NATIONAL TACO DAY – October 4th

National Taco Day

You love tacos? Then October 4th is your day, because it’s National Taco Day!

History and origin

The history of tacos dates back to the arrival of Europeans in Mexico. The indigenous people in the Lakes region of the Valley of Mexico traditionally ate tacos, which they filled with small fish. Already in the days of the Spanish conquistadors there was the first taco festival: Hernán Cortés, the famous conquistador, arranged this for his captains in Coyoacan.

Why the Spaniards called this local food “taco” is not exactly known. The Spanish word actually means “cone” or “peg”.

Difference between taco and tortilla

Do you know the difference between a taco and a tortilla? The tortilla is a Mexican flatbread, which is served as a side dish, e.g. to Chili con Carne, but is also used as a basis for tacos.

A taco is a tortilla stuffed with different ingredients. Popular fillings are ground beef, salad, onions, tomatoes and cheese. You can choose between corn and wheat tortillas. The original corn tortillas are crispy fried, while the wheat tortillas are soft.

What is your favorite?

Recipes

If you want to celebrate National Taco Day, here are two delicious recipe suggestions:

Taco Pizza 

Veggie Tacos 

Deals

Many restaurants in the US offer deals on National Taco Day offers. Here you find a selection.

How about visiting our South Venice Taco Bell? It is only minutes from our Villa Happy Gator. Get directions here.



National Taco Day

 

 

Restaurants in Venice – Vegetarian and Vegan in Florida

Vegan in Florida

Vegetarian and Vegan in Florida

Everybody loves going out to dinner, especially when you are on vacation. Venice and surrounding has a large selection of great restaurants and cafes, so that everyone will surely find their favorite spot. What we love is that many are also prepared for vegetarians and vegans. Let us present our top 5 restaurants, which have plant-based treats on the menu – vegetarian and vegan in Florida is easy!

1. Seed to Table – All Vegan Restaurant

Their Menu is composed of some of the favorite foods that they like to make at home and some from their favorite eateries in NYC & NJ.

The Christopher and Kimberly strive to provide you with the most healthy and appetizing food they possibly can. Everything they serve at Seed to Table is made with whole foods, organic ingredients, purchased locally whenever possible.

If you love food as much as they do or are looking to begin a healthy lifestyle then Seed to Table is for you! Seed to Table provides Pure. Good. Eats.

They also offer online ordering and deliver to your place in Venice, North Port and Port Charlotte.

2357 S Tamiami Trail
Venice, FL 34239
941-799-7137
eatseedtotable.com

 

Seed To Table Venice Seed To Table Venice

 

2. Island Organic & Smoothie

This is the place number one to get a delicious smoothie or a juice made with organic fruits and vegetables. They also offer a lunch menu and breakfast menu with so many great options, you will find it hard to choose. Be sure to try the pecan honey salad or the spinach salad!

Owner Alexa’s mission from the start has been to provide you with the best quality food in a fast-casual setting. At Island Organic they always try to get everything organic, local and fair trade when possible. You will find options for gluten free, vegan, and vegetarian diets.

231 W. Miami Ave
Venice Fl 34285
941-484-3565
islandorganicssmoothie.com

Island Organic Venice Island Organic Venice

 

3. Veg and Grill – “Veg”

The ”Veg” in Sarasota is a hidden gem. Enjoy fresh and delicious food from appetizer to desert. Try the Portobello mushroom burger and with vegan coleslaw and you will be excited. On hot summer days their berry sangria is just irresistible. They also carry great organic wines.

This Grill is definitely a must for anyone who enjoys high quality vegetarian, vegan or seafood dishes.

2164 Gulf Gate Dr
Sarasota FL 34232
941-312-6424
vegsrq.com

Veg and Grill Venice  Veg and Grill Venice

 

4. Café Evergreen

Annette’s and Ted’s personal philosophy is to be a leader in healthy foods and drinks that are fresh, great tasting and unique. You have lots of choices…something for vegans, vegetarians and meat lovers. Never boring, always changing and always delicious.

How about tasting baked sweet potato fries or a Kefir Mojito? You will be thrilled. At Café Evergreen they take things that people like and give them a healthier option.

Their food at the café is so vibrant and colorful because it is FRESH! When you use fresh ingredients there is always a difference you can taste.

801 Tamiami Trail South
Nokomis, FL 34275
941-412-4334
cafeevergreen.net

Cafe Evergreen Venice  Cafe Evergreen Venice

 

5. Baiyoke Thai Bistro

Famous for their great Sushi and Thai dishes, at Baiyoke also vegetarians and vegans will find a variety of delicious options. They are very proud to serve only the freshest and finest ingredients.

You will experience the liveliness and excitement of their exhibition kitchen. The extraordinary fast and friendly wait staff will happily help you to compose a plant-based meal.

1829 S Tamiami Trail
Venice, FL 34293
941-408-8141
baiyokethaisushi.com

BaiyokeThai

 

More ideas for vegetarian and vegan in Florida

Besides these 5 locations, a lot of other restaurants have plant-based options on their menu or are pleased to serve you a special order. The following list should give you an inspiration, but is not complete:

– Blu’ Island Bistro, Venice
– Bodrum Restaurant, Venice
– Café Longet, Venice
– Canton Chinese, Venice
– Cassariano Italian Bakery, Venice
– Croissant&Co, Venice
– Crow’s Nest, Venice
– Fins at Sharky’s, Venice
– First Watch, Venice
– Joy’s Kouzine, Venice
– Mad Dog Hot Dogs
– Made in Italy, Venice
– Mango Bistro, Englewood
– Suncoast Café, Venice
– Thai Bistro, Venice
– The Original Word of Mouth, Venice
– Tikka Indian Cuisine, Venice
– Trattoria da Mino, Venice
– Upper Crust Café & Bakery, Venice

 

National Avocado Day – July 31

National Avocado Day

On July 31st, we celebrate avocados in the USA!

Did you know that avocados have been collected and consumed by humans for at least 10,000 years? Archaeologists found evidence in Central Mexico. About 3000 BC, avocados were cultivated by Central American peoples such as the Inca and Maya.

The name avocado – also called “alligator pear” in the Caribbean – was first mentioned by the Irish scientist and botanist Hans Sloane, who depicted it in his catalog of plants native to Jamaica.

In 1833, the first avocado trees were planted in Florida. However, it took until the 1950s, until they entered the grocery stores.

Today, avocados are popular worldwide. The creamy, vitamin-rich interior is extremely tasteful and perfect for salads or the famous Mexican guacamole. The beauty industry loves the skin friendly ingredients.

So let’s celebrate – maybe with a homemade guacamole?

Here is one of my favorite recipes

Ingredients:

  • 2 avocados
  • 1 lime
  • 1 onion small
  • 1 chili peppers e.g. pickled jalapeno or fresh green ones
  • 1 tomato
  • salt according taste

Preparation:

  • Peel the avocados and mash them in a bowl with a fork. Add the juice of a lime.
  • Cut the onion, chili and tomato into very small cubes. For tomatoes, it is best to leave out the seeds.
  • Stir the cubes into the avocado cream, season with salt and serve soon.

Enjoy!

National Avocado Day

Chipotle

By the way – If you would like to celebrate National Avocado Day away from home, you can use the Chipotle offer: On July 31, there will be a free portion of guacamole for every regular entree. You have to pre-order with the Chipotle App or online here on the Chipotle page.

Chipotle in Venice is located Bird Bay Plaza, 519 U.S. 41 Bypass, Venice, FL 34285.

National Doughnut Day – June 7 2019

National Doughnut Day

Do you like doughnuts? I do! These delicious treats have conquered the world. How wonderful that there is even a National Doughnut Day!

National Doughnut Day

History

On the first Friday in June each year, people in the US celebrate National Doughnut Day. It remembers The Salvation Army Lassies, the women who served donuts to soldiers during World War I at the front lines in Europe. With home made foods those brave volunteers brought a morale boost to the troops. The doughnuts were often baked in oil inside the metal helmets of the soldiers.

In 1938 National Doughnut Day was created by The Salvation Army to honor these women and to start a fund-raising for Chicago’s Salvation Army. The goal was to help the needy during the Great Depression. National Doughnut Day was born.

National Doughnut Day

About the Doughnut

A doughnut is a ring-shaped sweet snack that is made of fried dough. It can be rolled in sugar or topped or glazed with icing. There are also doughnuts filled with jam, custard, or cream.

Food historians believe, that the doughnut came to the US with Dutch immigrants in the 19th century.

In the late 20th century, the shortened form “donuts” became popular with a successful doughnut chain, but still “doughnut” remains the most common spelling.

National doughnut day

 

Let’s celebrate!

Take some friends and enjoy the sweet snacks at your local doughnut store. Many doughnut stores have special offers on this day, so be sure to check.

Maybe you love baking? Try a new recipe and treat you and your loved ones at home.

Or continue the spirit of charity and volunteer for the local Salvation Army chapter or another non-profit organization that works with the armed forces.

National Doughnut Day

 

Doughnuts in Venice Florida

You are in Venice at National Doughnut Day? Be sure to visit Yummies Donuts, they are amazing.

On Friday June 7th, they will give ONE FREE glazed doughnut to everyone!!! (Until running out, so hurry!)

For more info, visit their website yummiesdonuts.com

National Doughnut Day

10 Great Beach Bars & Grills in and around Venice Florida

Beach Bars in Venice

Beach Bars – Tiki Bars – Grills – This is Florida!

Figure yourself sitting together with friends and family, having a cool drink and good food, leaning back, letting your eyes wandering over the water – this is true joy of life!

Venice Florida is a top destination for great beach bars, tiki bars and grills directly at the water. Let me present a few of my favorite locations from Englewood to Venice and Sarasota:

 

Sharky’s on the Pier Venice

Sharky’s is a great award winning beach bar and restaurant directly at Venice Beach. With a wonderful breeze coming off the water, this is a fantastic place for a meal. They offer all sorts of drinks and great food. Enjoy the sunsets and have fun. The location is simply unbeatable.

Go to their website sharkysonthepier.com to inquire about hours, events and menu.

Sharky's on the Pier - Villa Happy Gator

 

Pop’s Sunset Grille Nokomis

Pop’s Sunset Grill in Nokomis is THE place to take your friends and family for a taste of Old Florida. It has become one of Western Florida’s favorite landmark over the past 30 years. Guests love the casual atmosphere and fresh local fare.

Have a Cesar’s Salad or some bay scallops while enjoying the beautiful Intracoastal Waterway and the fabulous natural wildlife. Sip a delicious cocktail with the scenic view of boats and ships sailing by. Mostly at weekends, they offer some of the best live local entertainment in the Venice and Nokomis area. Be sure to check the calendar!

Please visit the website for opening hours, events and menu: popssunsetgrill.net

Pops Sunset Grill Nokomis

 

Dockside Waterfront Grill Venice

They offer casual waterfront dining & authentic Florida charm at Dockside Waterfront Grill. Enjoy sitting under Tiki Huts directly at the dock and admiring colorful sunsets.

For info and menu, please visit their website geckosgrill.com. For promotions and offers also see their facebook site.

Dockside waterfront

 

Casey Key Fish House & Tiki Bar Osprey

Casey Key Fish House in Osprey, FL, is an “Old Florida” waterfront restaurant with excellent food and a laid back casual atmosphere. The dining room is over the bay and EVERY seat has a view of the water! At sunset, even the local birds flock to the docks as they scramble for the scraps of the night’s leftovers.

Their great food is moderately priced. With 200 feet of deep water dockage, you can get to the restaurant by car or boat (Dockage Marker 32). Also, if you’re on the adventurous side, there are on-site rentals for jet skis, paddle boards, kayaks, fishing charters, and boat rentals too!

Read more at their website caseykeyfishhouse.com

Casey Key

 

O’Leary’s Tiki Bar and Grill Sarasota

Imaging yourself sitting with your toes in the sand, sipping on an ice cold and delicious cocktail, watching the sun reflecting on the water and feeling a breeze that is pushing through the palm trees – wouldn’t that be a perfect moment?

O’Leary’s Tiki Bar and Grill offers decently priced drinks and tasty food combined with that laid back vibe.

For more info please go to their website olearystikibar.com.

Olearys

 

Lido Key Tiki Bar Sarasota

This place is truly a slice of paradise! The Lido Key Tiki Bar is located directly on the beach behind The Ritz-Carlton Beach Club – you can’t beat the views, the cool white sand, the relaxed atmosphere. The rustic décor has its unique charm.

They serve amazing cocktails and delicious food together with an excellent service. Don’t miss their popular fish sandwich, it is simply irresistible.

Please see their website ritzcarlton.com.

Lido Key Tiki Bar

 

Lido Beach Resort Tiki Bar Sarasota

A favorite among locals, the resort’s Tiki Bar, which is open to the public, is the perfect place to meet new friends, mingle over tropical cocktails and enjoy southwest Florida’s breathtaking sunsets. While relaxing at the Gulf front bar, choose from a tempting menu of satisfying sandwiches, salads and appetizers along with tropical libations that perfectly complement the beachfront surroundings. Don’t miss their Happy Hour specials!

More on their website lidobeachresort.com

Lido Beach Resort

 

White Elephant Englewood

How about bringing your boat to the deepwater harbor? Of course you can also arrive by car and enjoy great food and drinks. The ‘Old Florida’ style structure was originally as a resort, and now houses the popular cold drinks and delicious food spot on Chadwick’s Cove. The idyllic location with the public beach across the highway and the marina at the bay make it a favorite eating-place, with fantastic entertainment a regular feature!

Please visit the website whiteelephantpub.com

white elephant

 

SandBar Tiki&Grille Englewood

This is a perfect place to eat and drink after a day on the beach or shopping in Port Charlotte. Some say they are serving the best food on the key. And there always seems to be someone singing or playing music for entertainment, so bring some time to enjoy – The place to be on Manasota Key!

See their website sandbartikigrille.com.

sandbar tiki grille

 

Lock’nKey Englewood

They serve great food at great prices and have great entertainment several nights a week. Soak up gorgeous sunsets or come for lunch and glory in the warmth of Florida. Every entree is a “Specialty of the House.” All menu items are made fresh from the finest available sources and prepared with loving care – just steps from Englewood Beach.

See their website lockandkeyrestaurant.com

Lock n Key

 

 

Restaurants in Venice: Delicious Pizza at Mama Maria’s

Mama Maria's in Venice

You love Pizza? You also love Steak Subs and Pasta Alfredo with Shrimp? Be sure to step by at Mama Maria’s on S Tamiami Trail, my personal recommendation. Best is to bring a lot of appetite, as the portions are very large.

The culinary team offers a variety of homemade pizzas, subs, appetizers, calzones, salads and pasta entrees, everything with fresh ingredients.Try and be ready to be amazed!

Guests also love the relaxed atmosphere and the friendly and attentive staff. You may also order take out meals or use the delivery service. Simply have a look at the menu and call.

Mama Maria’s is located on 2067 S Tamiami Trail in Venice, just across the end of Alligator Drive. Phone number for contact is 941-408-9226.

Mama Maria’s on Facebook here.

 

Pasta at Mama Maria's   Subs at Mama Maria's Venice

Where to eat around Venice: Waterfront dining at Pop’s Sunset Grill

Pops Sunset Grill Nokomis

Pop’s Sunset Grill in Nokomis is THE place to take your friends and family for a taste of Old Florida. It has become one of Western Florida’s favorite landmark over the past 30 years. Guests love the casual atmosphere and fresh local fare.

Have a Cesar’s Salad or some bay scallops while enjoying the beautiful Intracoastal Waterway and the fabulous natural wildlife. Sip a delicious cocktail with the scenic view of boats and ships sailing by. Mostly at weekends, they offer some of the best live local entertainment in the Venice and Nokomis area. Be sure to check the calendar!

All of their items are prepared fresh in their kitchen daily. If you have any questions regarding ingredients and would like to modify your meal for dietary, allergy or some other reason, ask the friendly staff. They will do their best to accommodate your request or assist you with alternate menu suggestions.

Please visit the website popssunsetgrill.net for opening hours, events and menu.

Yofresh – Delicious All Natural Yogurt in Venice FL

yofresh in venice

This will be your favorite spot if you love frozen yoghurt! Step into this bright and cheery place and you will feel immediately special. There is always a smile to greet and a great song on the speakers to welcome you.

Enjoy a large selection of delicious all natural frozen yogurts with a variety of tasty toppings, fresh yogurts and fruit smoothies.

They even provide almond milk flavors – vegan and dairy free – which are my personal choice. You will also find gluten and fat free options.

Do you know how “Hit Lucky 13” will create a “Yo Smile” on your face? Put exactly 13 ounces into your cup and you will enjoy it for free! Give it a try!

FroYo Your Way!

Yofresh Yogurt Café
4197 Tamiami Trl S
34293 Venice (Florida)
+1 941-244-0394

Meet them on Facebook!

Yoghurt in Venice  yogurt in Venice

yogurt in Venice  yogurt in Venice

Where to eat in Venice: Café Venice for exquisite Menus and Wine

Cafe Venice

Café Venice is a small, intimate bistro-style restaurant featuring an exquisite menu with American Cuisine with Homemade sauces, specialty side dishes, and delectable desserts paired with a fine wine selection. Whether you are looking for a casual spot to enjoy lunch and a glass of wine or an intimate location to celebrate your anniversary or special occasion, the staff at Café Venice will welcome you and ensure you have a great dining experience.

With their new outside terrace they offer outside dining as also a lighter menu whether you are enjoying an evening bike ride – or just want something light to munch on.

Come on over and enjoy a glass of wine, something on the lighter side and of course downtown Venice.

By the way: There is always a Happy Hour special, so make sure to check their website cafeveniceontheisland.com for the latest info.

Cafe Venice

Cafe Venice

Where to eat in Venice: Snook Haven at Myakka River

Snook Haven

Experience Snook Haven, one of Florida’s most unique restaurants, tucked away on the banks of the Myakka River in a true Old Florida setting. Enjoy your meal in the dining room, or on the deck while taking in the peaceful view of the river and wildlife.

Snook Haven features a delicious Back Woods Smokehouse menu featuring ribs, chicken, pulled pork as well as fresh fish, and shrimp. They have over 30 different beers to choose from, including some of Florida’s own craft beers, and other international favorites.  Snook’s outdoor stage is home to a rich history of local live music entertainment. Check out their monthly entertainment calendar to see who is performing. Come out for an afternoon of blues, country, rock music and more!

River Tours and canoe/kayak rentals

You are looking for activities? Book a River Tour or rent a canoe or kayak with Logan River Tours.

More info

Read more about the History of Snook Haven here. For opening hours and menu as well as for river tours and boat rentals please go to their website snookhaven.com.

Snook Haven