Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s drink for me!  

Aside from telling a mandatory pirate joke and stretching out your “ar”s in words when you speak ala Robert
Newton in Treasure Island, no National Talk Like a Pirate Day (September 15) is complete without a rum drink (heavy on the rum).

In order for that to happen we called on a local celeb bartender down Sarasota way. Ladies and Gentlemen, meet Daria Mohr (or for today’s purposes, Darrrria Mohr), of The Bijou CaféThe Bijou Caféis a beautiful, upscale café tucked away on 1st Street in downtown Sarasota, FL, that serves inspired lunches and dinners and quite often drinks inspired by their staff.

At least that’s the story behind this one sweet coconut rum drink with a big splash of dark rum and even bigger splash of pineapple juice.

As legend has it, the owners of the Bijou Café challenged their staff to create a new summer cocktail that customers would love and eventually end up on the permanent menu.  One afternoon staff gathered in the bar. Bottles were pulled from shelves. Jiggers were filled. Alcohols were combined. Mixers were mixed. Shakers were shook. Taste buds were shocked. Teased. And tantalized. And it the end, our dear Daria nailed it.

Her drink was delicious. And sweet. And coconut rum was a must-have ingredient as it is her favorite sibling in the rum family. A potent potable was born and soon-to-be deserving of all the praise it was to receive in the years following. This drink was clearly the Bijou Café’s next big thing. But it was missing something.

A name.

There’s a story for that as well. And I’m paraphrasing here …
The drink is sweet much like Daria herself. And if you had few of these sneak-up-on-you coconut and pineapple concoctions, you’re more than likely going to find yourself wanting to take an afternoon nap or, say, siesta (some say this is Daria’s favorite pastime). It’s from that combination of parts that the whole of the perfect name was born.
Next time you find yourself at the Bijou Café and want to taste a little local flair, order up a Daria Siesta.

The Daria Siesta has been featured in local newspapers. But it has also garnered international fame. That happened when a group of finicky ladies, from across the pond met their match. These ladies, it’s been said,  liked their mojitos sweet. Exceptionally sweet. So sweet in fact, that Daria’s sweetest mojito was still eliciting bullocks from the ladies. Daria suggested her Siesta. Let’s just say Sweet Tooths were satiated that day. The ladies switched from a mojitos to a certain Sarasota Siesta for the rest of their holiday.

If you can’t wait until the next time you make it the Bijou Café, Daria was kind enough to share her recipe with us today.

Daria’s Siesta
1oz Coconut Rum
1oz Dark Rum (Daria prefers Gosling's)
Pineapple Juice to taste
Ice
Grenadine
Orange slice

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Michael’s On East has completed a two-week renovation of the facility’s Ballroom.

“Given the area’s thriving social scene paired with weddings, client parties, corporate meetings and creative fundraising events which keep the Michael’s On East Ballroom packed throughout the year, it was difficult us to find a time to get a renovation of the Ballroom scheduled!” said co-proprietor Michael Klauber.

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Following months of careful planning with a focus on functional design, Klauber and his business partner Philip Mancini who manages the extensive catering operation have announced that the transformation of the popular space is complete.

Anne Folsom Smith Interior Design has been the design partner for Klauber and Mancini for more than three decades during the creation and renovation of all Michael’s venues over the years.

“The Michael’s On East Ballroom presents ‘sophisticated elegance’ at its best. Perhaps the most dramatic update to the space has been the addition of mocha molding which now frames the windows and extends around the entire room. The deep earthy color continues to the ceiling above each window with roman shades in wood grain and the columns have been covered with chocolate and vanilla crystallized tile which gives them a slight sparkle,” described Folsom Smith.“The new carpet is gorgeous, reminiscent of a riverbed which invokes a wonderful movement of water and adds additional depth to the design. Our colors are so neutral that any event theme or color scheme will be complimented and enhanced when celebrated in the Michael’s On East Ballroom.”

A versatile space for professional functions and formal occasions, the Michael’s On East Ballroom hosts up to 550 guests for a seated event or 1,000 guests for a reception. The space is also easily partitioned for smaller functions.

“We strive to always be the place locals love to gather. As Michael and I look ahead for the next 10 years, we remain committed to providing our guests the best event spaces,” said Mancini. “The Wine Cellar remains so popular; we loved having the opportunity to transform the waterfront venue now known as Michael’s on the Bay at Selby Gardens several years ago and are thrilled with this year’s transformation of the Ballroom.”

When asked about future plans for the Restaurant, he added, “Stay tuned for next summer.”

Michael’s On East is located at 1212 East Avenue South, Sarasota, 34239. For more information about all offerings from Michael’s On East Restaurant, Wine Cellar and Catering Division, call 941-366-0007 or visit www.bestfood.com.

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Anna Maria Oyster Bar is overjoyed to announce that Cherise Sherwin, a staff member at the Landside Oyster Bar location, has been named the 2018 Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association’s “Restaurant Employee of the Year.”

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A wonderful member of the AMOB family for nearly twenty-one years (more precisely, since Day One at our Landside location which opened on September 15, 1997), Ms. Sherwin was honored for her hard work, dedication to the company, and generous spirit as a Hospitality Star of the Industry award winner.

Cherise is the heartbeat of Landside, and has built an enviable clientele at “her bar” who come specifically to see her each day. Nancy appreciates her help with Word Warp puzzles - and Cherise provides the newspaper ready at the correct page. She ensures each guest is taken care of in their own special way, like when she arranged for special seating for Jim, who is now on a mobility scooter and needed a taller chair that would lift to bar height. Then there’s Josie, from the retirement home next to the restaurant, who takes her morning walk to see Cherise every weekday, and no matter if open or not, she is greeted at the door with a hug, a smile and a welcome.

Cherise is family to so many Oyster Bar guests – whom she sees more often than most of their family members do. She remembers birthdays, anniversaries, grandchildren’s names, and most importantly — their favorite meals and cocktails. If she hasn’t seen a regular for a few days, she calls or visits. She calls their family members, and the families call Cherise to check on their loved ones, too! In more than a few cases, she has been asked to serve as executor of wills.

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For nearly twenty one years, she has witnessed the growth of Anna Maria Oyster Bars, and been at the very heart of it. The wildly popular Birthday & Anniversary Club was her idea – now with over 12,000 members! Cherise walks with the AMOB “Shuck Cancer” Making Strides Against Breast Cancer team, sells ducks for PACE Center for Girls, and volunteered to captain Dive Into Reading at Landside, the award-winning summer reading program for Title I elementary school children, making sure each one is fed, had a book, and is having fun and learning.

Anna Maria Oyster Gran Jefe John Horne notes, “Cherise and I were standing behind the bar on the Day we opened Landside…and she’s been there ever since. We’re still behind the same bar, 21 years later…and she’s still making her guests feel at home and taking awesome care of them…. often I’m still standing right beside her… right in the way!”

Mr. Horne continues, “Cherise started at Landside thinking she’d work for three months while she got acclimated to the area, and then find a job where she could stay for a while after moving from Wisconsin. All three of her children have worked with us at some time or another… including Kaylyn,

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