Die-hard fans of Spain’s colonial architecture know all about St. Augustine, the Northeastern Florida city with claims as the oldest city in the US. Founded by Spanish settlers in the 16th century, we look at Spain’s culinary scene today in this dazzling historical setting.
Columbia Restaurant . Listed as One of America’s Most Historic Restaurants, Columbia Restaurant has been at the forefront of St. Augustine cuisine since 1905, sharing those same family recipes and values for over a century. Prepare to be transported back in time to Old World Spain, surrounded by azulejos tiling and fountains, as you take your pick from an extensive menu including their own family wine selection.
Must try: Spanish bean soup and the Paella Española.
Avilés Restaurant & Lounge
Don’t be thrown off by this restaurant’s Hilton hotel location - the setting is quaint and coastal, while the specialist chefs really know their Spanish cuisine. So you can relax and dine in good hands - this cozy-colonial restaurant excels in fresh seafood, stunning salads and typical tapas.
Must try: Serrano ham and manchego croquettes.
Spanish Bakery & Cafe
A casual dining institution in St. Augustine, Spanish Bakery & Cafe has been around since the 1960s. Bake goods are served fresh from the stone hearth oven, served daily until they sell out. Enjoy the fresh bread aromas, along with a selection of lunch and snacks that you can eat out on the picnic tables under the city’s famous historic cedar tree.
Must try: Spanish bean salad and gazpacho.
Michael’s Tasting Room
Hailed frequently by the St. Augustine press as the city’s Best Chef, Michael Lugo has fostered his own corner of Spanish fine dining in the historical Buchanti House built in 1764. A local favorite for date night, Michael’s Tasting Room appeals for its sharing tapas through to dry aged steaks, with an award-winning wine cellar appraised by The Wine Spectator.
Must try: Steak with Spanish Blue Cheese Crust and the Cast Iron Shrimp.