Saturday, June 23, 2018
Features and More

Easter brunch options abound around Tampa Bay

Here is a sampling of Easter brunches around Tampa Bay. Many other restaurants follow suit, with buffets, prix fixe meals and a la carte brunches. Be sure to call ahead for reservations. For more restaurant listings, go to tampabay.com/things-to-do.

Carmel Café & Wine Bar serves Easter brunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. with items like French toast stuffed with fontina, provolone and Serrano ham, and a free glass of prosecco or mimosa. 2548 McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater, (727) 724-4228 and 14306 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa; (813) 265-1415, carmelcafe.com.

The Cafe at Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg hosts a special buffet brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. with salad and seafood stations, carving stations (spinach- and pine nut-stuffed pork loin, herbed New York strip loin), omelets cooked to order, eggs Benedict and so forth, $39 for adults, $19 for children under 12. 255 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg, (727) 896-2667, fine-arts.org.

This year, First Watch will feature 15 new menu items from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Easter, including four omelets, four sandwiches, three skillet hashes, one salad, a frittata and something called the energy bowl. 2569 Countryside Blvd., Clearwater, (727) 712-8769, 2726 E Fowler Ave., Tampa, (813) 975-1718 and other locations, firstwatch.com.

Pelagia Trattoria expands its popular Easter buffet, with seatings from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., with hot and cold foods (grilled salmon with caper dill sauce, waffles with cappuccino mousse and candied walnuts), carving station, cooked-to-order egg station that converts to a pasta station at 3 p.m., an array of baked goods and desserts for $40 per adult and $16 for children 12 and under. 4200 Jim Walter Blvd., Tampa, (813) 313-3235, pelagiatrattoria.com.

Backwaters on Sand Key (1261 Gulf Blvd., Clearwater, (727) 517-7383) will offer a number of Easter dinner specials ranging from $16 to $24, served from 4 to 10 p.m., and its sister restaurant, Maggie Mae's on the Bluffs (2961 West Bay Drive, Belleair Bluffs, (727) 724-4243) also does an a la carte Sunday brunch with three or four specials for the holiday ranging from $6.99 to $12.99.

Bailey's routinely does a Sunday brunch with live jazz from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Easter's band: 2 Saxy). In addition to the regular brunch a la carte menu, there will be beef tenderloin and lamb chops and an array of other savory treats and strawberry shortcake to finish. There also will be an egg hunt around the restaurant. 238 E Davis Blvd., Tampa, (813) 254-8018, baileycatering.com.

Beginning with Easter and followed by Mother's and Father's Day, Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar serves a three-course sit-down menu with a focus on traditional dishes (filet mignon Benedict, shrimp or filet frittata, and a filet mignon cobb salad). Easter hours are 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. The prix fixe menu is $34.95, with a children's version for $16.95. Blood Orange Fizz, a new brunch cocktail, is offered for $6.95. 4322 W Boy Scout Blvd., Tampa, (813) 874-9463, flemingssteakhouse.com.

In addition to serving its full dinner menu all day on Easter and Mother's Day, Ocean Prime will serve a supplemental small brunch menu including king crab Benedict, short rib hash and blueberry French toast from 11 a.m. on. Guests can also choose from regular menu items like Chilean sea bass in champagne truffle sauce and 12-ounce bone-in filet paired with supper club sides, including black truffle macaroni & cheese, lobster mashed potatoes and sauteed wild mushrooms. 2205 N West Shore Blvd., Tampa, (813) 490-5288, ocean-prime.com.

Chef Tyson Grant and crew at Parkshore Grill offer a full regular menu for the holiday, as well as a special Easter menu for $50, which includes items such as rosemary grilled Niman Ranch lamb sirloin with toasted walnut arugula pistou, pan-seared scallops with fennel risotto, and iced Florida shrimp cocktail. 300 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg, (727) 896-3463, parkshoregrill.com.

Grill 131 serves an Easter dinner — more "linner" than brunch — noon until 7 p.m. for $19.90. It includes spring pea-potato vichyssoise and roasted leg of lamb with country mustard cream. 13079 Park Blvd. N, Seminole, (727) 393-1703, grill131.com.

— Laura Reiley, Times Food Critic

Comments
Finding the fun in a family road trip

Finding the fun in a family road trip

When Matt Villano sets out on the 560-mile road trip from his home in Healdsburg, California, to San Diego in July, his game plan will be carefully crafted. When you’re traveling with three kids under age 10, you have no choice.Villano, a freelance w...
Published: 06/23/18
See Datz pastry chef Alicia Wolding on Netflix’s Sugar Rush

See Datz pastry chef Alicia Wolding on Netflix’s Sugar Rush

When Alicia Wolding joined Datz as the new executive pastry chef last year her hair was rainbow — pretty much the whole ROY G BIV spectrum in cascading tresses. More recently, it’s bright purple, somewhere between iris and lilac. This is the color yo...
Published: 06/22/18
Enjoy Israeli Couscous, Swiss Chard and Peppers warm or at room temperature

Enjoy Israeli Couscous, Swiss Chard and Peppers warm or at room temperature

By Katie WorkmanIsraeli or Mediterranean couscous are tiny balls of toasted semolina pasta that plump up when cooked into toothsome, slightly less tiny balls of pasta. They make a great base for a side or salad. You can make the couscous according to...
Published: 06/22/18
Bar review: St. Pete’s Garage is a dive with Pride

Bar review: St. Pete’s Garage is a dive with Pride

Last year’s St. Pete Pride went smoothly, despite some behind-the-scenes drama involving the decision to relocate the parade to the downtown waterfront, rather than the Grand Central District, where it had traditionally been held. After all, the Gran...
Published: 06/21/18
Local craft beer of the week: Beach Slap Piña Colada Wheat Ale from Mad Beach Craft Brewing Company

Local craft beer of the week: Beach Slap Piña Colada Wheat Ale from Mad Beach Craft Brewing Company

"Hooray, it’s summer!" exclaimed no Floridians. But if it’s summer proper and not just the usual year-round weather, you might as well embrace the heat and humidity with a trip to the beach, accompanied by some suitably refreshing beers. While you’r...
Published: 06/21/18
Wine dinners, beer projects and more will wet your whistle this summer

Wine dinners, beer projects and more will wet your whistle this summer

FILIPINO FOOD: WELCOME CHISMISHave you been to the Heights Public Market at the 73,000-square-foot Armature Works yet? It’s the buzzy food market in Tampa Heights with more than a dozen vendors offering up everything from rolled ice cream to Cuban sa...
Published: 06/20/18
On stage this week: Freefall Theatre’s ‘The Musical of Musicals,’ Jay Pharoah

On stage this week: Freefall Theatre’s ‘The Musical of Musicals,’ Jay Pharoah

SENDUP: MUSICAL OF MUSICALSFive composers, a talented cast, choreography by Cheryl Lee and music directed by Michael Raabe — that’s Freefall Theatre’s recipe for a laugh-filled, season-ending summer musical, appropriately titled The Musical of Musica...
Published: 06/20/18
Artists’ talks and Sharon Norwood’s definition of beauty

Artists’ talks and Sharon Norwood’s definition of beauty

MARK MAKING: DEFINING BEAUTYBlack, squiggly lines are at the center of multidisciplinary artist Sharon Norwood’s works, an exhibition of which titled "Defining Beauty" opens at Tempus Projects on Saturday. Norwood’s use of the line in a variety of me...
Published: 06/20/18
Here’s the skinny on the ketogenic diet: What it is, how to follow it properly

Here’s the skinny on the ketogenic diet: What it is, how to follow it properly

It started with jugs of olive oil and cans of tuna, lots of it, which my husband hauled in one day and plunked on the counter. "That’s my lunch!"That was about three months ago, and every day since there has been a new entity in our house to consider...
Published: 06/20/18
Five ideas for rainbow-themed foods to serve at your Pride party

Five ideas for rainbow-themed foods to serve at your Pride party

More than 50,000 people are estimated to attend Pride weekend in St. Petersburg, which runs Friday to Sunday. (June is LGBTQ Pride Month.) Whether you plan to march in the parade or host your own smaller gathering, we’ve selected five rainbow-themed ...
Published: 06/20/18