How sweet it is at Joe’s
SUN PHOTO/LOUISE BOLGER
Joe and JoAnne Spallino, owners of
Joe’s Eats & Sweets, serve up yummy treats.
You wouldn’t think that ice cream could be inspirational, but being a fixture in Bradenton Beach for 18 years certainly is. Joe’s Eats & Sweets has been a local landmark that has been satisfying residents and visitors for many years and Joe and JoAnne Spallino plan on doing it for many more.
The Spallinos have been making homemade ice cream in the colorful elevated building across Gulf Drive from the beach for almost all of the 22 years they have lived in Florida. Relocating from Queens, N. Y., they like so many other Northerners, were looking for the sunshine and kicked-back lifestyle offered on Anna Maria Island. And what better way to readjust your attitude and embrace a new life than to sell ice cream at the beach.
Joe’s Eats & Sweets is best known for its large assortment of homemade ice cream made with high quality ingredients. JoAnne Spallino says they are very picky with how they create their product and even go as far as hand cutting their own cookies for their ice cream. And since the Spallinos believe that homemade ice cream tastes best served in glass dishes, that’s what you’ll get if you’re eating in at Joe’s Eats & Sweets.
They also specialize in sugar free and lactose free ice cream and carry fat free yogurt and sorbet as well as water and soda. You can also have a light lunch of hot dogs or pressed sandwiches and top it off with a smoothie, frozen hot chocolate, salt water taffy or homemade fudge.
The Spallinos are particularly proud of all of the staff that worked for them through the years. They take a personal interest in their young employees many of whom have stayed with them for years and have kept in touch long after they’ve moved on. Not only are the Spallinos good citizens because they help to mentor their employees, but also because they maintain a very aggressive recycling program as part of their efforts to protect the coastal environment.
Don’t be surprised to see Joe’s Eats & Sweets getting just a little more crowded. They have been voted as making the best desserts in Tampa Bay by the AOL City’s Best voters for two years and are in the running again this year with winners to be announced in July.
Take a break from the beach and enjoy the afternoon on their comfortable deck. Or with the long warm summer nights upon us, what better way to spend an evening than to stroll the beach with an ice cream cone in one hand and your best pal’s hand in the other. Now that’s the way to be inspired.
Joe’s Eats & Sweets219 Gulf Drive South
Daily, noon to 10 p.m.
Visa & MasterCard accepted