Sanibel Island is a world-renown travel destination famous for its white sand beaches, tropical climate and crystal clear waters. Along with all of its natural charms it also offers visitors to the island an exquisite variety of culinary options sure to titillate and excite any appetite. If you’re planning to visit this Caribbean gem you’ll want to take this quick guide to the top five restaurants to make sure you get the most out of your time there.
2003 Periwinkle Way, Tahitian Gardens Plaza, Sanibel Island, FL 33957
The first, must-taste restaurant on our list is truly more of a bakery but it is so good that it has earned its place at the top and is the aptly named Dolce Tesoro which means “Sweet Treasure” in Italian. Conveniently located in the Tahitian Gardens Plaza on Periwinkle Way, the bake shop specializes in making the gastronomical delights also known as cupcakes. Whether you’re in the mood for their Italian Meringue Buttercream frosting or a Sea Salt Caramel cupcake you will not be disappointed when you stop by this uber-popular coffee shop and panetteria. While there you can expect t spend an average of less than ten dollars a person while being doted upon by competent and friendly staff.
t6467 Sanibel Captiva Road, Sanibel Island, FL 33957-2016
The Mad Hatter is a proper restaurant and offers the full dining experience. This place is famed for its outstanding service and rich, creative menu so you may want to make reservations to ensure you’ve got a table before making the trip over to the restaurant. While the prices are much higher at the Mad Hatter than other dining options on the island the menu and culinary experience make up for it so don’t be fooled into thinking that it I just an upscale Margaritaville despite its scenic, beachside location. When visiting be sure to order the goat cheese pillows, the fresh crab cakes and finish off and refresh your palate with a homemade lemon sorbet.
1625 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island, FL 33957-4402
Sweet Melissa’s Café is located on the island’s main thoroughfare so it is easy to find and quick to get to. The eclectic fare mean that there should be something for everyone and the mushroom soup and Caesar salad come especially well-recommended. With prices in the $25 to $35 range per plate Sweet Melissa’s may appear to some t be pricy for a restaurant that bills itself as a café but the service and cuisine should have you feeling better about your check by the end of service.
4. The Sandbar
2761 West Gulf Drive, Sanibel Island, FL
Our fourth entry on our shortlist is the Sandbar. Billed as an American surf and turf eatery they also boast a fresh fish market from which the chef serves up the catch of the day. Suffice it to say that the Sand Bar offers the island’s most fresh and delectable selection of seafood and is the premier oyster bar in the area. Having said that, don’t stray too far ashore when it comes to their menu items as many diners report that their ribs, sides and salads are average quality at best. When you visit Sanibel Island be sure to do a dinner at the Sandbar and stick to the seafood offerings and you will be met with a gastronomic experience you won’t soon forget.
630 Tarpon Bay Rd, Sanibel Island, FL 33957
The Over Easy Café is a great restaurant for families staying on the island and is the most budget friendly of the all of the restaurants we’ve reviewed. Great service and great, local cuisine make it the ideal place for breakfast or lunch. The most highly rated items on the menu are their egg-based dishes so we recommend trying the Eggs Benedict or the Ho Hum breakfast. Cozy and quaint this restaurant is a must-eat if you’re spending any time on the island.