In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Nance Frank, the director of the Gallery on Greene.

This is perfect for all you Key West history buffs out there.  We dive deep into the history of Key West homes, the people and the art.

We recorded this episode in the fall, before COVID-19 lockdown happened.  I am pleased to say that The Gallery on Green is fully operational and taking visitors on a daily basis.

More on The Gallery on Greene

The Gallery on Greene has consistently fomented curatorial and artistic practice through ambitious exhibitions programs, created in close collaboration with its artists with museums from New York, MCNY, AFAM, SSSM to Havana’s National Museum of Fine Art.

Our philosophy: The style pendulum swung away from overly furnished and cluttered interiors some time ago. The immediate reaction was one of clinical simplicity. We are now experiencing a hugely exciting period where key pieces of fine art or antiques are used to a stunning effect within contemporary interiors. This juxtaposition makes for an emerging sophisticated style, next to no other. 

Now we can appreciate the best of both worlds.

With the growing sophistication of the general public, people are looking more into expressing themselves at home than ever before. Comfort, style, quality, beauty, technology and investment are all keywords mentioned when furnishing and decorating a new home.

The Gallery on Greene is ideally positioned to advise on the acquisition of such integral items to enhance your living space and daily lives.

Website: http://galleryongreene.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thegalleryongreene/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/The-Gallery-On-Greene-174703195932962/

Gallery On Greene
606 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040

(305) 304.2323
Havana – 011.535.413.362
[email protected]

Open 10am – 6pm Daily

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with the owner of Salt Island Provisions, Laura Richardson.

We talk about the origin story or Salt Island Provisions, how this island favorite is a hub for everything local; from salt to wine to honey to art.

This spot is a MUST for every tourist and local alike!

**Note that his episode was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown, but I am pleased to say that Salt is still running at full steam!

More on Salt Island Provisions

SALT Island Provisions is a purveyor of fine goods handcrafted in and sourced from the Florida Keys.

We offer the indigenous essences of sweet and savory: wild honey and sea salt, harvested in small batches from the sun-kissed islands.

We believe in goods that are simple by nature and speak to the ‘spirit of place.’ It is our business to celebrate our island home by featuring local artists and artisans. 

Website: http://www.saltislandprovisions.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/saltkeywest/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SALTKeyWest/

Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/salt-island-provisions-key-west

830 Fleming Street  
Key West, FL
305-517-6088
[email protected]
Open 10am – 4pm Daily

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Chief TuTu wearer, Jenn Stefanacci.

We talk about how this Jersey girl made her way down to the Conch Republic and how she created her cult-classic bar, 22&Co.

This was one of my favorite episodes I did, not only because of how cool 22&Co is but how cool Jenn is… bringing that NJ flavor all the way south.

**NOTE** This episode was recorded before the pandemic, so hours are changed. As of September 10th, 2020 – their hours are:

Monday – Thursday = 4pm – 12ish
Friday & Saturday = 2pm – LATE
Sunday = 12pm – LATE
Light snacks served at the bar.

More on 22&Co

Fresh cocktails. Fun bartenders. Tutus. Flamingos. Unicorns.
…Need we say more?

22&Co Key West
504 Angela Street
Key West, FL 33040

(305) 394-7244

Website: https://22andco.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/we_love_tutus/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/22tutuandCo/

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with the co-owner of The Green Pineapple at the Perry Hotel, Rebecca Schwab-Talpas.

We talk about her career start in retail, why she decided to open up the shop at the Perry, her yoga teachings, and her cookbook club :).

This episode was recorded months before COVID lockdown and since then Rebecca has taken most of her yoga classes online, so make sure to check out her schedule https://mindbody.io/locations/salute-to-the-sol

The Green Pineapple at the Perry Hotel

The Green Pineapple offers a lovely blend of goods and services to help you feel happy and healthier. Our lifestyle boutiques feature men’s and women’s apparel, handmade jewelry, accessories and much more.

Address
The Perry Hotel
7001 Shrimp Rd, Key West, FL 33040

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/greenpineappleperry/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/greenpineapple_perry/

More on Rebecca Schwab-Talpas

Rebecca is the owner of Salute to the Sol and has been teaching and practicing yoga in the Florida Keys since 2015. She is a certified yoga instructor, E-RYT 200, YACEP with Yoga Alliance. She enjoys creating an environment that allows you to tap into your inner and outer strength and flexibility. Although alignment is central to her classes, the joy of a yoga practice is that it is not taken too seriously. Smiling from the heart is where it is at!

Website: https://salutetothesol.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/salute_to_the_sol_yoga/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/saluetothesol/

Virtual Yoga Classes: https://mindbody.io/locations/salute-to-the-sol

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with local artist Jasmine Jones.

We talk about how she got started and how she is making a life for herself as an extremely talented artist.

This interview was recorded before the March 2020 shutdown, so Jasmine’s classes are on hold for right now, but all her amazing art is for sale!

Shop: https://www.oceanbluesstudio.com/shop

More on Jasmin Jones

Hi there! My name is Jasmine Jones, I’m an abstract painter based out of Key West, Florida. I was born and raised here in Key West, growing up immersed in color. From the vibrant flora and fauna that thrive on the island, to the picturesque sunsets and ocean seascapes, there was always plenty for me to draw as a kid.

The colors that occur naturally in the Florida Keys have been my main inspiration for painting. Whether it’s in the ocean or in the sky, the way the colors seamlessly blend and combine to create infinite and unique combinations is my favorite part of living in paradise.

I create my artwork using a combination of alcohol inks, acrylic paint and resin layers to create a body of work with a greater depth than traditional two-dimensional paintings. Each piece I create is an original work of art, I do not make any prints of my paintings. I believe a painting should be as unique as the collector.

Website: https://www.oceanbluesstudio.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/oceanbluesstudio/

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Casey Arnold of the Conch Republic Seafood Company.

We talk about the history of the historic building, all the food options, and their infamous happy hour.

Take note that this was recorded before the COVID lockdown, be as of June 5th, the bar at the restaurant will be open for business 🙂

More on Conch Republic Seafood Company

Experience true dock-to-dish dining as you enjoy the incredible views of the Historic Seaport inside our fully open air restaurant! Often, you’ll see our very own fleet of boats unloading their catches of fresh fish, stone crab and Caribbean Lobster!

Website: https://conchrepublicseafood.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/conchrepublicseafoodcompany/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ConchRepublicSeafood/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ConchFarm

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Aaron Pearlman, the General Manager of Prime Steakhouse Key West.

We talk about the restaurant’s history, how they stay upscale, but with a relaxed island vibe, and how they keep their food consistently amazing in our tiny island paradise.

A Message from Prime Steakhouse

Finally a light at the end of the tunnel! ☀️With the latest update this Friday we will be reopening our doors to our island friends & family! We will be running our September locals specials as well as half price stone crab claws 🦀 Indoor & outdoor seating will be available so reservations are recommended but not necessary. If you’re looking to celebrate a missed birthday, anniversary or would just like to have a sense of normalcy again, we would love to serve you! Our doors will open at 5:30pm. Take out & delivery will still be available as well 🥩 🦞 🍷•

More on Prime Steakhouse

Website: https://primekeywest.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/primesteakhousekeywest/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PrimeKeyWest

Address: 951 Caroline St, Key West, FL 33040
Phone: (305) 2964000

Since opening in 2005, PRIME has quickly become the premier steakhouse in the Florida Keys. Impeccably prepared prime beef is the star at PRIME, cooked to perfection in ovens nearing 1,000 degrees.

Under the supervision of the executive chef, there’s more to Prime than just great steaks!! Locally caught lobster tails, daily fresh fish specials from Key West fishermen, nightly pasta special, or whole yellowtail snapper, deep-fried and cleverly seasoned are just a few of the treats that await the non-carnivores. Chef Kim Quach has been pleasing palettes in the keys for over ten years and has brought his creativity and passion to PRIME. Jumbo lump crab cakes, carpaccio of filet mignon, or garlicky escargot are just a few starters that locals rave about. And don’t forget the Truffled Mac and Cheese, PRIME’S signature side.

Whether you prefer steaks or seafoodwe’ve selected wines from Italy, France and the USA, that will pair perfectly with your dinner.

Whether you choose to dine al frescoe on our terrace or in our intimate dining room, you will enjoy a superior level of service that will make your dinner at PRIME extraordinary!!

**NOTE** This episode was recorded in December, 2019.

During the Coronavirus crisis, the Cuban Coffee Queen is open from 7AM – 3PM for takeout and still delivering all of Key West up to Cow Key Bridge.

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with head barista and manager, Irena Dalton at the iconic Cuban Coffee Queen.

We talk about how the brand began, and how they are keeping locals and Key West tourists caffeinated on a daily basis.

More on the Cuban Coffee Queen

“One day in Cuba, I met a lady who made the best coffee and Cuban toast.

She told us stories and showed me how to make a real cafe con leche. I will never forget the Cuban coffee Queen.”

Website: https://www.cubancoffeequeen.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cuban_coffee_queen_/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CubanCoffeeQueenKeyWest

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KeyWestCoffee

Waterfront (original location!)
284 Margaret Street
Key West, FL 33040
Phone: 305.292.4747
Pick-up only

Downtown (corner of Southard and Duval)
5 Key Lime Square
Key West, FL 33040
Phone: 305.294.7787
Delivery, Pick-up

Clinton Square Market 
291 Front Street #6
Key West, FL 33040
Phone: 305.922.2896
Pick-up only

**NOTE** This episode was recorded in November 2019 and published on my other podcast, The Songwriters Podcast.

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with singer, songwriter, guitarists, storyteller, sailor and road warrior, Scott Kirby.

We talk about his long career as a musician, and where he goes for writing inspiration, and how a little bit of luck took him a long way.

More on Scott

Website: https://www.scottkirby.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/scottkirbykeywest/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/scottkirby.keywest

Singer, songwriter, guitarist, storyteller, sailor and road warrior are all words that aptly describe Scott Kirby. Writing songs for a new CD, performing 150 live shows a year throughout the US and Canada, and holding down the stage at his own club—Key West’s Smokin’ Tuna Saloon—keep the barnacles off this modern-day troubadour.

A creative lyricist and accomplished finger-style acoustic guitarist with an expressive voice, Kirby describes himself as a direct descendant of the ’70s singer/songwriter movement. His very first 45 was a Beatles record, and he came of musical age listening to James Taylor and other great songwriters of that era. He has never received any formal musical training but often credits Taylor with teaching him how to play the acoustic guitar. “If it weren’t for the hundreds of solitary hours in my room in Concord, New Hampshire, with a guitar and a James Taylor book, I never would have learned to play,” says Kirby. Speaking of New Hampshire and musical influences, let’s not forget fellow New Hampshire native Tom Rush who was taking the folk scene by storm in Kirby’s formative years. Coincidentally, Kirby connected with both of these artists in Key West 30 years later, which is a whole other story.

After a few years in high school bands and a stint in his early 20s as a bass guitarist with a group, Kirby drifted away from music and became immersed in a career in politics: managing campaigns, writing and producing radio and TV ads, and overseeing the office of a leader in the New Hampshire legislature. He was also guitarless for eight years! In 1988, however, after tiring of the political rat race and the length and severity of New England winters, he bought a new guitar, relentlessly practiced his chops, and planned his escape. Six months later Kirby was living in Key West and performing five nights a week on a balmy beach facing the Gulf of Mexico.

Kirby started writing songs after some inspirational late-night words from legendary songwriter Shel Silverstein and further encouragement from Peter Mayer, who had just joined the Coral Reefer Band. A year later he found himself recording his first CD, Too Damn Yankee, in Jimmy Buffett’s Shrimpboat Sound Studio with Peter and Jim Mayer and Roger Guth. “This was a very lucky break for me, but I was in a bit over my head,” says Kirby. “Peter, Jim and Roger were incredibly patient with me and it was a fantastic learning experience.”

Between 1993 and 2006, Kirby continued to write new material and recorded four more CDs with Key West producer/engineer Dan Simpson. In 2008 luck struck again when famed drummer/producer Russ Kunkel offered to produce Kirby’s Row Me Home CD at his studio in Los Angeles. “Next thing I know I’m cutting my songs in the Hollywood Hills with Russ, bassist Leland Sklar and guitarist Dean Parks and feeling like the luckiest guy in the world.”

Speaking of luck, Kirby’s wistful ballad “Lucky Enough” struck a chord with listeners on Sirius/XM Radio Margaritaville, which exposed his music to more markets around the country and led to his current touring schedule through 35 states each year. He continues to receive regular airplay on the station.

Kirby joined a group of friends in 2011 to open the Smokin’ Tuna Saloon, a 200-seat bar and music venue in Key West where Kirby performs often in winter months. The Tuna is also host to the Key West Songwriter’s Festival. The festival is in its 20th year and has exploded into the largest event of its kind in the country, featuring more than 150 songwriters every year.

In 2013 Kirby released his seventh CD, Sol Searching, a collaboration with producer/engineer/musician Lew London. “Lew was great to work with as he’s so multi-talented,” says Kirby. “He performed for years with Steve Goodman and is such a fine songwriter in his own right that he really understands how to build a sound around acoustically based songs.”

Scott  Kirby’s latest CD, Chasing Hemingway’s Ghost, was recorded with and produced by Matt and Andy Thompson in their studio in Nashville and released in 2017.

When it comes to songwriting, Kirby respects authenticity and counts on everyday life and his coastal roots for much of his inspiration. “I don’t wake up every day thinking about writing the next commercial hit,” says Kirby. “Songwriting for me is about telling stories, expressing emotions, and commentary on things I may find funny or absurd.”

Over the years Kirby has shared the stage with some of his favorite artists: Carole King, Jimmy Buffett, Livingston Taylor, Tom Rush, Mac McAnally, Peter Mayer and others. When not on the road or performing in Key West, Kirby splits his time between Livingston, Montana, and the coast of New Hampshire where he can often be found sailing, a lifelong passion of this descendant of Newfoundland fishermen.

Yes, Scott Kirby is—as he readily admits—lucky enough.

This episode was recorded months before COVID-19 happened, and Social Distancing was the new catchphrase.

I spoke with their team today and they wanted to let you know that they are OPEN FOR BUSINESS from 12pm – 8pm every day for TAKE OUT ONLY during the crisis.

Location: 1105 Duval Street, Key West, Florida

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Robin Bartley, the head ice cream maker.

We talk about the love of sweet delicious Key West ice cream, which puts a smile on everyone’s face 😎.

More on Flaming Crossing Ice Cream

Since 1987 Flamingo Crossing makes all its ice cream on the premises with the finest ingredients and is without doubt the best ice cream in Key West.

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/flamingo_crossing

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/flamingocrossing.keywest/