Ophelia’s is one of my favorite restaurants in Sarasota, and most certainly my No. 1 pick on Siesta Key. My husband and I have enjoyed numerous dinners at Ophelia’s over the past 10 years, and odd as it may sound we had never made it to their Sunday Champagne Buffet. I seized the opportunity to go with a girlfriend and her daughter who were in town for Spring Break.
What a treat! As the saying goes, good things come to those who wait.
We arrived for our 11:15 reservation with grumbling tummies and were seated outside on the large patio overlooking Little Sarasota Bay. Diners are offered a complimentary mimosa or bloody mary before heading to the buffet, and we all chose the mimosa – although a table nearby had bloody mary’s that looked pretty darn good.
The fabulous buffet offered a wide range of breakfast items including Belgian waffles, fruit crepes, egg bake, sausage & gravy, and of course bacon and sausage. Then moving onto the lunch items; there was a variety of salads, smoked salmon, and bagels including onion & capers, shrimp cocktail, and crab legs. Hot dishes included stuffed manicotti, baked white fish, as well as a ham and roast beef carving station.
As we were leaving, my favorite waiter Michael pointed out 2 smiling gentlemen who were seated in the dining room inside. He told me that they come every Sunday. I walked over and introduced myself. The two Joe’s (yes that’s both of their first names) told me they’ve been coming to Ophelia’s Sunday Champagne Buffet for years; same time (12:30), same table. One smiled and said “we come for the champagne”, then let out a little chuckle and said “no really it’s the food and service that can’t be beat – we think this is the best restaurant on Siesta Key”.
I can’t agree more with the Joe’s. I can see how this could become a weekly tradition. I know I won’t be waiting too long before I return.
Ophelia’s on the Bay is located at 9105 Midnight Pass Rd. on the south end of Siesta Key.