At a Space Coast Crossroads. A Little Sweetness Here, a Dash of Heat There…

The space shuttle Discovery is seen on launchpad 39A at Cape Canaveral.
Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

About twenty years ago, while touring the Kennedy Space Center, my family and I visited Dixie Crossroads, a 36 year old family-owned seafood restaurant in Titusville, Florida. Dixie Crossroads has been serving great tasting wild ocean-caught seafood, char-grilled steaks, prime rib, chicken, fresh salads and their famous corn fritters since 1983. The menu features the very best local shrimp and fish from Port Canaveral, Florida and ranges from low cost sandwiches and baskets to high end seafood combos. Our first visit was amazing, and ts been amazing ever since.

In short, if you’re in the area or looking for a nice Sunday drive, give it a try. The restaurant is about two hours’ drive from Stuart. Here’s a route

On my way back from dropping my amazing son Chunny off at Orlando International Airport, I went about 30 minutes out of my way to stop at Dixie Crossroads. I was in search of their vibrant red, delicious, sweet and mildly-hot Datil Pepper sauce. For what it delivers, a 12 ounces bottle of this sauce is a deal at only $8.00!

Datil Peppers are not the mildest pepper in the world, as you can see here. Very interesting article. I learned not only that a Datil Pepper in its unprocessed state is a HOT pepper, but that it is indigenous to northeast Florida. That makes the score on the sauce extra sweet (but not too spicy).

Dixie Crossroads’ Datil Pepper sauce is a combination of cocktail sauce (without the horseradish) and a mild to moderately spicy hot sauce. It is both sweet and savory, with a somewhat slight spicy finish. It hits you first on the tongue, and then subtly on the back of the mouth. Its great on seafood, but honestly, when I have it in the house I use it on, well… everything. I only bought two bottles for us, which we’ll go through in a couple of months, and one for our daughter Shug, so it will soon be on its way to New Hampshire.

As far as I can tell, Dixie Crossroads doesn’t sell online. Which is a bummer unless you’re stopping by the restaurant for their world-famous locally and freshly caught Canaveral Rock Shrimp. I’ve found a few online sources for Datil Pepper sauce, and believe this one is from the St. Augustine manufacturer of Dixie Crossroads’ sauce.

So if you’re in the neighborhood of Florida’s Space Coast, or would like to be, Titusville holds many treasures. It reminds me of Old Florida, before every inch of shoreline of the Intracoastal Waterway and the ocean were lined with wall-to-wall condos. Give it a try, and if you can make it to Dixie Crossroads (please do, you’ll love it), Just Do It! (I’d quote this, but I don’t care for Nike’s social politics).

As always, my opinions are my own, and worth exactly what you paid for them (grin). And feel free to share your own impression, experience, or what’s on your mind in the comments.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy!

Chris Church
The Suburban Forager