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Jack Dusty's Ruby Slipper.

Image: Staff

We got a preview of Jack Dusty's new cocktail menu Monday night, and trust us: you're in for a treat. Bartender Candice Marie has put together a bevy of beautiful and delicious craft cocktails that are totally refreshing and perfect for the warm spring months ahead. Our favorite: the Ruby Slipper, which is comprised of hibiscus-infused London dry gin, strawberry cordial, merlet creme de peche, lemon, cream, egg, Bitterman's Burlesque and rhubarb soda, then topped with an edible flower. To paraphrase Dorothy, there's no place like Jack Dusty.

Celebrate St. Patrick's Day with Irish Pub 32's excellent deep-fried potato planks, also known as chips. Sprinkle with malt vinegar or enjoy with ketchup or just a little salt. $12 if you have the large portion with fried fish (which you should). 

At downtown Sarasota's Lila, order the pork belly with the smoked poached egg in olive oil on brioche toast ($5) and you might have the tastiest breakfast anywhere—only you’ll have to eat it at lunchtime. No joke: we dream about this dish.
 
Pro tip: Head to Selby Gardens at lunchtime to take in the Marc Chagall exhibit, then stop at Michael's On East's food truck and have a perfectly French picnic in the sunshine. The menu includes crepes, salads and sandwiches; we're partial to the jambon et beurre baguette ($8)--Boar's Head honey ham and European-style herb butter on a crispy, toasted baguette. Order it with a split of Champagne and pretend you're sunbathing near the French Riviera. 

Founded by retiring circus performers back in 1958, the Main Bar has been slinging deli sandwiches ever since in a long, narrow space lined with barstools and small leather-covered booths. Downtown condo dwellers, lawyers taking a break from court and all sorts of other 9-to-5ers pile in daily for the $7.50 “famous Italian,” stuffed with salami, ham, provolone, tomato, peppers, onions and a proprietary oil blend. Yum.

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Editor’s Pick

Main Bar

$ American 1944 Main St.

Founded by retiring circus performers back in 1958, the Main Bar has been slinging deli sandwiches ever since in a long, narrow space lined with barstools an...

Editor’s Pick

Michael's On East

$$$ European, New American 1212 S. East Ave.

Sarasota’s only AAA Four-Diamond Award restaurant, this fine dining destination boasts American-Continental cuisine, an adventurous wine list and a comfortable, clubby piano lounge.

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Lila

$$$ New American, Vegetarian 1576 Main St.

Lila could make you a vegetarian, but that’s not the intent of chef/owners Ryan Boeve and Arthur Lopes.

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