Best Under the Radar Neighborhood Eats

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Being on the road with real estate I am always finding new and different places to eat all over town. Helping people list and buy homes has taken me to communities many people have never been to, each with their own unique flavors and styles. When visiting neighborhoods I like to find the smaller lesser known restaurants rather than large chains.  In my travels, I have found some of the best hole-in-the-wall restaurants with special dishes and tons of character. If you are looking for a new and different place to eat try these local Jacksonville restaurants and let me know how it was!

  • Miller’s Soul Food Kitchen – Dress down and come hungry when you visit Miller’s in North Shore. Located in an old Skinner’s Dairy corner store this locals-only restaurant has some of the best soul food you can find. Featuring fried chicken, fried pork chops, delicious veggies, savory sides, honey drippers and more. All at a very affordable price. This place is dripping with flavorful dishes and characters. Come prepared to sit outside on limited patio seating or get take-out.
  • Gumbo Ya Ya’s – Cajun cooking in Jacksonville! Prepare for spicy flavors at this New Orleans style restaurant that has everything you want from the city that loves food. Located in Intercoastal West near San Pablo & Beach Blvd. you’ll enjoy the delicious po-boys, gumbo, jambalaya and more. The house-made hot sauce is out of this world and word is they ship in the bread daily from the crescent city!
  • Cleo’s Sandwich Shop – Tucked away in Eastport and located alongside commercial and shipping businesses this workingman’s choice is a hidden gem. Heaping servings of comfort food served amid a welcoming family atmosphere make this spot a special one. You won’t want to miss out on the taco salad. The sign claims it as the best in town and they aren’t lying!
  • Southern Charm – Cracker style cooking doesn’t get any better than this. Lunch buffets, especially seafood Friday, are a huge draw at this small eatery outside of San Marco. Longtime chef Art is a fun character that cooks everything from scratch and doesn’t mind telling everyone in the room. Special secret – tell them its your first time visiting for a delicious plate!
  • Wing-it – Everyone has an opinion on the best place for chicken wings as there are a ton of choices available. Forget the large chains and try this local Mandarin establishment for the best wings in town. Don’t come for the ambiance but stay for the perfectly cooked wings and awesome sauces.
  • Chomp Chomp – After relocating from downtown Jacksonville to the outer edge of Avondale the food at Chomp Chomp has kept its great quality. Don’t plan on counting calories when you visit Chomp Chomp as most dishes are made full flavored. Though, they do offer vegetarian dishes and unique dishes coming out regularly. Make sure to get the Chomp Chips with your dish!
  • The Pig Bar-B-Q – Southern barbecue at its best. Tremendous slow-cooked meats and delicious sides typify the family feel of this local Jacksonville eatery. Make sure to visit the original location on Lem Turner Rd. –
  • Green Erth Bistro – If you are looking for a healthier option then Green Erth is an awesome choice. Featuring a middle eastern themed menu this San Marco eatery offers a lot of vegetarian and vegan dishes with plenty of flavor.
  • Mi Veracruz – You can drive by this small Mexican restaurant a hundred times without ever noticing it. But don’t be fooled by the unassuming exterior at this St. Nicholas favorite. Always affordable and delicious you’ll encounter a full house and and plenty of locals. Featuring pretty standard Mexican fare but with better flavors and unique touches!

When you take a visit to one my local favorites please chime in and let me know how it was. Or, if you have one to add to the list I’d love to hear about it! Happy eating!

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ethangregory