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Restaurant News

  1. Dining Planner: New Vinoy speakeasy, new Kahwa and … lobster at Subway?

    Food & Dining


    Subway is selling lobster rolls, and they’re pretty darn good. It’s $17.95 for a foot-long, $9.95 for a 6-inch sandwich — a lot of money by Subway standards but a mere pittance when compared to one eaten dockside in Kennebunkport. Not all stores sell them, but you’ll find them at the Hillsborough Avenue location in Tampa, Tampa Road in Oldsmar, Park Boulevard in Pinellas Park, Brian Dairy Road in Largo and on Fourth Street in St. Pete, which is where I had one — and, sure enough, it’s a pretty upstanding sandwich: a good ratio of seafood shreds to discernable claw meat, not too much mayo, ribbons of cold iceberg and a soft roll that can be toasted for greater verisimilitude.
  2. It's raining naan: New Indian restaurants around Tampa Bay are both affordable and familiar

    Food & Dining


    It's raining naan, hallelujah. Indian food is one of my faves, that wonderful array of spices, with textural interest provided by soupy lentil dals, spongy housemade cheese, fuchsia-tinged tandoori meats, pillowy puffed breads and condiments with heat and sizzle. In the past few weeks a …

    Customers enjoy a buffet lunch at Clay Oven Indian Cuisine in St. Petersburg.
  3. Dining Planner: Where to eat on the Fourth of July, plus a showing from Dr. BBQ

    Food & Dining

    For most of us, Saturday evening will culminate in looking skyward while saying, "Oooooohhhhhhh." July Fourth fireworks displays are preceded in large measure by backyard barbecues, but if you find yourself peckish preshow, here are some dining suggestions.


    Chef Ted Dorsey grills lobster at the Copperfish Restaurant located at 1502 S Howard Ave, Tampa.
  4. Review: Fabrica Woodfired Pizza brings custom pizzas to Tampa's Channel District

    Food & Dining


    If you work out at the Orangetheory Fitness center in Channelside, you've got to be a little nervous right now. Your spandex is soggy and your muscles burn, time to go out and rock the day. But what's this? The smell of thin-crust Neapolitan-style pizza? Each pie customized and available in 90 seconds? …

    The Carni pizza, with San Marzano tomato sauce, oven-roasted peppers, Italian sausage, beef and pork meatballs, pepperoni, fresh garlic and oregano, is among the pies at Fabrica Woodfired Pizza in Tampa.
  5. Where to eat in Orlando: a raft of new restaurants

    Food & Dining


    Maybe the kids are spending the week at Camp Kennedy Space Center, or the family has driven over to check out the 400 skeletons in dioramas at the new Skeletons: Animals Unveiled! on I-Drive or the similarly ghoulish Mummies of the World Exhibition at the Orlando Science Center. Or maybe you're taking …

    Offerings at Artisan’s Table, in downtown, include shrimp and grits, with seared royal red shrimp, cheddar and spinach grits, and tomato salsa. The restaurant offers breakfast, lunch and dinner.
  6. Restaurant review: La Fondita de Leo brings novel cuisine to downtown Clearwater

    Food & Dining


    Downtown Clearwater, the toughest restaurant territory in the Tampa Bay area. Is it the longtime construction that has made getting there tricky? Or maybe the lack of cultural amenities beyond the Capitol Theatre and the odd gallery or two? Or could it be the huge Scientology complex looming …

    Mofongo, a dish of mashed fried plantains, garlic, bits of bacon and meat, topped with mushrooms or cilantro chimichurri sauce, is on the menu at La Fondita de Leo in downtown Clearwater.
  7. Follow our new social media accounts for food

    Food & Dining

    As journalists, we're always looking for more ways to connect with readers, whether that's through an online chat or the pages of this section. That's why we've started two new social media accounts for Tampa Bay Times food content. Starting now, readers and fellow foodies can follow along on Facebook at

  8. Tampa restaurant Rooster & the Till raising money to help send employee to college

    Food & Dining

    It was supposed to be a surprise, but Hassan Lewis, 18, was noodling on Rooster & the Till's Instagram feed and was shocked to see his own face.

    Rooster & the Till dishwasher Hassan Lewis graduated this year from Leto High School in Tampa and hopes to go to USF.
  9. First look at new pan-Asian restaurant Souzou in downtown St. Petersburg

    Food & Dining


    One of the six dramatic black-and-white charcoal canvases depicting fierce shogun warriors looks suspiciously like Frank Zappa. The artist, Scott Fisher of St. Petersburg design firm T2theS, was not available to confirm Wednesday afternoon, but Mike Harting and Patrick Marston spent a little time …

    The 180-seat Souzou Asian fusion restaurant, opening Monday at 435 Fifth Ave. N in St. Petersburg, features tables made of walnut slabs and offers something many restaurants on nearby Beach Drive cannot — a lot of available parking.
  10. Cigar City Brewing, Florida Cattlemen's Association are partnering to make a craft beer

    Food & Dining

    Florida cattle ranchers and Florida craft brewers have gotten cozy in the past couple years. Jim Strickland, past chairman of the Florida Cattlemen's Foundation, and the brewmasters at Ulele and 3 Daughters Brewing have entered into savvy collaborations, the spent grain from brewing going to nourish Strickland's cows; …

    Label courtesy Cigar City Brewing
  11. Wrap your hands around one of Tampa Bay's alterna-burgers

    Food & Dining

    If your cheeseburger paradise is one with some quirks, here are the Tampa Bay sandwiches for you.

    Laura Reiley, Times food critic

    Brick House Tavern + Tap

    Square 1’s Portobello Burger is topped with greens, avocado, tomato slices, goat cheese spread and sun-dried tomato mayo.
  12. Tampa Bay chefs weigh in on how to craft a perfect burger

    Food & Dining

    What is the secret to a truly great hamburger? When we put the question to local chefs and restaurateurs, they each offered different versions of the same answer: Use quality ingredients.

    The Jameson Burger at James Joyce Irish Pub in Tampa is Angus beef topped with barbecue sauce made with Jameson whiskey, candied bacon and fried crispy onions. It recently took top honors as Best Burger in the Bay at Tampa’s annual Burger Showdown.
  13. Review: Engine Rose builds on success of burger hot spot Engine No. 9

    Food & Dining


    There comes a point during a Tampa Bay summer — the air is hot breath on the back of the neck, car seats feel like the surface of the sun, thunderstorms scuttle all afternoon plans — where you don't feel smart for living here. We are not yet at that point. In fact, we've got a number of …

    Engine Rose, in the space formerly occupied by La Creperia Cafe, opened in December. It’s more of an outdoors spot than an indoors one. The kitchen is located in that shiny Airstream.
  14. Exclusive preview: Walking through new St. Petersburg restaurant Stillwaters tavern

    Food & Dining

    ST. PETERSBURG —Chef Jeffrey Jew walked down the line naming what was in each bubbling pot: This is barbecue sauce, that one's gumbo, this is smoked pork and that's beer cheese fondue, he noted, tweaking the flame down a bit.

    The tavern will be a 260-seat indoor/outdoor restaurant with black steel and reclaimed wood and warehouse-style windows.
  15. 10 Tampa Bay bars for watching Lightning games

    Food & Dining

    With the Stanley Cup Finals now in Chicago, thousands of Lightning fans will be flooding watch parties away from the stadium. Because no fan should have to cheer on the home team alone, we took the liberty of gathering up the best bars and restaurants to check out while the Bolts are out of town.

    Hattricks …

    Luis Santana  |   Times (12/7/2012, Tampa, FL)   Barfly photo for Hattricks Tavern in Downtown Tampa. [Luis Santana | Times]