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Meet the best BLTs in Sarasota, Manatee counties

These three ingredients — bacon, lettuce and tomato — are always better together.

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Don't go bacon my heart...

Lettuce fall in foodie love with these timeless sammies that I adore from my head to-mah-toes. 

I'm talking about that trio that reigns supreme in the world of sandwiches— bacon, lettuce and tomato. Three simple ingredients stacked in between sliced bread sells itself as an interchangeable breakfast, lunch or dinner for anyone ages 3 to 93. 

These notorious sandwiches make me nostalgic since the BLT was a no-fault meal we made as a family. Most of the time my sister would slice the tomato since I refused. (My order was and always will be a BL, no T.)

Mom was on bacon duty, while I gathered the best groupings of romaine for the humans and fed our dogs the pieces that weren't up to my standards. But since the only thing my dad could make in the kitchen was toast, he was supposed to toast the bread. Full disclosure: He usually burned it, so when he wasn't looking, my mom would make new pieces.

Lettuce begin — here are some of the best places to get your hands on the classic bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich in honor of national BLT sandwich month.

New Pass Grill & Bait Shop

1505 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota; 941-388-1618;

Great views with a side of crispy bacon at the Bait Shop.
Photo by Emma Burke Jolly

Romaine Calm: While you might have to wait until 10:30 a.m. to get this BLT ($9.99), as the switch from breakfast to lunch begins, your tastebuds will be pleased by 10:31 a.m. As I've written before, I wish I could keep this foodie paradise to myself. But it would be incredibly selfish of me not to share these sensational bait shop eats. The bounty of crisp bacon will shock your senses (and potentially your heart), and the cool lettuce and tomato with a small swipe of mayo is what others wish they could create. Where else can you get a view like this with a side of beautiful bacon?

What Else is Shakin', Bacon: Not a fan of the BLT? Fear not, this spot has one of the best burgers in town. Whether you're coming by boat, kayak, bike, car or foot — the classic cheeseburger ($11.99) is just what the skipper ordered. Choose from add-ons including lettuce, tomatoes, onions, pickles, mustard, mayo and ketchup.

Station 400

8215 Lakewood Ranch Main St., Lakewood Ranch, 941-907-0648; 400 N. Lemon Ave., Sarasota, 941-906-1400;

Romaine Calm: While red tomatoes would suffice for most, it wouldn't be a Florida foodie feature without a fried green tomato or two, would it? The fried green tomato BLT ($12.50) at this Sarasota and Lakewood Ranch brunch spot staple is made with bold and crispy bacon, field greens, the best herb aioli and, of course, fried green tomatoes (add turkey for $1). Served with your choice of sweet potato fries, tomato cucumber salad, fruit salad or my personal pick — parmesan French fries.

Add turkey for $1 to Station 400's fried green tomato BLT.
Courtesy image

What Else is Shakin', Bacon: The hardest part about brunch is deciding which part of the word you're going to shove into your mouth. Feeling like a breakfast patron this morning? The lemon curd and fresh blackberry pancakes (three buttermilk, $10.95 or three buckwheat, $11.95) are my main squeeze.

Yoder's Restaurant & Amish Market

3434 Bahia Vista St., Sarasota; 941-955-7771;

An elevated BLT at Yoder's.
Courtesy image

Romaine Calm: Leave it to the Amish to make a BLT ($9.95), a BLT with smoked turkey ($12.95) and an even better-than-the-original version called the southern fried chicken BLT ($15.95). Yoder's crispy fried chicken breast, applewood smoked bacon, Dijonnaise, fresh lettuce and tomato on a honkin' hoagie roll: There you have it — the reason why Yoder's has been around since1975.

What Else is Shakin', Bacon: Save room for dessert. Baked fresh from scratch every morning, Yoder's homemade pies are not only the best in town, the price can't be beat — $6.95 per slice. Why not take home a pie (prices online) that will please the crowd? Of if you're going through a tough time, be like me and get a pie for yourself. No one's judging! I recommend a chocolate peanut butter 8” whole cream pie ($20.95, serves 4-6).

Wink Wink Modern Lounge

1290 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota; 941-906-1290;

Image via

Romaine Calm: My husband and I were supposed to get married at a local estate, but when a hurricane blew in and the governor declared a state of emergency, the venue shut down. But fear not! The Sarasota Modern said, "We got you." Our 140-person wedding was modified into a 38-person wedding in just 24 hours. Before we said, "I do," the bartender looked at my soon-to-be husband and me and said, "You guys deserve a tequila shot." Not only did the staff go above and beyond for our changing-like-the-wind needs, the food was terrifically tasty. Not featured on our wedding menu, but I wish it was, is the notorious BLT ($16) with bacon, avocado, kewpie (Japanese mayo), lettuce, tomato on multigrain bread (gluten-free option available).

What Else is Shakin', Bacon: I can't help but take this moment to give a round of applause for the Wink Wink's lounge libations. My eyes are set on the mexcal me loco ($16) made with Los Siete Misterios mexcal, Los Sundays blanco tequila, lemon, lime, mango and agave.

Shake Station

4219 U.S. 301, Ellenton; 941-722-7866;

Shake Station in Ellenton serves up a sensational sandwich.
Courtesy image

Romaine Calm: While it might be a trek, when you pull up to this joint from your journey you'll see it's worth it. The Big LT ($9.95) has been noted as one of the top versions of this timeless classic in our area. Bacon, lettuce, tomatoes and mayo on toast is *kiss* (Keep It Simple, Stupid). Or don't *kiss* and replace with fried green tomatoes or even chicken. 

What Else is Shakin', Bacon: If you're one to count calories, you're at the wrong station. But, if you're like me and know that life is far too short to skip the shake, be sure to order from the ice cream parlor. Your choices of ice cream to scream for is unlimited with milkshakes, hand-dipped ice cream, soft serve, sundaes, floats, banana splits, twisters and more. Me? I'm going with a tale as old as time — black and white milkshake ($3.95-$6.95).



Emma Burke Jolly

Emma Burke Jolly has worked at Observer Media Group since 2018 as the digital fulfillment specialist. Originally from Connecticut, this Gulf Coast transplant loves being by the water, reminiscing about what Longboat Key looked like in 1990, navigating life with her husband and their two Maine Coon cats, and sharing her foodie findings with you.

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