New Eating Options and Fun Finds

By Megan McDonald August 29, 2011

In my never-ending tour to find the ultimate apple pie (still lives in Sonoma, Calif.), the best thin-crust pizza (still leaves in East Boston) and the best dim sum (Toronto, Canada), I have certainly conquered many a favorite in our own hometown of Sarasota--everywhere from restaurants to grocery shelves to chef tastings. Recent adventures go like this:

Clark Dogs. Located across from Sur la Table, you just have to love a hot dog vendor that offers your dogs steamed or grilled. For $5, you get two hot dogs, chips and soda. (See, you don’t have to be a member of Sam’s Club to get a good deal!) For just a little more you can make your dogs a special combo, like cooked red onions, sauerkraut and spicy mustard. They dogs are certified Nathan’s hot dogs, and a good potato bun makes it 10 times better than a ballpark dog anytime. (Unless, of course, you are sitting in box seats at Fenway Park.)

A good salad to go from the new Jeff's Neighborhood Salad Company.

Next up? Jeff’s Neighborhood Salad Company. Now, the inside scoop  on this place is that there is no Jeff, but whoever came up with the salad combos did a nice job. You start with a salad, choose four free toppings, and then you can add premium toppings like dried salami, avocado, feta cheese--well you get the point--at an additional cost. Parking is very limited at lunch, so perhaps stop by in the off hours. My verdict? Worth a try, but no Cheesecake Factory salad. 

In the store shelf category, gluten-free lovers will adore Crave Apple Cream Pie. I was leery, especially given my love of real pie made with lard and white bleached flour, but this one was really good. The samosas are just as good--especially the cinnamon sweet potato and veggie varieties. Spices are just right if you are a fan of Indian cuisine.

Love all the topping choices at Yogurtology.

Yogurtology was a trip--the place was loaded at nine at night with people lined up waiting to top their chocolate cake or oatmeal cookie with a variety of frozen yogurts and toppings. You pay by the pound, so watch out on the heavy duty toppings--but it's certainly a creative, interactive way to enjoy a frozen treat.

What new food finds have you come across lately?

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