Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Low Country Cooking

I always knew there was Southern cooking but The Taste of St. Augustine introduced me to what is called Low Country Cooking! As usual, click each photo for a better view.

First a little history, Low Country Cooking is primarily associated with the coastal area between South Carolina and Georgia and chiefly one of my favorite cities, Savannah. The food reflects the history of the area in that it features rice and okra, brought over from Africa in the 17th century, tomatoes and corn grown in the new world, spicy ingredients such as hot pepper sherry from the West Indies, and seafood that was plentiful in the coastal area near Savannah.

Also from Africa, by way of the islands came sesame seeds, an East Indian herb used as a charm that was suppose to give secure entrance and exit through any portal. These seeds arrived in America on the necks of slaves, who wore them for good luck and planted them near their quarters on the plantations. Cooks in the "big" kitchens knew how to use the aromatic seed to make deliciously flavorful dishes that became low country cooking.

First I encountered "A1A Ale Works", which specializes in hand crafted beer and low country cooking using local area seafood.

I was driving so I didn't sample the beer but the dish featured below was very tasty. It combined what tasted like grits, various herbs with nice sized shrimp. Tasty, very tasty!

Next came "The Creekside Dinery." They offered their low country award wining oysters and shrimp St Johns which melted in my mouth.

And what would a meal be without a little wine... and there was my favorite winery San Sebastian's Winery. I have always found the people at the winery fun and informative, this group was no different. I had a glass of Rosa which went well with the tastings. It is a "must visit" on any trip to St. Augustine.

And finally desert!

I hung around two places... "The Hilton Bayfront, Arviles Restaurant" for their orange cheesecake,

and the "Purple Olive" for their chocolate covered macaroons that dissolved in your mouth creating a sweet sensation without being overpowering.

And then I was ready to leave, full and happy. Crossing over the Lion Bridge was well worth the effort and paid dividends.

I met some wonderful people, tasted some great food, and discovered a few restaurants that will add a whole new element to my visits to St Augustine!


  1. Wow, u had me at the chocolate macaroons... what a day you had...mussels and shrimp.. yum... The closest experience to southern food I've had was from my grandfather who came up through Georgia.. He actually was a stowaway on a boat that landed in Georgia via S. Korea...from him he use to fry up corn fritters, fry up a whole fish beautifully..

  2. Chrissy,
    Interesting history there! I have now discovered there is a whole new dimension to Southern cooking. And yes, the macaroons were heavenly. I normally avoid them because most times they are simply too sweet but these were great!

  3. Wow, I'm so embarrasing, ha ha ha. My drawing isn't very good, but you are so kind :-D Thanks for this honor, sweet Cherrie. I send you a very huge kiss from the far Spain!! Now I'm going to eat something, mmmm... your photos make me hungry ha ha. See you soon!

  4. The reason Ana is embarrassed (more like shy) is that she did a drawing for me and I posted it sort of as a logo on the blog. It was a quick, free hand drawing that I really liked and it is there in the upper left hand corner above followers, titled "Cherrie's Door"

  5. That's right, sorry, I didn't explain myself :-) I didn't imagine that you'll put it in your blog. Now is very late here (1:00am in Spain) but tomorrow I'm going to make and send you a better photo of this drawing... At least, I'm going to try my finger isn't in the image ha ha ha :-D To tomorrow, dear. ¡Hasta mañana! Y saludos a todos.

  6. Cherrie, that drawing is gorgeous!. I went by Ana's page after she came to mine... She is very creative and gifted...Lucky you!.