St. Augustine has many great restaurants and those that serve breakfast shouldn't be missed. We try to hit at least one new one on each stay at The Sand Bucket at Seaside, but with so many to choose from we can't eat at all of them. These are some of our favorites and some that we often hear that we need to try. These are in no particular order and please note that some are close by and some are in the downtown area if you prefer a later breakfast or brunch.
Location: 501 A1A Beach Boulevard (on the Island)
Hours: 7:00 am to 9 pm, later if there is a show.
This American-style restaurant features a smorgasbord of breakfast and lunch staples, such as meaty huevos rancheros, refreshing acai bowls, hearty breakfast burritos and lunch wraps, savory omelets, Cuban sandwiches, delicious eggs benedicts, and scrumptious paninis.
The gem of the week, is the weekend breakfast buffet on Saturdays and Sundays. Order an omelet your way or a stack of freshly made pancakes or a waffle and fill your plate with all the other stuff while they are being prepared for you.
Café Eleven opened its doors in 2001, and the owners renovated the place from a broken down convenience store. Now, the café is filled with modern décor and is known for bringing in world-class musical acts.
Maple Street Biscuit Company
Although this is a chain, they still serve up some good Southern style biscuits and gravy or eggs and grits. They are open for breakfast and brunch.
Menu options include biscuit sandwiches, like The Sticky Maple with fried chicken breast and pecan-wood smoked bacon topped with maple syrup, the Ralphie Deluxe which includes a biscuit topped with sausage gravy and a fried egg, and The Squawking Goat with fried chicken breast topped with a fried goat cheese medallion and house-made pepper jelly. They also have vegetarian options. The flaky buttermilk biscuits are made in-house and the locally roasted coffee is sure to please.
Cousteau’s Waffle and Milkshake Bar
Location: 15 Hypolita Street (historic area)
Hours: Sunday-Thursday 10:00 am - 10:00 pm, Friday 10:00 am - 11:00 pm, Saturday 9:00 am - 11:00 pm
Who doesn't love waffles? At Cousteau’s Waffle and Milkshake Bar, it’s never too early for a milkshake or too late for a waffle. Intriguing menu options and nearly limitless custom options make Cousteau’s a hit for breakfast.
The Jaguar Shark is a highly recommended waffle that is sure to warm your taste buds, as it is topped with maple syrup, pecan and bourbon whipped cream, and candied bacon. " Life on Mars", a Belgian waffle garnished with coconut ice cream, espresso whipped cream, and a chocolate drizzle can't be anything but spectacular and indulgent!
The Blue Hen Cafe
Location: 117 Martin Luther King Ave. (Lincolnville area in historic district)
Hours: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm, Tuesday - Sunday
This cozy breakfast and lunch café makes you feel as if you’ve sat down to eat with your next door neighbor—the epitome of Southern cooking and hospitality. The moment you open the door to checkered tablecloths and the smell of frying bacon, you'll know you have found the right place.
Try the fresh-catch tacos that feature the catch of the day, the delicious shrimp and grits with collard greens, the scrumptious pumpkin pancakes, the blue crab quiche, and the buttermilk chicken biscuit.
Location: 100 South Ponce de Leon Boulevard (slightly west of historic area)
Hours: 6:30 am - 9:00 pm
And my husband's favorite - Metro Diner. This diner serves huge portions of traditional American diner food with a mostly Southern twist. You can’t go wrong with classic options like fried chicken and waffles, Charleston shrimp and grits, huevos rancheros, lox and bagels, creamed chipped beef, Monte Cristo sandwiches, and steak and eggs. There is also the uniquely named “Yo Hala on the Square,” which consists of two slices of thick challah bread French toast topped with bananas, brown sugar, cream cheese, hazelnut syrup, and a blueberry-strawberry compote. My husband's favorite is the Bissell- 2 eggs any style, a huge pile of hash browns, 2 ginormous pancakes, your choice of bacon, ham, or canadian bacon, and 2 pieces of toast-try the sourdough. It is a ton of food-we often share!
Featured on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, this is a spot you won’t soon forget after eating here. Metro Diner consistently wins awards for best breakfast in several areas.
Les Petits Pleasure - French Bakery
The sign out front of this treasure reads simply "French Bakery", but the food says so much more. Located at 125 A1A Beach Blvd. (in a small strip shopping center, just around the corner from The Sand Bucket), has some of the best authentic French pastries that you will find outside of France. This is a small family-run restaurant serving breakfast and brunch and at times there may be a wait - but so worth it. We frequently pick up a pastry and enjoy it with our coffee on our screened balcony. Early birds get the best picks though!