I don't know if its the return of our Northern friends with their big strong Northern germs. It may be our unusual bout of cooler weather supposedly caused by volcanoes in the Pacific some where. I only know  some of my foodie thoughts have surfaced strongly.  Venice has so many varied food options now than they had when I first moved here as a kid.  There used to be a Johnson Brothers Cafeteria in the Bealls Outlet of the Publix Shopping Center on Bus 41. As far as I can tell, they were the southern version of the Morrison's Cafeteria.  They also had the Woolworths with the really cool soda and sandwich fountain. Their chocolate milkshake and egg salad sandwich on toast got me through many test days at Venice High School.

 The Venice Herald Tribune building was the site of the bowling alley that had a sandwich & soda bar and a block over was the A & S Rootbeer Stand. The only place in town to get a Rootbeer Float.  This was the hot spot after school to stop and grab a snack or hot dog at. Buffalo Bill's Sandwich shop was in the , now, Verandah Inn.  It was known for its champion cookies. I preferred the chocolate chips myself. Smitty's Restaurant was in the location of Pineapples. It was the business luncheon place and the hottest bar in town at night. Home of the famous Smitty Burger which still holds the uncontested title for the best burger ever eaten in Venice.  Smack MacDonalds was in the present site of  Gold Rush BBQ. As you can guess, it was a friendly clone of its more famous counterpart.  The Wedgewood was in the location of the Michael Biehl Park, decorated with fine china of the name. It was great for Sunday dinner, I still remember the biscuits.  And the ever popular Dairy Queen run by Bob Briner is now the parking lot for the Venetian Waterway Trail by North Bridge. Downtown was the Dick & Meadows Drugstore where everybody met for breakfast.The movie theatre was across the street, so catching a burger and a shake, before or after, was the tradition. I would love to hear any stories about the older eateries that are all naught but cherished memories nowadays. I will be chatting about more current ones as their goodies catch my eye.  Enjoy good eating in Venice.

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