Once upon a time, a long time ago, I used to live in Sarasota, Florida. (2001-2012.) And while I was there, I became BFFs with Michelle.
Michelle turned 50 this year!
So I flew down to Sarasota to visit her. SURPRISE!!!!!!!!!
I was only there for the weekend (flew down Friday, came back Sunday!) so we didn’t really get to go many places. But as we drove around, got lunch, and went shopping, it was like my very own personal history tour of Sarasota. In 24 hours, I managed to see (or at least drive past) every place I ever lived and worked in Sarasota!
The weekend was full of reminiscing, so this post is going to be devoted to some of the places tied to those memories. It reminds me of the time way back when, when Michelle and I attempted to start a restaurant review blog called Go Stuff Yourself. Hahaha. Here are some of my favorite places to go/things to do in Sarasota. Most of them involve food.
Siesta Key – I took the beach for granted when I lived in Sarasota. That’s how living in Florida is for a lot of us. People who don’t live there think Floridians must go to the beach (and Magic Kingdom) all the time, and some do, but for the most part… ehh. I love the beach, but I don’t necessarily love what comes with it. The traffic getting there, finding a parking spot, sand in the car, sand all over everything, etc. But I do love walking in the water and watching a Siesta Key sunset!
Daiquiri Deck – I can’t tell you how many daiquiris I have tried. I looked at the menu and I think I’ve had most of them. The Bushwacker and Purple Haze are my top two. I went here for a bachelorette party once. The night did not end well. There’s one on Siesta Key and there’s one on St. Armand’s Circle.
Munchie’s – This was the best place to go if you were super hungry after a night out drinking. It was featured on Man Vs. Food. They had a crazy super nuclear hot wing challenge, but what I went for was the sandwiches. In the Gulf Gate neighborhood.
Marie Selby Botanical Gardens – Michelle and I went here to celebrate the completion of my first book. We had never been before, so we went and had a lunch at the cafe there. I remember we split a little baby-sized bottle of champagne.
Phillippi Creek Oyster Bar – Another favorite! Awesome seafood. Ate there a lot!
Marina Jack’s – Have been to a couple happy hour events here. Great setting, nice for a large group of people to get together and hang out outside if the weather is nice.
Evie’s – I lived near Evie’s and used to go there for trivia night. Decent food and huge mugs of beer! There’s a driving range and a mini golf course right there, too. On Bee Ridge, but there’s one downtown, too.
Yoder’s – When I first moved to Sarasota, my job was a few doors down from a Yoder’s express/takeout place. I used to get a piece of chocolate peanut butter pie on my coffee break, eat half of it, and then finish it for lunch. I did that A LOT. Years later, some mornings before work, friends would go to Yoder’s for breakfast. But the pie. Ohhh, that pie. I miss it. On Bahia Vista.
Big Olaf Creamery – Right down the street from Yoder’s is Big Olaf. They have a ton of great ice cream flavors, but my all-time favorite is the Kahlua Krunch. SO GOOD. On Bahia Vista or on Siesta Key.
Publix – Yes, this is a grocery store, but it makes my list because they make the best sandwiches ever in the deli. I’m going to go ahead and say that they are better than Subway, Quizno’s, Jimmy John’s, Firehouse… There’s something about the bread, I don’t know.
The next time I’m in Sarasota, my dream evening would be getting a Publix sub and heading out to Siesta Key to eat and watch the sunset.
Live in Sarasota? Been there on vacation? What are your favorite spots? Let me know!