Four days on St. Simons was not long enough. Sure, I had time to explore museums and enjoy a massage and pool time at The King and Prince Resort– but I need many, many more trips to taste my way around the island. With 68 restaurants on this 2nd largest of the Golden Isles, St. Simons can keep a foodie busy for months!
I may not have tried everything St. Simons has to offer, but I did enjoy some amazing meals on my writer’s retreat. Here are a few must try meals in St. Simons Island:
Chef Tim and his wife Melissa have ensured Sandcastle Cafe is a go-to breakfast & lunch cafe for 25 years. Located in the Village just steps away from the pier, you’ll find exposed brick walls covered with photos of notable Americans who have dined here and a photographic history lesson of St. Simons Island’s evolution over the decades.
Weekends find locals gathered around the breakfast buffet. Everything is tasty, from made-to-order eggs to crisp waffles and classic cheese grits, but I’d drive back just for the cinnamon rolls! I actually did drive back for the cinnamon buns only to find out they’re a weekend fixture only… and they can go fast! So if you hope to take an extra box home, you’d better call first and beg them to set a few aside!
Southern Soul Barbeque
There are BBQ joints… and then there are places locals wish had never been discovered because it’s so smokin’ good they’d love to keep it to themselves. Southern Soul is in the second category but they’ve been discovered. Featured in Southern Living, on Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives and every bit as tasty as advertised, Southern Soul is a must-try when you visit St. Simons Island.
Classic Rock played over the speakers when we arrived and co-owner, Harrison Sapp, shared that Southern Soul is a place where anyone can feel comfortable. “The Mexican place says there are real Mexicans in the back… well, we employ real rednecks!”
He pointed out that his 50 tattooed, crazy-dyed-hair & dreadlocked employees may not find themselves as welcome in other establishments on classy St. Simons Island. I observed that while employees joked behind the register, they filled cups & churned out orders quickly. The food isn’t the only thing flourishing at Southern Soul.
My glass of sweet tea was Big Gulp big. Crushed ice keeps the tea cold and there’s enough sugar in the cup to make even my cranky old Aunt Myrtle sweet. I tried some Brunswick Stew since we were just across the bridge from Brunswick… and it was fine. I tried some ribs and they were perfectly smoked but a little fatty for me (I take beef ribs over pork ribs). But when I tried a spoon full of BBQ beans- SHUT MY MOUTH! They are goooood!
Tables are topped with several Southern Soul sauces- my favorite was the sweet but spicy Hot Georgia Soul. I’ll definitely take the kiddos there when we go back!
Del Sur Artisan Eats
Back to the Village for dinner… you won’t want to miss Del Sur. The original Del Sur is a thriving hot spot in Miami; the St. Simons Island Del Sur had a waiting list on a Monday night when we visited! Although I initially thought a restaurant that purports itself to be an Argentinian & Italian melange would be, well, trying too hard, I found Del Sur’s atmosphere and food to be comfortable, authentic and satisfying.
I enjoyed a special tasting menu at Del Sur – it was an amazing way to try house-made ravioli, three empanadas (beef, chicken and spinach), salmon entree and many other house specialties. My favorite dish was easily the Three Hour Short Ribs over Prosecco Risotto. If you go, get this! It’s so amazing. Even though I enjoyed the tasting menu, there are several other dishes I’d love to try… Del Sur is another place I’ll certainly return to!
ECHO at The King and Prince
The King and Prince Resort serves up amazing food at ECHO, their restaurant and bar. Named after the military base that occupied King and Prince during WWII, the name is all that’s left of any hard Navy cafeteria setting.
Leave your bias at the door- this oceanfront gem not only boasts amazing views, but many ingredients are locally farmed and the menus are seasonally inspired. Executive Chef John is both gifted and humble- his food is flavorful and bright while still satisfying the desire for traditional Coastal dishes. Enjoy a few snaps from breakfast and dinner:
These photos only scratch the surface… there is a lot to love about St. Simons Island! We will definitely be back and I can’t wait to share more with you!