Traditional Southern Food with a Modern Twist

Farm-to-table hotspot Preserved shines a culinary spotlight on Florida's farmers and local food producers

One of the St. Augustine’s newest restaurants is located in one of its oldest houses (built between 1865-1885) in historic Lincolnville. Opened in 2016, Preserved Restaurant offers up authentic Southern cuisine that showcases Florida farmers and locally procured proteins and produce. On your next vacation to Florida’s Historic Coast, add Preserved to your culinary itinerary.
 
Nestled on the corner of Bridge Street and Martin Luther King Boulevard, Preserved Restaurant has quickly become a favorite spot to celebrate everything from first dates and milestone anniversaries to birthday get-togethers and a romantic night away from the kids. And remember, for those planning a trip to the area, call ahead for reservations. This place books up fast.
 
Raw East Coast Oysters, Cheshire Pork Belly, Heirloom Tomato Salad and Pistachio Crusted Rabbit are just a few of the eclectic dishes up for offer. With a carefully curated menu running the gamut from fresh seafood to farm-to-fork game, Preserved Restaurant is the brainchild of Owner and Executive Chef Brian Whittington, a 2015 James Beard Foundation nominee and one of the brightest culinary minds in the country.

Historic Dining

Upon arrival at Preserved Restaurant, it’s easy to see that you’ve come to a special place. Housed in a meticulously renovated Victorian home from the 1800s, the restaurant is modern yet accessible. Every detail has been accounted for, from the tropical landscaping to brick pillars and fencing that make you feel like you’ve arrived home.
 
In fact, the structure, which is designated “Jefferson House,” has a long and colorful history like much of St. Augustine. In 1892, President Thomas Jefferson’s great-granddaughter, Marie Jefferson Shine, and her husband, Dr. William F. Shine, lived in the grey, blue and white Victorian.
 
Chef Whittington and his staff await as patrons check in for reservations and are seated in the outdoor courtyard, along the wrap-around porch or inside in the main dining room. The restaurant’s interior is intimate. Romantic seating for two is situated at every window with larger tables filling the middle of the room. Dark wooden floors and furniture offset the space’s off-white walls and décor.

Relaxing Meal

Take a seat. The wine selection, carefully chosen by Sommelier Christof Bauer, features a wide variety of sparkling wines, rosee, whites, reds and dessert wines. From Italian Prosecco and Austrian Riesling to California Chardonnay and Argentinean Malbec, each and every server at Preserved Restaurant is well-versed to help select the perfect vintage. There are also hand-selected craft beers from Florida-based breweries.
 
A mainstay on the restaurant’s menu is the House Charcuterie Board featuring pate de campagne, house-cured duck prosciutto, short rib rilletes, smoked andouille sausage, house pickles, jam, mustards and a daily cheese selection. Order one for the table. You won’t regret it.
 
Choosing an entrée is no easy feat. Supper, as it’s called at Preserved Restaurant, offers up Pan Seared Sea Scallops with pea shoot pesto and Duck Breast with French green lentils. There’s also the Pistachio Crusted Rabbit with roasted baby turnips and Cheshire Pork Chop with braised cabbage.
 
Don’t forget dessert. A small, but mighty offering includes vanilla bean Crème Brulee with berries and garden mint; Flourless Chocolate Torte with Chantilly cream, vanilla caramel cocoa nib ice cream and popped sorghum; and Banana Bread Pudding with caramel, buttermilk ice cream, cinnamon streusel and bruleed banana.
 
If you’re visiting on the weekend, make time for Preserved Restaurant’s Saturday and Sunday brunch. The Mayport Shrimp & Grits feature antebellum grits, shrimp fresh from Mayport, crisp bacon and creamed corn. Or try the Banana Nut French Toast with fresh berries, pure maple syrup and candied pecans. There are plenty of egg options, too, including omelets and Smoked Salmon Benedict.
 
Whether you’re visiting Florida’s Historic Coast for a weekend getaway with your significant other or spending a week with family and friends, add Preserved Restaurant to your list of restaurants musts. The historic home, extensive wine list and authentic Southern cuisine will have you glad you did.