Tuesday, February 16, 2010


My wife is out of town for a week and, as much as I love to cook, cooking for one person is a pain. I have been venturing out for lunch a bit more than normal and have found little to nothing in my neck of the woods (University and 34th Street area) that suits my tastes. Sometimes I just turn around and settle for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich at home.

As I have searched in vain, it quickly has become obvious to me that my favorite restaurants in Gainesville are all on the east side of town, east of 6th Street. Starting with my favorite, Ruby's, on 5th Avenue (east of 6th Street) there are many fine restaurants waiting to serve you tasty and memorable meals at great prices. A number come immediately to mind: La Fortuna, East End Eatery, Terrell's Barbecue, The Jones, The Top, Juniors, Mac's Drive-Thru, The Sandwich Inn, Blue Water Bay, along with several fine restaurants in the city center's dining district.

While it is a bit of a trek for some of you who live on the west side, Gainesville is NOT that big of a town. A drive east takes a few minutes extra and the locally owned restaurants there will welcome you with open arms. Liberate yourselves from the Chain Restaurant Jungle that clutters Archer Road and most high traffic routes on the west side. Take a ride east and your will never go back. I guarantee you will marvel at the variety of restaurants that are trying to provide meals that are closer to home-made, show their ethnic roots, and do a better job of patronizing local food purveyors.

So... I am going to begin reviewing my favorites to spur you to action. Stay tuned and I will add a new review weekly until I run out of east side restaurants to recommend. That may take longer than you might think!

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