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St Augustine: Critique this newbie's itinerary for 3-day weekend

Thanks for the tips Indy.

I'm going to stick with Columbia for this trip. Never been, the Spanish angle seems right, and I looked at Collage and looks like I can get very similar or better here in S Fla.

All your advice is appreciated.

Apr 30, 2015
CFByrne in Florida

St Augustine: Critique this newbie's itinerary for 3-day weekend

Thanks TG and Erica on Safe Harbor.

Seeing how it is 45 miles N of my hotel and 1 hour drive, I will have to skip it for this trip. But I will file this away for next time I go further north and pass through Jax.

Sounds from several sources I'll only be able to get whites or frozen royal reds (which is not that bad a thing). Last time I was at Wild Ocean Seafood down near Canaveral they had tons of frozen reds.

Definitely hitting OSteens, with any luck at 11:30AM tomorrow.

Apr 30, 2015
CFByrne in Florida

Lunch in Miami

Some clarification would help...

If you are driving from FLL to the Keys, your fastest route will be to take 595 in FLL west over the the FL Turnpike, and down to Homestead and FL City and then the Keys. This route pretty much bypasses Miami and (often but not always) its traffic and congestion.

So, are you willing to take a slower route solely to visit (quickly, you said) a restaurant in Miami "proper"?

Or, are you just looking for something good to eat on the way from FLL to KW?

If the latter, check these recent threads from folks in the same boat (so to speak):

Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Drive - Looking for a dinner down & lunch/brunch back
http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/1009542

Best fast food alternative heading south from MIA to KW
http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/996508

St Augustine: Critique this newbie's itinerary for 3-day weekend

Thanks, I'll try to go at 11:30AM. Any later and it will interfere with my early dinner anyway.

Apr 27, 2015
CFByrne in Florida

St Augustine: Critique this newbie's itinerary for 3-day weekend

Thanks all so far.

Still looking for a decent local fish market to take home some royal reds perhaps. Also a good bar for craft beer in Historic District.

R1949, I have added a lunch at O'Steens, for as soon as we arrive in town Friday at noon.

TampaGul, I've also added a trip to the Fort Matanzas.

Hobbert, we may hit Cordova Sunday morning.

Thanks!

Apr 27, 2015
CFByrne in Florida

St Augustine: Critique this newbie's itinerary for 3-day weekend

South Florida hounds coming to spend our first weekend in St Augustine Historic District next weekend (May 1-3).

Our tastes run from Michael’s Genuine in Miami to Buccan in Palm Beach to The Ravenous Pig and Luma on Park in Winter Park.

But since we’re hitting St Aug, I would definitely be up focusing on local specialties (Spanish, datil peppers, that Minorcan chowder etc).

Staying at Best Western Bayfront, just a few blocks from St George and Cuna. Have a car.

Here’s my rough draft itinerary. Please comment and even suggest top bites at any of these spots:

Arrive mid-afternoon Friday.

Friday late afternoon (5PM) pre-show dinner at Michael’s Tasting Room
http://www.tastetapas.com/

Friday night Wilco show at St Augustine Amphitheatre

Friday late night spot for craft beer and maybe music back in Historic District? I am a fan.

Saturday Breakfast
http://www.southbeachgrill.net/

Rest of Saturday: See the sights.

Saturday lunch at The Floridian
http://www.thefloridianstaug.com/lunc...

Saturday evening our “big dinner” at Columbia
http://www.columbiarestaurant.com/st_...

Sunday morning: Depart but maybe nice early breakfast first somewhere.

Also looking for an “authentic” seafood market or “fishing village” spot in the area, from St Augustine on south, that might have royal red shrimp and other special local seafood products. (If worse comes to worse I can always get these all the way down in Cape Canaveral).

Thanks in advance!

Apr 25, 2015
CFByrne in Florida

good crawfish in south fl??

Well, buttercup, the bad news is that you are responding to my post from 4 years ago. The good news is that the same folks are still doing the same thing - and within the next few weeks!

They are taking orders now for Fri/Sat Apr 24/25. See attached image.

They are a couple of old hippies who love everything Nawlins related and enjoy having the crawfish boils every spring. You can join them Saturday evening - BYO and hang out - or place an order for pickup.

The location is literally right behind the infamous Frog dive bar on N Federal Hwy in Delray.

If you need more deets, hit me up on Twitter or IG.

@CharlieDelray

PS: Tobacco Road is also doing their annual thing this Sunday, at a new location down in the 305.

Palm Beach County openings 2015

I'm looking fwd to Clay's new place too.

Plus, he's openly admitted he spent time at PO to get ideas for his pizza. That seems like a good omen to me.

At former location of Reward Lighting - 1901 S Dixie Hwy, a few blocks N of Belvedere.

BTW, he'll be at Taste of the Nation this Thursday, it's a good event for a good cause:

http://ce.strength.org/palmbeach

And they'll be no shortage of nice bites:

2015 Participants
3800 Ocean
Addison Reserve Country Club
Aioli
Angle at Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa
Avocado Grill
Benny's on the Beach
Būccan
Cafe Boulud
Cafe Chardonnay
Casa D'Angelo
Chops Lobster Bar
Citrus Grillhouse
City Fish Market
Coolinary Cafe
Cordon Bleu Catering
DADA
Del Frisco's Grille
Earth & Sugar
Fin & Feather
Four Seasons
Guanabanas
Ian's Tropical Grill
Kapow Noodle Bar
Max's Harvest
Meat Market
Mozzarita
PB Catch Seafood & Raw Bar
Rebel House
Shake Shack
Spoto's Oyster Bar
Table 26
Talay Thai
The Sugar Monkey

Special Occasion Restaurant near Boca Raton?

I would seriously consider taking a relaxing and scenic half-hour drive up A1A to Palm Beach. There, you can choose from Cafe Boulud or Buccan (within two blocks of each other).

Boulud, quieter and more on the formal side (but not big-city formal).

http://www.cafeboulud.com/palmbeach/

But if you want to try something perhaps a bit more unique to South Florida, Buccan gets the call. Loud and more of a "scene", but Chef Clay Conley and team consistently deliver at a very high level.

http://buccanpalmbeach.com/

Any casual restaurant in Boca Raton area for a largish group?

First, I am glad you enjoyed Nick's. I was there again recently, and I remember thinking yes, this would be very good for certain occasions/groups.

Sadly, I also found the no-clam situation. I do know the rough winter created shortages up north - for example, see this article from March:

http://www.longislandernews.com/the-l...

One would hope that's over now, or at least, on the rebound.

However, if I return again soon and still no clams, I may start a fight myself. :-)

Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Drive - Looking for a dinner down & lunch/brunch back

BTW just for kicks I mapped it, and FLL to KW is 190 miles... so half way (in terms of distance) would be around MM95, which is Tavernier, close to lower Key Largo.

In that area, I'd second Key Largo Fisheries (turnoff is right around MM100). For starters, the conch chowder is pretty good, and the fritters actually have conch in them (shocking!).

http://www.keylargofisheries.com/

Another option with a real Keysie feel would be Snapper's, oceanside right at MM95, a few blocks off US1. The food will not blow you away, but the waterfront cove and atmosphere will put you in the Keys mood instantly.

http://snapperskeylargo.com/

BTW the upper keys are not very scenic from US1. You may wonder when the cool stuff shows up.

Wait... once you hit lower Islamorada (MM 75-ish), it will all become clear.

Buying local produce, other than at farmers markets...

I'm excited to hear Bedner's is opening an outpost in NE Delray, near downtown.

Specifically, it sounds like it will be right around the corner from 3rd and 3rd and Fit Food. (On a personal note, about 6 blocks from my house).

It may not be perfect, but it's likely to be another nice option to choose from. Deets:

http://www.bocamag.com/blog/2015/04/0...

good crawfish in south fl??

The Federal is doing it's crawfish thing again, starting tonight.

https://www.facebook.com/TheFederalMia

Gotta make it down there one of these days.

1 Cuban Lunch: Versaille vs El Palacio de los Jugos

I may be nearby El Palacio de Los Jugos mid-day today.

Must-gets? I hear the chicharones are pretty good...

I'm not interested in going anywhere else for today's particular adventure.

TIA.

Shishito peppers

Spotted at TJ's in Delray yesterday

Any casual restaurant in Boca Raton area for a largish group?

Agree on Nick's Pizza.

Lettuce, that was my initial thought too. It's loud and they are used to big groups, and with kids too. (I know, I've sat next to them). A few blocks from the big Boca Raton Town Center Mall, just off 95 and Glades.

And Monica, I don't know if the family eats such things, but the White Clam Pizza is excellent (when available)... I get it with garlic and bacon, but other varieties avail too. If not, traditional is pretty good too.

They do a nice Panzanella salad as well.

Lunch on the water between West Palm and Boca

I don't know of any "dives" on the water in Palm Beach county. If so, maybe we can buy them for a steal - and make a fortune ourselves!

Sure, Two Georges and Banana Boat are nothing special in the food department. Like oh so many waterfront restaurants.

But you can take a group there and have a decent lunch, with a nice, direct waterfront (ICW) experience, for a middle-of-the-road price.

A burger, maybe $12 or something, dolphin sandwich, what, $15. Whatever. I don't think that's "overpriced". Do we really need a "price point" to see if they will spend $15 but not $20 for lunch with friends on the water?

It's not going to be a gourmet experience. But probably 95% of the people who dine there are going to be perfectly happy. (The huge crowds still after some 20 years in business probably attest to that).

And I got the feeling (I could be wrong) that would be just fine with the OP.

Hottest Taco Joint in Miami

Olee Fowler over at Eater has a nice updated list of 16 Miami/Dade-area joints...

http://miami.eater.com/maps/best-taco...

I'm annoyed I walked right past Coyo this Saturday and didn't realize what it was.

Lunch on the water between West Palm and Boca

Boston's on the Beach is in East Delray, however, it's not really "on the beach". It's on the other (west) side of busy A1A, as well as large stands of Sea Grapes. So you're not going to see any water sitting at Boston's. Although you could certainly visit the less-casual 50 Ocean upstairs - some seats have spectacular ocean views.

From WPB to Boca there are surprisingly few places actually "ON" the water.

For the ocean, you're looking at Benny's on the Beach in Lake Worth and Dune Deck in Lantana for casual.

Then, a few hotels also have restaurants including Eau Palm Beach (nee Ritz Carlton) in Manalapan and Tideline Resort (nee Omphoy), but I've not been to either in quite a while.

You could also take a look at Boca Beach Club but I believe you have to be a member or staying at the hotel...

http://www.bocabeachclub.com/dine/

For the Intracoastal, you've got Two George's and Banana Boat in Boynton Beach (both just off the Ocean Avenue bridge). And in Delray, Deck 84 and the new Hudson at Waterway East, both at Atlantic Ave and the ICW.

EDIT: Add Key Lime House on the ICW in Lantana

Any food blogs covering Ft. Lauderdale to Boynton Beach?

There are a few. But these days, if you want to stay up-to-date, you're probably better off following folks on Twitter and Instagram.

On Instagram, for example, you can follow SoFlaFoodie who gets around PBC quite a bit. YoungGoHard dines out in Delray often.

A good trick for getting started is to find a few of your favorite restaurants and/or chefs on IG. Then, follow them, and see who makes good comments on their posts, or follows them, or that they follow.

Soon, you'll have a decent "data feed" of food, dining and restaurant news tailored to your own likes, locations, etc.

I've eaten here and it was good! (I'll go first) Sweetwater (Boynton)

Speaking of Sweetwater...

I hear that Lauren DeShields, Exec Chef at Market 17 in Fort Lauderdale, is now Exec Chef here.

According to her public LinkedIn bio, looks like she still may be "consulting" at M17...

If anyone has the scoop, please update.

Best Pizza in South Florida

Pauli Gee's of Brooklyn had been reported to be spreading its wings:

http://www.eater.com/2013/12/23/63089...

Well, a move into Miami now appears to be official:

http://miami.eater.com/2015/3/10/8183...

I am hoping they offer the Hellboy, among others, as it sounds similar to Roberta's BeeSting, which is one of my all-time favs.

Hellboy
Fresh Mozzarella, Italian Tomatoes, Berkshire Sopressata Piccante, Parmigiano Reggiano and Mike’s HOT Honey

http://pauliegee.com/greenpoint/

Check Please South Florida

And if you do not get "Check, Please!" on your TV provider (for example, like me with DirecTV in Palm Beach), you can view segments here:

Rebel House:
http://video.wpbt2.org/video/2365440020/

Papa's Tapas:
http://video.wpbt2.org/video/2365440011/

Coolinary Cafe:
http://video.wpbt2.org/video/2365440008/

Le Tub - Does it live up to the hype?

I finally show up at LeTub, and now rumors start that it is closing! Hah. :-)

Luckily they are FALSE. Good report from Nicole at Clean Plate:

http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/cle...

And some good dope on the burgers:

"Sidle has explained the secret to this burger is simple, the right balance of chuck with top-quality ground sirloin, combined with simple seasonings. The preground blend is delivered each morning, and the burger is seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic powder before it's densely packed into a mammoth patty with a thick mound in the middle. From there, it remains on the char-grill for a minimum of 20 minutes, under a thick cloud of smoke until it's cooked to the requested doneness."

What I found most ironic on my visit: They're building the mammoth zillion dollar Margaritaville across the street. Yet this little dump will have much more of that kind of "spirit" than any new hotel complex ever will.

Ft Pierce, Port St Lucie area local restaurants?

Anyone been to Crawdaddy's in Jensen Beach lately? Reports?

I'm headed to PSL next Saturday from Delray, andI'm willing to make a diversion to check out a Cajun joint.

http://crawdaddysjensenbeach.com/

"Crawdaddy’s was established in 1998 by brothers Mark and John Kren."

Mar 01, 2015
CFByrne in Florida

Bamboo Fire Discount

As it turns out, I was there just this Wed night for the first time in a while.

Among other dishes, I had the Conch Ceviche. Similar to what most would call Conch Salad.

It was perhaps the best I've ever had. It was NOT loaded with conch but I really didn't care. Fantastic fresh tasting vegs and the "broth" was mind-blowing.

I hear the Oxtail is really great these days too - so I am going back for that soon.

ALSO - right now during "season" they are also open Sunday, starting around 2PM. That could be a great time to go when this little hideaway is not slammed - we all know service can get very very slow when they are busy due to tiny kitchen and staff.

Is there really no Cajun food in Palm Beach County?

Just happened to come across this place online:

http://crawdaddysjensenbeach.com/

It's up in Jensen Beach - east of Port St Lucie.

May have to check it out when I go up for a spring training game for NY's best baseball team.

I saw in some ancient comments on the FL board, LargeLife has been there. What's the scoop, LL?

Sapphire Indian Cuisine, Boca Raton

You can get the whole "Indian Restaurants in Palm Beach County" scoop in this thread:

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/501298

Much of it is old, but there's recent stuff too, including some on Sapphire.

Le Tub - Does it live up to the hype?

Posting in this old thread because virtually all the comments in here still hold true. Long wait, just chill out, service can be sketchy etc etc.

But no doubt one of the coolest old-Florida waterfront dive restaurants around.

Come and plan to take a lot of time, probably helps if you can drink a lot to kill the time.

Visited here for first time Saturday afternoon around 1:30 PM. Crowded but not packed.

I was solo so sat at the bar/counter, where I was able to watch the cook and all the servers placing/picking up orders.

A few notes:

*My burger was very very good. They are really thick and cooked on a flaming grill. So they get a great char/crust on the outside, but so thick they can turn out medium inside. I cut off a piece of meat before diving into the burger and it was nicely seasoned.

*Maybe they used to cook only 2 or 4 at a time, but now it is more like 16 or 20, as the photo shows. But still, they must have been on that grill for 15 minutes. So I don't know how long the wait might get when they are slammed... but it could be a looooong time.

*They now take credit cards. Not sure about Amex, I used Visa.

*The burger is now $11, add 50 cents for cheese.

I want to go back and try again, and also check out the chili and the gumbo.

http://www.theletub.com/menu.asp

TOP FOOD TRUCKS IN THE MIA

Looking for a reasonably up-to-date list of food trucks (ideally good ones!) that serve the Delray Beach area.

A friend is planning a big event...