People gotta eat, and when you’re on vacation, you gotta eat well. Part of the fun of travelling is getting to explore different restaurants and cuisine. You don’t go to Rome and head straight for the nearest McDonalds. When you’re in Tampa Bay, Florida, you might as well take advantage of all the local and high class food options that are here.
I put together a list of restaurants that I personally love going too, for all different tastes.
Gaspar’s Grotto – Tampa (Restaurant / Bar)
If you’re looking to just kick back and have a good time somewhere that’s a little more than ordinary, this is a good place to start. It’s a pirate themed restaurant, yes pirate themed, with eye patches, swords, and scallywags. I have a good time there every time I go. The atmosphere is just so fun and the food and drinks are on point. The food is mostly a modern American / Cuban menu, but that’s really to be expected from the area. So no surprise there. I have to say that the food has all been very good and I’ve never walked away disappointed. On top of that, there’s not 1, not 2, but 3 bars there, each with there own different flair. This way, you can spend the night there, feeling like you’re bar hopping and not having to go anywhere. It can get a little loud and rowdy, but it’s all because people are having a good time. If you’re looking for that type of scene, then this is a good stop.
Ulele – Tampa (Seafood Restaurant)
This is easily one of my favorite places to eat, by far! They serve a lot of seafood and I looove seafood. Everything I have ever ordered there has honestly blown me away. It’s not really a party spot like Gaspar’s, but it is still casual dining with excellent food. The service here is great and when you leave, all you’ll be able to think about is what you are going to order the next time you come back. Since I’m a fatty, I’m going to list for you the best meal I’ve had there. Don’t judge me, because it’s a lot of food and I shared it with my wife, but the shame and regret of eating it all was totally worth it.
- Appitizers – Lobster Claw Cocktail and Crab Mac and Cheese
- 1 Dozen Oysters on the Half Shell
- Main Course – Seafood Risotto and Juan’s Snapper
- Sides – Jalepeno Corn Beer Muffins and Collard Greens
- Desert – Chocolate Torte and Toasted Coconut Ice Cream
If that doesn’t get your mouth watering, I don’t know what will. I can’t recommend this place enough. You gotta trust me on this one and try it out. You won’t regret it.
Datz – Tampa (Gastropub)
Datz is a very cool place. It has a unique menu and rustic feel. Everything there is so authentic and homemade. They work with the bakery next door to give you freshness every day. They have a pretty large menu that’s made up of stuff that you would expect to find on a bar menu – deep fried, greasy, cheesy, bacon-y, deliciousness from top to bottom. The real fun part is their cocktail menu. They have an awesome selection of beer, scotch, whiskey, mezcal, and bourbon along with signature mixed drinks. No matter how your day is going, stopping in here for a few drinks with friends can only make it better.
There are so many great places to spend some time and get a great meal in Tampa. I just wanted to point out a couple of my favorites in the hopes that you might enjoy them as much as I do. Also, there’s no harm in trying to support places with great service and great product. Hopefully they will stay in business a long time. Good luck in your search for good eats! You really can’t go wrong here.