Three International Flavors Found Near Sanibel Island

Sanibel Island is home to many excellent restaurants. While we’re known for our seafood, the island’s restaurant scene has become a melting pot of cuisines from all over the world. In fact, some of the best Sanibel restaurants serve international fare.

Here are three international flavors that you’ll find near Sanibel.

the beautiful florida beaches
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Matzaluna The Italian Kitchen

A family-friendly restaurant with a casual atmosphere, Matzaluna is the only restaurant in Sanibel that has a wood-fired pizza oven. 

Try the Veal Marsala, Chicken Puttanesca or Shrimp Carbonara. Check out the weekly specials from Iron Chef award winner Sal Velez.

It’s not surprising that Matzaluna is considered one of the best Italian restaurants near Sanibel. Stop in for dinner, or grab a meal to go.

It’s the perfect way to wind down after spending the day on the beaches of Sanibel Island.

Matzaluna is located on Periwinkle Way, just a half-mile from the causeway and close to our Sanibel vacation rentals. They’re open daily from 4:30-9pm.

Dante’s Coal Fired Pizza

Dante’s serves up coal-fired pizzas and other Italian fare, including pasta dishes, sandwiches, calzones and more. 

The restaurant is known for its specialty pizzas, like the San Daniele, which is a white pie topped with prosciutto, fresh garlic, bacon, and arugula. Try the classic Margherita pizza with fresh tomatoes and basil, or the Fresco with mozzarella, ham, tomatoes, mushroom, and arugula. 

If you’re not in the mood for pizza, try their coal-fired burgers, wings, and ribs. Salads and sandwiches are also on the menu. Top off your meal with an order of zeppoles for dessert.

Dante’s is located on E Gulf Drive – right near our two-bedroom condos in Sanibel) and close to some of the most sought after Sanibel real estate. They’re open daily from 8-11AM and 4-10pm.

Café Italia

Located on Summerlin Road in Fort Myers, Café Italia is a hidden gem near Sanibel. The restaurant serves up classic Italian dishes. Chef Mike Romano was trained in Naples, Italy and cooked in restaurants all over Italy and Europe. 

Patrons will find a variety of pasta, meat, seafood, and vegetarian dishes.

Try the Ravioli ai Funghi noci e Mascarpone, which features stuffed ravioli with mushrooms, Mascarpone cheese, walnuts, a Balsamic reduction, and a brandy cream sauce. The Conchiglie Ripiene features stuffed pasta shells filled with ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, tomato sauce, and a bechamel sauce.

End the night with a slice of tiramisu or a cannoli and a glass of wine.

Café Italia is open Monday-Saturday from 11am-9pm.


Doc Ford’s Rum Bar & Grille Sanibel Island

On Island Inn Road, across from Bailey’s Shopping Center, sits Doc Ford’s, a Caribbean restaurant that has become a local favorite. It’s also the best place to find writer Randy Wayne White.

Rated one of the best Caribbean restaurants near Sanibel, Doc Ford’s has two dining rooms and an outdoor patio. Their extensive menu includes sandwiches, soups, seafood tacos, salads, appetizers, flatbread, a raw bar, and a variety of entrees. 

Seafood is the star of the show, but the menu also includes a variety of chicken, steak, rib and vegetarian dishes.

Doc Ford’s is open daily from 11am-10pm.

Parrot Key Caribbean Grill

Parrot Key serves up Caribbean fare in a fun atmosphere. Located on Main Street in Fort Myers, the restaurant is situated right at Salty Sam’s Marina. Dock and dine, or take a seat on the outdoor patio to enjoy the view.

The menu includes a variety of cocktails, shareables, soups, entrees, salads, and small plates. Try the Salmon St. Croix, which features salmon marinated in dark rum and topped with a sesame-ginger glaze over vegetable couscous. If you’re not in the mood for seafood, try the Chicken Tostones, which features jerk chicken, onions, tomatoes, pepper jack cheese over fried plantains.

Enjoy live music and events while you dine or have a drink.

Parrot Key is open daily from 11:30am-10pm.


Bleu Rendezvous Bistro

Located on Periwinkle Way, Bleu Rendezvous brings a taste of France to the island. Rated one of the best French restaurants near Sanibel, Bleu serves steaks, seafood, and other classic dishes.

The menu includes familiar items and classic French fare, like the Frog Legs Persillade, Escargot, Coq Au Vin and Boeuf Bourguignon. 

Top off the meal with Creme Brulee or a slice of French Silk pie.

For more Sanibel Island information contact our helpful staff. Our goal is to help you find the perfect property on Sanibel Island.