The Breakfast House
A Key West-style eatery with brightly painted tables and servers in floral button-down shirts, The Breakfast House is a breezy little cottage with a fun breakfast menu. If you’re not in a rush and want to charm a prospective out-of-town client, sit outside on the patio for an alfresco meeting. Inside, the whimsical décor offers friendly warmth to start the workday. Downtown Sarasota executives from the adjacent banks and law offices make this a regular hotspot for Guinness-infused corned beef hash and crab cake eggs Benedict. Expect a bit of a wait, especially on weekends.
Price range: $7 to $13. The Breakfast House, 1817 Fruitville Road, Sarasota, (941) 366-6860
The Toasted Mango Café
Diner style and down to earth, the two locations of The Toasted Mango Café offer memorable menu musts from mango mimosas to mango French toast. The no-frills atmosphere (simple wooden tables and chairs and beach décor) makes it easy for executives and potential clients to let their guard down. Just want to meet for coffee and sign off on some business paperwork? Expedient in-and-out service means you can exchange signatures and handshakes and head back to the office in time for the 9 a.m. meeting.
Price range: $6 to $14. The Toasted Mango Café, 430 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, (941) 388-7728, and 6621 Midnight Pass Road, Sarasota, (941) 552-6485
With gourmet spins on breakfast standards, Station 400 wows the most fickle of foodies. The Sarasota location has a quainter vibe (with a railroad depot theme) than the sleeker Lakewood Ranch spot, but both boast made-to-order morning fare. Executives from both downtowns indulge in the bananas foster French toast, the Nutella waffles and the fried green tomato eggs Benedict. Tip: If it’s going to be a short workday, try the seasonal mimosas that should help smooth over even the toughest business negotiation.
Price range: $7 to $13. Station 400, 400 N. Lemon Ave., Sarasota, (941) 906-1400, and 8215 Lakewood Main St., Suite P103, Bradenton, (941) 907-0648.
Sage Biscuit Café
Dietary restrictions at the table? No problem. Bring your vegans, vegetarians and gluten-free diners to either one of Sage Biscuit Café locations. The specials at this Bradenton locale include healthful fare such as tofu scramble, as well as traditional favorites like homemade sage biscuits and gravy. The downtown locale is more executive-centric than the Cortez location, catering to those who work in the high-rise building (the café is on the bottom floor).
Price range: $6 to $11. Sage Biscuit Café, 6656 Cortez Road W., Bradenton, (941) 792-3970, and 1401 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton, (941) 405-4744.
A modest strip mall coffee shop/café, Mocha Joe’s inviting vibe is accented with antique kitchen tools and light wood flooring, but the hearty fare is the real attraction. Try the country-fried steak, corned beef hash and eggs, and Belgian waffles. Good coffee, too. Execs in the West Bradenton area congregate here for a hospitality that rubs off no matter how stressful the day or high strung the client.
Price range: $5 to $9. Mocha Joe’s, 3633 Cortez Road W., Bradenton, (941) 753-7094.