Publix Display of Affection

The 10 Best Publixes in the Sarasota Area, Ranked

Publixes are like seashells: Each one is special and deserves to be cherished. But some are more special than others.

By Lauren Jackson November 2, 2023

Publix Super Markets are as synonymous with Florida as white sand beaches, blue-green water and palmetto bugs. We often hear tales from locals who move away that no other regional supermarket can replace Publix’s sprinkle cookies, Pub subs or commitment to service, not to mention advertisements so emotional they can make you weep. In honor of the grocery chain's lifelong place in our hearts, we’ve ranked the 10 best Publixes (Publi?) in Sarasota and Manatee counties. These Publixes are where shopping truly is a pleasure.

The quaint Publix on east Bee Ridge Road.

10. Bee Ridge Road East

8300 Bee Ridge Road, Sarasota

The newest Publix on the list, this store is small but mighty. With its gleaming exterior and cozy size, east Sarasota County residents will find what they're looking for without suffering from choice paralysis. And although there is another Bee Ridge Publix farther west, this one is superior.

The deli at the expansive new Landings Publix.

9. The Landings

4840 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

Before Publix at The Landings was a Publix, it was an Albertsons grocery store, which had tons of square footage but an antiquated design. When Publix eventually moved into this location, it made do with the space before undergoing a massive facelift last year. Now, this store has a beautiful new floor plan and the central location cannot be beat.

Get ready for great people-watching at the Publix at Siesta Row.

8. Siesta Row

3825 S. Osprey Ave., Sarasota

Don't let this Publix's West of the Trail address trick you into thinking it's puttin' on the Ritz. This Publix offers the same tried-and-true classics as the others, but the well-heeled residents from surrounding neighborhoods like Camino Real and Southside Village make the people-watching sublime.

Skip the long lines on Anna Maria Island by stopping at Manatee Avenue's Publix.

Image: Gigi Ortwein

7. Beachway Plaza

 7310 Manatee Ave., Bradenton

The last Publix you encounter before the long stretch of causeway out to Holmes Beach, this spot is excellent for stocking your cooler before hitting the sand. You could stop at the Anna Maria Island location (for more on that store, see below), but the locals know that the Manatee Avenue location is superior when you want to skip the long lines in tourist season.

The upstairs dining balcony at Publix at Venice Village Shoppes.

6. Venice Village Shoppes

4173 S. Tamiami Trail, Venice

Before its recent renovation, this Publix was a definite skip. (Some might even say it was downright dingy.) But now, thanks to a series of impressive updates—like an entire upstairs balcony for dining in—this Publix is a sight to behold. Even better, it has a ramen bar.

Grab a floaty before heading out to Holmes Beach at Anna Maria Island's Publix.

Image: Gigi Ortwein

5. Holmes Beach

3900 E. Bay Drive, Holmes Beach

Did you forget an inner tube for the beach? Are you starving after hours in the sun? Never fear: the Publix at Holmes Beach has you covered. This teeny-tiny location has an Old Florida feel, much like the rest of Anna Maria Island, and even has souvenirs to bring back home with you.

Customer service is key at Osprey's Publix.

Customer service is key at Osprey's Publix.

4. Shops at Casey Key

1350 S. Tamiami Trail, Osprey

This Publix ranks high for one (and, arguably, the most important) thing. At Osprey's Publix, the customer service is unparalleled. Employees will greet you at every department, and even if you think you're hiding that you're lost when navigating the aisles, someone always recognizes that you might need help. During one recent visit, five employees and managers lined the walls surrounding the exit to say goodbye to departing customers.

The University Walk Publix even has a Starbucks.

The University Walk Publix even has a Starbucks.

3. University Walk

2875 University Parkway, Sarasota

Unconfirmed word on the street has it that this Publix might be a test location for new products. When you visit, there's always something interesting that you've never seen at your neighborhood location, which secures it a spot high on our list. In the past, this Publix even had a mini Carrabba's inside. Although the Italian chain outpost is long gone, the unique selections remain.

Palmer Ranch's expertly laid out Publix.

2. The Plaza at Palmer Ranch

8409 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

It's hard to pinpoint exactly why this Publix is so superior, but it is. The layout is perfect, the deli is stocked with awesome finds, the floral department is amazing and the parking is quick and easy. Sure, you could big-box it at Costco up the street, but make time to swing into the almost-best Publix in town.

The epic wine department at Publix on Longboat Key.

Image: Gigi Ortwein

1. Shoppes at Bay Isles

525 Bay Isles Parkway, Longboat Key

C'mon, was there ever even a question that this is the best Publix around? One peek at the deli, which is overflowing with artisanal cheeses and gourmet grab-and-go items, gives you a clue that this Publix is something special. Check out the wine department, which has its own wine steward, and you'll continue to be amazed. High-end whites, reds and Champagnes that are usually only available at fine dining restaurants will beg to be taken home with you. How will you ever decide?

Our 10 favorite local Publixes, mapped.

Honorable Mentions

Two Publixes missed our top 10 rankings because their customer service is abysmal. However, the Publix on 10th Street in downtown Sarasota deserves an accolade for its impressive views of Sarasota Bay upon exiting the building. And the Bay Street Publix, also near downtown, has an escalator that carries your cart down to the parking lot, which is just plain fun.

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