Ay Jax

Today, I thought I would share two of my favorite places to eat in Jacksonville, Florida with you. I spent all last summer working there, so I’m getting kind of nostalgic, and had to visit my favorites when I went back to St. Augustine last week.

  1. Chamblin’s Uptown


The socialite cousin of Chamblin’s Bookmine, this bookstore-cum-coffee shop-makeshift lunch destination is simultaneously one of the most bustling and calm in the city. Located at 215 N. Laura street right on the city square, smack in the middle of downtown Jacksonville, it’s an oasis of art, literature, and oversize cookies at your fingertips. Best of all, if you forget your book, they have plenty to choose from, and a liberal coffee selection on the cafe side. IMG_4194

2. Bistro Aix


The closest Jacksonville gets to France, Bistro Aix has the smell and warmth of a boulangerie and the wine menu of fine Parisian dining. Complete with a wood fired oven and salmon smoked in-house, pizzas the likes of the one below come topped with caviar at the most affordable price this side of San Marco. Adjoined is Bar X, where you can soak in fashionably low Deco lighting with a Death in the Afternoon even Hemingway would approve of. Afterwards? It’s off to the nearby shops and boutiques lining San Marco’s beautiful neighborhood as the sea’s waves peak at you, just a block away. IMG_3799

Outfit Details:
Blazer: Zara
Pants: Givenchy
Shoes: H&M
Bag: Kate Spade

Sunday Brunch: Subscription Style


I am well aware we’re in the middle (to end?) of what could only be called a subscription box craze, However,  having no need for dog foods, random nail polish colors, or study snacks that don’t include coffee, I had yet to justify the ceremonial expense of at least 20 dollars for products I could better pick myself (or find in trial size giveaways around the perfume counter). Try the World changed my mind, or at least piqued my interest. Try the World is a subscription box that can only be described as a culinary geographical capsule. Each month (or sooner), you are sent a box full of foods from a region, along with a few cultural pointers and tips. They have just come out with an Argentinian box (and my mouth waters for those condensed milk cookies), but I got Morocco and France (pictured is Morocco). I thought it might be fun to share with you and review one.


So, my Morocco box came six items, advertised by the company to be the full size products. I am going to have to trust them (skeptically) on the size of the argan oil, which seems small compared to the way I know most people here buy olive oil. Anyway the 5 items were as follows:

  1. Couscous
  2. Sardines
  3. Baby Argan Oil
  4. Cous Cous Sauce
  5. Kefta Rub
  6. Palmiers

My overall impression (besides developing a new love for palmiers) is about a 6.5/10. Honestly, the cultural guide/ info. is nice to flip through but ultimately not that informative, and not really something I’d keep (except maybe the Moroccan movie list). I don’t think I’m super biased by having been to Marrakesh (the city the guide highlighted), because, though I gorged on kebabs, I didn’t really soak up the whole (or even most of the) culture in my 3 day stay there. Nexy wee should talk price. I bought my box subscription during a sale that gave me 2 for $40. Most of the times, they are $40 per box. That seems like a lot of money to me just to get a baby argan oil, generic box of couscous (I equate this on the cheap end of things, like sending me a box of rice from China… gee thanks), and a (well, admittedly pretty) can of sardines. The oil was good, but it all seemed like a way to keep costs down. In the France box, I felt the same way about the French salt they sent (…. really? I just paid 1/6 of $40 for some salt?).

The cous cous sauce was better, but almost the same as buying salsa from the grocery store. To me, the kefta rub and the palmiers were the nicest items. I’m probably ridiculously biased because they palmiers were so good. They are bite size butter cookies that seem folded like a tightly packed croissant. They were especially nice with coffee, and well worth the find. I haven’t had an occasion to try the kefta rub yet, but please feel free to direct me should you have any recommendations on how to use it with food. Otherwise, it too may be a sunk cost…

So in essence, I think these boxes are super fun (I got champagne truffles), and probably worth the $20, but I just don’t think the quality is enough to solicit any more than that, though the branding is really quite something. Watch out for their email list though… I get one like every week (no, I will not extend my subscription), but on the whole this was fun to try.  DSC_0084

Picnic details: Shoes: Bally | Scarf: Liberty London | Boater hat: Vintage | Toes: OPI: I lost my czechbook.