Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Having recently celebrated their two year anniversary, Chew is a relative newcomer to the swanky downtown restaurant scene. If you've gone wandering through the downtown streets some lonely evening or weekend when the Jacksonville city center turns into the set for a post-apocalyptic zombie movie, chances are you've passed by Chew and not taken much notice. The subdued brick facade is easy to glance over and the simple yet elegant arrangement inside doesn't do much to attract one's attention. Eat here once, however, and you'll never be able to ignore it again.

chew exterior

Despite the quiet formality of its interior, Chew doesn't intimidate you into adopting a faux air of elegance. Instead you are simply invited to meld into the surroundings and participate in something that seems natural rather than pompous.

chew interior

The menu is full of modern takes on French inspired cuisine replete with long names and enticing descriptions of the interesting ingredient combinations. There were so many fascinating things we wanted to try but we are only wee people and decided on an entree each: the Boneless Half Chicken with bacon and white bean cassoulet, fresh fennel, in a cognac pan sauce and the Flounder Hot Pot steamed flounder, soba noodles, napa cabbage, roasted beets, Honsimeji mushrooms, in a spicy lemongrass-ginger broth. There was no flounder that day so Ahi tuna was used in substitution but, being a tuna addict, there were no complaints from me.

tuna stew

According to their website they "use the highest quality products available - made in-house, sourced locally, or from all over the world," which was apparent in the quality of the food. We thoroughly enjoyed our meals and thought that the prices were certainly reasonable considering the quality, quantity, and variety of the ingredients.

For all the desert lovers, their offerings are supposed to be sublime but, for a variety of reasons, we stay away from such foodstuffs and can neither confirm nor deny the assertion. Regardless, the place begs repeat visits and looking over the menu once again has convinced me that the time is about right for my return.

117 W Adams St
Jacksonville, FL 32202
(904) 355-3793

Chew Restaurant on Urbanspoon

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