Locals flock to Toucan Cafe for their succulent fare, pleasing environment and friendly service. My husband and I found out about this hidden treasure located in midtown Savannah from some friends who were delighted to share their experiences dining at this tucked away eatery with us. We’re so happy they did! Since that time, we have made Toucan Cafe one of our top five restaurants that we visit in the city when we’re in town. (Yes, it’s really THAT good!) You may have to drive past the establishment a couple of times before finding it. That’s what we wound up doing since it is positioned down a long driveway behind another small building that blocks the view of the eatery from the street. However, once we did locate the property, parked our vehicle and delighted in what Toucan cafe had to offer, we returned again and again…
Toucan Cafe, lovingly called ‘Toucan’s’ by locals, offers an inviting environment from the time you walk into the restaurant to the time you depart. Its beige stucco exterior, enhanced by flourishing leafy palms around the perimeter, compliments the continuous line of potted plants along the entry, while the gentle coaxing resonance of flowing water from a nearby fountain sets you at ease.
The approach to the front door tips you off about what awaits inside. More lush plants greet your approach, as color begins to come into play. A deep purple painted door and ceiling, lime green chairs next to a toucan-decorated handwritten menu board…but wait…that’s just the beginning to this palate-pleasing experience…
Once inside, bursts of vibrant color and twirling ceiling fans enhance a Caribbean motif, while an eclectic collection of furnishings make great conversation pieces and make you feel at home. A cooled wine display offers diners a selection of choices as you wait to be seated by a friendly and knowledgeable server genuinely happy to see you, and the aroma of fresh bread baking and culinary temptations wafting throughout the cafe make your mouth water and senses heighten.
And how the senses do heighten here! Above, hearty sliced bread is served with a container of chilled butter, a Chardonnay from the restaurant’s wine & beer options refreshes, and several iced teas and cold Arnold Palmers allow for complimentary refills.
Toucan Cafe Caesar Salad
We always begin with the Toucan Cafe Caesar Salad. Above, I like mine with additional Spanish anchovies (a slight additional charge). A simple, yet flavor-packed version with freshly-grated Parmesan cheese, chilled Romaine lettuce and crunchy flavorful croutons.
Despite the multitude of menu options at Toucan Cafe, I have to confess that of all of the items my husband and I have experienced, my absolute favorite is the Moroccan Salmon dish. This HAS to be one of the most flavorsome, rich-tasting, euphoric salmon preparations I have ever involved my taste buds with. Made with chiffonade leafy greens surrounding the entree, diced tomatoes, Mandarin orange slices, toasted almonds and a warm couscous drizzled with an unbelievably flavorsome curry-honey sauce.
Above, my husband has enjoyed the Tilapia entree on more than a single seating. Served with roasted two-spice potatoes, squash, zucchini, extra virgin olive oil and lemon, this lesson in delicately grilled fish was meticulously executed and the flavor was astounding as well.
Wasabi Pea Encrusted Salmon
The amazing Wasabi Pea Encrusted Salmon was so tender, succulent and certainly a unique presentation for a salmon dish, my husband began ordering it repeatedly for a while as we continued to dine at Toucan Cafe. Here it was prepared with mashed potatoes, sauteed spinach and a creamy not-light-but-definitely-savory sauce.
Salmon Steak With Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Roasted Vegetables
The Salmon Steak with Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Roasted Vegetables was another favorite of ours at Toucan Cafe. With the sauce ordered on the side, we were able to control just how much succulent sauce we were getting. Of course, we wound up devouring the entire container (and asked for more!). The fish was fork-tender as expected, while the roasted vegetables and mashed sweet potatoes created a lovely taste and visual presentation of this offering.
We cannot remember how many times we’ve actually dined at Toucan Cafe. It’s definitely been a LOT! After our first encounter with this delightful friendly establishment, we were hooked. We’re sure you will be as well after your first visit!
- ESTABLISHMENT / DECOR: Calming entrance with palms, numerous potted plants along the entry…then massive festive colors of the Caribbean welcome you in as you enter the front door as the ‘toucan’ motif and vibrant hues create an exciting and colorful atmosphere.
- FOOD / DRINK: Sensational…complimentary refills on iced tea, a pleasing selection of wines, and outstanding cuisine is being cooked up in the kitchen at this locals’ restaurant.
- LOCATION: Toucan Cafe is located at 531 Stephenson Avenue in Savannah, GA 31405.
- HOURS: The restaurant is available Monday through Saturday from 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM for lunch, Monday through Thursday from 5PM – 9PM for dinner, and again for dinner on Fridays and Saturdays from 5 PM – 10 PM.
- SERVICE / STAFF: Friendly, efficient, smiling faces, and pleasing overall. It’s as though you’re walking into your own family’s home with those who care about you welcoming you in and making you feel at home.
- PRICE / VALUE: So reasonable, you won’t believe it. Especially for lunch. And the value overall is spectacular. You’re not just getting what you pay for here…you’re getting that and more!
- CORKAGE FEE: $15 per 750mL bottle.
- CONTACT INFO: Phone: (912) 352-2233, Website: www.toucancafe.com
- PARKING: There is ample parking in the lot that surrounds the restaurant.
- TOTAL BILL: Most of our total bills came to around $40 (including tax) or near that for two people. That included iced teas, and an entree for each of us, which we don’t think it bad at all