Although the major overhaul of Siesta Key public beach includes an esplanade, a new restaurant aims to bring the boardwalk feel to another part of the island.
Boardwalk Eats & Sweets opened Monday in the space formerly occupied by Beach Bites in Siesta Key Village. Co-owner Theresa Radovich said she and her parents, Robert and Charlotte Akers, spent more than $40,000 to open at 217 Avenida Madera next to Solorzano Bros. Pizza.
“We wanted to be where the action is,” she says. “We didn’t want to open anywhere else.”
The family has have been serving up funnel cakes and other fried fare for more than 20 years under the name A & R Concessions out of a stand at the Sarasota County Fair, festivals at Hunsader Farms and other major local events. The menu at Boardwalk Eats & Sweets includes burgers, Nathan’s Famous hot dogs and deep-fried Twinkies, Oreos and candy bars.
“It’s high-quality food at a fast food pace,” says Radovich. She hopes to fill the “walkable food” niche in the Village, which is mostly populated by sit-down restaurants.
Radovich says she hopes to appeal to customers walking in the Village who will see other people eating her funnel cakes and other goods.
Though the family hasn’t ratcheted up advertising yet, employees have been giving out free samples, and Radovich says staff of other Village businesses have been excited about the eatery opening.
“Everybody says they wish they could get funnel cake year round,” says Kitchen Manager Nick Radovich, who shares duties with his brother Jason Akers. “Now they can.”
Boardwalk Bites will be open from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. or later Saturday and Sunday.