Welcome (back) to Jacksonville!

1993. My family moved to Jacksonville when I was in 4th grade.

2001. I moved away from Jacksonville when I left for college.

2019. I’m fortunate enough to move back to Jacksonville thanks to an amazing job opportunity.

In the time since I left Jacksonville, I’ve done some growing up. I’ve also done some living. I could bore you with a full-on autobiography, but I’ll spare you. It makes for good conversation if we ever hang out. To make it short and sweet: In the 18 years since I moved away from Jacksonville, I have lived in Tallahassee, Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Cazenovia, New York (about 20 miles outside of Syracuse). I’ve worked my way through several degrees, with the most recent (and final) being a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy. I’ve also worked my way through the field of education and have been a teacher, college access program coordinator, and currently, I am an Assistant Dean of Admission at a fancy pants liberal arts college. At least… for the next month.

You see, that’s where the move back to Jacksonville comes into focus. I’ve recently taken a position within administration (college counseling) at a local independent school. This is a significant career move and one I am thrilled to make. It’s going to be a life-changing experience.

Outside of work and education… let’s see. Well, I love to travel. I also love to eat. I also love to play golf and softball. I love all things Frank Lloyd Wright inspired, and I also have a thing for LEGOs. You see, rather than buy knickknacks to represent my travels, I get the corresponding LEGO Architecture Series should there be one. Currently, I have 19 models adorning my office.

Anyway, this blog is supposed to be about food, so I guess I should get to that…. well, in my absence as a resident, I have seen Jacksonville grow in ways I never expected or anticipated (but should have!). I continue to marvel at how underrated and underappreciated Jacksonville continues to be. The food here is impressive. From local barbecue joints, to farm-to-table cuisine, to a burgeoning food truck scene, Jacksonville has SO much to offer and I am excited to explore every nook and cranny of it.

In full discolure— I don’t move to town until April 4th. I wanted to get this up and running though so that maybe, just maybe, by the time I get there, someone can offer some suggestions on the first places I should check out. I do hope to get to at least one place per week as time permits.

So, what would you suggest? Where would you take someone who has one meal in town and you want it to be the best representation of the Jacksonville food scene? Let me know! Comment below or reach me at the contact link!