epicurious

Gulf & Main - - Epicurious -

MATZALUNA

Well-Smoked Ital­ian. The Five Cheese with Gor­gonzola, ri­cotta, spinach and ar­ti­choke hearts is just one of the pop­u­lar wood-fired piz­zas. Fresh pas­tas, chicken, seafood and veal round out the menu. D 1200 Peri­win­kle Way, Sani­bel, 239-472-1998, matzaluna.net

THE NORMANDIE SEA­SIDE CAFÉ AT WEST WIND

In­dulge Your­self. Banan­aberry French Toast or an Ital­ian Omelet for break­fast? The café of­fers those and much more, in­clud­ing a Florida fruit bowl or Veg­gie Omelet, served with Colom­bian cof­fee or a choice of ar­ti­san whole-leaf teas. Re­lax in the old-world at­mos­phere as you en­joy an Is­land Curry Chicken Salad or Pressed Cuban Sand­wich for lunch, paired with the per­fect wine from an ex­ten­sive list. BLD 3345 West Gulf Drive, Sani­bel, 239-472-1541, west­windinn.com/normandie-restau­rant-sani­bel

PINOC­CHIO’S ICE CREAM AND GEPPETTO’S BEACH FOOD­IES

The In­sti­tu­tion. A Sani­bel tra­di­tion since 1980, Pinoc­chio’s hand­crafts all its frozen con­fec­tions daily right in the Sani­bel store in small batches. This mecca for ice cream food­ies of­fers a va­ri­ety that’s sure to please all palates: ice cream, gelato, sor­bet, sher­bet, frozen yo­gurt and Ital­ian cus­tard. Choose from 130-plus fla­vors and en­joy gen­er­ous por­tions. Stop in for the sig­na­ture Sani­bel Krunch or Dirty Sand Dol­lar. Geppetto’s Beach Food­ies, the sis­ter gourmet shop lo­cated next to Pinoc­chio’s, sur­prises with au­then­tic crois­sant bak­ing. 362 Peri­win­kle Way, Sani­bel, 239-472-6566, pinoc­chiosice­cream.com

THE SAND­BAR

Wel­com­ing. The Seafood Trio, which in­cludes bronzed grouper, scal­lops and crab cake, is a fa­vorite. Fresh seafood and steaks grilled to per­fec­tion are sure to please all palates. D 2761 West Gulf Drive, Sani­bel, 239-472-0305, sani­bel­sand­bar.com

SANI­BEL FISH HOUSE

Tried and True. Fresh seafood en­trées on the all- day menu range from sand­wiches and sal­ads to fried bas­kets and house spe­cial­ties, such as seared tuna with rice cakes and sea­weed salad. The salmon can be or­dered broiled, grilled, black­ened or Ja­maican jerked. LD Three lo­ca­tions: 1523 Peri­win­kle Way, Sani­bel, 239-472-7770; 4685 Bonita Beach Road, Bonita Springs, 239-495-5770; and 320 Old San

Car­los Blvd., Fort My­ers Beach, 239-765-6766, the­fish­house­r­estau­rants.com

SANI­BEL GRILL

Lo­cal Color. Sani­bel Grill ser ves up typ­i­cal pub fare—juicy burg­ers, seafood bas­kets and spicy Buf­falo wings—and more. You’ll find sea­soned bar­tenders and the of­ten-sought-but-nev­er­found neigh­bor­hood bar feel, which ex­plains the pop­u­lar­ity of this spot. D 703 Tar­pon Bay Road, Sani­bel, 239-472-4453, the­sani­bel­grill.com

THE SANI­BEL SPROUT

Fresh Is­land Good­ness. Sani­bel Is­land’s pop­u­lar ve­gan and veg­e­tar­ian gourmet take-out restau­rant of­fers a de­light­ful va­ri­ety of meals, smooth­ies and juices pre­pared fresh daily. Chef Nikki Rood uses only 100-per­cent or­ganic, gluten-free, nonGMO, farm-fresh in­gre­di­ents in each cre­ation, in­clud­ing the pop­u­lar Smoked Pa­prika Hum­mus & Sprouts. An­other best-seller is the Raw Ve­gan Lasagna. The heart of The Sani­bel Sprout is “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food,” (quot­ing Hip­pocrates) and this is re­flected in ev­ery de­lec­ta­ble dish it of­fers. LD Bai­ley’s Cen­ter, 2463 Peri­win­kle Way, Sani­bel, 239-472-4499

SUN­SET GRILL

Floribbean Gourmet. For lunch, try the crab cakes or black­ened chicken Cae­sar wrap. Morn­ing peo­ple might choose eggs “San­tiva” and “Cap­tiva,” which are vari­a­tions of eggs Bene­dict with ei­ther smoked salmon or lump crab cake. BLD 6536 Pine Ave., Sani­bel, 239-472-2333, sun­set­grill­sani­bel.com

SWEET MELISSA’S CAFE

Good Thing, Small Pack­ages. Chef Melissa Tal­mage pre­pares en­trées in full and pe­tite por­tions, giv­ing din­ers the op­tion to sam­ple mul­ti­ple dishes, such as Grilled Oc­to­pus or Smoked Mul­let Frit­ter. 1625 Peri­win­kle Way, Sani­bel. 239-472-1956, sweet­melis­sas­cafe.com. LD 1625 Peri­win­kle Way, Sani­bel, 239-472-1956, sweet­melis­sas­cafe.com

THISTLE LODGE

Vic­to­rian Ren­dezvous. Cre­ative cui­sine such as black grouper, oven-roasted co­quelet and herb-crusted lamb rack or black­ened yel­low­tail snap­per mojo adds to the al­lure of Vic­to­rian trap­pings, as do glo­ri­ous beach views from al­most any ta­ble. L D SB Casa Ybel Re­sort, 2255 West Gulf Drive, Sani­bel, 239-472-9200, thistlelodge.com

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