Thanks to Gregg (wheregreggeats.com), Paul (Sundancer), Katie (ChezKatie), Rich (Bluemaxx), and signman for your various recommendations in other threads that I tracked down in my pre-trip research. Because of you, my sons and I were well-prepared and well-fed during Spring Break. Dixie Crossroads, 1475 Garden Street, Titusville FL (321.268.5000) www.dixiecrossroads.com
Yes, it’s a huge, famous, popular-with-the-tourists restaurant, but we loved it anyway. Got there early so no wait, huge line when we left. They specialize in wild ocean shrimp and it was excellent. We had the rock shrimp (broiled) and the Cape Canaveral white shrimp (fried), both excellent. The corn fritters (they’re not hush puppies) were excellent, but as Paul said they would ruin your appetite if you over-indulged since they serve them before the meal. Brickyard Lounge, 747 W International Speedway Blvd, Daytona Beach FL 32114 (386.253.2270) www.daytonabrickyard.com
Oh, wow, this was every bit as yummy and fun as Gregg and the other Roadfood recommendations indicated. Great looking bar and restaurant, and indeed an excellent hamburger. The superior quality of Brickyard was underscored in my mind when we ate at a “Johnny Rockets” later in the week and the comparison was not even close! I want to insert a clever “car beats rocket” joke here but it’s late and I can’t think of one. Barnacle Bill’s, 14 Castillo Drive, St. Augustine FL 32084 (904.824.3663) www.barnaclebillsonline.com
The docent at the Visitor Center told me that the locals eat their seafood here. We loved it. Boys had fried Gator Tail, they loved it. I had the shrimp combo of Original, Coconut and “Dat’l Do It” which is a spicy flavor made with the datil peppers. Yummy orange marmalade sauce for the coconut shrimp. Huge onion rings. Cole slaw, fries and hush puppies all delicious. It did seem curious that all the shrimp still had that black vein or intestine in it, which I find un-appetizing and was previously told it’s not supposed to be eaten, so I had to surgically treat each shrimp before eating. Cuban Sandwich Shop (aka C. H. Sandwich Shop & Café) 722 Mason Avenue 32117, Daytona Beach FL (386.255.6655)
I learned that I don’t like a classic Cuban sandwich, but you shouldn’t take my lack of enthusiasm as a “diss” of the version served here. Sometimes a “cold cut” sandwich leaves me cold, and the ham on this sandwich seemed unappealing, and the roast pork likewise unimpressive. The bread of the sandwich was fabulous. If I had ordered same thing with tuna or chicken I might have been happier. The current owner told me she is the third owner, and currently has the shop up for sale. Dustin’s, Granada Boulevard, Ormond Beach,
This barbecue restaurant was acceptable and ordinary. It’s got a very chain-looking ambience. The bbq chicken was smoky and tender but also a little dry. I like my barbecue swimming in sauce, which this was not. The only sauce served on the table was good, but it was thin and a little vinegar-y. Dan’s bbq baby back ribs were good. Ken’s bbq beef was good, sliced very thin and served without sauce. Entrees came with good but ordinary cole slaw, and bland garlic bread. The all-you-can-eat salad bar looked very bedraggled so we didn’t participate. I wouldn’t easily choose to eat at Dustin’s again, yet if someone tried to drag me in there I wouldn’t cling to the door frame to avoid it. River Grille, 950 N US 1, Ormond Beach FL (386.615.2004) www.rivergrille.net
The River Grille was excellent. My sons ordered an appetizer of Gator Bites, and they loved them. I had the evening special, a local fish called Corvina served as a firm white fillet that was excellent, the side fresh green beans were perfectly crisp, and the roasted red potatoes were yummy. Dan ordered jambalaya which he never ate before, and ended up being unenthusiastic about it, but he may not be a fair and accurate critic. Ken’s fried shrimp was excellent. Peach Valley Café, Granada Boulevard at US A1A, Ormond Beach FL
In a strip mall but excellent restaurant. Cinnamon French Toast a huge hit. A large sausage patty looked hand-formed with irregular edges and tasted great. Omelet was delicious, served with huge fluffy biscuits. Coffee served in over-size mugs. Beautiful ambience with sunny yellow walls and lovely art. Zeno’s Boardwalk, Daytona Beach FL
excellent handmade ice cream. I had butter pecan and coconut in a waffle cone, excellent!
Non-food stops included Universal Studios, Cape Canaveral and Kennedy Space Center, old St. Augustine, Daytona USA and Daytona Speedway, as well as some sun-n-sand days at the beach. Had a great time in Florida, I wish we were still there right now!