801 Old Water St., Tampa, FL 33602
Features: Outdoor seating
Cost range: 1.0-10.0
Payment options: Credit cards accepted
Alcohol: Full bar
More in this neighborhood: Downtown Tampa
The Tampa Bay History Center has hired the right restaurateur. Richard Gonzmart, great-grandson of Casimiro Hernandez Sr., founder of Columbia Restaurant in Tampa's Historic Ybor City, is passionate about Ybor City, about local food history and about Cuban sandwiches (not necessarily in that order). The center's Columbia Cafe concerns itself with authenticity. It has a gorgeous wooden bar that is a reproduction of the original Columbia's bar, with black-and-white prints of old Ybor on the walls. Its menu is dotted with chunky text explaining the Ybor staples (devil crab croquettes, Cuban bread, Spanish bean soup). Prepare for a treat in the spring or fall, when you'll be able to enjoy the outdoor deck that overlooks the channel separating Tampa from Harbour Island.
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