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Annual Taste of the Islands winners announced

By CROW - | Dec 23, 2020

PHOTO PROVIDED The Old Captiva House won Taste of the Taste and Best Seafood Dish.

The Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife announced the winners of its 39th Taste of the Islands.

This year’s “Reimagined” event featured 31 restaurants from Sanibel and Captiva that diners visited throughout November. Local judges Harold Balink, Gina Birch, Karen Feldman, Jarred Harris, Gloria Jordan, Norman Love, Patrick Nolan, and Geoff and Robbie Roepstorff, along with surprise celebrity guest judge Keegan Gerhard of the Food Network, rated the restaurants’ offerings in a variety of categories while passport holders voted for the People’s Choice award, sponsored by Rosier Insurance.

The Taste of the Islands winners are as follows:

– Best Appetizer: Lime Zest and Sesame Crusted Ahi Tuna, Thistle Lodge Beachfront Restaurant

– Best Meat: Lamb Lollipops, The Timbers Restaurant & Fish Market

PHOTO PROVIDED Thistle Lodge Beachfront Restaurant won Best Appetizer.

– Best Seafood: Cioppino, Old Captiva House

– Best Vegetarian: Vegetarian Burger, Sanibel Fresh

– Best Dessert: Coconut Tres Leche Cake, Spoondrift Island Bowls

– Best Adult Beverage (tie): Toasted Coconut Colada, Doc Ford’s, and Shellshock Punch, Tipsy Turtle Restaurant & Bar

– Taste of Taste: Cioppino, Old Captiva House

PHOTO PROVIDED The Timbers Restaurant & Fish Market won Best Meat.

– People’s Choice: MudBugs Cajun Kitchen

“We really wanted Taste to be successful for both CROW and our restaurant partners and I think we can say it has been,” Executive Director Alison Charney Hussey said. “It took a little getting used to the new format, but I think the community really embraced it and enjoyed exploring the restaurants throughout the month. We are so blessed to have the support of such amazing sponsors, restaurants and patrons.”

To watch a video of the winners receiving their award, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Ziq9h01VnY&feature=youtu.be.

CROW thanked Bank of the Islands/Edison National Bank for returning as the presenting sponsor. It was the 11th year in a row that the bank has led the sponsorship for CROW’s signature fundraiser.

It also thanked event sponsors, including FOX 4 as lead media sponsor; The Silverman Organization and VCA Sanibel Animal Hospital as executive chef sponsors; Jensen’s Marina & Cottages, The Inns of Sanibel, Rapid Response Team of Fort Myers and Royal Shell as sous chef sponsors; and Island Reporter/Sanibel-Captiva Islander, Island Sun & River Weekly Newspapers, Santiva Chronicle, Happenings Magazine, and The News-Press, Naples Daily News and LOCALiQ as supporting media sponsors.

PHOTO PROVIDED Sanibel Fresh won Best Vegetarian.

PHOTO PROVIDED Spoondrift Islands Bowls won Best Dessert.

PHOTO PROVIDED Doc Ford’s tied for Best Adult Beverage.

PHOTO PROVIDED Tipsy Turtle Restaurant & Bar tied for Best Adult Beverage.