Street Scene: Five Points
With locally owned shops and unique restaurants, a strong undercurrent of independence runs through Jacksonville's hip Five Points area.
The grocery stores, offices and pharmacies that originally filled Five Points are long gone; today, the area is an eclectic commercial district that draws its fair share of antique hunters, tattooed hipsters and hungry strollers. A quick walk might make one think that the dining and nightlife concepts here are nothing new — a few bars, restaurants serving various cuisines and a movie theater, to name a few — but they're all executed with local twists. And with so many offerings condensed into such a small radius, a visit to this hip strip can easily last from a leisurely lunch all the way to last call.
1 COZY TEA
From the floral linen tablecloths and dainty teacups to the assortment of chocolate truffles and loose-leaf teas, this spot is known among locals as the loveliest place to while away a lazy afternoon. A traditional tea menu is offered for purists, but regular lunch diners swear by the curried chicken pastry and vegetable samosas. www.cozyt.com
2 SUN-RAY CINEMA
This cinema has recently undergone a complete overhaul (see page 78), transforming from simply an oldie back to a goodie. Back in 1927, it was the first movie theater in Jacksonville to play films with sound. Today, independent and wide-release talkies make their way to its marquee (recent screenings have included We Need to Talk About Kevin and The Hunger Games ), and the kitchen serves beer, wine and housemade pizza. www.sunraycinema.com
The eye-catching glass mosaic draws passersby to the patio at Birdies, where stiff drinks tend to keep them 'til the witching hours. The avian theme extends to the menu; try The Hummingway, a Southern-style concoction with peach schnapps and sweet tea vodka. Or, grab a beer and head to the back for a game of pool and people watching. www.birdiesjax.com
4 O'BROTHERS IRISH PUB
This no-frills establishment is where patrons try to conjure the luck of the Irish (or, at the very least, hallucinate leprechauns) well into the wee morning hours. With 18 beers on tap, a big patio and consistently popular weekend ragers, this place is a local fave. On top of that, it also serves mouthwatering meals: Don't miss Emerald Isle standbys like the booze-soaking bangers and mash, plus a handsome selection of burgers and a Guinness-infused mac and cheese plate so good it's a neighborhood legend. www.obrotherspub.com
5 VINTAGE RECALLED
Vintage Recalled is the new kid on a block filled with antique and secondhand stores. The interior of this purveyor of classics is small but filled to the brim with a solid selection of hipster goods like perfectly distressed cowboy boots, pre-loved dresses and wonderfully worn-in band tee's. www.vintagerecalled.com