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Helen Freund - Times Food Critic

Times Food Critic

I write about food and restaurants in the Tampa Bay area. When I’m not writing about food or restaurants I’m probably talking about food or restaurants, or, you know, actually eating food at restaurants. I was never a picky eater, and never had a chance to be: Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, saying ‘no’ to things like geoduck sashimi or fiddlehead fern pesto just wasn’t cool. Instead, I tried everything, and have ever since. I studied journalism at the University of Washington and cooking at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. I most recently was the restaurant critic and dining editor of Gambit Weekly in New Orleans - another place where people love to eat and drink. When I’m not eating, I’m probably scuba diving and tagging along with spearfishers, hoping they’ll spear some dinner for me.

  1. The gingerbread latte at Intermezzo Coffee.
    From a Thai temple to a French bistro, here are some of our favorite bites this month.
  2. Lingr on 6th St., coming to St. Petersburg in spring 2020, marks the first solo culinary project for local chef and 'Top Chef' alum Jeffrey Jew.
    The former Stillwaters Tavern and BellaBrava chef will launch his first solo project in 2020.
  3. Arugula with proscuitto and burrata is on the menu at Soul Sicilian Fusion located in downtown  Clearwater, Florida on Tuesday, November 26, 2019.
    The downtown Clearwater restaurant hews closely to simple Italian classics. | Restaurant review
  4. Diners at Yummy House in Tampa.
    Escape the traditional holiday menus at these Tampa Bay restaurants.
  5. USFSP International Club's vice president Maria Novoa Pinzon and international student adviser Angelica Rodriguez Jimenez put the finishing touches on the club's Friendsgiving potluck.
    From pad Thai to lechon kawali, it’s a multicultural smorgasbord.
  6. Holmes Beach restaurant Eliza Ann’s Coastal Kitchen will serve a three-course, pre-fixe Turkey Day menu.
    In search of a holiday spread you don’t have to cook? Here’s your go-to list for Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Dunedin and more.
  7. Death By Pepperoni Pizza.
    Get ready for some dinner theater at this pizzeria. | Restaurant review
  8. Hiramasa crudo at Anchor & Brine.
    Some of our favorite sips and bites around Tampa Bay right now.
  9. Strandhill Public's version of a Scotch egg consists of a six-minute egg wrapped in ground pork and panko, served with pickled red peppers and spicy hollandaise.
    Tavern cuisine gets a modern riff at this Irish pub and restaurant. | Restaurant review
  10. Part of Sundial in St. Petersburg will become a food hall. The mall is currently a mixture of retail stores and restaurants.
    The Armature Works project will redevelop 25,000 square feet of commercial space in downtown St. Petersburg.