BlackFly The Restaurant

Our interest in BlackFly was threefold:

  1. Mike Hyatt – he owns Collage Restaurant downtown, which we love. Could he duplicate that success with a family-friendly menu & atmosphere?
  2. Vaughn Cochran – Hubby used to talk fly-fishing with this international fishing guide & original Jimmy Buffet band member.  When Vaughn moved his shop from Aviles Street in St. Augustine to Jacksonville, hubby followed.  Hubby loves Vaughn Cochran’s fish art in bold colors & couldn’t wait to see what a fly-fishing themed restaurant was all about!
  3. FOOD – St. Augustine is a great food town… what would BlackFly add to our foodie scene?

We’ve been twice now.  Two memorable visits.  Mostly great.  Here’s the scoop:

First Take: You'll be greeted by a gift shop featuring Vaughn Cochran's signature style & Black Fly gear.

Our first visit was a couple of months after opening.  We wanted to slip out to dinner with a friend and be home before bedtime, so we went early.  The restaurant wasn’t open for dinner yet, so we headed to the bar for a few minutes…

The first thing I noticed was that pizza oven- can't wait to go back & try a wood-fired pizza!!

I like the way they’ve transformed the restaurant into a nautical themed space without it being predictable or cheesy.  My hubby spotted a board where fisherman can pin up photos of their prizes- and stumbled upon a bonus!

protip: pin up a photo of yourself fishing {and hopefully catching} in BlackFly gear for 1/2 off an app in the bar or restaurant!!

The bartenders know how to pour the usuals but they also have some unique drinks on the menu.  I learned BlackFly’s signature Citrus Basil Martini won 2 Aperol bartending competitions. Last visit, I tried the Hot Shot to experience a spicy cocktail.

Hot Shot ($8) will make ya pucker!

The Hot Shot ($8) was fun- I won’t order it again but it was a great “I’ve never had that before” drink.  The cocktail menu is full of these original drinks.  It’ll take me a lot of visits to work my way through and find my favorite!

BlackFly The Restaurant

Vaughn’s art and the 1,000+ bottle wine cellar set the ambiance for the restaurant side of BlackFly.

Mike gave us a tour of the walk-in wine room… its 60 degree temperature is perfect for serving reds- you wouldn’t want a room temperature red here in Florida!  “Fifty-four degrees is best for long-term storage but we’re in the business of serving, not collecting!” Mike joked.

About the food… whatever you do, order the Steak & Cheese Risotto ($8)

If you’ve had risotto, you don’t need to see a photo of it to be convinced to try it.  And if you haven’t tried risotto, this caramelized bacon is more likely to convince you to order it than the photo.  Every.bite.was.delish.

I had a hard time deciding which dinner photos to share here… I’ll have to upload a video with more later.  I narrowed it down to one fish and one steak entree:

Chris ordered the Skirt Steak ($22) our first visit- it remains my favorite entree to date.  The balsamic mushrooms are a perfect accompaniment to any grilled entree and a bite of steak with a mushroom and dollop of mashed potatoes was enough to make me swoon.  I talked him into swapping plates.  You know that’s true love {on his part. ahem.}

I have ordered the fish special both visits.  Most recently I had locally-caught grouper with the sweetest, tops-on young carrots I’ve ever had.  BlackFly operates an everything-from-scratch kitchen which means every sauce & dressing is prepared on site.  These are incredibly flavorful & set BlackFly apart from the many other restaurants in St. Augustine.  Yes, their food is as flavorful & beautifully plated as Collage!  I will say I’ve preferred the steak dishes over the fish both times.

We ended with a light sweet treat- the Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream Sundae ($7) was light & refreshing after a full meal.  We’ll have to share some pizza another night so we have room to try a bigger dessert- I’m especially tempted by Moms Carrot Cake Cheesecake ($8) and the Banana Rangoons ($7).

Both times we’ve visited, one of the owners was on site.  I love this about St. Augustine’s restaurant scene!  When you go, try a funky drink and the risotto app, meet Mike or Vaughn and tell them hi for me!  If I have my way, we’ll be at the table behind you!

BlackFly the Restaurant
Sunday – Thursday 5:00 – 9:30 pm, Saturday they’re open ’til 10:00 pm
The Angler’s Bar is open 4:00 – 11:00 pm
108 Anastasia Blvd.
(904) 201-6300 
Blackfly - the Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Thank you, BlackFly, for inviting us to a delish dinner!  It’s always a pleasure dining with you!

Comments

  1. I’ve been wanting to get the scoop on BlackFly…thanks. Thinking the pizza and sundae are calling my name:)

    • If you beat me to the pizza, please report back!! If you’re in an ice cream mood, I’d stick with Cold Calf for an amazing local ice cream experience. :)

  2. Went twice; once for an unremarkable yet overpriced fish meal; second time for drinks and some rather poor pizza. I would rate it meh. Not on any rush to return.

    • Really?! Wow- I haven’t tried the pizza but was excited to! You’ll have to try the steak next time… yummy. But sorry it was disappointing!

  3. dropped in on a Friday night and was very pleasantly delighted with the great food and fun art. The chocolate dessert was awesome !!! Would recommend the place.

  4. BlackFly is one of my favorite restaurants in St. Augustine and we’ve been there many times. My absolute favorite is their seared scallops. I love the colorful interior, and the service has always been excellent. We’ve taken family and friends who come to visit us to BlackFly and they’ve always enjoyed eating there too.

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