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Eating and Cooking are the real keys to a great life. I have created this Food Blog to share with you the places I go. Some may be in your backyard, or mine. If I am eating out, or cooking at home, I will share pictures and thoughts about everything from service and lighting to recipes and vegetable sales. Please join me in this never ending love for food. Find me on facebook! www.facebook.com/SouthernGrub

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Pita Pit, Fleming Island, Florida…

Their motto is "Fresh Thinking, Healthy Eating." Lose those big buns once and for all!
Pita Pit is the new, young, fresh, and healthy way of life! Located across the street from O2B Kids right in front of Carmike Cinemas. It is in a great location for a fast lunch pick up- or to sit, relax, and take a breather while you eat. All of the ingredients are fresh and made to order. You can dine in, take-out, or use their FREE delivery service!!! The also cater anything large or small. You can make any pita the way you want it, so it never gets old. I could eat here every day. Pita Pit being so affordable and healthy, eating there every day is actually a good idea. You always want more. From a little research I found out they won the Clean Plate Award several times. I am always impressed by how spotless the restaurant and bathrooms are. Pita Pit loves all customers but if you join the e-mail club or follow on Facebook and/or Twitter you get tons of specials daily. The staff is super friendly and the owners always seem to be on site. This means great customer service. Breakfast pitas are served all day long, and are great in the morning if you’re on the run. The menu has everything covered, from Breakfast Pitas, Meat Pitas, Veggie Pitas, to Kids Pitas. Such as the Dagwood, Chicken Ceaser, Chicken Crave, Club, Philly Steak, Gyro, Chicken Souvlaki, Turkey, Roast Beef, Black Forrest Ham, BLT, Tuna, Falafel, Hummus, Babaganoush, and many more. Ranging anywhere from $5 - $6. They offer several different kinds of cheese, sauces, snacks, cookies, toppings, etc. Plus Kids Eat FREE Every Monday through Wednesday. You can also order any pita “Fork Style” and have it as a salad. Pita Pit gets FIVE STARS from me. In my group today we had a hummus pita, chicken ceaser, and the philly steak, all to die for!!! My pictures don’t do it justice so go check it out and leave comments below to let me know what you think.

1810-5 Town Center Boulevard
Fleming Island, FL 32003
(904) 579-4930

Monday, June 28, 2010

Taverna OPA... Orlando, FL

Taverna Opa - Greek Cuisine – Orlando
On a recent trip to Orlando for Cirque Du Soleil I had lunch at Taverna Opa.
I have never been to this place but have heard about others in Florida. We arrived around noon and were the only table, I thought that might mean bad news for the food we ordered but couldn’t have been more wrong. It was AMAZING. The ambiance was cool, fun, bright and young! We decided to order a few different appetizers and not meals so that we could try more of everything. Our server brought us fresh pitas and made hummus fresh at our table. It had a strong garlic flavor, which I loved! The Traditional Greek Salad ($9) was fresh vine ripe tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, peppers, kalamata olives, feta, EVOO, vinegar, and fresh oregano. This was simple, but delicious. The feta was fresh and melted in your mouth. The Asparagus ($7) was amazing, tasted like butter and had chopped tomato, garlic, and a splash of wine. Yummy Yummy Yummy! The best dish we had was the Grilled Octopus ($10). The Octopus is grilled over oak-wood fire and extremely tender. A little drizzle of lemon juice and it’s a one of a kind flavor. Must try it! The hours of operation are 11am until the Ouzo runs out.
Phone: 407-351-8660

Monday, June 21, 2010

D' Fontana, Authentic Italian Food! Green Cove Springs, FL

A Pizzeria and Ristorante in Green Cove Springs! A quaint little place with great Italian food.Open Mon-Thur 11-9 and Fr-Sat 11-10. You can view the entire menu online at www.dfontana.com
In this order we had one small Greek Salad ($4.75) and a Med White Pizza ($15.99)
The pizza doesn't seem to be cheap anywhere these days, especially places like Mellow Mushroom. The White Pizza here is the only one I've tried and I LOVE it.
The Greek Salad is pretty standard, the dressing is good. In previous visits I have had the Manicotti ($9.75) and the Stuffed Shells ($9.75) and both were good! They came out piping hot and extra cheesy!!! My experiences here have been good, occionally I've had to wait a little extra on a meal, but nothing to complain about.
D' Fontana offers the following and more: Fried Mozzarella, Onion Rings, Fried Calamari, Meatballs, Sausage, Chicken Wings, Salads, Antipasto, Hot and Cold Subs, Spaghetti, Linguine, Veal, Shrimp, Lobster Ravioli, Tortellini Alla Penna, multiple Chicken dishes, Eggplant Rollantini, Baked Ziti, Lasagna, New York Style Pizza, Sicilian Pizza, Soups, Rolls, Calzones, Stromboli, Kids Meals, and Dessert.
(904) 529-5515
324 Ferris Street
Green Cove Springs, FL
Check it out and let me know what you think in the comment section below!

Father's Day Dinner at home...

Happy Father's Day!
I made a crab cake appetizer that I pan-fried in butter. I cooked salmon on the inside grill, skin side down always. I keep it on med-low with all the spices on top. If the salmon is thick you can tent it with foil to keep the heat in. I cooked steaks and terriyaki chicken on the grill outside. The chicken marinade I used is the kind they sell in Hawaii, I found it at World Market. The lobster tail I cooked inside. I removed the meat from the shell and pan-fried in butter, lemon, lemon zest, salt and pepper. The corn boiled, and the asparagus I cooked on the grill outside. Everything was so good I didn't get a chance to take after pictures! Leave me comments and let me know what your special Father's Day meal was!!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Top of the Reef! Green Cove Springs, FL

I had lunch at Top of the Reef today. Every time I eat there I always order the same thing. The fried shrimp. It is mouth watering! You can get them normal or cajun. In the lunch special you get 6 shrimp, two sides, and a tea for $6.95. Everyone at my table today ordered the same thing with different sides. I had the Coleslaw and Cauliflower Au Gratin, it was cheesy and tasty. The green beans are made southern style, with bacon, butter, and cooked til soft. Yum! The only thing I don't love is the sliced peaches, and only because they aren't fresh. On your table you have a daily list of what vegetables they offer. It usually has around 15 different choices. Top of the Reef always has a fresh fish of the day. Tonight's special is the Prime Rib. I have heard people talk about it for months so it should be really good! The onion rings are a good appetizer. They offer lots of other seafood, meat, poultry, gator, soups, and salads. Check it out and let me know what you think in the comment section!!
Top of the Reef
414 Walnut Street
Green Cove Springs, FL 32043
(904) 284-7178

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Rockin Rodz Bar and Grill... Fleming Island

Rockin Rodz has just opened on 220 and College in the Food Lion shopping center. This will allow for plenty of parking when the bar grows popular. And it will. The atmosphere inside was awesome. Guitars cover the walls, flat screen TV's by the bar, and bright colors add to the music theme. Our server was Megan C. and she was amazing. I would request her when you visit! The bathrooms are clean. The booths are comfy. And for some people, the ice is important. They have rabbit ice, which is my favorite. On to the food, bread came out after our drinks in a cute guitar basket! Several different kinds were included, and different flavors of butter. The pecan bread was to die for!!! Our wonderful server brought us tasting spoons of the She Crab Soup and the Hot Rod Gumbo and they both were delicious. For an appeteaser we had the Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail ($8). The shrimp were indeed large and the order came with 5 shrimp and cocktail sauce. For our entrees we had the Stratocaster Shrimp ($11) and the Hot and Spicy Grilled Grouper ($12). The Stratocaster Shrimp was sauteed shrimp, grilled chicken and spicy smoked Andouille Sausage with onions and peppers, served with black beans and rice. It was good, but my meal (grouper) was better! The Hot and Spicy Grilled Grouper was marinated in lemon, ginger and other select spices and grilled to perfection. Served sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds and fresh parsley on a bed of wild rice and your choice of 1 side. I enjoyed it. The lemon and ginger flavor really comes out, which I love, with a tangy flavor that matches the spicy side. Overall Rockin Rodz was a good experience. I would visit again but can't wait for the bar side to become popular!!! The prices and menu options vary from $4 burgers to $27 filet mignon. Menu items include: Onion Rings,Soups, Salads, Wings, Burgers, Hot Dogs, Fish, Chicken, Duck, Pork Chops, Steaks, Children's Menu, and dessert. You also have a wine list and glass on your table as you are seated. Go check it out, let me know what you think in the comment section! Don't forget to ask for Megan C.
2574 County Road 220 Unit # 4-7
Middleburg, FL 32068
Tel 904-276-2000
Fax 904-276-2001

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Lemongrass Asian Bistro: St. Augustine, FL

Lemongrass Asian Bistro is located in St. Augustine, FL in the shopping center in front of the Outlet Mall. (near Wendy's and the kids race track) We had a table of four last night and overall had a good experience. Lemongrass is fairly new and only two other tables were occupied. The lighting is dim so my pictures aren't great. Our waitress was very kind! Lemongrass has a large menu of Thai food and Sushi. They also have cheap lunch specials from 11-2. The menu includes but is not limited to the following: Thai Springs Rolls, Soups, Chicken Lettuce Wraps, Salads, Chicken Entrees, Beef Entrees, Seafood Entrees, Mei Fun, Lo Mein, Fried Rice options, Noodles, Curry, Kids Box, Dessert, Teriyaki, Tempura, Sushi, Sashimi, and much more. The waitress did a very good job of spacing our orders out to allow us time to enjoy our beer/wine and between courses. The Pad Thai took a little longer, but it still wasn't a problem. For appetizers we ordered: Yellowtail Jalapeno ($8) and Thai Crispy Calamari ($6). The Yellowtail Jalapeno was 8 pcs of yellowtail sashimi and jalapeno with a spicy ponzo mix sauce. The waitress told me it was a great choice when I ordered it, she was right. It was spicy, which I love, and absolutely delicious. Would go back just to order this! The Thai Crispy Calamari was served with a chili dipping sauce and I thought it sucked. I personally like calamari with the tentacles and rings, and this came out in strips. It just tasted fried, the dipping sauce was blah also, nothing special. Wouldn't order it again. The Miso Soup ($2) was good. I prefer this over clear soups most Sushi places around town have. It has greens, tofu cubes, and green onion on top. The Chicken Pad Thai ($8) was a pretty large portion for the price and was excellent. It is thin rice noodles stir-fried with egg, bean sprouts, peanuts, sweet radish, and scallions. For sushi we ordered three different rolls. The Sakura Roll ($10) was spicy tuna and tempura shrimp, avocado, wrapped with soy bean papers and chef's special sauce. The Kamikaze Roll ($8) was eel and avocado topped with spicy tuna and served with eel sauce. The Dancing Dragon Roll ($10) was tempura shrimp, avocado, tuna, and spicy crab with crunch on top. All three rolls were very fresh and tasty! The presentation on all food ordered was pretty. As a side note: the bathrooms were extremely clean, and they have plenty of parking. This place was cool and hopefully will become more popular with time!
Lemongrass is open Mon-Thur 11-9:30... Fri-Sat 11-10:30... and Sunday 12:00-9.
Tel: 904-829-8822
Fax: 904-829-8808
2730 SR 16 West
St. Augustine, FL 32092

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Sweet Sensations Cafe*Chocolates*Desserts

Sweet Sensations caters to a lunch crowd, mainly from the courthouse, admin building, and school boards in Green Cove Springs. It is a cozy little place located on Highway 17 in the middle of town. They offer soups, salads, sandwiches, sweets, and a special of the day. Today's special was Shepard Pie. ( I didn't have it, but it look delicious!) You place your order at the counter and pick up when your number is called. The pace is pretty fast. The workers are very nice, a small town joint! Today my table ordered the fresh Tomato Bisque, Side Salad, and Outlaw Chicken Salad Sandwich. The soup and salad combo was $6.99 but you can pick between 2 of the 3; soup, salad, sandwich. The ranch on the salad was extremely thick and creamy, the tomato bisque was good (not as good as mine) and had chunks of tomato and fresh basil. The Outlaw Chicken Salad Sandwich is a favorite here, the fruit mixed in makes it popular and fresh. The sandwich comes with chips and pickle spear for $6.99. The most important part of Sweet Sensations is just that, the sweets. They offer a large variety from lemon bars, cakes, pies, to cookies. The cookies are my favorite. They are huge! If you haven't yet, I would give this place a try on your lunch break. They recently changed the hours to Mon-Fri 10-4 and Saturday 10-3.
534 N Orange Ave
Green Cove Springs, FL 32043-2916
(904) 529-8554

Monday, June 14, 2010

Little Saigon Vietnamese on Blanding!!

After spending months of vacation time with family and friends in Hawaii, and coming back to Florida, I have started having Vietnamese cravings that I couldn't fulfill. Until now! Little Saigon is located on Wells and Blanding near 57 Heaven, Red Lobster, and Honey Baked Ham. Everything was amazing. The service was wonderful. I think it was only the owners who were working and you could tell they really cared. The prices are pretty cheap for dinner, and even cheaper for lunch specials. Pho is one of the most popular dishes. For more information on what Pho is, click here http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-pho.htm The orange/pink sauce you see in the pictures they call Fish Sauce. It is delicious!! You can put it on everything, and I do! We had 2 different appetizers that were 3$ and 4$ and all of our entrees were 8$ each. The entrees are a lot of food. I don't think you can order anything bad here, but I will post more on different options upon my next visit! They are open til 9.
1975 Wells Rd
Orange Park, FL 32073-7677
(904) 375-0061

Pool Party Cookout!


My best friend and I made dinner after the pool party last Saturday and decided on an Island Style dinner. We had corn, baked with butter, sugar, garlic, and parm cheese. Corn is pretty cheap right now, around 8 for 2$ in grocery stores and cheaper in farmers markets! Brooke has perfected her Gordan Biersch Slaw. It's sweet, spicy, and tangy which is perfect for Fish/Shrimp tacos. The shrimp for the tacos were cooked in a stick of butter. (about 2 lbs of shrimp) These were peel and eat, on sale for 4.99$ per lb. The blackened fish was cooked in the oven. Tilapia is so inexpensive here in North Florida that it is always fresh and always on sale in the grocery stores! I love spicy, so a little of everything went on the fish to make the blackening spice :) Brooke also made twice fried plantains, Costa Rican style!! Feel free to always E-Mail me for any recipes!

Burgers as Big as Your Head! Times Grill

A new place in Fleming Island has opened called Times Grill. It's in the old BluGrotto. Although they have many different burgers to choose from they are famous for the "Wall of Fame Burger". This 1.5 pound burger is enormous. If you eat the entire thing you get your picture on the 'Wall of Fame' and a T-Shirt that claims you "ate the whole thing". We had 3 people at your table try this but only one finished. Other orders at our table go different reviews. Spicy chicken sandwich was large, tasty, and very spicy. Two other (normal size) burgers were ordered and both were said to be good except the bun on one was completely soaked (gross). The cajun crawfish pasta sounded amazing but was nothing special. The manager brought out a sausage and shrimp pasta on the house that was delicious. The service wasn't bad but nothing to rave about. If you have a group of friends with someone trying the giant burger you will have a great time!
TimesGrill - Fleming Island
1811 Town Center Blvd
Fleming Island, FL 32003
Phone: 904.592.4400
Fax: 904.592.4402