At Bar Zin, Expect Luxury That You Won’t Forget

By Dylan Bailey

A quaint bistro called Bar Zin is tucked away behind the lush scenery of Palmetto Walk. Steeped in history yet refreshed in focus, it reopened in 2021, intent on delivering an upscale yet casual dining experience. Now that it’s been a few years, has Bar Zin kept that promise? I wanted to find out and eat some food, so it was a win-win.

Stepping into the restaurant, a warm and friendly hostess greeted me. It was like catching up with a friend. I dined alfresco, since the sun and weather were perfect for it. Small, golden rays peeked through the trees. It was serene.

Bar Zin’s menu is a curated, albeit small, selection of dishes. Their focus is on quality and not quantity. And with it being a wine bar, you’ll find a laundry list of alcoholic beverages. There is a little of everything, from the extensive array of wines to the handcrafted cocktails.

I started with one of the chef’s specials: Mediterranean crab dip—a delightful medley of flavors, with generous chunks of crab enveloped in the creamy dip, offset by crisp tomatoes and a hint of spice. It came with buttery, toasted bread that perfectly matched the dip.

For my main course, I went with the chicken piccata. Fried to perfection, the chicken sat on pappardelle pasta that soaked up the wine butter sauce like a sponge. The garnish was even better. Sheets of parmesan, capers, mushrooms and tomatoes added a light and salty bite. Eating this dish felt like a warm spring day.

I couldn’t decide between the beignets and chocolate cake for dessert, but the chef’s special of the day, the Key lime pie, won my heart. And I can say Bar Zin knocked it out of the park. The piece had a generous dollop of whipped cream, and a blackberry and strawberry, placed over a sweet glaze. A light and flavorful dish that rounded off the meal.

Bar Zin’s pricing leans towards the higher end, but it respects you enough to provide a quality meal in exchange. Expect to shell out more than $20 on a main course and north of $12 for an appetizer. You can expect to pay a similar price for the desserts, making them a luxurious indulgence.

Bar Zin’s promise of refocusing on the casual, upscale vibe has remained true. I enjoyed every second, from the moment I stepped foot in the restaurant to the last bite. The bistro is perfect for a special occasion or a casual dinner. Next time I go back, I’ll order the chicken piccata in a heartbeat. And try the truffle frites. Maybe even the beignets.

Bar Zin

Website: www.barzin-bistro-winebar.com

Address: 4924 First Coast Hwy., Fernandina Beach, FL 32034

Hours: Hours vary

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