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Saltwater Cowboy's: Marshland Haute Cuisine
This place goes to all kinds of extremes:
It is extremely hard to find: down at the end of an otherwise residential street.
The atmosphere is extremely 'white cracker' fishing camp (there are pictures of huge 'gators caught by locals and tanned rattler skins on the walls).
The food is extremely refined,tastes excellent, and is reasonably priced (nowhere else have I ever had apple vinegarette salad with walnuts and raisins- very tasty!)
Favorite Dish: Everything is good. Their fried seafood is a highlight.
This is also the place to try 'gator tail which is offered as an appetizer (think 'gator McNuggets).
A "Don't Miss" Seafood Experience!
If there is such a thing as a quintessential seafood restaurant… this is it! Salt Water Cowboy’s is everything you would want a seafood restaurant to be! It is located about 20-25 minutes from downtown historic St. Augustine – drive south on A1A, turn right onto Dondanville Road, just before Crescent Beach. You pass through a quaint residential area, and the restaurant is at the end of the road, overlooking the natural beauty of a saltwater marsh. They welcome “call-ahead reservations” since the wait can be rather long, especially during peak dinner times and in the summers. We called ahead and only had to wait about 5 minutes once we arrived (around 8:30 on a weeknight). The menu has a “cowboy” flair, with an “Open-Pit Barbecue” menu section, including ribs that looked really good. They also feature items you don’t see on your average “tourist” menu – a type of cuisine they list under the heading “Florida Cracker Corner,” which includes cooter (soft-shell turtle), gator tail, and frog legs (none of which are of my choice, but if they are yours, these are most likely among the best). All the seafood they offer is prepared either fried (a really light, homemade breading), blackened (not too spicy, and it complements the seafood well), or baked. For the most part, whatever type of seafood you are craving, they’ve got it – scallops, shrimp, fish (including a “catch of the day”), steamed oysters, crawfish, clam strips, and soft-shell crab. I ordered the “Three-Way Shrimp” the first time we went (we went twice in a short 5-night trip!) – 4 fried shrimp, 4 BBQ shrimp, and 4 stuffed shrimp filled with blue crab meat and smothered in this amazing peppery-cream sauce! We also ordered a ½ bucket of crawfish, which was boiled in a spicy, salty broth (they were good, just not my favorite). The atmosphere was lively, fun, and cozy – you really do feel like you’re at a Florida fish camp with the hardwood floors, twig furniture, tin ceilings, and warm lighting. The second time we visited I had their “award-winning” white clam chowder – awesome! – not too creamy and thick, with lots of clam, potatoes, and okra. They also have a spicy red clam chowder, if that’s more your style. I heard their key lime pie was a “standard” to measure others by, but we did not have any room left for dessert! You must add this restaurant to your dining experience while in St. Augustine – it’s casual, fun, and you won’t leave hungry!
Favorite Dish: I ordered the “Three-Way Shrimp” the first time we went (we went twice in a short 5-night trip!) – 4 fried shrimp, 4 BBQ shrimp, and 4 stuffed shrimp filled with blue crab meat and smothered in this amazing peppery-cream sauce! It was nice to have a variety -- and, if it's shrimp you want that night, this is the best "fix" for that!
Saltwater Cowboys: Great Food & Service
Love location of this place, on the Marsh, great sunset view. Food is wonderful, fun menu. Servers were really nice. You can call ahead as not to have to wait an hour when you get there. Casual attire and a must see place. It used to be an old hunting lodge.
They need more parking spaces, you will have to wait in your car while waiting for someone to leave before going in. Everything else is great.
Favorite Dish: Seafood, everything
Saltwater Cowboys: Where are the Gators?
This place suits it's name perfectly! An old fishing cabin set on the marshes, you'd expect to see some gators and an old cowboy singing the blues. No gators but the jazzy blue-sy music in the place sets the ambiance.
Decorated with aligator skin and stuffed possum, very cute in a creepy sort of way!
Josh, our waiter was super friendly and the service was fantastic!
Favorite Dish: I had the jambalya and oyster (oh god, those oysters were DELICIOUS!) but i also sampled the cucumber fish and blackened fish. Everything was yummy so I highly recommend that you take a few friends you you can eat off their plates!
Saltwater Cowboys: Worth the visit!!
This is a very rustic building on the edge of the intracoastal. It used to be an old fish camp and it's surrounded by saltwater marshes. The atmosphere is WONDERFUL and the food is great!
Favorite Dish: I had the Jambalaya......YUMMMMMMMMMM
Great food, and excellent location! This seafood restaurant, with the funny name, serves up some great dishes. We tried Jambalaya and a Blackened Catfish Dish, good stuff!!
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