1. Home
  2. keyboard_arrow_right
  3. Lifestyle & Travel
  4. keyboard_arrow_right
  5. Places to Go & Things to Do
  6. keyboard_arrow_right
  7. Local Flavors: St. Augustine, Florida
  1. Home
  2. keyboard_arrow_right
  3. Lifestyle & Travel
  4. keyboard_arrow_right
  5. Places to Go & Things to Do
  6. keyboard_arrow_right
  7. Local Flavors: St. Augustine, Florida

Local Flavors: St. Augustine, Florida

Image Caption: Photo Credit: Getty

During the Gilded Age, St. Augustine, Florida, was one of the great winter-time tourism magnets in the nation. The old Spanish colonial city still attracts travelers with its fascinating array of historic attractions, eco tours, golf, stunning beaches—even an alligator farm.

Founded in 1565 by the Spanish, St. Augustine is the oldest continuously occupied European settlement in the United States, decades older than those in Jamestown and Plymouth. For a little taste of the Spanish colonial era, visit the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, built in the 17th century. Or stroll St. Augustine’s charming narrow streets, with balconied houses that now, often as not, contain intriguing restaurants, bars and shops. For another important piece of St. Augustine history, be sure to visit the Lincolnville Museum and Cultural Center to learn about Black history, stretching from the empires of West Africa to the early African presence in colonial Florida to the 20th century.

Finally, climb 165 feet to the top of the iconic, striped St. Augustine Lighthouse for views of the picturesque old port and its surrounding beaches. You’ll see why St. Augustine retains its appeal after all these decades (and centuries).

rv travel St. Augustine

Photo Credit: Wirestock/Getty

On the Menu

Minorcan Clam Chowder

This tomato-base chowder is pretty similar to Manhattan clam chowder except for one crucial ingredient: datil peppers. Indentured servants from Minorca, an island off the eastern coast of Spain, brought them to the St. Augustine region. Datil peppers have a heat level similar to super-spicy habañero and scotch bonnet peppers, but they also have a fantastic natural sweetness that tempers their heat. The whole fruit is hard to find outside the St. Augustine region, so use datil pepper sauce (available online) if you can’t find fresh peppers.

You’ll Need

  • 1/4 pound bacon, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 15-ounce can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 cups seafood stock
  • 1 (8-ounce) bottle clam juice
  • 2 (6.5-ounce) cans chopped clams, drained and liquid reserved
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 datil pepper, seeded and minced, or datil pepper hot sauce, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 small red potatoes, diced

Make It

  1. In a large saucepan, cook bacon over medium heat, stirring frequently until crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels, reserving a couple of tablespoons of drippings in pan.
  2. Add onion, bell pepper, and carrots to drippings and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until just tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in all the remaining ingredients except the clams and bacon, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer on low for 45 minutes.
  3. Stir in clams and cooked bacon, and cook for 5 minutes. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.
rv travel St. Augustine

Photo Credit: Clean Slate and Vennstone Wineries

Fine Parings

Pairing wine with spicy food can be a palate puzzler, but these two options do the trick. Our budget choice, Clean Slate Riesling, comes from the Mosel Valley in Germany. This slightly sweet wine with flavors of ripe peach and citrus fruits helps tame the flame in hotter dishes. $12

Our date-night option, Vennstone Pinot Noir, blends grapes from Sonoma, Monterey and Santa Barbara, California. A rich, purple red in color, it’s a full-bodied wine with distinct notes of berries. Pop this wine in the fridge to chill for about 15 minutes before serving. $20


Terri Peterson Smith
+ posts

Read This Next

Subscribe to Wildsam Magazine today, Camping World and Good Sam’s magazine of the open road.

Just $19.97 for a year’s subscription.


Read Premium Articles with an RV.com subscription.
Starting at $14.97/year

Join Now