Much like the Volusia County shopping scene has evolved into something really great the last few years, the restaurant scene has pretty much followed suit.
Here are some of my favorite restaurants throughout Volusia County.
Jimmy Hula’s – This is a great place for “surf themed” tacos and burgers. We used to drive all the way over to Lake Mary every couple of months to get our fix, but now its just a short drive away and they are also taking about adding more locations in Daytona and Port Orange (fingers crossed). Located in the Granada Plaza on beachside in Ormond. We usually get the Cabo Trio (quest, guac, and salsa with tortilla chips), and a couple of Pipeline Pork Tacos. They have a lot of local craft beers too.
Larry’s Giant Subs – Located in the same plaza as Jimmy Hulas is Larry’s Giant Subs. We used to have one convenient to us in Port Orange but that one closed a few years ago and now we have to go to either the one in Ormond or Daytona. Worth the trip though. I like the chicken salad. My mom always used to be partial to the egg salad.
Genovese’s – Also in the same plaza is Genovese’s Italian Cafe. They have great pizza and pasta. We get take-out there all the time from their location in Daytona Beach Shores where we live.
Houligan’s – Houligan’s calls itself a “Spirited” Sports Grille and that’s exactly what it is. Best known for their “Wally Wings” which are finished on the grill (Honey BBQ Wally Style is my go-to). They also have burgers sandwiches, etc. Several people I go there with swear by the Philly. They have two locations in Ormond.
Peach Valley Cafe – Peach Valley is only open for breakfast and lunch, and because they serve breakfast from open to close, its always a challenge to decide whether I want breakfast or lunch. If I go the breakfast route, it’s usually biscuits and gravy, but if I go with lunch, I usually have the reuben and fries. The chicken salad on croissant is also fantastic. But whether you choose breakfast or lunch, I demand you get an order of the apple fritters. You can thank me later. Peach Valley has two Ormond locations, one on the beachside and one on the mainland.
Stonewood Grill – Stonewood describes itself as “polished” casual dining. The food is on the same level as many of the finer dining restaurants around, but you won’t feel out of place in shorts, a polo shirt, and a pair of Sperry’s. While they have several locations throughout Florida, I believe the Ormond location was the first one. Great steaks, chicken, pasta for dinner, but make sure you start off with the Bruschetta and/or the Clam Chowder.
Bonefish Grill – Yes, its a chain but it makes my list because it’s so “bang” good (Bonefish fans will get what I did there!). I just wish there was one in Port Orange or Daytona. Maybe one day.
Billy’s Tap Room – A great place for a fancy date night, Billy’s is an Ormond Beach landmark, and the food is really great too. It started as a Tea Room on the property of the beautiful Ormond Beach Hotel in 1922 and they moved across the street to their current location in 1926. Known for great steaks and seafood.
The Chart House – If a fancy dinner with a great view is your thing, then the Chart House located at Marina Point (just off Beach Street) is the place for you. Floor-to-ceiling windows allow you to watch boats float by on the Halifax River or see them coming and going in and out of the marina. Phenomenal steaks and seafood. Also well known for their salad bar, and of course the hot lava cake.
The Cellar – This is about as fine as fine dining gets around here. Located in what was once the winter home of President Warren G. Harding, The Cellar is know for their phenomenal Italian cuisine and their extensive wine list. If you want to impress somebody, take them to The Cellar.
Stavro’s Pizza – Through the years there have been several Stavro’s locations, but the one on Beach Street has been the most enduring and in my opinion the most consistent. The pizza and greek salad here are definitely worth driving a little bit out of your way for.
There are also Stonewood Grill (on LPGA in the old Vince Carter’s Restaurant space) and Houligan’s (across from the mall near the entrance to the airport) locations in Daytona, and the ONE Daytona development across from the Speedway has some great restaurants coming soon, such as PF Chang’s.
The Daily Grind – Looking for a great burger? As the name suggests, they grind their fresh beef here every day of the week. You can pick from one of three patty sizes and a ton of great toppings. It definitely won’t be the fastest you ever got a burger, in fact it might be the slowest, but that’s a testament to the fact that everything is made to order. Well worth the wait in my opinion.
Malibu Beach Grill – Steaks, chops, seafood. Malibu is about as fancy as you’ll find here in Port Orange, and even then it’s not too fancy. The clam chowder is pretty good here too. Located in The Pavillion.
San Diego Grill – Also located in The Pavillion, my wife and I go here for fajitas a few times a month. The menu skews SoCal, and they have brunch daily until 3pm. Something for everyone in your group here.
Giuseppe’s – Open since 1982 Giuseppe’s is known for great pizza and wings.
There are also Stonewood Grill, Peach Valley Cafe, and Houligan’s locations in Port Orange.
New Smyrna Beach
Corkscrew Bar and Grill – It’s a bit of a drive for us, but somehow we always seem to end up at “the screw” at least once a week. Located on Canal Street, their menu features “American classic comfort food with southern twists.” The wife and I almost always split the Swamp Pasta, but the burgers are good here too. And they have a heckuva beer selection and a nice wine list too.
Norwood’s – Speaking of wine, Norwood’s is one part restaurant and one part wine shop. They’ve got one of the largest wine menu’s around, and great steaks, seafood, and chicken to go with all that wine. They’ve also got live music in the Treehouse they built a few years back.
The Garlic – Another popular NSB restaurant, The Garlic is known for their great food, live music, fine wine, Italian beer and specialty martinis. You can dine either inside or outside. Most weekend nights there’s a decent wait to get in and unless it’s a major holiday or you have a party of 10 or more, they don’t take reservations. So grab a drink and relax until your table is ready.
Yellow Dog Eats – Another really cool place to check out is Yellow Dog Eats. Known for great BBQ, a long list of unique sandwiches, and much more this place is unique addition to the local restaurant scene.
Outrigger’s – All I really need to say about this place is Bid Time Bloody Mary. The description from their menu: “If a Rolls-Royce mated with a Rolex and they had a bloody mary, this would be it! House infused Tito’s Vodka, candied black pepper bacon, cocktail shrimp and rimmed with our blend of blackening seasoning and merlot salt.” The food is good too, and if you sit outside you’ve got a great view of the marina.