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If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

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Madison Heights...
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If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

First trip to Sanibel and will not be eating out a lot. Family of 4 with two children ages 10 and 15. We all enjoy seafood and would like one nice meal out for dinner. We like to cook in for the majority of our time on vacation. From reading all of the forums was thinking of maybe Doc Fords or Grandma Dots. Can you give me some recommendations? thanks

Inman, SC
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1. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

Between the two you mentioned, I would definitely choose Doc Ford's. With the age of your children, I would also suggest Traders, if they're open. I had possibly the best meal I've ever had on Sanibel there last visit. Service was excellent as well (to me, that is not always the case at Doc's tho the food is always delish). I'm looking forward to dessert from Bubble Room on our next visit...never tried it before, but Orange Crunch cake is on my "must do" list in a few weeks.

Lake St. Louis...
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2. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

I cook in alot also and don't go out much.

I personally don't get it about Doc Fords. Never been to Grandma Dots but I wouldn't consider it a "nice" evening out. Island Cow is fun for kids, huge menu but average to me.

If you can describe what your thinking for that nice dinner out. Could you be more specific with price, atmosphere, etc so we can help with that one special night out?

For me a nice dinner out with kids would be Timbers. Good seafood and steaks and a Tommy Bahama type atmosphere. Next door is The grill owned by the same person and atmosphere is like a sports bar with like 20 TV's. Same food basically but cheaper. The sides are different. I go there myself. Good value for quality of food.

Sanibel Island...
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3. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

For the past two years Doc Ford's has been our favorite eatery on Sanibel Island. We have always found the food to be excellent and reasonably priced, but service can sometimes be iffy. It has a sports bar type atmosphere with lots of TV's and a large, salt water fish tank. Their fried calimari appetizer is to die for. I really enjoy their deep water mahi mahi, but everyone likes a different one of their entrees. Many people like their mojitos, but I prefer their Sam Adams Boston Lager on tap. They also have an assortment of decadent desserts. You and your two children should enjoy eating there. The other restaurants that have been mentioned are also very good. Of the others, The Sanibel Grill is my next choice, primarily because I think your children would like it. It is hard to find a bad place to eat on Sanibel Island!

Sanibel, FL
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4. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

I agree with Traders and Doc Ford - Just had dinner at Doc Ford's with my family - all ordered a seafood dish (grouper, buffalo shrimp and mussels) and everyone happy and satisfied. We did have a meat eater with us -he was happy too. Jacaranda is another option - great menu with lots of seafood choices and Islandy atmosphere. Timbers is always an Island favorite for families. The menu is varied and there is something for everyone. I personally love Sanibel Grill - good menu - I Love the Crunchy grouper sandwiches! Casual atmosphere. Sports bar.

Newtown...
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5. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

Hands down... Doc Ford's! Best fish tacos ever and their grouper sandwich is always delicious... enjoy. Don't forget to order the pick & peel shrimp appetizer... to die for!

Edited: 26 September 2010, 01:15
Florida
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6. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

Hands down Doc Fords. We love it there, the workers are extremely nice and the food is awesome. My hubby is very picky about his burgers and Docs is the only place he'll eat one. Thankfully we only live a couple hrs away, just got back

from there a cpl of weeks ago and we are excited to go back soon for a great meal :)

Edited: 26 September 2010, 03:00
England
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7. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

Can't say I rate Doc Fords all that highly,nor the Island Cow where service always seems slow. Gramma Dots closes early,

Timbers is great and the Jacaranda is where we go for a really special meal. They have early (cheaper) dinner selections otherwise it can be a bit pricey, but if it's just the one night out.

Lazy Flamingo 2 is a fun place with great fries/burgers and a fair selection of fish dishes.

Sample menu's can be found here www.cuisine-scene.com

Alternatively go to Cheeburger Cheeburger

Saint Paul...
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8. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

We are Sanibel "regulars" who have traveled with kids that age and I think it would help if you better described "nice night out". We don't cook that much on vacation (maybe twice at dinner time) so we go out a lot.

"Nice night out" to me would be the Thistle Lodge, Jacaranda, the Sunset Grill or Traders. (And the Mad Hatter but I would not have taken a 10 year old there). A more casual, fun night out would be Doc Fords, Key Lime Bistro, Lazy Flamingo, Timbers. We would probably only go to Gramma Dots for lunch or take-out. Would not go to the Island Cow.

There are lots of wonderful options on the islands but it really depends on what you mean by "nice night out".

Madison Heights...
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9. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

Thanks for all the info. Gramma Dots's seems like more of a lunch place, maybe we will pry ourselves from the beach one day and do that. When I say nice meal out I don't mean tremendously upscale, we really don't plan to dress up on this vacation. My children are very well behaved and do fine in any type of atmosphere. I'm thinking from the reviews maybe Timbers, Traders or Jaracando. Lazy Flamingo also sounds nice. With so many good choices maybe we will eat out more!!!!

Wyoming & Sanibel
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10. Re: If you could go to only one restaurant for dinner

Travelmom -

I just want to clarify a couple of things, as we all want you to have a terrific time in Sanibel.

Gramma Dot's is EXTREMELY causual - screened in dining (meaning no air conditioning), very small (which can mean long waits to get in during busy times), located at the marina (one of the few locations on Sanibel where you can eat and see the water). The food is excellent, served on waxed paper and wicker baskets. Sandwiches come with their homemade potato chips, which are terrific. It is expensive for a lunch place. In May (most recent visit to Gramma's), my husband went by himself, had a grouper sandwich, ice tea or soda, and with tax and tip, he spent $20. It's certainly worth the prices they charge, first for great, fresh food, but also a great location. I just didn't want you to drag everyone away from the beach to get there & be surprised.

You don't have to worry about dressing up when eating out in Sanibel, everywhere is casual (except Thistle Lodge and perhaps Ellington's). I think what the inquiry really was asking was your price range. Here is a link where you can get an idea of the menus and price ranges cuisine-scene.com/pages/restaurantsancap.html