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SFF 2013: Where to eat and drink

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  • Sarasota Film Festival logo
    Sarasota Film Festival

    Finding the right films to see among the hundreds screened at the Sarasota Film Festival is a daunting task. Picking a place to grab a nosh before, between or after a screening shouldn't be. Here are 10 spots that will sate your non-cinematic needs and near enough to the screenings to make for an easy foray into downtown Sarasota.

  • made restaurant

    1990 Main St., Sarasota, 953-2900, maderestaurant.com

    Made

    This new spot at the east end of Main Street serves updated and interesting takes on American classic, like chicken and with black-pepper waffles, bacon-wrapped corn dogs, confit duck wings, steak and eggs and more. Now open for lunch and dinner, Made also stays open (and serves food) until midnight during the week and 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.

  • Eat Here. (Courtesy Photo)

    1888 Main St., Sarasota, 965-8700, eatheresarasota.com

    Eat Here

    Sean Murphy's Eat Here restaurants have an undeniable energy to them that will give you a kick in the seat after a multi-hour documentary binge. The food is fun and tasty, there's plenty of outdoor seating, and the upstairs lounge features outdoor tables perfect for watching people walk by on their way to or from the next screening.

  • half shell oyster house

    1991 Main St., Sarasota, 952-9400, halfshelloysterhouse.com

    Half Shell Oyster House

    The Louisiana-inspired menu is one reason to stop here before or after a film, but the sidewalk-adjacent courtyard is an even bigger draw, covered and separate from the downtown bustle but perfect for people-watching and potential star-spotting.

  • mediterraneo

    1970 Main St., Sarasota, 365-4122, mediterraneorest.com

    Mediterraneo

    Mediterraneo's Italian dishes are great, but the pizza -- cooked in a blazing oven behind the bar -- are a treat. There's a sizable bar area and outdoor seating tucked into a beautiful courtyard on the side, where you can see and be seen.

  • utamaro

    1900 Main St., Sarasota, 366-0095, sarasotasushi.com

    Utamaro Sushi Bar

    While most restaurants near the Hollywood 20 are likely to become "scenes" with the influx of film-buffs, Utamaro can serve as a gentle escape from cinema hurly burly. The small restaurant makes great Japanese food, including some of the best sushi in downtown Sarasota.

  • A reclaimed cypress table on Indigenous' patio. (Aug. 29, 2011) (Herald-Tribune staff photo by Dan Wagner)

    239 S. Links Ave., Sarasota, 706-4740, indigenoussarasota.com

    Indigenous

    Although just a couple of blocks away from the Hollywood 20, Indigenous feels like it could be miles from the fest. That's thanks to its idyllic location in the historic Towles Court arts district and the restaurant's design, which is chock full of reclaimed wood and natural elements. The food hasn't lost a sense of place, however, with innovative takes on Florida seafood and regional cuisine.

  • mozzarella fella

    1668 Main St., Sarasota, 366-7600

    Mozzarella Fella

    If you just want to grab a quick sandwich between films (or sneak one in for a mid-film nosh) Mozzarella Fella is you destination. The bread is crusty and hefty enough to handle the fillings, which include mozz made fresh daily, prosciutto, meatballs, eggplant and a host of other serious sandwich standards.

  • melange

    1568 Main St., Sarasota, 953-7111, melangesarasota.com

    Melange/Pangea/1564 Main Street

    Although it's a few blocks from the Hollywood 20, Melange is the place for late-night eats (and not-so-late-night eats, if you'd rather). Chef/owner Lan Bradeen serves her worldwide fusion cuisine until 2 a.m. every night but Tuesday, which means bacon corn fritters, duck springrolls, ginger crab soup, braised cod and a whole lot more. Next door is Pangea, the hidden cocktail lounge by Bradeen's partner Brad Coburn, as well as 1564 Main St. -- a late-night sandwich shop opened by the couple.

  • FNTLATE05u.jpg

    1525 4th St., Sarasota, 343-2165, darwinson4th.com

    Darwin's On 4th

    Darwin's has a trifecta that is difficult to beat: exceptional Peruvian-inspired cuisine, beer brewed in-house by a resident brewmaster and a killer happy hour. Add an interior that is intimate and loaded with historical accents and you have a wonderful spot for a post-screening breakdown of the latest films.

  • Photo provided / by Max Kelly Design

    1525 4th St., Sarasota, 388-7539, blueroostersrq.com

    The Blue Rooster

    Although adjacent to Darwin's on 4th, the atmosphere at the Blue Rooster is considerably more energetic. There's live music nightly, a menu that treads heavily on Southern and low-country classics and a vibrant bar scene.

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