoyable and finger-licking-good the charcuterie platter (Spanish cheeses, olives, grilled bread, and meats) and chocolate martinis were.
Yet another international cuisine to be enjoyed while visiting St. Augustine is the scrumptious, and reasonably priced authentic Italian dishes from Amici Italian Restaurant. I can vouch for Amici’s salad (with housemade dressing), hand-tossed pizza, and Veal Parmigiana that the food is dynamite. My favorite dish on the whole menu is Tortellini (meat or cheese) with basil-cream sauce. The pasta was cooked to perfection and the sauce was creamy and luscious, but didn’t feel heavy. Splurge on the billowy bread, but save room for the cannoli cookie sandwich. Yum!
Michael’s Tasting Room (MTR)
A premier restaurant in the heart of St. Augustine is Michael’s Tasting Room, a foodie-worthy spot on St. George Street. The chic eatery that sources local and sustainable ingredients has an eclectic chef-inspired menu and the piquant (peppadew) peppers stuffed with goat cheese alone are worth the visit. I love MTR’s take on Shrimp and Grits (pictured below), but for me, the burger with bacon jam, was pure deliciousness. Chef Michael Lugo has hit a home run with this incredible eatery in the most fun part of town. Try the Sunday brunch if you are in town.
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Read more of our Florida food posts:
Ultimate Guide to Vero Beach