V-Day Cheat Sheet

Valentine's Day in Sarasota: Where to Dine Out

Tips for the most romantic meal of the year.

By Ilene Denton February 11, 2016

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Image: Shutterstock

Restaurants are pulling out all the stops for the most romantic night of the year. Here are a few of our faves, with more to come:

 The Sandbar, Beach House and Mar Vista

 Make a weekend of it at The Sandbar, Beach House and Mar Vista restaurants on Anna Maria Island and Longboat Key. These popular eateries, members of the Chiles Restaurant Group, are offering three different three-course prix-fixe dinners Friday through Sunday—and they’re throwing in a glass of bubbly as their gift.  

 The Sandbar, 100 Spring Ave., Anna Maria; sandbar.groupersandwich.com

The Beach House, 200 Gulf Drive N., Bradenton Beach; beachhouse.groupersandwich.com

Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant and Pub, 760 Broadway St., Longboat Key; marvista.groupersandwich.com/ 


 Want to get lucky? Ortygia, in Bradenton’s Village of the Arts, is pulling out all the stops Valentine’s Day evening with a Romantic Aphrodisiac Dinner. It’s billed as “a titillating evening of sensual food,” from honey lemon ricotta bruschetta to Sicilian lemon tarts. $80 per couple, plus tax and tip. Reservations required.

Ortygia, 1418 13th St. W., Bradenton; ortygiarestaurant.com

Harry’s Continental Kitchens

 We love just about everything chef Harry Christensen brings out of his kitchen, and Friday through Sunday evenings, it’s a special Valentine’s Day three-course menu. Choose from stone crab Louis, Harry’s steak tartare or baked apple and arugula salad to start; followed by pan-seared steak Diane, bouillabaisse or bronzed Gulf of Mexico grouper; and to end with a flourish, Harry’s famous Key lime pie, chocolate lava cake or poached pear Helene with rum cake and vanilla ice cream. Groan. $54.99 per person; $70.99 with wine pairings.

 5600 Gulf of Mexico Drive, Longboat Key; www.harryskitchen.com 

Café L’Europe

 This St. Armands fine-dining spot is giving the ladies who dine there this weekend a lovely Valentine’s Day gift. (We’re in on the secret, but we’re not telling.) On the special menu: choices not offered every day, including papaya and brie ravioli, veal scallopini Oscar and cupid’s chocolate hearts filled with strawberry mousse. $169 per couple, including a bottle of red, white or sparkling wine, but not including tax or tip.

431 St. Armands Circle, Sarasota; cafeleurope.net

Seafood Shack

The completely reinvented Seafood Shack invites you to “Feel the Love” in its candlelit Neptune Room Saturday night, with a romantic three-course dinner and musical entertainment by jazz vocalist Sarah Combs. Plus, each couple can “pick a pearl” from the oyster station. $115 per couple, plus tax and gratuity.

 4110 127th St. W., Cortez; www.seafoodshack.com

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