This city by the sea played host to America's first European settlement in 1559. And its sugar-white sand and turquoise water have continued to draw visitors ever since, from conquering armies - the city has come under the sway of five different flags in its colorful history — to armies of beach-loving families. Though known the world over for its scenic, coastal charms, the Pensacola Bay Area is also home to an eclectic mix of fresh, locally harvested flavors. Here are five of the best places to get a taste of the City of Five Flags.
1. East Hill Honey Co. Tommy and Emily Van Horn have been producing artisanal honey since 2010 in their backyard in Pensacola's trendy East Hill neighborhood. The couple transformed from hobbyists to full-time beekeepers in 2012, buoyed by a successful Kickstarter campaign. Now, they offer an array of products every Saturday at Palafox Market. They also deliver orders (by bicycle) to customers living in the East Hill neighborhood of Pensacola, and will ship to anyone else.
2. Joe Patti's Seafood For more than three-quarters of a century, Joe Patti's has been serving up fresh seafood on Pensacola Bay. The company was founded in the early 1930s by Italian immigrants Anna and Joe Patti, who began by selling seafood from their front porch on Pensacola's De Villiers Street. Today, the bustling market on the western edge of downtown Pensacola is a landmark, flanked by towering shrimp boats—but the business remains a family affair. Make sure to watch our vlog on a trip to Joe Patti's.
3. Palafox Market Each and every Saturday, locavores descend on downtown Pensacola's Martin Luther King Jr. Plaza for Palafox Market, the city's premiere destination for local produce, baked goods, fine art and more. The weekly market features dozens of vendors and attracts anywhere from 1,500 to 4,500 patrons each week. Make sure to watch our video on Palafox Market.
4. Ever’man Natural Foods Another local gem in the heart of Downtown Pensacola is Ever’man Natural Foods. This newly-remodeled co-op offers the largest variety of natural and certified organic products within a 150-mile radius. In addition to their store, you will also find the only organic juice bar in town and a lovely café where you can get a delicious, all-natural breakfast, lunch or dinner! Be sure to try their Keens Beans Coffee, as well! Rhonda Keen and Eric Yoder produce their organic, shade-grown coffee right in the heart of historic Pensacola. Their beans, which are also sold weekly at Palafox Market, are grown on the couple's coffee farm in the mountains of Costa Rica and processed locally.
5. J.W. Renfroe Pecan Co. The Renfroe family has been cultivating pecans in Pensacola since 1956. Today, the business is still in the family and still going strong. Although famous for pecans, Renfroe also offers a variety of other nut products, as well as home-made fudge and New Orleans style pralines. Their products can be purchased wholesale, from their Pensacola facility, or online.
Explore our website or request a free visitor guide to learn more about all the local flavors the Pensacola Bay Area.