Dinner and a movie? Easily accomplished without the rush!
Located on upper Main Street directly across from the Regal-Hollywood 20 is the Mediterraneo, sibling restaurant of Café Epicure. Mediterraneo occupies the northeast corner of the historic Crisp building, (National Register of Historic Places), and is also home to one of Sarasota’s largest outdoor murals created by Skip Dyrda. This mural, along with a small courtyard, adds to the charm of the area, not to mention the outdoor seating!
Although not large, this cozy, comfortable restaurant offers 4 venues for dining: the aforementioned outdoor “al fresco”, the casually oriented lounge, the white table clothed main dining room, and the more private back room. Since it was a little cool outside, we choose the main dining room. It should be noted, the Mediterraneo’s menu is the same regardless of your dining location choice.
Upon seating, we were immediately brought some bread, olive oil, and 2 pieces of bruchetta topped with very fresh diced tomatoes. Our meal consisted of the following:
Minestrone soup: Traditional Italian vegetable soup $7.50
A soothing dish on a cool evening, chunky and tasty with a little spice to it.
Gamberetti saltati con salciccia spagnola e cannellini: Sauteed gulf shrimp and andouille sausage over Tuscan beans in white wine sauce $12.50
Classic combination of shrimp and sausage; white beans add a nice creamy texture; a warm comfort food for me.
Costolettadi vitello alla Milanese con rucolae pomodori: Pounded and breaded veal chop topped with arugola and tomatoes $ 31.95
A signature “bone-in” presentation of tender, lightly bread, pan fired veal smothered in arugula and tomatoes. Warm tender, sweet and cool. A Great combination! In fact my mouth waters just writing about the experience.
Insalata Mista: Mixed baby greens, with carrots and tomatoes. $7.75
Great side salad, fresh, the “right” size.
Casare Salad: Romaine, Caesar dressing, croutons, and parmesan cheese. $9.95
Very nice presentation, large, fresh, well dressed with lots of shaved parmesan cheese.
Tropicale: Arugula, hearts of palm, avocado and parmesan. $9.95
Delicious, fresh, ample size, great flavors.
Special White Pizza: Mozzarella cheese, gorgonzola cheese, apples, pears, walnuts and honey. $14.95
Thin, crispy, wood fired crust, sweet and tangy, delicious, a work of
Miki Pizza: Fresh tomato, bufala mozzarella, arugula, prosciutto. $16.95
Wood burning oven, very thin crust, delicious combination of flavors
Funghi Pizza: Tomato, mozzarella, champignon mushrooms. $14.95
Great crust, thin, but not soggy.
We accompanied the above with a Super Tuscan LeVolti Ornellai Bolgheri $59.00, from the well represented Italian wine list.
Entrees are a bit pricey, however, if you are looking for a more casual meal, there is a large selection of wood oven fired pizzas ranging in price from $14-17. Our favorite is a salad and pizza in the front room by the bar.
So if you plans call for dinner and a movie, the choice for dinner is easy; Mediterraneo of course. Choosing a movie might be more difficult.
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