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Diners' Choice: Best Ambiance restaurants in Sarasota / Bradenton

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OpenTable
Updated June 05, 2024

Looking for restaurants with the best ambiance in Sarasota / Bradenton? You’re in the right place. Each month, OpenTable analyzes nearly 2 million global diner reviews from the past four months. We sort the results by location and category to help you discover new favorite restaurants. It's a great partnership: you reserve, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!

A photo of Dry Dock Waterfront Grill restaurant
4.8
4.8 (8950)
$31 to $50
Seafood
Longboat Key
About the restaurant
The Dry Dock Waterfront Grill is a “polished casual” restaurant over looking Sarasota Bay. We are located at the south end of Longboat Key behind the gas station. We are north of St. Armand’s Circle, and minutes from downtown Sarasota. Best known for Local Fresh Grouper and Red Snapper. Enjoy the second story dining area with a panaramic view of the bay, or enjoy dining outdoors on our dockside patio.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 5 days ago
Whenever we come to Longboat Key. We make sure we have dinner here. Food is always amazing. Try the Seafood Pasta. Lobster, shrimp, crabmeat on linguine. Your choice of sauce but recommend the Tuscan Cream Sauce. The serving is huge. Both hubby and I took half our dinners home to eat the next day!!!
A photo of 481 Gourmet restaurant
4.7
4.7 (533)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Sarasota
About the restaurant
For a truly memorable dining experience, cuisine and atmosphere are paired as thoughtfully as food and wine.
481's fresh prepared Seafood, pastas, and other favorites from the continent create an artful experience in the famous Rosemary District of Sarasota.
Enjoying a world class selection of wines and Chef Spenser McKenna's daily specials make 481 Gourmet a truly memorable experience that you'll want to keep secret but you wont, as you'll want to bring your friends.
481's outdoor dining patio offer truly elegant dining regardless of the temperature as you can sit among the stars and enjoy the very best of Sarasota.
Top review
OpenTable Dinervip
Dined 2 days ago
Our dinner was delicious! Service was great, we will be back!
A photo of Ophelia's on the Bay restaurant
4.8
4.8 (6135)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Siesta Key
About the restaurant
Ophelia's on the Bay is one of Sarasota’s premier fine dining waterfront restaurants. Enjoy beautiful vistas of Little Sarasota Bay, from the floor-to-ceiling windows that line the dining room. Or join us for al fresco dining on our open-air patio, as the dolphins and manatee swim by. Winner of many awards both locally and nationally, including an Excellence rating from Zagat as well as being listed as the number one restaurant in America in Power and Motoryacht Magazine for dock and dine. Ophelia's on the Bay has also been voted most romantic, best waterfront and best restaurant with a view by its loyal customers. The menu changes nightly using fresh and seasonal ingredients, fresh fish flown in from all over the world and specialty meats. There is certainly something for every palate! We feature an extensive wine list, specialty martinis, as well as a full bar. Family owned and operated for over 22 years, we have an experienced staff that prides itself on exemplary service.
Top review
RJFOTR
Dined 6 days ago
This was are second time at Ophelia's and it has been outstanding both times. It is easily the best restaurant in Seista Key.
A photo of Crow's Nest Restaurant, Tavern & Marina restaurant
4.8
4.8 (3710)
$30 and under
Seafood
Venice
About the restaurant
The Crow’s Nest Restaurant, Tavern and Marina has been serving the Venice, FL community since 1976. With the freshest seafood and most flavorful dishes, the Crow’s Nest strives to prides itself on providing 5-star experiences for their guests each and every time they visit.

The upstairs dining room provides a fine dining experience with a fantastic view of the water for lunch or dinner. The wood-paneled and cozy tavern downstairs serves for a more casual experience and is open all day.

You can also enjoy their full-service marina, offering overnight dockage, gas and diesel pumps, and all the supplies you need for a day or week on the water. You can also rent their paddleboat, one or two person kayaks, paddleboards, bicycles and more!
Whatever experience you choose, you’ll be sure to enjoy a 5-star experience! Stay up to date on their specials and promotions by joining their email list at CrowsNest-Venice.com!
Top review
MikepUK
Dined 7 days ago
Fantastic restaurant location with a great atmosphere. Food and service were excellent. Could fine no faults with the whole evening. Will definitely look to return when we’re next in the area
A photo of Sage SRQ restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1622)
$31 to $50
Global, International
Sarasota
About the restaurant
Sage is Sarasota’s premier dining destination, providing inspirational cuisine and original craft cocktails in an unforgettable setting. Award-winning Chef Christopher Covelli and his team curate seasonal menus, highlighting flavorful culinary creations from around the world. As a Wine Spectator Award of Excellence recipient, Sage also offers an extensive wine list. Housed in the stunning historic Sarasota Times building, Sage's decor and attention to detail is mirrored in the food and service they provide. Sage's rooftop bar provides a serene setting for viewing some of Sarasota's spectacular sunsets.
Top review
CharleyRvip
Dined 2 days ago
Meal and service was over the top!!!! We will be back!!!
A photo of Roessler's restaurant
4.8
4.8 (1774)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Sarasota
About the restaurant
WE CANNOT WAIT TO SEE YOU!
PLEASE NOTE WE CAN NOT ACCEPT RESERVATIONS FOR OUTSIDE DINING, PARTIES OVER 6, OR HOLIDAYS THROUGH OPEN TABLE. PLEASE CALL THE RESTAURANT IF YOUR TIME IS NOT AVAILABLE. THANK YOU!!! 941 966 5688
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 6 days ago
This restaurant is fabulous in every way. The beautiful restaurant is nestled in a tropical setting with a pond that is so calming. The staff is without a doubt the best, from kitchen staff to wait staff, to owners. The wait staff are professional, polite, and take great care of the table. The food, it’s to me one of the best restaurants in Sarasota, every meal is done so well, from appetizers, soups, main course to desserts. Their wine list is very good, and mixed drinks are always good. To me, I’ll continue to support this wonderful restaurant and I hope many more will try this magnificent restaurant and you too will be glad you did…
A photo of Michael's On East restaurant
4.7
4.7 (5412)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Sarasota
About the restaurant
Serving "inspired cuisine" since 1987, the celebrated Michael’s On East restaurant takes fine dining to another level, offering award-winning cuisine and outstanding service, in an exceptional 1940s supper club atmosphere. Michael's On East has been inducted into Nation's Restaurant News Fine Dining Hall of Fame and recently received their 32nd consecutive AAA Four-Diamond Award. The 350+ bottle wine list has been awarded the Best of Award of Excellence by the Wine Spectator!

Upon entering the dining room, you are immediately dazzled by the plush design and inspired décor. The restaurant’s intimate aura, along with its contemporary flare, world-class wine cellar and incomparable service, create an unparalleled dining experience.

Michael's Lounge, complete with a grand piano, is a guest favorite with its signature cocktails and award winning wine selection.

Michael’s Atrium for outdoor dining is a stunning glass-covered, plant-filled courtyard with a beautiful flowing fountain.
Top review
Trailerkingvip
Dined 3 days ago
Excellent meal Excellent service Excellent menu selection Had the Lobster special & I thought I was back in Maine. Lobsters boil was cooked perfectly.
A photo of Fleming's Steakhouse - Sarasota restaurant
4.8
4.8 (1807)
$31 to $50
Steak
Sarasota
About the restaurant
Your Sarasota Fleming’s is located on the corner of US 41 (Tamiami Trail) and Siesta Drive, just across the street from Westfield Southgate Shopping Center and minutes from downtown and the Ritz-Carlton and Hyatt Regency Hotels. Fleming's in Sarasota is an outstanding choice to enjoy an exceptional Prime steak, glass of wine or handcrafted cocktail. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion, hosting a business dinner or simply wanting to enjoy a night out – we will create a safe and memorable evening in our Dining Room or Outdoor Patio. With premium Prime steak options on our Dinner Menu as well as best-in-class seafood and innovative plant-based options, we have something to offer everyone you are dining with.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 2 days ago
Overall excellent
A photo of The Rosemary & Thyme restaurant
4.8
4.8 (4137)
$31 to $50
American
Sarasota
About the restaurant
Welcome to Rosemary & Thyme!

Downtown Sarasota American Bistro serving traditional and contemporary dishes with an emphasis on healthy options. Savor made-from-scratch selections for breakfast, lunch and dinner prepared with fresh ingredients from regional farms.
Top review
Annievip
Dined 5 days ago
Rosemary And Thyme is always a favorite - consistent all around. Date Night Menu is not to be missed
A photo of Dolce Italia restaurant
4.9
4.9 (553)
$31 to $50
Italian
Sarasota
About the restaurant
Dolce Italia was established in 2010 by Tiziana Di Costanzo who came from Ischia, an island in the Gulf of Naples. Using a combination of classic Italian dishes, family recipes passed down for generations, and warm hospitality, Dolce Italia has built a reputation in Sarasota as a destination for anyone seeking great food and ambiance. In 2015 Matthew joined as manager of the front of house and is now a managing partner of Dolce Italia. The kitchen staff trained by Tiziana from the beginning are still with the restaurant with Maria being the capocuoco.
Some of the specialities Dolce Italia has become famous for are the Napoletan Eggplant- a tender sautee eggplant with fresh tomatoes crowned with ricotte, the Trenne Dolce Italia- the signature pasta dish with creamy tomato sauce, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, and mushroom.
Top review
joannesvip
Dined on Jun 15, 2024
Had dinner at Dolce on Saturday night. A small restaurant with 12 tables. We chose a Savor Sarasota menu. 3 courses just wonderful food. A shrimp appetizer for me great choice. My husband had eggplant with ricotta-delicious. Puttanesca pasta with shrimp also wonderful. Al had a pasta with eggplant and sausage. Wonderful flavors nice portions. Limoncello cake heavenly. Best part quiet atmosphere. Very attentive staff. Perfect choice👍
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