New dining options coming to Sarasota's UTC starting this fall
Five new restaurants and a bar headed to the UTC area.
| 5:30 a.m. October 7, 2020
George Wood wants to bring more flair to UTC’s daytime culinary scene, along with more upbeat fun to the area’s nightlife.
The result is Georgie’s Garden Cafe and Bar George. The two institutions, owned and run by the same family as Jane’s on 3rd in Naples, will sit side by side on North Cattlemen Road next to Acropolis Greek Taverna and JPAN Sushi & Grill. They are expecting to open in March.
Georgie’s is based on Jane’s, a high-end breakfast, lunch and brunch restaurant featuring items from smashed avocado Benedict with lobster to stuffed French toast. The restaurant’s interior will be designed to reflect its name — Wood wants guests inside to feel as if they’re eating outside.
“We came in with the mindset that Sarasota doesn't have anything that would compare to what we are in Naples,” Wood said. “We're taking what we have in Naples and actually enhancing that.”
Bar George will be open Wednesday through Sunday and feature live music that Wood said will cater to different age groups, perhaps depending on the time of night. The plan is to stay open until 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and midnight on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.
“And if it wants to go later, then great,” Wood said. “If it wants to go to 3 in the morning, which I believe is our legal limit, we’ll go to 3 in the morning.”
Jane’s, Georgie’s and Bar George are run by Wood and owned by his father, Tony Wood.
Georgie’s Garden Cafe isn’t the only restaurant on its way to UTC. Here are four more culinary options that are scheduled to open on North Cattlemen Road in the coming months:
Norman Love Confections
The sixth of Norman Love’s “chocolate salons,” this will be the first to feature a dine-in, restaurant-style section serving imaginative dessert dishes. It’s expected to open in late October or early November next to California Pizza Kitchen.
Bento Asian Kitchen and Sushi
Bento is a quick-casual, pan-Asian restaurant serving dishes such as sushi, poke, bento boxes and boba tea. It’s expected to open in October or November between California Pizza Kitchen and European Wax Center.
Ford’s serves classic American fare such as burgers (often presented in hub caps) in a setting based on retro service stations. It’s expected to open as early as December next to Florida Blue at the corner of Cattlemen and Desoto Road.
Selva Grill serves Peruvian dishes with an emphasis on presentation. It’s expected to open in late 2020 or early 2021 next to Jared Galleria of Jewelry at the corner of Cattlemen and University Town Center Drive.