About Sweet Melissa's Cafe

1625 Periwinkle Way
Sanibel, FL 33597
View Larger Map

Executive Chef Melissa Talmage offers a divinely creative menu sure to fit any foodies dream. Serving lunch and dinner, Chef Melissa challenges your taste buds to explore an array of different textures and tastes. Our dinner menu is broken into sections and the entrees are offered in half portions to give you the ability to try a few different dishes in one visit. We also offer an extensive wine list to enhance your dining experience. Come join us for another side to island dining.

Dining Style:
Fine Dining

Cuisines:
Contemporary American, Tapas / Small Plates

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Friday 11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Dinner: Monday - Saturday 5 pm
Closed Sunday

Cross Street:
Casa Ybel

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(239) 472-1956

Website:
http://www.sweetmelissascafe.net/

Entertainment:
Acoustic Guitarist Wednesday Thursday Friday and Saturday Evenings

Executive Chef:
Melissa Talmage

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Sweet Melissa's Cafe Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.7

ambience

4.5

value

4.3

noise

Moderate

98% would recommend it to a friend

Creative Cuisine (37)
Fit for Foodies (36)
Special Occasion (27)
See All
Quiet Conversation (26)
Good for a Date (22)
Good for Anniversaries (21)
Open Kitchen (20)
Romantic (19)
Neighborhood Gem (17)
Good for Birthdays (15)
Worth the Drive (14)
Local Ingredients (11)
Authentic (10)
Outstanding Value (9)
Live Music (9)
Cozy (9)
Great for Outdoor Dining (9)
Healthy (8)
Tapas (7)
Bar Seating (7)
Notable Wine List (7)
Casual (6)
Handcrafted Cocktails (5)
Seasonal (5)
Great for Lunch (4)
Business Meals (4)
Gluten Free Options (3)
Tasting Menu (3)
Modern Decor (3)
Good for Groups (3)
Pre/post Theatre (2)
Molecular Gastronomy (2)
Fun (2)
Good Vegetarian Options (2)
Paleo Friendly (2)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Comfort Food (1)
People Watching (1)
Hot Spot (1)
Late-night Find (1)
Disabled Access (1)
Great Beer (1)
Dining Occasion:
S
Sort By:
S
1304 reviews
Loading Reviews ...

Very good and creative menu. Appreciated ...

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined 4 days ago

Very good and creative menu. Appreciated the choice of small and larger entrees.

Tags: Casual, Open Kitchen
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value3

I wouldn't change a thing. Everything w ...

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined 5 days ago

I wouldn't change a thing. Everything was top notch. Loved it. Cobia special was really special.

Tags: Seasonal, Open Kitchen, Worth the Drive, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Romantic, Business Meals, Healthy, Good for Anniversaries, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

This is a very good restaurant. Excelle ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 17, 2017

This is a very good restaurant. Excellent service. Food was great. Two of us had the smoked tenderloin which was done to perfection and very good. One had the fish stew - again, outstanding. Desserts (cheescake and flourless chocolate cake) were outstanding and rather large. Be careful of the larger portions which are substantial. Best bet, get one of the outstanding appetizers, a small version of an entree and then do get a dessert or two to share. Great experience. We'll be back -- like tonight!

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Delicious food and great music and servi ...

 
 (New England)·Dined on January 14, 2017

Delicious food and great music and service.

My husband and I were celebrating our 28th wedding anniversary. It was our first visit to Sanibel, and our first dining experience. We enjoyed the grilled romaine salad and a crab cake to start. Then enjoyed the scallops and red fish.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Wonderful unusual food preparations. Jus ...

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 13, 2017

Wonderful unusual food preparations. Just the right size small plates.

Tags: Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

I rated this restaurant with all high ma ...

vip
 (Naples)·Dined on January 10, 2017

I rated this restaurant with all high marks, however, it must be told that getting there is a nightmare. The traffic on Sanibel is crazy.

The food is excellent but it doesn't come cheap. A burger is 15.00. My husband had two glasses of wine for a whopping 32.00.

So, yes I would tell my friends about it but honestly there are really good burgers for much less money.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Sweet Melissa's is the nicest restaurant ...

 
 (New Orleans)·Dined on January 6, 2017

Sweet Melissa's is the nicest restaurant on Sanibel and one of the best in southwest Florida. We have gone to the restaurant for many years now and it never disappoints. This time was outstanding-there were five of us and every dish we had was excellent. The salads were especially good-loved the beet salad and also the kale salad. The swordfish special was perfection on a plate :). We had our two 20 something daughters with us and they loved it too-beef tenderloin and braised short ribs. The only dish we weren't crazy about was the redfish-it was just ok. However, the creole potatoes it was served with were amazing.

Cant ever go wrong with Sweet Melissa's just hope she keeps loving having her restaurant on Sanibel.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Enjoyed eating outdoors and hearing the ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on January 4, 2017

Enjoyed eating outdoors and hearing the guitar music from the musician inside. We had an early reservation and were alone in the screened outdoor space and it was quite enjoyable. Delicious starters- tartare was special and loved the beet salad. The cioppino had so many delicious seafoods in a most flavorful slightly thick red broth. The whole crispy fish was beautiful, artfully deboned with a unique and tasty pickled okra relish. For dessert we shared scoops of gelato which were delicious but the grapefruit sorbet with rosemary made a perfect finish!

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Molly greeted us at the door with a war ...

vip
 (New England)·Dined on January 4, 2017

Molly greeted us at the door with a warm welcome. Service and drinks were great. Food was amazing! Husband ordered the Blue Crab Sandwich and I had the Prime Angus Burger. We couldn't decide which was better - they were both amazing!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

Love Sweet Melissa's and we try and go e ...

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on January 4, 2017

Love Sweet Melissa's and we try and go every time we are on Sanibel.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Quiet Conversation, Fit for Foodies, Open Kitchen
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Best restaurant on Sanibel. Melissa is a ...

vip
 (Columbus)·Dined on January 3, 2017

Best restaurant on Sanibel. Melissa is a creative chef who does great things with pork belly, scallops, local seafood, and sweetbreads. Her imaginative combinations will dazzle your tastebuds. Servers are terrific too. And Kevin makes awesome cocktails. I've eaten here dozens of times since the restaurant opened and have enjoyed all of my dining experiences.

Tags: Open Kitchen, Bar Seating, Paleo Friendly, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Anniversaries, Molecular Gastronomy, Handcrafted Cocktails, Creative Cuisine, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value5

Sweet Melissa's is my favourite Sanibel ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on December 31, 2016

Sweet Melissa's is my favourite Sanibel restaurant. Always excellent creative food with perfect service (thank you Brad) in a lovely ambiance. I had the whole crispy fish (yellowtail snapper) that had been expertly deboned, the beet salad and believe it or not, foie gras beignets for dessert - yes, it works! Soooo good. Can't wait to return.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Special Occasion, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Sweet Melissa never fails. Always a grea ...

vip
 (Jacksonville)·Dined on December 30, 2016

Sweet Melissa never fails. Always a great meal. The baked black grouper was exceptional. We eat here every time we are in Sanibel.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

My wife and I choose this grand place to ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on December 30, 2016

My wife and I choose this grand place to celebrate our special times. Food is always great and the small plates give us a chance to taste lots of great dishes. Wait staff is top notch and very helpful when you ask questions! Live music adds a great surrounding for a very fun meal!!! Would and have, told many people about how great it is! Give it a try, I think you will agree!!! The great cook, who is the name sake, Is friendly if you wish to say high, But she is cooking her heart for all her guests! Don't miss it!!!!!!!

Tags: Fun, , Special Occasion, Tasting Menu, People Watching, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Hot Spot, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays, Notable Wine List, Romantic, Healthy, Good Vegetarian Options
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

This place was a great find! We apprecia ...

vip
 (Western NC)·Dined on December 30, 2016

This place was a great find! We appreciated the long list of small plates and the fact that some of the entrees were also offered in a petite portion. Wonderful drinks and appetizers, too, and all were enhanced by the excellent service we received.

Tags: Live Music, Worth the Drive, Romantic, Handcrafted Cocktails, Great for Outdoor Dining, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

We have eaten at SM's on spring break an ...

vip
 (Cleveland)·Dined on December 30, 2016

We have eaten at SM's on spring break and Christmas break and both times were excellent...best food on the island...seafood stew and goat cheese cheese cake are crazy good.

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

I always gave Melissa's highest grades. ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on December 29, 2016

I always gave Melissa's highest grades. Not this time. The potatoes were undercooked, the fish overcooked and the sauce too salty. Otherwise, great.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine, Quiet Conversation, Notable Wine List, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience5
service5
value2

We enjoyed a wonderful dinner on 12/26/1 ...

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on December 29, 2016

We enjoyed a wonderful dinner on 12/26/16. The east Bombay Negroni was a wonderfully crafted and balanced cocktail. Fish stew is a fabulous entree. Our server Molly, was a terrific, friendly professional. Great experience. Background guitar music was a perfect accompianment to the meal.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Special Occasion, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for Anniversaries, Open Kitchen
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

Outstanding surprise. Best restaurant e ...

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 28, 2016

Outstanding surprise. Best restaurant experience in the Sanibel/Captiva area. This would be a 4 star or 5 star restaurant in any major city (NY, DC , LA or Chicago)!

Tags: Open Kitchen, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

I was a little hesitant since I had not ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on December 22, 2016

I was a little hesitant since I had not heard much about this restaurant and reviews were mixed. What a great experience it turned out to be. The place was large but quiet with live music even on a Thursday night. Two of the people in our group were foodies and they were happy with the menu. The smaller portions were as large as every other restaurant. We cleaned our plates and were stuffed. Our waiter was friendly, easy going and attentive but not intrusive. He chuckled at our jokes and seemed happy to serve us. The only criticism I have is that even though they knew beforehand we were celebrating a birthday they did not offer a free dessert but did put a candle on the one dessert we ordered.

Tags: Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Worth the Drive, Tapas, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The food is phenomenal! The prime beef ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on December 22, 2016

The food is phenomenal! The prime beef burger and crab cake were true gems to be enjoyed!

Tags: Cozy, Neighborhood Gem, Local Ingredients, Romantic, Fit for Foodies, Casual, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Creative and fun each menu Stellar servi ...

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 18, 2016

Creative and fun each menu

Stellar service with a special thanks to molly

Tags: Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Fabulous quality of food, ambience and s ...

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on December 17, 2016

Fabulous quality of food, ambience and service - a cut above. Kale salad (a special) was especially great, as was a grapefruit/rosemary sorbet!

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

As Siri said when I asked my iphone for ...

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 12, 2016

As Siri said when I asked my iphone for directions "it's a bit pricey" but considering it's well above average fare, I think it was worth the expenditure for my husband's 65th birthday celebration. The service is attentive without being distracting and the menu is full of traditional items with interesting flavor twists. There is an excellent wine list and some unique beer and cocktail selections as well. Everything we ordered tasted fantastic! We will be back the next time we are in Sanibel.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Modern Decor, Quiet Conversation, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

My wife ordered the Cobia and the flavor ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on December 12, 2016

My wife ordered the Cobia and the flavor/taste was out of this world. I had thee beef tenderloin and totally enjoyed it. And Melissa even took time to come out from the kitchen to talk to my wife.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

What a fabulous meal we had at Sweet Mel ...

vip
 (New England)·Dined on December 10, 2016

What a fabulous meal we had at Sweet Melissa's. Everything was delicious, salads, appetizers, entrees & dessert! Best meal in Sanibel!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

Fantastic meal. Second time around in a ...

 
 (Atlanta)·Dined on December 9, 2016

Fantastic meal. Second time around in a few years and still memorable. Lots of fish options for us pescarians. Incredible service from Jeanie. I'll be back for sure.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Open Kitchen, Bar Seating,
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We first found Sweet Melissa's on our fi ...

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on December 5, 2016

We first found Sweet Melissa's on our first trip to Sanibel, two years ago. So good, we were back for a second dinner within 72 hours. A factor in our return visit to the island was the chance to have another experience at Sweet Melissa's; it did not disappoint. Beef Tartare, superb; filched escargot from my wife's plate, wonderful. My wife had the smoked beef tenderloin (could not have been better); I had the Fish Stew which was amazing. Service could not possibly be improved; an entire crew who clearly care. Thank you, Melissa, for creating one of our favorite restaurants anywhere.

Tags: Bar Seating, , Open Kitchen, Creative Cuisine, Seasonal, Fit for Foodies, Modern Decor, Quiet Conversation, Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Good food able to accommodate no milk, b ...

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 3, 2016

Good food able to accommodate no milk, butter or cheese in a limited way but a competent way. Pretty outside, basic inside liked being able to see the kitchen.

1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service5
value4

Amazing restaurant. We went there 2 nigh ...

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 2, 2016

Amazing restaurant. We went there 2 nights in a row for dinner and had a great example both times. Attentive service, food is outstanding, can strongly recommend the fish stew, beat salad, whole fish crispy and red fish seared. Goat cheesecake with honey and pastas was out

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

My husband and I had a lovely meal- I ha ...

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 2, 2016

My husband and I had a lovely meal- I had pompano fish and he had a whole fish- delicious hearty portions, service was excellent! We had a nice corner table which made it more romantic!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Romantic, Special Occasion, Gluten Free Options, Good for Groups, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Excellent food, great service! Enjoyed ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on December 1, 2016

Excellent food, great service! Enjoyed the fact that you could get smaller portions of most items. Plan to return next time we are in Sanibel

Tags: , Good for a Date, Cozy, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

This was supposed to be a 2 $$ sign loca ...

vip
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on December 1, 2016

This was supposed to be a 2 $$ sign location and a dinner for 2 was $127 before tip. The meal and service was worth it but it is NOT a 2 $$ establishment.

1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5

Great food and great service. Had a grea ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 1, 2016

Great food and great service. Had a great lunch.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

Such an interesting menu, very creative ...

 
 (Naples)·Dined on November 29, 2016

Such an interesting menu, very creative combinations, a taste adventure

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Our meal was amazing as always. We have ...

 
 (Cleveland)·Dined on November 25, 2016

Our meal was amazing as always. We have been here numerous times and will keep coming back for the delicious food.

Tags: Romantic, Open Kitchen, Quiet Conversation, Good for a Date, Great for Lunch, Business Meals, Worth the Drive, Fit for Foodies, Seasonal, Special Occasion, Bar Seating, Live Music, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Local Ingredients, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

The best food that we found on Sanibel I ...

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on November 25, 2016

The best food that we found on Sanibel Island. Four of our five selections had outstanding flavor and the fifth was good. Can't wait to return to try it again.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Tapas, Quiet Conversation
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

Wonderful and looking fo

vip
 (New England)·Dined on November 25, 2016

Wonderful and looking fo

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4

Very nice dinner. Oysters were good; swe ...

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on November 22, 2016

Very nice dinner. Oysters were good; sweetbreads were good; escargot were great. Grouper special (crawfish etouffe and puffed rice) was outstanding, and fish stew was extremely good. Definitely worth a return visit!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We went with our 3 children (11.10,4). ...

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on November 21, 2016

We went with our 3 children (11.10,4). Everyone enjoyed the food and service. Very pleasant staff. Creative excellent meals and deserts. Wiold definitely return.

Tags: Business Meals, Romantic, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Report this review as inappropriate?

If you believe this review should be removed from OpenTable, please let us know and someone will investigate.