Random Acts of Service

By staff May 21, 2007

What makes me choose a restaurant? Read on.


 By Judi Gallagher


 The other day I read that someone said to patronize their establishment because they were independently owned and needed the business. Ironically, I was reading that section of the newspaper when I had the urge for my afternoon quad over ice with a splash of cream. I drove to the Starbucks near Ferrari’s restaurant on the South Trail, and a young gentleman of 17 or so greeted me with a big smile and welcome. I ordered my quad over ice. While he was making the espresso, he remembered that I like a larger cup so I can shake it after I add the cream. Bravo—he remembered how I drank my coffee, greeted me with a smile and…most importantly, thanked me again for coming. Now, that is how I base my decision on where to go. Friendly, kind service with a nice attitude and an awesome hit of espresso!

Now that's what I call fresh mozzarella.


Speaking of Ferrari’s (941-929-7900), we later stopped in for a visit with Marcello and his mom, a.k.a “shoe queen” Vicenza, for some good old Italian cuisine with a refreshing new flair. The antipasti was superb and a wonderful reminder of how fresh mozzarella should really taste, and it certainly sparked my taste buds as I prepare to head to Italy next weekend. There are just a few spots where I trust the chef enough to say just surprise me—Ferrari’s is one and Bellagio the other. No surprise that the jumbo lump crabmeat salad bruschetta with balsamic-glazed bay scallops and diced sun-dried tomatoes made me the envy of the small dining room. While Paul had his standard Veal Monte Carlo—delicioso—I must admit I was drooling over the house specialty of homemade lasagna at a table in the corner. Guess I should have brought them a bruschetta for an even trade.

Vincenza serves a nightly special with flair


June 1 sparks Savor Sarasota, 10 days of special dining in Sarasota. Now that the tourists have headed back north, the SCVB invites diners to enjoy a multi-course meal for $15 at lunch and $25 for dinner, at more than 25 participating restaurants. Last year’s first annual was such a hit that the Ritz-Carlton extended their Vernona menu for an extra week.


What is your favorite food event in Sarasota? Email me at [email protected]; you might win a gift certificate to one of our city’s best dining destinations.


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