Most families are often busy on weekdays, and Saturdays are often spent doing chores or attending kid’s sporting events, leaving only Sundays for rest and relaxation. And what better way to recharge and connect with friends and family than to enjoy a Sunday brunch or late lunch (for those who enjoy getting their beauty sleep) in Sarasota?

Downtown Sarasota bars and restaurants provide lots of choices for tastes of all kinds. And while tourists flock to some of them, there are many that provide locals and tourists alike with excellent locally-sourced food, and great service and ambiance.

Whether the craving is for Italian, Chinese, Indian, or another specific cuisine, it can be found downtown. However, oftentimes the very best solution for everyone’s taste is to find someplace that offers elegant, modern, and fresh American cuisine.

Why Eat Local?

Restaurants are not all the same. Many restaurants in downtown Sarasota may have familiar “franchise” names and offer numerous fried options (probably straight from their freezer to the frying rack). Other, better restaurants on Main Street in Sarasota offer excellent local cuisine with truly gracious hospitality. It takes significant time and resources to search for and test out local providers of meat, fish, dairy products, and vegetables that can be built into a creative and delectable menu.

There are many reasons for foodies to choose chefs that source their ingredients from local farmers. One of the primary ones is flavor. One simply can’t compare the taste of food that has not been preserved, frozen or canned to the real deal, straight from the dirt. Diners can experience the simple peace of mind knowing that they and their loved ones are consuming natural, quality foods (and without having to cook them themselves!)

Most people probably know that fruits and other shipped foods are often picked before they are ripe. But by doing so, they often, therefore, lack the nutritional value that fully ripened fruits have. Another benefit to dining at a restaurant that serves local foods is that the ingredients didn’t have to travel very far to get there — resulting in lower fuel consumption and fewer emissions. Something everyone can feel good about!

Especially in popular tourist areas, it’s important to remember that when diners choose to “eat local,” they are supporting not only one local restaurant (as opposed to a chain or franchised establishment) but they are also supporting all the farmers and bakers who have produced the ingredients or bread the guests are enjoying. Their livelihoods all depend on that supply chain being connected to the eater! When Sarasota residents choose local establishments, their money stays in their local area to support those establishments and allows them to employ their friends and neighbors.

One of the best advantages of a farm-to-table restaurant featuring local dairy and produce is that their menu changes with what is available. And even with fabulous Florida weather, each food does have a season. Sarasota diners will be constantly delighted and surprised to see new brunch, lunch, and dinner menu items pop up at downtown restaurants and bars on Main Street!