Shantell Williams 

Shantell’s Cafe

Shantell Williams (photo by Rob Bartlett)

Shantell Williams (photo by Rob Bartlett)

Shantell Williams, the affable proprietor of this stylish Sanford soul-food joint, has words for you: “Put down the remote and come join me for dinner! Just one bite and you’ll feel the love.”

Williams is all about the love – “Do what you love and it will love you back. Our goal here is to share just a little of that love with the world,” she swears – and her culinary career was born from that love; her daughter was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes at age 2, and that led Williams to the kitchen.

“No one should have to forgo the magic of comfort food, so we offer delights for the diabetic and meal-planning for those with special dietary needs without sacrificing any of the love.” Or the flavor, to be sure: Shantell’s sells a 1-pound burger that’ll knock your socks off, as well as perfectly executed chicken and waffles, fried flounder and fried okra. Some items, like a mac-and-cheese-topped portobello mushroom, are atypical but nonetheless noteworthy. Desserts change daily, but whatever Shantell’s got, get it.

406 S. Sanford Ave., Sanford, 407-732-7728; $$

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