EL TORO BRAVO, my favorite authentic Mexican restaurant is celebrating with specials all day long. There are many other popular restaurants, Mexican and not, celebrating as well. Don Pablo's, Two Senoritas, Tijuana Flats, and EL Lago Rancharo in Lakewood Ranch, are among the many participating in the celebration. FYI, EL Lago, is now owned by their next door neighbor JPAN, so you can expect improved food and service.
If you are looking for an outdoor activity today, try the FIT triathlon at BENDERSON PARK. The facility, still under construction held it's largest single rowing event last weekend with over 1,800 participants and 8-10,000 in attendance. And, our inconsistent Florida Legislature just voted $5 million for the park which means Benderson is still in the running for an International event and is on target to complete the park in a few years. The Florida International Triathlon competition begins at 7am. There will be sprint and international distance races as well.
MICHELANGELO'S on Sunday. The fried calamari was really good and the linguine with sausage was delicious...for $23. We had enough food for a few days. One last thing, the food and service at CARMEL'S is slipping. My Tuesday lunch group gave it an F rating. The food was not cooked properly and portions were really small. I had a good piece of salmon, but we will not be going back." Thanks, George. Claybourne Park gave its last performance Thursday. If you did not see it, you missed a great show.
This weekend kicks off the SUMMER movie barrage with IRON MAN 3. I will be skipping that one, as my youngest grandson Josh saw it the day it was released. Here is his review, "Iron Man 3 released this Friday to fairly good reviews. This third installment takes place some time after The Avengers (released last summer) and makes mention of it's affects on the main character, Tony Stark (played by Robert Downey Jr.) throughout the movie. There is a new villain, "The Mandarin" (played by Ben Kingsley) who is portrayed in an unexpected manner which adds to the fun of the movie. IRON MAN 3 is the funniest of the trilogy and just as action packed as the other two. All in all I loved the movie and would definitely recommend it!"
I recommend The Place Beyond The Pines. Playing at Burns and Royal Palm, it is a gritty and tough independent movie. If you enjoyed The Wrestler, you will like this one. Also recommend Mud, with Matthew McConaguhy and two young future super-stars. This is a true Independent thriller that keeps you involved through the final sequence of events. I cannot recommend Company You Keep with Robert Redford playing at Burns. It is uneven and at times not easy to follow. Plus the sight of an ancient Redford running through the woods is totally unbelievable.
If you just want to stay home, ON-DEMAND has a movie which opened in NY and LA this weekend.....The Reluctant Fundamentalist from the best-seller about a Pakistani-born Wall Street hotshot whose life is derailed after 9/11. Entertainment Weekly has it #4 on its MUST LIST this week.
SIX YEARS, is best read during those days when you have enough time to commit to reading. It is a not to put down thriller, and ranks as one of his best.
University of Georgia. She pledged Sigma Delta Tau, and had an active academic and social first year. She finishes finals this week and heads home to Atlanta for awhile before heading off on an adventure of a life-time to ISRAEL as a participant of Birthright, funded by a group of Jewish philanthropists who believe every Jewish child should visit their homeland. She'll be away for ten days and will nanny the rest of the summer. She returns to UGA late July.
MOTHER'S DAY ALERT....... Next Sunday is set aside to honor mother, daughter and wife. There are many restaurant specials from elaborate brunch to dinner. Just don't forget the date. You might want to shop at AS GOOD AS IT GETS. From cheese to chocolate to wine, gift baskets and more they have become one of SARASOTA'S best for gift giving. click here for more information . They are located at 49 S. Palm Ave.
JIM'S RANT this week is directed to some of SARASOTA'S finest restaurants who continue to charge exorbitant prices for wine, beer and cocktails. Everyone needs to make a profit, but not that much!!!! And at several well known establishments, the price of a glass of wine is more than double what they pay for the bottle.....drink at home and have dessert when you go out to eat. Your credit card will be better off for it!!!
Have a great week. Today, Roberta and I are seeing Fiddler On The Roof at the new MANATEE PERFORMING ARTS CENTER in Bradenton. I'll have a review on the show as well as pictures of the new theatre next week. Thanks to Tracy and George for their contributions this week. A special thanks to Josh for his review of IRON MAN 3. As always, have a great week and I'll see you again next Sunday........JIM