Jax 5th Avenue: Our Story
The Story Behind One of Lake Mary’s Favorite Restaurants
When people visit Jax 5th Avenue Deli & Ale House in Lake Mary for the very first time, they always ask about the building’s architecture, the intricate details of the woodwork inside and how Jax came to be. We are all too happy to share the history of Jax and how it became one of Lake Mary’s favorite restaurants.
The design of the building was the vision of a Swiss hotelier when he set out to create an elegant, yet casual gourmet restaurant that resembled a Swiss chalet in the heart of Lake Mary, FL in 1988. Nothing was spared in his quest for authenticity. What at one time was Frogg’s at the Crossings was rebuilt and doubled in size, but he didn’t stop there! Trees cut from the foothills of the Alps were shipped to a family of woodworkers in Austria to be hand-carved and stained. The three craftsmen were then brought to Lake Mary to make the installation of the massive, solid pine beams and legend has it that the workers buried the tools of their trade within the building.
In March of 1988, the Swiss Inn attracted crowds of diners who appreciated the classic styling of the building and the European-style menu. Restaurant reviews by food critic Scott Joseph of the Orlando Sentinel gave superb ratings to the Swiss Inn’s cuisine and made special mention of the attention to the details of the building, right down to the imported European furniture and custom case moldings.
The decade of the 90’s was a troubled time for this beautiful building when several owners came and went. In 2007, another man had a different vision. With an already successful Winter Park location, he realized that the citizens of Lake Mary weren’t looking for a fine dining experience. They wanted a neighborhood restaurant that served New York-style, well-stuffed deli sandwiches and more beer than they could ever drink; they wanted massive big screen TVs visible from anywhere in the building; and they wanted sports, sports and more sports!
Jax 5th Avenue Deli & Ale House in Lake Mary was opened in August of 2007 and the legend continues today.