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St. Simon’s Island, Ga. (& surrounding islands)


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#1 Steve R.

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Posted 18 February 2018 - 06:44 PM

For no particular reason other than we've never been, we've decided that this will be our 1st stop on our way home from Florida in mid-March. No reason to get back to Brooklyn quickly so we've booked 4 nights at a nice looking B&B/Inn near the lighthouse on St Simons & plan to tour around the area, including Jekyll Island, etc. Anyone with any recommendations for food, sights, etc.? We plan to visit the turtles, the lighthouse and a couple of the other well known local points of interest. We will not be having the major Sunday brunch at the Jekyll Island Inn Resort - although the Grand Dining Room looks great, that amount of food is just not doable mid-day these days without feeling (& probably looking) like a beached whale. We will hit Southern Soul for lunch to see if I like NC bbq any better this year than I did last year. So... other comments, suggestions? Nathan - you still around MF and feel like chiming in? You know the area, right?

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#2 Evelyn

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Posted 18 February 2018 - 08:23 PM

Are you sticking to the islands, or including Savannah in your plans?

For St. Simons, I would recommend Georgia Sea Grill; Echo or Halyards. I have not been to Nancy, but have friends who adore it.

 

Presume you are bypassing the beaches of/near Jacksonville...I lived in Ponte Vedra for 20 years and still spend time there.



#3 Steve R.

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Posted 18 February 2018 - 10:43 PM

We’ve stopped in Savannah (& Charleston) on previous trips, so not this time. I’ve only made one dinner reservation so far based on my own research and that was for Georgia Sea Grill. You’ve just confirmed it. Nancy looked a little too full of itself for our liking but, if you think that’s a bad assumption, we have 3 more dinners that need to be eaten. Halyards looked good & is already on my maybe list. I’ll take a look at Echo. Thanks.

We hit Gainesville on the way down this year & have friends who live in St Augustine, so we’ve spent some time there as well &, therefore, haven’t had a chance to go to the Jacksonville area. I guess we need to pick your brain a bit on that for next year’s drive.

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#4 Steve R.

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Posted 21 March 2018 - 06:11 PM

We spent a great 4 nights on SSI and definitely plan to make this our 1st stop next year on our way back to NYC from Florida. Beautiful area, with beaches, lush foliage, hanging moss, piers & sights to see/things to do. But, as this is (supposedly) a food board, let me say that we really liked most of the places we went. Georgia Sea Grill has a real dining room &, opposite it, a long bar room with some tables and a live piano player. We ate in each once (same menu) & thoroughly enjoyed it. The low country crab soup was excellent (real crab) & Ginnys escargot were each wrapped in a pastry puff and reeked of garlic (in a good way). Caesar salads were well made. Thats all we ate at the bar meal, as we had a big lunch that day at Southern Soul. On the dining room meal, we each had excellent entrees: she had the lamb chops & I had the Verlasso Salmon w/sweet corn risotto & collards. I chuckled afterwards, as with glasses of wine, the bill w/tax & tip barely made it over $100 total, which is half of our NYC thread dilemma price point.
A large lunch was had at Southern Soul, a BBQ place with a good reputation from a couple of my knowledgeable CH friends. A meat combination platter included burnt ends, a ½ rack of ribs & pulled pork (we got to choose which 3 we wanted from a much longer list). The pulled pork was N.C. Style and excellent, the burnt ends were Texas Style & as good as Ive had (outside of Franklins or a couple of other places), and the ribs were perfectly done St. Louis style. All sauces were on the table so you could vinegar your pork, slather your burnt ends with either hot or sweet sauce & leave your ribs alone. All good. We had a large Mac n cheese, done very smoothly and addictive, perfect collards, excellent baked beans & ok cole slaw. Meat was served over a couple of slices of white bread, sweet iced tea was nice, as was the beer selection. $40 all in & well be back next year for the chicken (& the turkey and the sausages and the...).
Our best meal was at Halyards last night. Their owner/Exec. Chef now has this (his primary) place, a well regarded Italian place and a recently opened Mexican place in his Halyard Group & is known for creatively enhancing basic preparations and regularly changing the menu. Their escargot appetizer was perfectly cooked snails in a shallow bowl with fresh mushrooms, sautéed together. Ginny loved it. My crab soup was even better than the one at Ga. Sea Grill. We also had a small plate order of 4 nicely done pork Asian dumplings w/citrus hoisin sauce. These were thicker skinned than they should be but the skins were tasty, the pork meaty & the sauce good. Ginny ordered trout & it was two huge fillets over fingerling potatoes that she loved but couldnt finish. I got the Buttermilk Fried Chicken (two crunchy breast fillets) over creamy grits in a Crystal hot sauce beurre blanc (really) with a side of Anson Mills Sea Island Red Peas. This was great. Again, glasses of wine that were basic mid-range and a bottle of large Pellegrino Sparkling Water. Really broke the bank here and paid about $125 w/tip. Just as an aside, if we skipped the wine by the glass (averaging $9 per x 3 for $27 total cost) and went for a good bottle, the Jordan Cab (2013) was $120, but quite a few other bottles could be had well under that. Basically, this is the interesting $100pp all in place I think wed all love to have in NYC.
As I said, SSI is now our official 1st stop driving north from Florida. Thank you Evelyn for the recommendations. Next year we try Echo (its in a resort we may stay at).

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#5 Evelyn

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Posted 21 March 2018 - 08:07 PM

Glad you enjoyed your meals. And thank you for writing up your meals. I’ve issued write ups like these.