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SRQ DAILY Jan 17, 2023

Tuesday Dining and Food Edition

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Tuesday Dining and Food Edition

"From our savory side, our customers love the eggs Benedict from our homemade Hollandaise sauce to getting their eggs the way they love them."

- Todi Garay, Owner, Crisp Waffle Company.

[The Dish]  Up Your Breakfast Game with Crisp Waffle Company
Kevin Allen, kevin.allen@srqme.com

Perhaps not often enough, a thought occurs to me: Why should tourists have all the fun around here? I forget that places like St. Armands Circle are just as readily available for us locals. With this in mind, my wife and I headed to Crisp Waffle Company and breakfasted like royalty.

Crisp has been open for about a year and a half now, and their wares live up to the name. Perhaps that’s because these aren’t your average waffles. These are liege waffles, which originated in Belgium. They’re thicker and richer because they’re made with dough rather than batter. The outside of the waffles are perfectly crisp, while the insides are dense, chewy, and just sweet enough to complement something savory or welcome more sweetness without overpowering.

I opted for the Strawberry Extreme, which boasts a high pile of fresh strawberries, a sizable dollop of rich whipped cream and a cookie butter drizzle that’s imported from Belgium. Those who dine with me know that I rarely finish what’s on my plate (peculiar for a food writer, I admit), but Crisp was an exception. I devoured every crumb, every errant bit of cookie butter, every wisp of whipped cream.

Owner Todi Garay says, “Not only do we make our dough fresh but we import our ingredients from Belgium to give (our customers) the most authentic experience.”

If this is an authentic Belgian experience, book me a ticket to Brussels ASAP.

I was skeptical that my wife’s chicken and waffles could be as joy-inducing as my Strawberry Extreme, but the savory is just as craveable. It’s served with maple syrup and a side of Old Florida Farms FROG Jam, which stands for figs, raspberries, orange and ginger.

A return trip is certainly in order though for another need-to-try. As Garay told me, “From our savory side, our customers love the eggs Benedict — from our homemade Hollandaise sauce to getting their eggs the way they love them.” Crisp Waffle Company is proof that waffles are one of the most deliciously versatile carbs out there. Our enjoyment of the food was enhanced by the friendly, attentive staff and the handsome, modern interior, which opens to some outdoor seating.

The company just purchased a waffle bus to take their operation mobile, so start looking for them at events where food trucks abound. But if you’re looking to live like a tourist — even for just a morning — Crisp Waffle Company is your conduit.

Crisp Waffle Company, 17 Fillmore Drive, Sarasota, 941-556-9261, crispwafflecompany.com


Pictured: Cutline: Crisp Waffle Company makes a liege waffle, which uses a dough instead of a batter, creating a richer, more complex taste experience that works for sweet or savory toppings. Photo courtesy of Crisp Waffle Company.

[Frozen Yogurt]  Pomegranate Frozen Yogurt Elevates Froyo to Gourmet Status
Laura Paquette, laura.paquette@srqme.com

In Sarasota-Manatee, frozen yogurt shops are ubiquitous, but Pomegranate Frozen Yogurt, in Parrish, has elevated the product to gourmet-status.

Pomegranate Frozen Yogurt was opened in 2016 by Gary and Nicola Rodney and their children, Myles and Gabrielle. Nicola, who worked in healthcare administration, and Gary, who worked in business technology management, combined their expertise while developing the business.

After tasting frozen yogurt for the first time with his daughter, Gary and the family decided to explore franchising with already-existing frozen yogurt companies, but felt that building their own business would be more rewarding.

While the concept appears simple—pull the lever and out flows a creamy swirl—creating a premium product takes research and patience. “We did our due diligence to make sure we could create quality products,” adds Nicola.

The frozen yogurts are rich, creamy and spot-on with their flavors, which include chocolate, orange splash and Dole Whip, which tastes just like its Disney World cousin. Complementary flavors, such as Strawberry Sensations and Classic Cheesecake, are dispensed from separate nozzles while flanking the swirl nozzle which creates a flavor mash-up, like Strawberry Cheesecake. In February, Pomegranate will roll out spring flavors like Irish Mint, Cotton Candy and Peeps. Gluten-free, sugar-free, fat-free and low-fat options are available to suit all guests’ dietary needs. Some yogurts, such as the seasonal Peppermint, are developed in-house. Many toppings, including cookie dough, whipped cream and waffle cone chips are homemade. Indeed, grandma’s own cookie dough doesn’t hold a candle to the one at Pomegranate.

“If our guests go elsewhere, they report back that our yogurt is better and wish they’d waited for us to open,” says Nicola. In fact, Pomegranate provides bowls and lids for customers to stockpile the yogurt at home so that it’s on hand to satisfy off-hours yogurt cravings.

From ensuring that the yogurt remains at the correct temperature for texture and food safety to selecting fresh ingredients, the Rodneys hold Pomegranate to the highest standards.

“My background is in healthcare, so I brought those sanitation protocols to the business,” Nicola says. The toppings canisters are enclosed and the additional toppings bar is walled-off and only accessible by the staff, who keep all the machines and the shop spotless. “Because Pomegranate was already food-safe, patrons felt comfortable visiting us during the pandemic, which helped us survive 2020,” she adds.

Commitment to the community is central to Pomegranate’s mission. The shop hosts fundraisers and started a Monday promotion allowing larger families to save money without having to nickel and dime their purchases. “We treat every guest like they’re a member of our family,” says Gary, “and our shop is intertwined in the lives of members of the community.”

Pomegrante Frozen Yogurt, 9023 US-301, Parrish, 941-981-3617. 

Pictured: A bowl of frozen yogurt at Pomegranate Frozen Yogurt. Photo courtesy of Pomegranate Frozen Yogurt.

[New Menu]  Michaels On East is Featuring the Country of Turkey for January's Epicurean Menu:

The culinary team at Michael’s On East is challenged to create new dishes inspired by the world’s most exotic destinations each month. Join in to experience ever-changing, palate-pleasing global cuisine with Michael's Epicurean Adventures. The three-course dinner menu is available Tuesday through Saturday evenings for $42.95 per person. 

Pictured: Pomegranate Chicken with Walnuts Couscous Salad with Mint and Lemon, Red Onions, Baby Spinach, Dates & Apricots. Photo courtesy of Michaels on East.

[Superbowl Event]  Catch the Big Game at Geckos

Join Gecko’s Grill & Pub’s, your #BestSportsBar for the Big Game and the most super seat outside of Glendale! Seating is limited so reserve today with a $25 per person deposit. Reserved guests will receive a $25 GC to use on Big Game day (must be present 15 minutes before kick-off). There will be giveaways in addition to Gecko’s special football menu and new cocktail menu, small batch spirits and the usual huge variety of craft beer and  award-winning happy hours! Ask your friendly server or barkeep for more details and reserve today! www.GeckosGrill.com. 

[Announcement]  New Product Announcement

FL: Rita Medical Elite in Sarasota, FL is thrilled to announce that they have been selected to offer DAXXIFY™, the newest neuromodulator on the market. DAXXIFY™ is an FDA approved, peptide-powered injectable neuromodulator that helps smooth wrinkles by temporarily relaxing the facial muscles. The common neuromodulators on the market (Botox, Dysport, Xeomin) last for 3-4 months. DAXXIFY™ lasts on average 6 months, and as long as 9 months for some. Revance Aesthetics, the creator of DAXXIFY™, has pre-released their
injectable neuromodulator to the top 1% of injecting practices nationwide, making Rita Altman, PA, MPAS and her team of injectors the only Medspa in the Sarasota area to offer it. 

[Festival]  Forks and Corks Food and Wine Festival

Organizers of 2023 Forks & Corks Food & Wine Festival are excited to announce ticket information for the Grand Tasting at The Ringling Museum of Art, presented by the Sarasota-Manatee Originals. Celebrating its 16th year in 2023, the multi-day epicurean event is designed to showcase the palate-pleasing talents of the locally-owned, independent restaurants of Sarasota and Manatee Counties, highlighted by an esteemed international cast of visiting winery owners and winemakers. The Festival is scheduled for April 20-24, 2023 and offers a world-class weekend of winemaker dinners, interactive wine seminars and wine tastings that culminates with the alfresco Grand Tasting event at The Ringling Museum of Art Courtyard. Forks & Corks’ most sought-after event is the Grand Tasting taking place on Sunday, April 23, 2023 in the historic courtyard of The Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota. Guests will savor delicious dishes presented by over 40 Members of the Sarasota-Manatee Originals restaurant group and sample from a collection of more than 300 unique wines from across the globe selected by event Co-Chair Michael Klauber and judged by an esteemed group of beverage professionals. There will be live musical entertainment, and an expansive silent auction of rare and collectible wines and experiences. “A wine shop is also available, where patrons can purchase the various wines,making Forks & Corks one of only a few festivals in the Southeast to provide the opportunity to purchase their favorite wines onsite during the event,” added Ms. Davis. Due to the unprecedented demand this year, there are three available ticket levels. VIP ticket holders ($450+ each) receive a variety of perks including a $150 wine voucher for the onsite wine shop, complimentary valet parking, and covered seating in the Forks & Corks VIP Tent Presented by The Scout Guide. Early Access tickets ($350+ each) include a $50 wine voucher.,Both VIP and Early Access Ticket holders will enjoy expedited early access to the wine shop with a Champagne Reception (11am to 12pm) as well as early event entrance into the Grand Tasting in the Ringling Courtyard at 11:30am. General Admission tickets ($175+ each), will be available on January 19 at 7:00pm, and historically have sold out in a matter of minutes. The 2023 Forks & Corks festival is supported by its sponsors including Suncoast Porsche and Audi Sarasota (Presenting Sponsor), Art Ovation Hotel, Florida Design Works, Icard Merrill, Atlas Insurance, Sweet Sparkman Architects, Lincoln Financial Group, Sysco, Palmer Accounting Group PA, the Observer Media Group and more. For more information on Forks & Corks and to purchase tickets, visit EatLikeALocal.com. Follow Forks & Corks on Facebook and Instagram. 

[Forage]  Nothing Artificial
Ariana Kolesar, ariana@srqme.com
NOTHING ARTIFICIAL | Peter Pappas, baker, pizzaiolo, and sweets specialist offers taste-bud tantalizing flavors.

Boston-born Peter Pappas has returned to his love for sweets with the opening of Pete's Sweet Treats Homemade Ice Cream & Italian Ice, an ice-cream and Italian ice shop in Gulf Gate. Read all about the delicious new spot through the link, on our social medias, or in the January Edition!

Read Here!

[SOON]  : The Ringling - A Decade of Collecting , October 22 – January 22, Varied

A Decade of Collecting brings together a survey of artworks acquired for the permanent collection over the past eleven years. As the State Art Museum of Florida and a division of Florida State University, The Ringling’s collections are constantly expanding to provide our state and local community with access to current contemporary works in all media and thoughtful additions to our historic collections. Though the core of the collection has always been the works acquired by John and Mable Ringling, the museum’s holdings have been expanding ever since the State of Florida took full possession of the bequest in 1946. In the early years, these additions were mainly in pre-1800 European art and circus-related material, but over the second half of the 20th century, directors and curators also began acquiring works by modern and contemporary artists. A Decade of Collecting presents a unique snapshot of how The Ringling’s collection continues to evolve, allowing us to tell new stories of the past, present, and future. Visit ringling.org to plan your visit.

Museum of Art Searing Galleries

[SOON]  GALLERY: Contemporary Realism First Friday Gallery Walk at the Dabbert Gallery , January 6 – January 31, 6 to 9 p.m.

Contemporary Realism First Friday Gallery Walk at the Dabbert Gallery. From 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 6, the Dabbert Gallery will host the First Friday Gallery Walk through its new contemporary realism exhibit. The exhibit runs through Jan. 31. For more information, visit dabbertgallery.com. Dabbet Gallery, 46 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Rainforest Masks of Costa Rica at the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens , January 11 – January 22, During garden hours

The annual Rainforest Masks exhibition showcasing handcrafted art from the Indigenous Boruca tribe of Costa Rica is now on view! Experience (and purchase) vibrant, hand-carved and painted balsa wood masks featuring flora and fauna of the tropical rainforest. With over 400 spectacular masks on display, this year's display highlights the common motifs of the orchid, butterfly, hummingbird, frog, sloth, jaguar, and warrior found in the work of the Borucan artists. Proceeds from mask sales support the Borucan village and also benefit Selby Gardens’ education, research, horticulture, and scientific work. To learn more and purchase tickets, visit selby.org.

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Towers of Tomorrow with LEGO Bricks at the Bishop , January 11 – March 18, During museum hours

Get inspired to create your own ‘towers of tomorrow’ with over 200,000 loose LEGO® bricks available in hands-on construction areas. Young and old will be limited only by their imagination as they add their creations to a steadily rising futuristic LEGO® metropolis inside the exhibition. To learn more and purchase tickets, visit bishopscience.org.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Ranch Nite Wednesdays at Waterside Place , January 18, 6 to 9 p.m.

Enjoy a night of fun at Waterside Place during Ranch Nite Wednesdays. The event features food trucks, live music, a night market, a vintage mobile bar and cornhole. Click the above link to learn more. 1561 Lakefront Drive.

[SOON]  FILM: Cinema at The Bay: Raiders of the Lost Ark , January 19, 7 to 9 p.m.

Enjoy a free, outdoor movie at The Bay Park! Bring your blankets, chairs, family, friends and good dogs to enjoy a wonderful evening under the stars. The Nest, the new concession at The Bay, will be selling tasty food and beverages to make the evening a legit and fun movie-going experience for all. Click the above link to learn more.

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Art Center Sarasota: Same Source , February 2 – March 11

The Same Source exhibit by Luca Molnar uses various media to explore the connection between historical figures and personal mythologies. The exhibit highlights the connection between private life, domestic spaces and memory. On Thursday, Feb. 16, Molnar will participate in an artist talk via Zoom from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The exhibit runs from Feb. 2 to March 11. To learn more, visit artsarasota.org or call 941-365-2032. Art Center Sarasota, 707 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Geckos Grill and Pubs Trivia , July 1 – June 1, 7:30 pm

Geckos Grill & Pub’s Award-winning Trivia-Think While You Drink! If you love Trivia, join the fun at Geckos all year round. All Trivia starts at 7:30pm. We will have prizes, giveaways and specials plus the Geckos made-to-order fare, signature cocktails and hospitality you love. Monday trivia will be held at the Clark Road location in Palmer Crossing and on Tuesdays at the SR 64 location in Braden River Plaza. The SR 64 location will be taking a break from Trivia in October, but will start back up in April. On Wednesdays, trivia will take place at the Hillview Street location in Southside Village. www.GeckosGrill.com.

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Thunder by the Bay Music & Motorcycle Festival , February 17 – February 19

The 25th Annual Thunder By The Bay Music & Motorcycle Festival. The iconic three-day Festival, organized by and benefitting Suncoast Charities for Children, is scheduled for February 17-19 at the Sarasota Fairgrounds. Continuous live music will be featured throughout the weekend, and attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets for outdoor seating in front of the stage. The Festival plans to feature over 100 vendors, a 17-class bike show, a motorcycle stereo sound off competition, motorcycle freestyle demonstrations, a tented full bar area with seating, a “little riders” kid zone, a food court, “Thunder Alley” inside Robarts Arena and so much more!  For tickets, vendor information, sponsorship opportunities, and a complete listing of all Festival events visit: THUNDERBYTHEBAY.ORG | (941) 487-7904. 

Sarasota Fairgrounds

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: SB2 Luncheon: Featuring the Good Hero Awards , March 7, 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
The SRQ Philanthropic Agenda and Good Hero Awards luncheon and panel discussion will explore the dynamic and ever changing world of non-profits. What's trending, who's innovating, why are donor-advised funds growing so rapidly and what exactly are donors looking for? The luncheon will culminate with the SRQ Good Hero Philanthropic Awards program at which we will honor individuals who have meaningfully impacted our community for good in the past year and for-profit companies who have been incredible philanthropic partners to the community.

Michael's On East, 1212 S East Ave Sarasota, FL 34239

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Urbanite Theatre: 2023 Modern Works Festival , May 3 – May 7

2023 MODERN WORKS FESTIVAL Presented by Summer Wallace. May 3 - May 7, 2023. Urbanite Theatre. Back for the fourth time and returning to an in-person experience, the Modern Works Festival is a playwriting contest, reading festival and celebration of women in theatre. See all three finalist readings and become eligible to vote on the festival-winning playwright! Titles of finalist plays will be announced in 2023. For information contact - phone (941) 321-1397, email info@urbanitetheatre.com, website www.urbanitetheatre.com

Urbanite Theatre , 1487 2nd Street Sarasota FL, 34236

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Walking Tours at The Ringling's Arboretum Available Now Through May 2023 , November 26 – May 29, 12:00 PM

This walking tour led by volunteer guides will introduce you to interesting botanical specimens on the estate while providing a historic overview of the development of the estate. The Ringling Arboretum has been accredited at Level II through ArbNet and there are over 2350 trees within the arboretum representing native, exotic, historical, and culturally significant trees. Garden Tours are available Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays and take place entirely outdoors. It is 90 minutes in length and covers approximately 1 mile. We encourage visitors to bring bottled water, and wear appropriate footwear, preferably closed-toe, sunblock, and hats. There will be a maximum of 10 participants per tour. Tours are subject to weather conditions. Please check it at the Visitors Pavilion prior to your tour. Tickets will be available 30 days prior to each tour.

[SOON]  THEATER: Urbanite Theatre: Birds of North America , January 6 – February 12, Varied

"Birds of North America" runs January 6th-February 12th, 2023 at Urbanite Theatre. As birders, John and his daughter Caitlyn adore spending tender autumn days attempting to catch glimpses of elusive birds. But as seasons, the climate, and global politics change, the two find their connection as rare as a red-headed Woodpecker.  In a lyrical and endearing family portrait, Birds of North America unfolds in delicate, detailed layers like the scattered leaves of each passing year. For tickets and information contact Ph. (941) 321-1397, Email info@urbanitetheatre.com, Website www.urbanitetheatre.com

Urbanite Theatre , 1487 2nd Street Sarasota FL, 34236

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: The Players Centre: Proof , January 12 – January 22, Varied

Proof by David Auburn. Winner of the 2001 Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award for Best Play, Proof tells the story of Catherine, a troubled young woman, who has spent years caring for her brilliant but unstable father, a famous mathematician. Now, following his death and on the eve of her 25th birthday, she must deal with her own volatile emotions; the arrival of her estranged sister, Claire; and the attentions of Hal, a former student of her father’s. Over the long weekend that follows, a burgeoning romance and the discovery of a mysterious notebook draw Catherine into the most difficult problem of all: How much of her father’s madness—or genius—will she inherit? January 12-22, 2023 For tickets visit theplayers.org, Ph. 941-365-2494, email BoxOffice@ThePlayers.org

The Players Centre For Performing Arts, Performance Venue & Box Office The Crossings at Siesta Key 3501 South Tamiami Trail, Suite 1130 Sarasota, FL 34239

[SOON]  GALLERY: Elements by Cheryl Moody to be Featured at Art Uptown Gallery in February , January 27 – February 23

From January 27, 2023 to February 23, Art Uptown Gallery will exhibit Elements by Cheryl Moody. Cheryl loves being outdoors and painting subjects in oils that spark her interest, whether it's the way light filters through leaves, reflects on water, creates patterns of color in the landscape, or how palm fronds twist in the wind. Cheryl enjoys hearing from people saying they could “ feel the wind blowing” or “smell the salt air,” and knowing that they have been transported to her special places. Meet the artist at the gallery on Saturday, January 28 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and at the monthly First Friday, 6 p.m. public reception on February 3. Art Uptown Gallery welcomes patrons and friends at 1367 Main Street daily where the diverse art works of regional, award-winning artists are exhibited. Telephone 941-955-5409 or visit www.artuptown.com for hours and further information.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: FST - A Place in the Sun - A Tribute to Stevie Wonder , November 16 – April 16, Varied

A Place in the Sun – A Tribute to Stevie Wonder, will begin playing in FST’s Goldstein Cabaret on November 16, 2022. The new music revue celebrates the legendary musician whose catalogue spans six decades and multiple musical genres, taking audiences through the beloved songbook of musical pioneer, Stevie Wonder. Created by Jason Cannon, Richard Hopkins, and Sarah Durham, this all-new Cabaret features such timeless hits as “I Just Called to Say I Love You,” “Isn’t She Lovely?,” and “Superstition.” Tickets are now on sale at FloridaStudioTheatre.org or at 941.366.9000.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Golf Tournament Raises Funds for Domestic and Sexual Violence Survivors , January 16 – February 7, 11:00 AM

Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) is hosting its annual golf tournament, Scramble for SPARCC, at the Laurel Oak Country Club on Monday, January 16, 2023. With the support of sponsors, community donations and golfers, this tournament raises funds to help provide life-saving, free and confidential programs and services for survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Entry fee is $185.00 per person and includes green fees, individual carts, happy hour light bites, beverages (cash bar available) and player awards. Registration opens at 11:00 AM with a shotgun start at 12:30 PM to kick off the 18-hole scramble. In addition to the golf tournament, there is also a closet to the pin contest, closest to the line contest, golf ball launcher, 50/50 chance drawing, and awards celebration. Co-Chairs for this event are Sandy Fulkerson and Bonnie VanOverbeke.

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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