by Katie Hendrick Vincent | December 14, 2018

Amelia Island Gourmet Getaway

Taste the island’s culinary best during Restaurant Week, January 18-27 2019

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With a culinary bounty as rich as its cultural history and natural habitats, Amelia Island teems with epicurean treasures throughout its historic downtown and its breathtaking resorts tucked among the oak trees and nestled along its pristine beaches. Florida’s northernmost barrier island has become a must-eat destination for the discerning foodie, offering fresh-off-the-boat seafood, farm-to-table produce, world-class wine and so much more.

Sweet-tea-brined pork chop on mac n cheese with warm blackberry ginger preserves at 29 South Eats

“There’s a little bit of everything here — casual and upscale options, bakeries and cafés, Southern-inspired restaurants, international cuisine and loads of local seafood establishments,” said Amy Boek, chief marketing officer for the Amelia Island Convention and Visitors Bureau. “The diversity and quality of our culinary scene would be impressive anywhere, but especially so for such a small community.”

A mere 13 miles long, Amelia Island boasts more than 100 places to dine, most of them distinct, local institutions. Twenty-eight restaurants will participate in the island’s 11th-annual restaurant week, January 18-27.

Salt at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island will host Salt & Savor, the kick-off event for restaurant week.

The 10-day gastronomic showcase will feature some of the island’s most popular eateries and restaurants, from refined favorites such as The Pub at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island to open-air seafood spots like The Salty Pelican. Participating kitchens will offer pre-fixe menus for lunch ($12) and dinner ($21, $31 or $41).

“This week is a chance for our chefs to diverge from their day-to-day selections and show off new items,” Boek said. “It’s also an opportunity for diners to savor some of the island’s finest food for an incredible value.”

The quiet island is home to some of the restaurant industry’s heavy hitters. Top Chef alumnus Kenny Gilbert of Gilbert’s Underground Kitchen, honed his craft at luxury properties, including The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island and the Sea Island Lodge in Georgia, and has cooked for President George W. Bush and Oprah Winfrey. Scott Schwartz of the much-lauded 29 South Eats, and a member of the prestigious club Les Toques Blanches, has cooked for high-profile events such as the 1996 Olympic Games and the American Express Celebrity Chefs Tour and has accumulated an impressive collection of “best of” accolades.

A variety of gastronomic- and cocktail-related activities will complement the week of savory savings. Festivities kick off Wednesday, January 16, during Salt & Savor, a four-course gourmet dinner with wine pairings for $150 (gratuity not included), led by Rick Laughlin, chef de cuisine at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island’s AAA Five Diamond Award-winning restaurant, Salt. In addition to a decadent meal, guests will enjoy serene views of sand dunes and the Atlantic Ocean through Salt’s floor-to-ceiling windows.

Omni Amelia Island Plantation’s The Spouting Project will host the Sea & Sky finale dinner.

The Sea & Sky finale dinner, Saturday, January 26, at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation concludes Restaurant Week. Drawing inspiration from the island’s natural surroundings, executive chef Todd Ruiz will prepare a four-course menu for $95 (tax and gratuity included) highlighting local seafood, farm-to-table poultry and ingredients from The Sprouting Project, the property’s state-of-the-art aquaponic greenhouse, organic garden and collection of beehives.

Reservations are required for the opening and closing events. For additional details, including participating restaurants and menus, visit AmeliaIsland.com/yummy.

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