A list of Tampa Bay businesses offering free food and drink to frontline coronavirus workers

You can chip in with your wallet (or appetite), too.
World of Beer's Tampa Bay locations are matching every $10 meal purchased for a local health care worker with an additional meal.
World of Beer's Tampa Bay locations are matching every $10 meal purchased for a local health care worker with an additional meal. [ Courtesy of World of Beer ]
Published April 7, 2020|Updated April 20, 2020

A number of Tampa Bay restaurants and other food and drink businesses have started showing appreciation for those on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic with various freebies and discounts. Some of the giveaway offers even rely on the public’s participation.

Below is a running list of local spots supplying free meals, coffee and more to first responders and health care personnel. These are all subject to change.

3 Daughters Brewing: The brewery plans to donate 50 free cases of beer to randomly selected frontline workers from April 15 to 30. Suggest first responders, health care or grocery store staffers, janitors, postal or sanitation employees and other personnel by tagging 3 Daughters in a post on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. You must use the hashtag #FloridaHeroes and say why your nominee should be picked. Winners will visit the brewery to build a case of beer with four sick-packs of their choice. 222 22nd St. S, St. Petersburg. (727) 495-6002.

4 Rivers Smokehouse: Frontline health care workers and first responders receive 20 percent off orders placed online through May 30. They must enter the promo code 4RHEROE$ at checkout and show a valid ID at pickup. Locations vary.

Chicken Salad Chick: Franchisees Paul and Linsay Rohr, who own the Chicken Salad Chick locations in Palm Harbor, Seminole and Trinity, have been coordinating drop-offs of $10 meals to different Pasco and Pinellas cities since last month. The Rohrs’ latest initiative? Their Trinity restaurant will give the first 200 first responders to stop by for takeout on April 11 a free scoop of chicken salad and a free mask. 12096 State Road 54, Odessa. (727) 685-3888.

Community Cafe: Use the pay-it-forward program of this restaurant to feed health care and retail staff, among other frontline workers. All you have to do is purchase a digital gift card and enter Community Cafe’s email as the recipient. 3803 Haines Road N, St. Petersburg. (727) 222-6979.

Datz: Buy a $10 meal for a health care worker or two from Datz’s South Tampa location online. The restaurant will match each one sold and drop off the donations at Tampa General Hospital on Fridays. (813) 831-7000.

Food Not Flowers: The Tampa-based company reinventing the traditional care package sends free bundles of freshly prepared meals, cookies and gifts to medical and health care employees. If you know some, tag them on Food Not Flowers’ social media channels. The company will then select the giveaway winners. Toll-free 1-833-736-3363.

Related: Clearwater's Popical Popcorn donates its signature snack to nursing home staff

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop: Donate to the GoFundMe campaign launched last month by Fuzzy’s Taco Shops of Central Florida to help provide free meals to medical personnel across Hillsborough and Polk counties. The restaurant company operates the Fuzzy’s locations in Brandon, Riverview, Tampa and Lakeland. At the time of publication, the GoFundMe had raised more than $13,000 of its $20,000 goal.

Golden Dinosaurs Vegan Deli: The restaurant began dropping off boxed plant-based lunches to health care personnel the week of April 5. Golden Dinosaurs prepares and delivers 15 to 30 meals daily with help from the community. Support the initiative by buying one boxed lunch or a handful in bulk. 2930 Beach Blvd. S, Gulfport. (727) 873-6901.

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Grindhouse Coffee and Cafe: In addition to reducing its prices, the coffeehouse invites Clearwater police, firefighters and EMT to stop by for a free meal every day until normal business resumes and the pandemic restrictions are lifted. Medical Appreciation Week, running April 15 through 21, also gives a free meal to folks in the medical field who show their badges. Call in advance or order on site. 432 Cleveland St., Clearwater. (727) 300-0905.

Hooters: Health care workers, first responders and military personnel can take 20 percent off their takeout orders daily until further notice. All that Hooters requires is a proper form of ID. Call your nearest location to validate. Locations vary.

Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company: Joffrey’s has rolled out its mobile coffee bar to Raymond James Stadium in Tampa a few times and to Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg once to give free tea and coffee to their health care providers and volunteers. The company is in talks with a few other locations to keep paying it forward over the next couple of weeks.

Kahwa Coffee: As of March 26, doctors, nurses, health care providers and first responders can fuel up at any of the St. Petersburg roaster’s cafes at no cost. They must present a work ID to receive one free small coffee drink, at any of the Tampa Bay locations.

Sable Santana, an assistant manager with Kahwa Coffee, brings chairs inside the cafe on Second Avenue S on March 16 in St. Petersburg. Kahwa has moved to a to-go-only model in response to the coronavirus.
Sable Santana, an assistant manager with Kahwa Coffee, brings chairs inside the cafe on Second Avenue S on March 16 in St. Petersburg. Kahwa has moved to a to-go-only model in response to the coronavirus. [ CHRIS URSO | Times ]

Mole Y Abuela: First responders, frontline service staff and hospitality workers nab free and discounted meals from noon to 4 p.m. every Wednesday and Saturday. Free supplies and other giveaways are also on hand. Email for details. 1202 N Franklin St., Tampa. (813) 370-1000.

Pascal’s Artisan Bistro & Gourmet Coffee: Call in by 5 p.m. on Thursdays to buy a $10 lunch item for a Tampa General Hospital staffer. The eatery delivers donations to the hospital every Friday. This effort is part of a larger initiative that Pascal’s has teamed up on with other Tampa restaurants — Si-am Thaimerican Restaurant, Zudar’s on Platt, Farrells’ on the Island, Swann Ave. Market, Zydeco Brew Werks and Oggi Italian. They take turns feeding Tampa General Hospital throughout the week. 241 E Davis Blvd., Tampa. (813) 513-5478.

Popical Popcorn: Owner Lynn Roberts donates bags of the store’s organic gourmet popcorn to nursing home employees around Pinellas County, treating them to her signature snack. Email or call for details. 2551 Drew St., Clearwater. (727) 744-4191.

Related: Tampa events venue opens drive-in takeout hub for local food trucks

Surfside Taphouse: Clearwater police, firefighters and EMT are eligible for a free meal every day until normal business resumes and the pandemic restrictions are lifted. The restaurant, which has rolled out reduced pricing, also offers a free meal to medical personnel who show their badges during its Medical Appreciation Week from April 15 through 21. After that, folks in the medical field land 50 percent off food orders. Call in advance or order on site. 395 Mandalay Ave., Clearwater Beach. (727) 201-3530.

Rooster & the Till: Add to Rooster & the Till’s medical workers fund the next time you’re ordering takeout. All you have to do is let the restaurant know how much you’d like to contribute. Medical personnel can call in a free meal up to $20 as well. 6500 N Florida Ave., Tampa. (813) 374-8940.

Tampa Carryout: Your purchase at the collaborative drive-in food truck outpost helps supply free meals to frontline workers. To pick up their grub at no cost, first responders and health care personnel must order over the phone, mention where they work and arrive in uniform. Tabellas at Delaney Creek, 5818 Causeway Blvd., Tampa.

Tropical Smoothie: As part of the #InThisTogether campaign, Tropical Smoothie locations in Tampa Bay are helping the company reach its goal of donating 100,000 smoothies to health care workers and first responders nationwide. Pinellas County franchisees Brad, Jean and Lexi Freet have given away more than 600 smoothies so far. Their most recent drop took place at the Pinellas sheriff’s office on April 10. A franchisee in Tampa, Bhrugesh Patel, has also donated Tropical Smoothie’s signature drink to two Tampa spots: North Bay Animal Hospital and a Valley bank branch.

World of Beer: World of Beer is set to pay it forward once again. This craft beer bar and kitchen’s Fowler, Tampa International, South Tampa, Brandon and Westchase locations will match each $10 meal bought for a Brandon Regional Hospital worker through April 9 with an additional meal. Last week, the World of Beer crew donated more than 100 meals to ICU staff at Tampa General Hospital. They plan to focus their efforts on a new hospital every week. Locations vary.

Zauq: This small Pakistani/North Indian restaurant provides a free meal to vulnerable community members and health care workers. Co-owner Taimoor Bangash said Zauq received such a great response to the offer, which launched on March 24, that it has been extended for an indefinite period of time. 4040 W Waters Ave., Tampa. (813) 443-1720.