SAVE THE DATE - Safari Sarasota 2019


2019 Safari Sarasota Events (October 24 - 26, 2019)

  • NEW! Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019 - A Conversation with Boyd Varty
    • Gifted storyteller, life coach, wildlife and literacy activist Boyd Varty, author of soon-to-be-released The Lion Trackers Guide To Life, will share lessons learned from the South African bush in an engaging and educational presentation. (Daytime event)


Watch Boyd Varty’s Ted Talk: “What I learned from Nelson Mandela” 

Watch Boyd Varty’s Talks at Google: “Cathedral of the Wild” 

  • Thursday, Oct. 24 - Interactive Cooking Dinner
    • Join us for an evening of South African food and friends featuring award-winning South African wines, an interactive safari-inspired dining experience with Africa’s top safari lodge chef, and a celebration of the All Heart Fund, a Sarasota-based initiative that is delivering education technology to rural, low-income South African school children.



  • Friday, Oct. 25 - Bush Wine Dinner 
    • A magical evening under the banyans awaits you at Marie Selby Gardens, as Chef Anna presents a traditional South African bush dinner perfectly paired with South African wines. 


  • Saturday, Oct. 26 - South African Wine Tasting
    • A casual, walk-about tasting with prized wines from Cape Winelands. The perfect finish to Safari Sarasota. 


Safari Sarasota 2019 - FAQ’s

Q: What is Safari Sarasota? 

A: Safari Sarasota is a series of events inspired by the Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club travels through South Africa and a passion to support digital learning in rural areas of South Africa. 

These events are unlike any other in the county. Safari Sarasota brings people from all over the world together to learn about South African culture while supporting digital literacy in rural South Africa. Special guests Chef Anna Ridgewell from South Africa’s Londolozi Game Reserve and Wildlife/Literacy Activist, Boyd Varty will be traveling to Sarasota to support Safari Sarasota and the All Heart Fund. 

Q: When is Safari Sarasota? 

A: Safari Sarasota is a series of events that run the weekend of October 24th through October 26th.

Q: Who does Safari Sarasota Support? 

A: Safari Sarasota events benefit the All Heart Fund, which was created in honor of Leanna Knopik, a 16-year-old Sarasota native who passed away almost a year after visiting some of South Africa’s most remote communities. It was Leanna’s dream to support children and education in South Africa and over the last two years, the All Heart Fund, in partnership with the Good Work Foundation, has provided digital literacy access to over 1,500 South African school children per week.

Q: Where should I stay when visiting?

A: We are pleased to share our host properties offering special accommodations rates through the weekend of Safari Sarasota 2019. 

Mention “Safari Sarasota” and secure your room reservation now:

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Recipe: Tarta de Santiago

Tarta de Santiago

Our Pastry Chef, Ray Lajoie, shared this recipe on Sarasota's Suncoast View on August 8, 2019. Here's the complete recipe in case you missed the cooking segment, or simply join us at Michael's On East to enjoy this delicious Spanish dessert available on the Restaurant’s Spain Epicurean Adventure menu.

Tarta de Santiago


  • 2 1/3 cups almond flour, or finely ground almonds

  • 6 eggs separated 

  • Zest 1 orange

  • 2 tablespoons almond liquor

  • 1 cup brown sugar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Cream yolks and sugar until smooth then add all other ingredients to the yolks and sugar mixture, set aside.
  2. In another bowl, whip the egg whites until they form stiff peaks, fold into the yolk mixture in 1/3 at a time.
  3. Pour into a prepared 8-inch cake pan and bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.
  4. Let cool remove from pan dust with powdered sugar. Enjoy!
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Recipe: Rape Envuelto en Jamón Serrano


Our Sous Chef, Kory Minor, shared this recipe on Sarasota's Suncoast View on August 15, 2019. Here's the complete recipe in case you missed the cooking segment, or simply join us at Michael's On East to enjoy this delicious Spanish dish available on the Restaurant’s Spain Epicurean Adventure menu.

Rape Envuelto en Jamón Serrano

Ingredients for Fish:
  • 6-7oz portions of Fresh Monkfish

  • 12 thin sliced of Serrano ham

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Steps for Fish:
  1. Season the fish and sear to medium-rare.

  2. Let cool, then wrapped with ham.

  3. Bake for 5 minutes in a standard oven at 500-degrees or 5 minutes in a convection oven at 350-degrees.

Ingredients for Clams:
  • 30 littleneck clams (rinse very well)

  • 2 jalapenos seeded and julienne

  • 8 garlic cloves roughly chopped

  • 2 cups of chardonnay 

  • 2 yellow tomatoes

  • 2 red tomatoes

  • 2 fresh limes

  • ½ cup of virgin olive oil

  • ¼ cup blended oil

  • Salt and pepper to taste 

 Steps for Clams:
  1.  Chop the tomatoes roughly and set aside.
  2. Heat up medium-sized sauté pan, then add the blended oil, garlic, clams, and tomatoes.
  3. Cook for 4 minutes then add the wine and cover the pan until the clams open. (about 3 minutes)
To Plate:

In a small bowl place, 5 clams with sauce then place the fish on top. You can serve the dish with vegetables, rice, roasted potatoes or sautéd spinach.

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Wish Wednesdays


Please join us for All-Night Happy Hour, 5-9 pm on Wednesdays* this month as Michael’s On East donates 10% of beverage sales in the Restaurant’s Lounge to Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida
*Valid on February 7, 21 and 28, 2018 (Excluding Valentine’s Day) 

Enjoy $6 Specials in the Lounge: Michael’s Private Label Wines, Draft Beers & Well Cocktails

About Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida

A wish experience can be a game-changer for a child with a critical illness.

This one belief guides us in everything we do at Make-A-Wish®. It inspires us to grant wishes that change the lives of the kids we serve. It compels us to be creative in exceeding the expectations of every wish kid. It drives us to make our donated resources go as far as possible.

Most of all, it’s the founding principle of our vision to grant the wish of every eligible child.

Wishes are more than just a nice thing. And they are far more than gifts, or singular events in time. Wishes impact everyone involved – wish kids, volunteers, donors, sponsors, medical professionals and communities. The impact varies. For wish kids, just the act of making their wish come true can give them the courage to comply with their medical treatments. Parents might finally feel like they can be optimistic. And still others might realize all they have to offer the world through volunteer work or philanthropy.

Whatever the odds, whatever the obstacles … wishes find a way to make the world better.

“Together, we create life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses.”

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Monday Happy Hour Supports Girls Inc


Michael’s On East continues our All-Night Happy Hour on Mondays, now in support of Girls Incorporated of Sarasota County (Girls Inc) through February 2018!

Please join us to take advantage of $6 beverage specials (Michael’s Private Label Wines, Well Cocktails and Draft Beers) from 5-9 pm each Monday in the Michael’s On East Lounge.

About Girls Inc
The Girls Inc. educational experience focuses on the development of the whole girl, and equips girls in grades K-12 with the skills they need to successfully navigate gender, economic and social barriers and grow into healthy, educated and economically independent adults, prepared employees, and strong and ethical leaders. Girls Inc programs bolster their emotional, physical, and mental health and give them the support to achieve their goals boldly and confidently. 

As early as age 5, girls who attend Girls Incorporated of Sarasota County are exposed to life-changing education about entrepreneurship, technology, finances, engineering and science through national Girls Inc. curriculum and experiential learning through a girl-run city called “Dream Harbor.” Eighty percent of those who participate move on to attend higher education and have successful careers. 

By investing in these programs you’re giving the girls of Sarasota County the chance for a sustainable future. A donation today to Girls Inc. can make these future opportunities into a girl’s reality. 

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