Whether you’ve lived in Jacksonville for a while or have just moved to town and are just looking for a place to escape to within the city for a couple hours, you might be wondering where you can go that’s still within the city limits but doesn’t necessarily feel like the city. If that’s the case, this listicle is definitely for you! Avondale is a neighborhood bordering Riverside, and as one of Jacksonville’s most prominent historical districts, it kind of feels like stepping into a different world when you come out here. So, if you’re looking for an excuse to get away for a day, or even just a few hours, well, is there any better excuse than trying out a new restaurant? Below, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best restaurants in Avondale.
Everybody needs to escape every now and then, but escaping doesn’t always come at a cheap price. While dining out in a new location is definitely more affordable than taking a long holiday to a place that will really drain your bank account, it’s still nice to know that you’ll still have a bit of a cushion left even after dining out. That’s where GiftYa comes in. By pairing up with local restaurants, they’ve come up with a way to provide you with e-gift cards to local places, which will hopefully help to alleviate a bit of the stress of spending money. Order one for your favorite person who really just needs a break today!
3551 St Johns Ave | Avondale | bluefishjax.com
Can you really say you’ve had the true Floridian experience if you haven’t indulged in some of the best fresh seafood you’ll ever eat? During your day trip to Avondale, you can enjoy some of the best seafood Jacksonville has to offer - and some great views to go along with it.
Whether you’re dining inside in the main dining room or one of their banquet halls or out on the patio where you can revel in the warm Florida sunshine, The Blue Fish Restaurant & Oyster Bar has some of the absolute best seafood in the area, and it’s all fresh from the nearby waterways!
Even if you’re not a huge fan of oysters, this restaurant is a safe bet for pretty much anyone. Stop by for brunch, lunch, dinner, or even just a quick Happy Hour, and you can get your hands on anything from shrimp and grits to a late morning quiche.
Non-seafood options mean that pretty much everyone can find something to enjoy here (although we have a feeling you’ll want the seafood)!
“Incredible service from Brandon. Haven't had good service like this since before the pandemic. Definitely check this place out and the food was very good and generous portions!” - Yelp Review
3580 Saint Johns Ave | Avondale | facebook.com
If there’s one thing we know about neighborhoods that muster up a small town feeling, it’s that they are the perfect backdrop for diners. In the heart of Jacksonville, Avondale offers up a slight reprieve from the hustle and bustle you might find in the more congested areas of the city - as well as one of the best diners around.
The Fox Restaurant has been voted time and time again by local Avondale residents as one of the best places to find that all-American classic diner food that we all know and love so much. If you find yourself with an inescapable craving for a burger or some eggs, this is your place!
Not only is their food some of the tastiest in the area, but they’re also a hotspot for many of Jacksonville’s local artists and musicians - which means that you won’t find a restaurant in the city that’s more fun and easygoing than this one is!
“The Fox is Jacksonville's diner. A breakfast/lunch staple in the historic Avondale neighborhood. They cook a perfect egg, their burgers are very underrated, and the staff is loaded with Jax artists and musicians.” - Yelp Review
3556 St John's Ave | Biscottis | biscottis.net
Who doesn’t love a combination of good food and a whole lot of history? Avondale is home to one of the most prominent historical districts in Jacksonville, so it’s no surprise that they should have a few restaurants that highlight that old-timey feeling.
Biscottis is one of those restaurants - and while you may think that this place may be nothing more than a snazzy bakery and cafe, you may want to think again. While it’s true that many of the dishes you’ll see featured on their website and social media accounts are sweets, they actually have full menus for lunch, dinner, and even brunch!
On top of their restaurant, though, they also run a pretty successful side gig of catering for special events, such as weddings, anniversaries, and graduations. Stopping in for dinner is always an option here (check out the beautiful historical architecture while you’re at it), but if you’re also on the lookout for a place that will cater your next big event, Biscottis is it!
“I love Biscotti's. It is always fresh, on point, delicious and the fact that it is close by makes me happiest. Everyone can find a new comfort dish here. Personally, I love the grilled shrimp salad.” - Yelp Review
3628 St Johns Ave | Avondale | thecasbahcafe.com
Everybody loves a good bargain. If you’re looking for a restaurant in Avondale that can double as both a delicious meal for the evening and some fun recreation while you’re at it, look no further than Casbah Cafe.
Before you head out, keep in mind that this particular restaurant bars anyone under the age of eighteen from entering (for good reasons), so maybe pick a day when you have someone else to watch the kids to go there.
What is it about this restaurant that makes them 18+? Well, they actually also operate as both a hookah bar and a cabaret! Alongside some of the tastiest Mediterranean food you’ll find outside of the Mediterranean itself, you can also witness some lively traditional Middle Eastern belly dancing and get to know some of the unique flavors of hookah quite well.
“I'd give it a six star review if I could.... Thankfully we found this place on Yelp. Open late at night and the food was out of this world delicious. Everything came out very fast. Great ambiance sitting outside at the tables.” - Yelp Review
3572 St Johns Ave, Ste 1 | Avondale | mojobbq.com
Despite being located on the southern side of the United States, Florida seems to have a culture all its own. That being said, if you’re hoping to get your hands on some more traditional southern grub while you’re down here, there’s nothing quite like southern barbecue.
And as far as barbecue in Jacksonville goes, nobody does it better than Mojo no. 4 Urban BBQ Whiskey Bar. (It’s a mouthful, we know; most people prefer to shorten it to Mojo no. 4 to keep themselves from tripping over the words.)
Not only is the barbecue here absolutely delicious, but Mojo no. 4 is also the perfect place for you to sit down and have a good time while you’re in Avondale. After all, derived from lingo that came about with the rise of the Blues, “mojo” is all about good vibes - and the vibes here are some of the best in Avondale.
“BBQ isn't always my first choice, but I could eat here several times a week - it's that good!! We have ordered it twice to work, but I haven't eaten inside yet.” - Yelp Review
3611 Saint Johns Ave | Avondale | mellowmushroom.com
Everyone has their opinions about chain restaurants (especially the pizza ones, for whatever reason), and we totally understand the concerns that might come up time and time again as you eat out at those chains, but we also maintain that when it comes to pizza in Avondale, nobody does it better than the Mellow Mushroom in that neighborhood.
With one of the most laid back atmospheres you can find at a chain restaurant, Mellow Mushroom really does live up to the “mellow” in their name. Enjoy a relaxed, fun evening out with your friends when you come to eat here - and scarf down some delicious pizza while you’re at it!
All of their pizzas are baked inside a stone oven, and they make them up using unique, original southern pizza recipes alongside their hand-tossed dough. They also strive to use the freshest ingredients possible, so not only will this pizza taste delicious, but it will also leave you feeling like you’ve put something good in your stomach.
“I'm not a fan of franchised pizza and coming from Philly, I like to keep my pizza and cheesesteaks in my city. But let me tell you I was feeling mellow when I ordered the mushroom pizza from here.” - Yelp Review
Getting away on a whim doesn’t always leave a lot of room for searching up new restaurants to escape to. Hopefully this list will make your search a little easier. Let us know which one provided the perfect local escape in the comments below!