Marathon Island Eats: Bring on the Garlic!

Marathon Island Eats: Bring on the Garlic!

Frank’s is one of those go-to restaurants for locals seeking refuge during a busy tourist season.

It’s that place where you take some close co-workers or friends and family for a celebratory meal.

And, it serves as a landmark for other businesses along U.S. 1 in Marathon.

“Our new offices are located in Town Square Mall, the same one where Frank’s is located,” our office staff often directs first timers to The Weekly Newspapers headquarters.

Frank’s doesn’t offer much outside seating save the two concrete tables just outside the front door. They also don’t advertise their “sunset views and waterfront dining.” The windows overlook a parking lot.

What you come to Franks for is the food.

Frank Farello was a chef for many years at his uncle’s Village Café in Gulfside Village. He yearned to head up his own establishment, so he broke away from the family business in 2006 and many of his loyal customers followed.

On a recent Tuesday evening, The Marathon Weekly sat down for some of Frank’s dinner specialties.

Being in such close proximity to this one of a handful of Florida Keys’ Italian restaurants, we were no strangers to this kitchen’s fare.

Some of our lunch favorites include the Greek Salad that is topped with an Italian specialty – roasted red peppers – and plenty of them.

Pair any of Frank’s salads with their signature lobster bisque, and the answer to “What are we doing for lunch?” is quickly answered.

It was our orders from Franks that led us to the first course of our meal, the appetizer special of escargot.

Our waitress, Joanna Sykut, a familiar and always welcoming face at Franks for dinner service, pointed to another regular table and added that one diner just ordered a double order of escargot with double the garlic. With plenty of fresh, warm bread to soak up the olive oil chocked full of fresh herbs, this appetizer was an incredible way to begin our Italian feast.

Sykut confessed one local Italian deli and gym owner is stuck on the Snapper Italiano, one of which was also our chosen entrees. Fresh, broiled Yellowtail Snapper sautéed with fresh chopped tomatoes, basil, a little garlic and fresh ginger for a unique spin was as equally fabulous for dinner as were the leftovers for lunch the following day.

The Veal Chop Milanese, highly recommended by another local businessman famous for “Putting Your Name on It”, was so outstanding that we recommended it to a fellow diner celebrating their wedding anniversary! Lightly battered and pan-fried then topped with a heaping portion of fresh, thinly sliced mushrooms, the Milanese preparation was happily situated between Marsala, Scallopini and Picatta, three of our favorite preparations for a tender veal chop!

Of course, we were too full to enjoy a specialty Italian dessert in the restaurant, but we simply couldn’t resist the light and creamy homemade Tiramisu. From a Styrofoam box or a beautiful plate in the restaurant, nothing could detract from the perfection of this classic Italian dessert.

Frank’s menu offers a short selection of beer and wine, espresso, tea and coffee. For lunch or dinner, this local’s hot spot will never disappoint. We only advise that you call ahead for reservations as the handful of tables fills up quickly even before the sun sets!

 

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