I was in Elkton last October for an event at the St. Johns County Fairgrounds and noticed Jim’s Place. Elkton is not a big town by any stretch of the imagination and Jim just about has it locked up, as far as the restaurant business is concerned. But after having lunch there on that Saturday, I’m sure Jim would do just fine even if there was plenty of competition!
Just in case you’re not too familiar with this part of Florida, St. Augustine is the “big city” in St. Johns County. Tiny Elkton is a good location for the county fairgrounds as it’s pretty much in the middle of St. Johns. I was there playing music with my good friends Bill and Eli Perras for the recent Tiny House Festival and Jim’s is a stone’s throw away from the fairground’s entrance. I had to stop.
It was a busy Saturday lunch and it took my server a while to greet me. This was not a serious issue to me as the joint was jumpin’ and another party was seated about 20 seconds before I was. As someone who worked in that business for many years, I knew it would be a minute or two before my server made it table side.
Once she got to me and we got down to business, I opted for the Club Sub, it sounded intriguing. When I’m in a place for the first time, a Club Sandwich is one of my go-to orders. I’ve learned over the years that any establishment worth its salt can usually turn out a decent Club. But I’d never had a “Club Sub” and I just had to see what would come out of the kitchen.
It did not disappoint! It’s hard to translate a double decker sandwich into a sub roll but this sub — even though it really should have been served with a bib — was an excellent lunch for this first-time guest.
There are some menu offerings at places like Jim’s that are pretty much impossible to finish in one sitting. Their Club Sub is a great example. But I put on my big boy pants and managed to polish it off. You’re really not going to be able to eat it as you would a “normal” sub; this Mac Daddy of subs isn’t going to stay together for you, at least not long enough to get from stem to stern. If you do go to Jim’s and decide to give this selection a go, your fork will be your best friend. The fries were served hot and were quite good, too.
I liked the country vibe at Jim’s. When you look at the menu and take in your surroundings, there’s just a bit of a disconnect. Pizza and subs are staples here, but it looks nothing like your basic city pizza parlor. If you know what I mean. The best way for me to describe it is that it’s a bit like a scaled-down Cracker Barrel but without the retail part. It’s small-ish, but so is the town of Elkton. You certainly can get a lot more than pizza at Jim’s Place, so the country feel there is fitting. I’ve just never personally walked into a place for pizza or a sub that looked like it.
The next time I visit, I think I’ll make it earlier in the day and get an order of biscuits and gravy. And I’ll quash that silly hope that one day I’ll see Chicken Fried Steak on the menu at my fave pizza place in downtown Orlando! Just kidding…
Jim’s Place not only features excellent variety on its menu, it’s a very family-friendly spot and also has some outdoor seating on the front patio. The parking lot is not paved, something you’ll find in many small eateries in the country, so come wearing your boots and not your Sunday shoes! And the prices at Jim’s are moderate.
Jim’s Place ~ 4917 S.R. 207 ~ Elkton, Florida 32033 ~ Dial 904 692-1222 ~ The Home Page