It’s a new year so you will be seeing all sorts of “Best of” articles, memes and columns. Some even did theirs in the middle of last year. How you decide who the best anything was for the year before the year is over seems a little sketchy, but that’s none of my business.
This article is the fifth in a series showcasing the best in Jacksonville, Florida. We did ours differently than most. Our best is not just a popularity contest as many others are. We accepted votes, via our facebook page, to get a list of the top twenty as selected by the citizens of Jax. We then sent Deputy Examiners into the field to independently rate each burger, beer, cocktail, happy hour, etc…
We took those totals and came up with a list of the five best in each category as well as 5 honorable mentions. There were a few categories that didn’t have twenty and in that case we used the top half for our in field examinations. Our best of are not listed in any particular order, they represent the best Jax has to offer in their respective categories. We have left the best part for you; try each one and decide for yourself which is The Best in Jax! Best Italian restaurants in Jacksonville;
La Cena Ristorante offers fine dining and a nice selection of wine in downtown Jacksonville. Their menu is primary tradition Italian offerings which they change up seasonally. They make their pasta and sauces fresh daily and the chef is substitution friendly.
Mamma Lucia Restaurant on Beach Boulevard is family owned and run. They offer a large menu and large portions of handmade and prepared sauces and pasta. Reservations are recommended. *This restaurant has closed* Since they were up and running during our competition and had received so many votes we have included them on the last as a thank you for all the wonderful food they have served the citizens of Jacksonville over the years.
Nero’s Cafe, nothing fancy just great food piled high with reasonable prices and friendly service. Their weekly specials were mentioned in almost every vote they received.
Sunday is “All U Can Eat Lasagna” for $9.95. Tuesday and Thursday is 2 for 1 pizza and on Wednesday “ll U Can Eat Spaghetti for $5.99
Santioni’s Italian Restaurant is located in Fleming Island and has been serving up great Italian food since the mid 1980’s. They offer live music on the weekends and owner Bruno Santoni is a frequent performer. When he’s not singing for your supper he and his staff are busy serving authentic Italian cuisine. Entrees ordered before 6 p.m. come with complimentary wine. It’s worth the drive just for their fresh made garlic knots and their cannoli.
Taverna San Marco is located in historic San Marco and run by the husband and wife team of Sam and Kiley Efron. Taverna boasts a large selection of Italian dishes. The menu changes seasonally and the couple also make all of their own pastas,and broths.
Honorable mention; Enza’s Italian Restaurant, Joseph’s Pizza, Pizza Italian and Sorrento Italian Restaurant.