The second posting of our Sanibel adventures….we are loving it here. Mr. Sweeter Thing keeps asking me if we can buy a vacation home here….I keep reminding him that we missing an essential component to being able to do that. Money. He says I’m no fun. Oh well. We have had a chance to visit another couple awesome places in the last couple days. I love the unique atmospheres and creativity of the people who run these businesses. I also love the pride that you can see in everyone’s products and services, the prices are almost always a bit inflated but I’m ok with that in a place where I feel like the food and the experience are an extension of the people who pour themselves into these small businesses every day.
Surprise surprise….we wanted pizza. We had a lazy day of beach walking, shelling, laying by the pool. and napping. We were getting a late start on dinner and just wanted some good ol’ comfort food so we went to Schnapper’s Hots. Known for their hot dogs, which we didn’t try (yet), they also serve pizza, wings, fries, and the like. We were beyond hungry….and possibly feeling a little indulgent. So we ordered a pizza, wings, and fries. They looked at us like we were nuts….then they looked at my belly and made a face that said “oh, I get it”. I didn’t mind the judgement. What we didn’t realize was that the pizza was HUGE. Like 18 inches huge. And delicious. We are boring pizza eaters…sausage and pepperoni…but we love it. The sausage wasn’t your run of the mill ground sausage, in fact it looked a lot like the pepperoni and was full of flavor. Everything from the crust to the cheese to the toppings was fabulous and while we hardly made a dent in our huge pizza, it has made for excellent left overs and saved us some money on lunches out. I don’t eat buffalo wings but Mr. Sweeter Thing was “happy happy happy” to devour them alone. And finally…the fries. These were fresh cut fries with some of the skins still on and perfectly fried. They were devoured. Our bill was $30, we thought it was a great value for the money.
Our next stop was for cupcakes. We have been searching for a little sweets shop on the island and every time we think we find one, it’s been closed. Insert sad face here. We finally discovered that a little coffee shop on the island was doubling as a cupcake shop and since we have a soft spot in our hearts for all things cupcakes, we made a beeline for it. It was so hard to decide which cupcake to try, they had flavors like sea salted caramel, red velvet, lemon drop, key lime, black tie, and raspberry waltz.
We chose the key lime and the black tie. They had an ingenious way of packaging cupcakes to go. Rather than using expensive little boxes which let in a lot of air and can dry a cupcake out, they simply use a plastic to-go cup turned upside down. It doesn’t smash the icing and keeps the cupcake protected for the walk or ride home.
So my review of the cupcakes? They were delicious. HOWEVER, I think it’s really important to tell you that this cupcake shop favors italian buttercream over traditional american buttercream. Italian buttercream is delicious, don’t get me wrong. It comes down to preference, I LOVE american buttercream. I love the sugar rush, I love the way it ties flavors together and anchors a cupcake. What’s the difference? Italian buttercream is made with tempered egg whites, butter, and granulated sugar. American buttercream is made with butter, powdered sugar, and either milk or heavy cream. These cupcakes were great, they were worth their $3.50 price tag, but I was left wishing I had a spoonful of buttercream to eat.
Next stop: Mexican food. We LOVE mexican food so we headed to Captiva, the sister island to Sanibel for something delicious at Cantina Captiva. This place is tiny but so cute and lots of fun decorations.
I would definitely return to this little dive again but it’s definitely not a place for dirt cheap mexican food. The queso blanco alone was $9, and while it was delicious, it wasn’t anything out of the ordinary. The salsa had fabulous flavor but was super chunky, I was wishing they would run it through a food processor for a couple seconds before serving but it was delicious. I ordered a burrito with pork, black beans, yellow rice, roasted corn, and cheese. It was amazing. The flavor and texture made this one of the best burritos I’ve had and I eat a lot of burritos. Still, the $13 price tag was a bit much for something that involved rolling up some stuff in a tortilla shell. Mr. Sweeter Thing had his usual: steak tacos served in corn tortillas with cilantro, raw onion and a lime wedge. Yum. He thought it was delicious though there wasn’t anything that set it apart from other awesome mexican restaurants we’ve been to. Nonetheless, we were happy campers.
The final stop on todays’ tour is the Bubble Room on Captiva. Folks, DO NOT leave this island without visiting the Bubble Room. I’m pretty sure it’s not even allowed. If you get to the toll booth, I’m pretty sure they’ll turn you away if you haven’t visited the Bubble Room. I have no idea what’s on the rest of the menu, but they serve homemade desserts the size of your head and they are decadent. So amazing. My mouth is still watering. We love to rent red box movies while we vacation and get our desserts to go. We get Littlest Sweeter Thing in bed and then park ourselves on the couch with dessert and a movie. Check out this dessert case.
Mr. Sweeter Thing opted for the Very Moist Chocolate Cake and I opted for the French Chocolate Torte (that’s the enormous torte in the picture above with the fresh strawberries sticking out of it). Holy moly….it was AMAZING and worth every cent of the $7 per slice price tag. Super moist with whipped cream that did NOT deflate and fresh strawberries. Simple and yet so perfect. And the chocolate cake? Moist does not do it justice. It was rich with deep chocolate flavor and the perfect texture. It was what all cakes hope to be when they grow up. We are planning to return this week for the key lime pie (which they ran out of by lunch) and the New York style cheesecake. Yum.
That’s it for today’s post. It was lengthy, I know. I just had to share with you our island dining experiences. We have a couple more fun places in mind, reviews to come. Next week when I return, I have a new recipe and tutorial to share with you, so don’t despair….