For decades, the Cripe family has pleasantly graced the Bradenton restaurant scene with their presence. They currently own and operate the reliable Central Cafe and have recently opened a much-needed wine bar that you’ll find snuggled into the downtown Bradenton scene. With the opening of Jennings Downtown Provisions, here are four more things to love.

1  The Arcade 

The restaurant inhabits a tiny storefront on Old Main Street, located at the front of Jennings Arcade, a historic two-story rectangular-shaped building with a light, airy interior due to its skylights. The arcade was built in 1926 and is an excellent example of Mediterranean Revival architecture popular in coastal Florida and California in the 1920s and 30s. Today it is still filled with shops and offices and retains its high-end opulence with polished terrazzo floors, wrought-iron balconies and original light fixtures. As you cruise down the hallway to utilize the restaurant’s shared bathroom, take a moment to admire the arcade’s outstanding architecture. 

2 Light Bites, Just Right 

At Downtown Provisions, don’t expect a heavy meal that will weigh you down, but do expect small plates with big flavor. Some of the delicious “provisions” you might partake in include “Ahi Poke” tacos that include wasabi cream, seaweed, radish, cucumber and pepitas, a variety of flatbreads and “boards” that include, smoked salmon, beef tenderloin and Burrata, each accompanied with little mounds of accoutrements. The heaviest of dishes offered is the impressive Jumbo Barvarian Soft Pretzel. Inside the pretzel’s “loops” you’ll find beer-braised Italian sausage on one side and a plentiful mound of a mixed greens “tangle” on the other.

3  La-La-La-La Lola 

There are plenty of beer and wine options to wet your whistle here, but the beverage of choice has to be Lola wines, a Napa wine created and owned by a Cripe family sibling. Enjoy a glass of the lovely Lola Pinot Noir or the smooth Chardonnay. The restaurant offers a daily happy hour with $6 glasses of Lola (and $1 off draught beers) and on “Wino Wednesdays” you can enjoy $6 Lolas from 7 pm until close.

4  Element of Surprise

Don’t miss becoming a part of the
“Wall of Awesomeness,” where dozens of custom beer mugs are displayed. For $75, pottery artist Eileen from eileenVLpottery will personally design your 20 oz. mug and, every time you stop in, you get 20 oz. refills for the price of a 16 oz. (that means, every 5th beer is free). High coolness factor.

5  Oh Yeah, the Beer

When eating and drinking at an establishment along the active Old Main Street, you never know what kind of surprise you might encounter with the fun events that take place along the popular corridor. Since this restaurant’s large patio virtually spills out onto Main Street, Provisions is a ripe participant for any of downtown’s shenanigans. The street is often closed to traffic for a variety of events so expect to be an active participant in rollicking celebrations like the Bradenton Blues Festival or the bustling farmer’s market that takes place every Saturday until 2pm. You may even see the Budweiser Clydesdales stroll down the street! With a glass of Lola in one hand and a tasty flatbread in the other, you will be glad to stay a while and enjoy the people (and horse) watching.