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Mar 11, 2007 06:33 PM

Sarasota: good seafood, Italian, ice cream

My wife and I are going to be in the Sarasota/Siesta Key area for 5 days. I'd like to get some recommendations for good seafood and Italian restaurants. We'll probably have some casual meals, but also will have have a nice dinner or two. This will be our first time to the area; it would be great to hear about a couple lesser known places that we should try. Also, does anyone know of a place in the area that has good, homemade ice cream or gelato. Thanks.

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  1. Here is my opinion for the best Italian in Sarasota:
    Divino on Main St
    Galilio on Stickey Point Road
    For home made Gelato, there is a Italian Ice Cream place on St Armands Circle that is excellent, but do now know the name. I will try to find out. Its superb to anything.

    1. Try Derek's Eclectic Cuisine in the Rosemary District--I had one of the best meals I've had in SW Florida there. Their website is and you can check out their imaginative menu there. Enjoy!

      2 Replies
      1. re: laboheme

        way---way--way--too noisy for me at DEREK'S for just a ok meal.

        1. re: irwin

          How long has it been since you have been to Derek's? We thought it was very noisy too but they have really taken care of the noise problem they had. Acoustic paneling and acoustic fabric under tables and chairs. We can now enjoy those fabulously creative meals again.

      2. There is a Caffe Classico on Tamiami Trail for gelato, Kilwin's on St. Armand's Circle has the best ice cream, and Cafe Baci on Tamiami Trail is the best Italian.

        1. Ice Cream- Big Olaf on Siesta Key
          Seafood- Phillipi Creek Oyster Bar (more than just oysters. I liked the steamed shrimp)

          1. For Italian the best in Sarasota is:
            Gallialo on Stickney Point Road
            Divino on Main St
            Cafe Baci is way too commercial and for tourists
            Derek's is the noisyest restaurant in Sarasota and food is just OK
            Captain Brians or Barnicle Bills is the best seafood in the area.
            Big Olaf has stores all around the Sarasota area and is very good.
            While you are here, please try YODER'S on Baiha Vista....Wow-you will love it. Its open for 3-meals daily except Sunday and especially known for their desserts.
            Let us know how you made out after your trip. We like to hear if our suggestions worked out as well as they were intended too.
            For lunch try Citrus Cafe on the corner of Pineapple and Orange.

            1 Reply
            1. re: irwin

              the name of the gelato place on st armand's circle: setini's (sp)?

              mediterraneo in sarasota is a good italian spot. we'll be coming from nyc to longboat key for spring break week after next, so I'll be scanning here for more suggestions.