AMI Beach Cafe – Toes in the Sand Dining!

The AMI Beach Cafe is a great toes in the sand dining spot! Imagine this, the beach, the sun, the sand, people watching, AND FOOD! What? Amazing, I know. Where does this even exist? Ill tell you a little not so secret, secret. Anna Maria Island Beach Café, yep, amazing! I personally enjoy breakfast, but I love ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT pancakes. In fact, Ill be right back. But seriously you have to go here, go alone, go with friends, take your family, just go. They have a great menu and the prices are wallet friendly.

Oh, you didn’t wake up for breakfast did you? That’s okay because they serve lunch and dinner too! Don’t worry they didn’t forget about you late risers. Just get out of bed, grab your keys, and drive to where Manatee Ave meets Gulf Drive and wallah, Beach Café at your service. If you think I skipped telling you about putting on regular clothes, your wrong, I didn’t. You can wear anything here, your swim suit, pajamas, work clothes, wedding dress, anything. Ordering is quick, simple, and fun. Just pick your favorite menu option, place your order at the window, pay for the meal, grab a number, then sit back and wait. An atmosphere like this is hard to find, laid back people, sunshine and waves, island music, perfection.

Just when you thought you knew everything there was to know about this glorious place, I shall break this news to you lightly. They also have ice cream and shopping! Yes, you can cool down with a scoop of cookies’ n cream ice cream for dessert and then stroll right on into the gift shop for some island memorabilia. That, fortunately for you, you will have money for, because everything was so affordable, yes, you’re welcome.

AMI Beach Cafe

Columbia Restaurant on St. Armand’s circle, Sarasota

The Columbia restaurant is mainstay in Sarasota as well as Tampa.  If you are looking for fine dining with some shopping before or after the Columbia on St. Armand’s circle is a great choice.  They serve elegant dinners and lunches all year around.  Located on St. Armand’s circle the restaurant makes for a great day trip from Anna Maria Island.  Grab a lunch at the Columbia, walk around and go Shopping on St. Armand’s circle and pick up an ice cream as a mid afternoon snack.

The Columbia restaurant originally started in the Tampa area and you can find the Columbia in Tampa, St. Pete, Clearwater and several other Florida locations.  As soon as you walk up to the restaurant you feel a positive vibe.  There is limited seating outside of about 25-30 seats with at least 100 inside.  The elegant restaurant has a large interior bar and the exterior is made to feel like an extension of the interior.’ Continue reading Columbia Restaurant on St. Armand’s circle, Sarasota

Beach House Restaurant – Outdoor dining and great Florida seafood

The Beach House restaurant is located in Bradenton Beach on Anna Maria Island  just past the street light after the Cortez Bridge heading south.

Experience great waterfront dining on the Gulf of Mexico with breathtaking views and fresh Florida seafood. It is the perfect place for family dining with plenty of room for all the kids to play on the beach while you sip on a tropical drink and enjoy great food while listening to live entertainment by local artists. You can choose, if you like, to have your meal inside the dining room or on the waterfront deck. There is even a covered Gulf front area, which makes it perfect rain or shine.

Beside the regular lunch and dinner menus, Beach House offers a happy hour menu at the bar including delicious libations and small plates.  In addition to fresh local seafood you can find farm fresh produce on the menu. The Grouper sandwich is a popular menu item, but be sure to check out any seasonal offerings like the stuffed squash blossoms from Gamble creek farms.

The Beach House is a wonderful spot to enjoy a gulf sunset after a long day at the beach. If you like to take a look at some spectacular sunset pictures visit our Anna Maria Island  blog and get in the mood for a nice dinner at The Beach House.

It is also a great place to have a wedding. The Beach House is an award-winning location for beach weddings, receptions or any special event. Maybe if you are in luck you’ll witness one of the happy couples exchange their vows.

You can even do a little shopping in their gift and souvenir shop located at the entrance area of the restaurant.

The Beach House Restaurant
200 Gulf Dr
Bradenton Beach, Fl 34217
Phone (941) 779-2222

Subway is quick lunch or dinner on Anna Maria Island

Subway is located on East Bay drive in Holmes Beach.  They have all your typical amenities that all subway’s provide.  Fresh baked bread, cookies, and a toasted sub if need be.  Watch while the Subway staff services you to make your sub in front of you.  Great for on the go or an impromptu beach picnic.  Subway also offers platters of subs for larger gatherings and they are very affordable.  They do have a small plastic table outside in case you want to eat on site outside as well as seating for about 20 people inside.  If you need a fast and inexpensive lunch or dinner then Subway could be a quick answer.

Just a quick 3 minute walk down the plaza you can find Walgreens which will offer more food supplies if need be.  Soda, chips, and other sub sandwich necessities for a larger group.  Also, lots of gift shopping around if you need to slip in some gift shopping.  Plenty to do at the East Bay Drive Plaza.

3232 East Bay Drive
Holmes Beach, FL, 34217
(941) 778-7878

Cortez Kitchen restaurant 1/2 mile from Anna Maria Island

Cortez Kitchen is a unique “hangout” restaurant that may not be the perfect romantic setting however the seafood is very fresh.  Outdoor picnic bench seating both covered and uncovered are in close proximity to the boat docks.  So….while eating your inexpensive “rustic” lunch or dinner you can sometimes watch boats come in and out of the docks.  I have also personally witnessed lots of fork lift activity at the docks which my 4 year old friend’s son just loves.  If you are looking for an inexpensive fresh seafood lunch or dinner and you have children that will enjoy looking at water or boats then this could be the perfect fit. The grouper is fantastic and believe or not, try the Buffalo Grouper sandwich with Blue Cheese Dressing….its a knock out!  Be sure to take a look at the picture above.  The BLUE sign is a great reference point so you don’t miss the turn off of Cortez Road.  One side note is the restaurant turns more into a bar around dusk so if you are taking your family  be sure it’s at an appropriate time.  They do offer live music usually on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights.  Just a great all around “old Florida” bar setting.

One last thing.  They do sell fresh raw seafood in an adjacent building, so if you need tomorrow’s seafood, kill two birds with one stone, or fish that is….

Cortez Kitchen
4528 119th Street W, Cortez, FL, 34210
(941) 798-9404

Need another rustic restaurant?  Starfish Company is just to the West a few blocks and also offers fresh seafood choices that can be cooked up at your Anna Maria Island Vacation Rental.