Cooper Levey-Baker has written about food, politics, civic issues, the arts, and music in Southwest Florida for 15 years. His work has won multiple awards from the Florida Magazine Association and the Florida Society of Professional Journalists, as well as an honorable mention from the Julia Child Foundation. Follow him on Twitter: @LeveyBaker.

Food News

A New French Breakfast and Lunch Spot Is Coming to Main Street

Mademoiselle Paris will open this October.

07/26/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Mental Health

Sarasota Is Facing a Youth Mental Health Crisis, and Many Parents Can't Cope

Over the past year, 85 children in Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto counties have been removed from a home because of a parent or guardian's "inability to cope."

07/22/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Marcella's Magic

A Documentary About Legendary Cookbook Author Marcella Hazan Is in the Works

Hazan's fascinating life story is set to be documented in a new film, if the director can raise the necessary funds.

07/20/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Good stuff

Indigenous and Mattison's Recognized for Sustainability, Transparency

The restaurants were recently honored by the Good Food Media Network, which works to promote practices that are good for the environment and food industry workers.

07/19/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Passion project

Give Your Spritz a Tropical Twist With Chinola

The passion fruit liqueur tastes great on its own, but it's even better when mixed with sparkling wine.

07/16/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Big Top, Big Plans

Big Top Brewing Is Taking Over the Cock & Bull

The legendary Sarasota beer bar, which is closed for renovations, will reopen later this summer as Big Top's tasting room.

07/14/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Stream team

Motorworks Creates New Beer for Central Florida Golf Resort

Little Payne Creek Lager will be served exclusively at Streamsong in Bowling Green, Florida.

07/12/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Birthday party

Gecko's Is Throwing a Party to Celebrate the Sarasota County Centennial

100 Years Feature Night will take place 5-8 p.m. on Tuesday, July 13, at the Gecko's Grill & Pub near Fruitville Road.

07/07/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Skrt Skrt

Conservation Foundation Launches New Food Truck Event Series

The first gathering will take place Friday, July 23, with the food truck Curb Your Appetite.

07/01/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Piney Point

Environmental Nonprofits Sue State, Property Owners Over Piney Point Disaster

The lawsuit charges that the state and the company that owns Piney Point ignored warnings about possible failures at the site.

06/25/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

All the deals

Here Are All the Restaurants Continuing to Offer Specials Deals After Savor Sarasota

Eleven restaurants are extending their summer specials.

06/23/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Summer of Love

Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams Is Serving Up Free Scoops on Monday Evening

The popular ice cream shop is kicking off the summer season in style.

06/21/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

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Five-O Donut Co. Is Coming to University Town Center

The shop's fourth location is set to open later this year or in early 2022.

06/17/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Not Just for Passover Anymore

Matzo Project Wants to Make Matzo a Year-Round Snack

The company makes traditional sheets of matzo, as well as matzo 'chips' and 'bites' and more.

06/17/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

The Cooldown

Refreshing Florida Seltzers Are Perfect for Hot Summer Days

The hard seltzer trend isn't going away.

06/16/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Au Naturel

Here's an Easy Introduction to the World of Natural Wine

If you’re new to this unusual and sometimes wild category of wines, Artisan Cheese Company is offering a starter pack.

06/14/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Hop on the Trolley

New Progressive Dinner Series Highlights Wine and Food Pairings

The Blend is a new series of dinners organized by the Sarasota-Manatee Originals.

06/11/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

Dark Matter

Magical 'Queen of the Night' Flowers Are Blooming All Over Sarasota

The flowers bloom only after dark, and for only one night each year.

06/08/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

History Glass

New Beer From Big Top and Gecko's Celebrates Sarasota County's Centennial

The beer, made with a pink grapefruit infusion, will be available at Gecko's restaurants beginning Monday, June 7.

06/04/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker

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Selby Gardens Breaks Ground on New Downtown Campus

Work will start later this year on the first phase of what will be a massive overhaul of Marie Selby Botanical Gardens.

06/03/2021 By Cooper Levey-Baker