Raintree Restaurant still the local hot spot

By RENEE UNSWORTH

Looking for a relaxing dinner spot with a beautiful view of St. Augustine, amazing food, wine and live music that isn’t too loud? Try Raintree — it’s still a local favorite.

Owner Lorna MacDonald and her family opened the eatery in the early 1980s when she was just 19 and her parents purchased the Casa de Espana, renovated it and reopened it as Raintree Restaurant, 102 San Marco Ave., uptown in St. Augustine.

Since then, St. Augustine locals and visitors from all over enjoy the menu of seafood, steaks and other specialities, especially the dessert menu with signature crepes. The seafood paella and Beef Wellington are just a few of the favorite entrees.

On a recent Saturday evening, I dined with a friend and our two little girls in the courtyard of Raintree Restaurant.

We enjoyed that the live music (outdoors) was enjoyable and not too loud. We could have a conversation without yelling over the music! Indoors, diners enjoyed a quiet but comfortable setting in a turn-of-the-century house turned restaurant.

My friend and I each had a glass of Pinto Grigio. The kids ordered iced tea and watched the people stroll by across the street at the Mission Nombre de Dios, where the Great Cross stands, built in 1965 for St. Augustine’s 400th anniversary. What a great view!

For dinner, kid-friendly pasta and handmade pizza options are available, as well as delicious salads. My entree, the shrimp pomodoro, is a pasta dish served with fresh grape tomatoes and tons of garlic (my favorite!). The shrimp were cooked perfectly.

In addition, Raintree Restaurant holds live supper club and theatre events upstairs from time to time, offering diners another fun option. Raintree also partners with Limelight Theatre, offering dinner to theatre patrons before and after plays and musicals.

Raintree is open from 5 to 9 p.m. daily, with Sunday Brunch served from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. each Sunday.

RAINTREE RESTAURANT

  • 102 San Marco Avenue, St. Augustine
  • 904-824-7211

  • www.raintreerestaurant.com