We took a quick trip down to St. Augustine this past weekend so Jenna could visit Flagler College. We rolled into town Friday evening, checked into the hotel and set about finding something good for supper. We weren’t quite sure what we were in the mood for but we knew we didn’t want fast food. We also knew that we didn’t want anything from a restaurant that has a location near home. ConnieLou picked up one of those free tourist info/coupon books in the hotel lobby when we checked in so we took a look at it to see what we could find. We noticed fairly quickly that St. Augustine has no shortage of restaurants. For whatever reason I was drawn to the ad for a New York style pizza joint named Carmelo’s Pizzaria. It had good reviews on Yelp and was just a couple of blocks from the college.

One of the reviews we read mentioned that Carmelo’s was behind the gas station on the corner. Turns out that it’s not exactly behind the gas station but is attached to the gas station. OK, now don’t go getting the idea that this is a gas station dive…it’s not. It’s a nice sit-down pizzeria (there’s also a take-out side) that happens to be attached to a convenience store called Carmelo’s Market.

Rather than ordering a single pie to split we decided to order slices. Jenna ordered a slice of Meat Supreme, ConnieLou chose a slice pepperoni and I went with a slice of Meat Supreme and a slice of Hawaiian.

After driving for over six hours we really didn’t care if the pizza took a while to get to us…but it didn’t. It was served quickly and piping hot. So how was it? In a word, fantastic! We really couldn’t find anything to complain about.

So how did Carmelo’s fare on the Thumbs Scale? It easily scored six thumbs up. We seem to have a knack for finding good pizza. Every once in a while we find exceptional pizza and we all agreed that Carmelo’s probably fit somewhere in our Top 5. I suspect that if Jenna ends up attending Flagler, we’ll be visiting Carmelo’s again…and again…and again.

On Saturday morning we did the college tour and had a couple of hours to poke around town before we had to head back home. We found a few geocaches before I was informed that we needed to get milkshakes for nourishment for the long ride home.

ConnieLou pulled out a brochure that we got during the college tour that mentioned a shake shop called Cousteau’s Waffle and Milkshake Bar. We Googled up the address, plugged it into Google Maps (aren’t smart phones the handiest things?) and off we went.

A short walk through town brought us to Cousteau’s, which is a little hole-in-the-wall place. Once inside we saw that it was decorated with photos of Jaques C. himself and his underwater exploration teams and their equipment. Neat little place. Like I said, we were in the mood for milkshakes but they also served up Belgian waffles with ice cream and other toppings.

ConnieLou and I both ordered the Calypso which was described as “key lime pie in a milkshake” and consisted of vanilla ice cream with fresh Florida lime juice, graham cracker crumbs and topped with whipped cream. Jenna ordered the Pele Dos Santos which consisted of fresh bananas and Nutella mixed with vanilla ice cream.

OK, I’m a key lime pie fan and I’ve got to say that the description of the Calypso was right on the money. We decided to drink our shakes as we walked back to the car. Considering that we didn’t have all that far to walk and that our shakes had pretty much disappeared by the time that we made it to the car, it was obvious that they were pretty darn good.

So how did Cousteau’s rank on the Thumbs Scale? Another six thumbs…easily. Yep, we’ll be back there someday too.

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