Fort Myers' Homestyle: Big on Portions and Big on Taste

At the end of a long day, there is nothing like sitting down with a big plate of hot food surrounded by friends and family. Food speaks to your soul. While the trendy, gourmet restaurants have their place; there is something to be said for homestyle cooking, homestyle serving and a good old homey vibe. Whether its biscuits and gravy, pot roast, a big plate of pasta or a giant piece of pie, everyone has a dish that can magically melt all your cares away after just one bite. 

Comfort food, although not always healthful for the body, is always healthful for the soul. At Old 41 the owners aim to serve foods that remind you of home, no matter where that is, geographically speaking. And they make no excuses for the extra cream, butter and cheese that makes some dishes oh sooooo good. 

The national restaurant Buca de Beppo is great for big parties and celebrations. The food is served in the traditional family-style. Big bowls and platters are put in the middle of the table so everyone can dig-in. Don't skip dessert! The place is full of laughter and fun memorabilia.

If you want that homestyle feeling, try one of these 10Best restaurants on for size. Warning, you will need to loosen that belt a notch or two. 

Photo courtesy of Gina Birch

At most Korean BBQ places, you cook your own meats and vegetables. That's not the case at Koreana. Similar to a Japanese-style hibachi but with individual grills, your Korean specialties are cooked for you by the expert staff. Gather the family,...  Read More

Bonita Springs

The food philosophy at Old 41 is to serve the stuff you grew up with, regardless of it's health benefits. Want creamed chipped beef like Grandma used to make? You'll find it here, along with sausage gravy, roast beef and true Texas Toast. The...  Read More

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Mel's Diner

Mel's Diner has been serving home cooked comfort food for nearly thirty years and has expanded to five locations in the Fort Myers area to meet the demand. You don't have to wait until Thanksgiving to get a satisfying meal of freshly roasted...  Read More

North Fort Myers

Just over the Caloosahatchee Bridge, across from downtown Fort Myers, you'll find the Go-Go Diner in a strip mall next to a Bingo Hall. The chef and owner is a Culinary Institute of America graduate who has made local headlines with his...  Read More

South Fort Myers
Fancy's Southern Cafe
Photo courtesy of Gina Birch

Sometimes in Florida, it can be easy to forget you're even in the South. A trip to Fancy's Southern Cafe will most certainly remind you. "Southern Sophistication" is the name of the game at Fancy's. Its rustic decor cleverly uses old doors,...  Read More

Buca di Beppo
Photo courtesy of Gina Birch

Manga Manga! Buca de Bepo serves heaping portions of traditional Italian food in a fun and festive atmosphere. The food comes true family-style, placed in the middle of the table for you to help yourself. Try favorites like eggplant parmigiana,...  Read More

If you like big portions of meat and BBQ makes you swoon, you need to visit Bubba's. You can see the grill from the dining room, the sparks flying as the chefs expertly tend to steaks like a 25-ounce ribeye. The ribs are award winning and so...  Read More

Oasis Restaurant
Photo courtesy of GIna Birch

Offering breakfast seven days a week and all day long, the Oasis Restaurant in downtown Fort Myers has a little bit of everything to offer. The "hangover" omelet is a house specialty with Italian sausage and vegetables covered in melted cheese....  Read More

Reuben's Smokehouse
Photo courtesy of GIna Birch

Chef Reuben's catering experience, makes him an expert at giving you great food to go or dine in. The fast food is anything but fast quality. Rueben's menu is full of home cookin' comfort foods; the stuff that may not always be good for the...  Read More

The Farmers Market is the oldest continuously operating restaurant in Lee County, located off the beaten path in an industrial area that you might drive right by. The no frills, homey eatery serves the same big portions and same great quality of...  Read More


Meet Gina Birch

Gina carries the rare title of "Native Floridian". Living in Southwest Florida for 22 years, she is a well known, award winning radio and TV personality. 

Besides brandishing a microphone, Gina...  More About Gina