Food + Drink

  • Cataluna Jax 

      Words by Amiyah Golden    I am a proud self-proclaimed foodie — through and through — bu…

  • Bite by Bite — June

    Arlington  Cajun Crab Juice Seafood & Bar Jax cajuncrabjax.com   Cliff’s Bar & Grill cl…

  • Gas Station Heroin

      Words and Photos by Amiyah Golden    Half-full Chipotle Bowls. A Non-Existent Work-Life Balan…

  • Snaccident: Doughnuts and Tater Tots

     Words by Ernest Matthews A snack is generally described as a small food item eaten in between meals…

  • Bite by Bite

    Arlington  Cliff’s Bar & Grill cliffsbarandgrill.com   Fancy Sushi & Grill Japanese Res…

where to get your green grub

by erin thursby Here are some of the local places where you can pick up a quick bite or sit down to a full meal knowing that you’re getting a healthy, green-conscious repast. grassroots Nestled in the bosom of 5 Points is Grassroots (2007 Park Street, 384-4474). They also have a new location in Fleming Island (1915 East West Parkway, 541-0009). It’s long been the go-to spot for the organically inclined. Besides getting your grocery shopping done, you can also pick up a vegan or vegetarian sandwich along with a healthy smoothie. healthy way Organic fast food might not be …

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dish update

by erin thursby Opening up in the space where Tokyo Bay used to be in 5 Points is the Fu Hao Bistro (1003 Park St). While they’ve got a distinctly Chinese decor, their menu is pan-Asian and they have quite a few Thai menu items. Rumor has it they’re hiring Thai chefs. This will be great for the Thai-hungry over on the Westside. (Just so I don’t get hate mail from real estate agents, the Westside is a general term for a collection of more specific neighborhoods, including Riverside and Avondale). While Westsiders don’t have their own Indian joint, they …

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dish update

by erin thursby Cilantro’s on San Jose was my savior when I lived over in Mandarin. There just aren’t that many Indian cuisine options in that neighborhood, and the food is good. Sanjit Kumar Rajak, co-owner and manager was recently arrested. First, he was here illegally; second, he had hired workers that were in the country illegally. The workers, who worked six days a week, were housed by Rajak and paid $600 a week in cash. They were from Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico. Cilantro’s is understandably closed for now. Although I don’t live in Mandarin anymore, I am sad it …

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cornichon

Cornichons, also known as gherkins, start with a fresh cumber-like vegetable that is then pickled while they are still small. These little guys are served with pates in France or strips of fried fish in other European countries. They’re basically baby pickles. Cornichons are the French version. They’re more tart and not as salty as regular pickles. Because they’re less salty, the sweetness is a little more pronounced. The genuine article will be packed with white vinegar, mixed with tiny, peeled silver skin onions and spiced, generally with whole peppercorns and/or mustard seed. In Jacksonville you can find them at …

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well-priced luxe

Alter Der Ruine Alter Der Ruine Alter Der Ruine Alter Der Ruine Alter Der Ruine Nachtmahr Nachtmahr Nachtmahr Nachtmahr Nachtmahr by Erin Thursby Orsay has been in-demand as one of the newer places to nosh. It occupies the space where Crush used to reside and some of that French sensibility has rubbed off. What hasn’t rubbed off is the snobbishness that one would sometimes encounter at Crush. Last year Orsay expanded their seating. Besides the dining room in front, they have a lounge dining area in back, a spacious bar and a small private dining room.   If going out …

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tree cup

by erin thursby Café Nola, inside the MOCA gets its fair share of press, but did you know that you can now enjoy a pleasurable meal inside the Cummer? If you haven’t been to the Cummer Museum’s café in a while, you’re in for a pleasant surprise. They used to just serve smoothies, teas and coffee drinks, but since the fabulous Chef’s Garden took over, they’re offering all that and more. At the Tree Cup you’ll find fresh, pretty salads, gorgeously plated sandwiches, small appetizer plates, hearty soup and decadent desserts all at reasonable prices. Their Baby Blue Salad ($5.95) …

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trying new foods

by erin thursby Every time I shop at the grocery store I keep a weather eye out for something I’ve never seen before. This is not difficult if I’m at, say, one Jacksonville’s small Korean markets, but if you take a closer look, you’d be surprised what you can find on the shelves at Publix and even Wal-Mart. I scout for the exotic mainly in the produce section, scouring the bins for any fruit that looks out of the ordinary. Here are a few of the fruits I’ve sampled in my quest to try something different… kumquat Kumquats are not …

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ingredient secrets

by erin thursby It’s strawberry season here in Florida. This little berry has come a long way since it was mentioned as an ornamental in Roman gardens. But it didn’t really get its start until the 1300s when it began to be cultivated in Europe. By the 1500s it was popular in gardens and widely farmed in France. There’s confusion as to where the name for strawberry comes from. Some experts say that the origins have to do with actual straw, because straw used to be placed in the strawberry beds. Others say that medieval children used to sell the …

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romantic restaurant round up

by erin thursby Stuck as to where to take your sweetheart for the Valentine’s meal? Here’s a short list of just some of the fabulous places you can take her in and around Jacksonville. Valentine’s Day is one of the busiest days for restaurants, so do call ahead and make reservations. Often, they’ll offer a special menu just for the occasion. If you have your heart set on a particular place but they’re booked, see if you can make plans with your sweetheart on an alternate date. 1171 1171 Edgewood Ave. 384-3160 With luscious in-house desserts, an innovative menu and …

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dish update + events

by erin thursby I don’t think I’m the only one with a dirty mind. Oral Explosion is not the name of a strip club or a porno. It’s the name of a company that’s building a stand-alone food court on San Marco Blvd. The name already has connotations, but once you add what the location is standing on (the site of an old strip club), then it’s hilarious. As an interesting side note, I’ve been asking random people in my life what they think of when they hear “Oral Explosion.” The results so far: a type of fizzy candy, something …

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