Sarasota Assisted Living’s Spice of Life: 3 Ways to Explore International Cuisine in Florida

Here at Westminster Manor, we know our residents have adventurous palates. Many of us have traveled the world and experienced exotic cuisines firsthand. Now, as active seniors living in beautiful Bradenton, Florida, we continue seeking multicultural food experiences right here in our backyard.

Sarasota and the surrounding Gulf Coast region host vibrant international communities, flavors, and traditions. With balmy weather ideal for being out and about year-round, every day presents new culinary adventures. As a continuing care retirement community (CCRC) emphasizing dynamic senior living, we encourage our residents to explore local ethnic cuisine through food festivals, cooking clubs, restaurants outings, and more.

Join us on a moveable feast as we spice up life in Sarasota assisted living with international food!

  1. Identifying Popular Cuisine in Florida

Having attracted immigrants from the Caribbean, South America and beyond, Florida serves up intoxicating multinational cuisine. Assisted living residents can try mouthwatering specialties without even leaving the Sunshine State.

Cuban food leads the palate parade with tangy, garlicky, slow-roasted meats like lechón asado (roast pork) and ropa vieja (shredded flank steak). Add black beans, rice, fried plantains and a mojito to complete an authentic Nuevo Cubano meal. Cuban Bread, a local favorite, provides the perfect vehicle for Cuba’s iconic sandwiches.

The nearby fishing waters yield an abundance of fresh seafood tailor-made for ceviche, a zesty Latin American specialty mixing raw fish or shellfish with citrus and chilies. Some Sarasota restaurants put a Floribbean spin on ceviche by incorporating mango, pineapple or coconut milk.

Attending Food Festivals Year-Round

Florida’s endless food festivals let assisted living residents sample a wide spectrum of cultural cuisine in one place. These lively events bring international chefs, restaurants, markets and musicians together to showcase national foods and associated arts.

At the ever-popular Greek Glendi festival, zigzag through the food booths collecting heaping plates of gyro meat, spanakopita, dolmas, Greek salad and baklava. Then work off the calories dancing to live music!

For more exotic choices like curried goat, oxtail stew or Jamaican jerk chicken, visit the annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival. Inhale the aromas of spices and sizzle of barbeque grills while reggae bands play.

If you’re seeking something unique, the annual Sarasota Medieval Fair whisks you back to olde England with giant turkey legs, meat pies, fish ‘n chips, and mead. Costumed musicians, jesters and knights entertain faire-goers.

Most food festivals run during peak visitor season between January and April, but some operate year-round. So assisted living gourmands need never endure a dull palate!

Meeting Friends to Swap Recipes

Fellow foodies make the best friends. At Westminster Manor, new friendships often form around shared cooking interests and recipes from native cultures. You might even find potlucks, bake sales, recipe exchanges and informal cookouts ideal for swapping kitchen stories.

For home cooks seeking new culinary challenges, nothing beats learning recipes firsthand from native-born assisting living friends. Those longing for a taste of Italy can get tips on perfecting marinara sauce, handmade pastas and other staples from our Italian American residents.

Likewise our Cuban friends gladly share treasured family recipes for picadillo, ropa vieja, maduros and more. Cooking these dishes together strengthens bonds while expanding your international repertoire.

You might even consider bringing a friend to enjoy local cooking demonstrations and classes. Chefs from Sarasota’s eclectic restaurant scene may visit the area to showcase cooking techniques and signature dishes from their homeland. Seeing authentic preparation methods — especially for unfamiliar ingredients — helps de-mystify ethnic cuisine.

As active seniors in assisted living, we relish all avenues leading to more flavorful food and meaningful connections.

Trying Local Restaurants and Group Outings

For carefree culinary adventures, nothing beats dining out in good company. Sarasota County has over 800 eateries ranging from everyday cafés to upscale establishments specializing in global gastronomy. Many restaurants lie within easy reach of Westminster Manor.

Assisted living group excursions to nearby ethnic restaurants let us experience the joy of breaking bread together. Sharing a meal often leads to sharing stories and laughter, strengthening connections new and old.

Westminster residents frequently enjoy outings to St. Armands Circle, a jewel of Sarasota dining. At this Mediterranean-style shopping district, walking along the palm-dotted promenades under swaying lanterns makes for great exercise and people watching, too!

For more adventure, don’t miss taking trips to historical Ybor City, Tampa’s Latin Quarter. Founded by Cuban and Spanish immigrants in the 1880s, Ybor City feels like walking into Old Havana.  Between the authentic cuisine, hand-rolled cigars and eclectic architecture, residents find endless fascination.

As Florida’s reputation as a retirement mecca grows yearly, Westminster Manor attracts active seniors from across the U.S. and abroad. This makes for exciting culinary diversity right onsite. New residents often introduce hometown recipes and Initiate ethnic potlucks, expanding all our palates.

Every day, Sarasota’s multicultural assisted living community spices life with zest, joy and meaning. ¡Buen provecho!

At Westminster Manor, exploring Florida’s rich international cuisine never gets dull. From lively local festivals to cooking with foodie friends, our campus stays abuzz with tempting aromas and flavors from around the globe. Culinary day trips as a group let us break bread together while supporting Sarasota’s diverse restaurant scene.

As a continuing care retirement community, Westminster Manor emphasizes whole-person wellness through life’s transitions. Our worship services, fitness classes, social hours and community service activities further connect residents from all backgrounds.

Want to spice up senior living? Contact Westminster Manor in Bradenton to learn more or schedule a tour. Our welcoming staff looks forward to sharing vibrant flavors and fellowship with you!

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