Omnivores, vegetarians and vegans can order a milieu of affordable leaves, lentils and other delicious fare at this neighborhood cafe that opened in May. Customers can also purchase an assortment of bougie craft drinks and freshly baked sweets.
Sheila Siegel owns and operates the cafe with her partner Michael Schoening, who is a classically trained chef. Siegel and Schoening wanted to open a restaurant serving high-quality plant-based food at lower prices, something they thought was lacking in Sarasota.
After looking all over Sarasota, they chose this spot at 2801 N. Tamiami Trail. Siegel talked about how the area does not have many surrounding restaurants and that local residents have welcomed Leaf & Lentil.
“We liked that Ringling [College] was across the street and we also have a wonderful neighborhood that surrounds us,” Siegel said. “The neighborhood has been unbelievably, supportive, they were so happy that a neighborhood cafe came in there. We’re thrilled to be here.”
Siegel and Schoening hope to change how people think about and eat plant-based food.
“Our ultimate goal is to change the world through food,” Siegel said. “We want people to have a better impact on their bodies and on the environment. You can’t do that if you’re opening a high end restaurant. You want it to make it so that everyone can enjoy it.”
Leaf & Lentil is located at 2801 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Hours are 11:00 a.m.–8:00 p.m. Monday–Saturday and 11:00 a.m.–7:00 p.m. on Sundays.