After spending the morning perusing the antique shops along 1st Street in Sanford, Florida we had worked up an appetite. A real German-styled restaurant , Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe at 205 E. 1st Street, Sanford, Florida 32771 (Phone 407-321-2204) caught our attention. The restaurant offers seating either street side or inside in the air-conditioning. Outside under an awning the patio is filled with tables, some with umbrellas. People bring their dogs along as they have a casual meal with friends. You can sit out here and watch the world go by. During the winter, when the weather requires, the outside heaters are fired up to ensure the guests comfort. Inside the restaurant, the atmosphere is bright and busy. German decorations including beer signs, stags heads and more are displayed on the walls.
Service proved to be fast and efficient. They have a host at a podium outside that seats people. The wait staff are more than happy to make recommendations for beer to go with your meal.
The restaurant is open seven days a week, but the hours vary. Monday, the Willow tree is open from 11 am – 3 pm and only serves lunch. The rest of the week, the Willow Tree serves lunch and dinner with the dinner menu being offered from 4 pm. It’s open 11 am – 9 pm from Tuesdays through Thursdays and also on Sunday. On Fridays and Saturdays the hours are 11 am until 10 pm. Entertainment is offered Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Afternoons on Saturday and Sunday typically feature Nash Rambler, a guitarist and vocalist. Evenings feature live entertainment with accordion playing, yodeling and more performed by the duo Schunkel Abend.
Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe features over fifty beers! If you’re thirsty for some real German brews then this is the place to visit. Wash your meal down with a specialty brew. Appetizers such as potato pancakes, white asparagus with ham and melon run about $5.20 and up. Salads range from about $7.50 USD to $10.00 and include the traditional Cobb and Chef salads or the more exotic First Street Salad with a delicious apple, pecan and chicken salad. Sandwiches such as the Chicago, Red Baron, Alpiner to mention a few are stacked with meat on marbled rye, croissants or French bread. Sandwiches cost from about $7.00 up. For the more hearty appetite the menu features sausage plates, wursts, pork loin and schnitzels. Prices start at about$10.00 up to about $50.00. Be sure and save room for the fabulous desserts with coconut cream pie, lemon pie, cakes with real whipped cream and chocolate. Fantastic!
Reservations are recommended for dinners that feature live entertainment. Also, on the second Thursday of every month, the City of Sanford hosts an Alive After Five Street Party (AAF) and the restaurant fills up quickly. Jazzed in Sanford free concert series the first Saturday of each month in Magnolia Square also draws a hungry crowd and you may have to wait a bit for a table. Dress ranges from Florida casual (shorts and tee shirt) to business professional.
Parking can be rather difficult in downtown Sanford, especially during the Alive After Five and Jazzed in Sanford events. For Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe parking there is a free parking lot at the corner of Palmetto Avenue and 1st Street. Alternatively, you can parallel park street side if the space is available.
City of Sanford, About Sanford http://www.ci.sanford.fl.us/about.aspx
Willow Tree Cafe http://www.willowtreecafe.com/