Advertisement
  1. Life & Culture
  2. /
  3. Food

Critic’s plate: An afternoon snack at Tampa’s Anchor and Brine

Here’s where our food critic is eating right now.
Anchor and Brine, at the Tampa Marriott Water Street, features a seafood-focused menu and a waterside setting.
Anchor and Brine, at the Tampa Marriott Water Street, features a seafood-focused menu and a waterside setting. [ HELEN FREUND | Tampa Bay Times ]
Published Apr. 21|Updated Apr. 22

This column is part of an ongoing series that first appeared in Taste, a weekly newsletter from food and dining critic Helen Freund featuring restaurant news and Tampa Bay dining intel. To sign up for it, click here.

TAMPA — Last Friday, I took the Cross Bay Ferry from St. Petersburg over to Tampa for an afternoon stroll along the Riverwalk. It was a beautiful, sunny day and I was in the mood to walk and sightsee.

Unfortunately, my plans were cut short when I realized some poor planning on my part. It was a hotter day than I’d expected, with temps in the high 80s, and I had my mother along, who was visiting from out of town and had recently sprained her ankle.

After less than a mile, we realized that walking the Riverwalk wasn’t going to be quite as enjoyable as we’d hoped.

Parched and in need of a shady pick-me-up, we decided on a late afternoon lunch at Anchor and Brine instead. That was a great decision.

The restaurant, which sits right outside the Tampa Marriott Water Street, overlooks Garrison Channel and features an entirely al fresco setup. Even on hotter days, the light breeze off the water and the ample shaded seating provide a nice refuge from the sun while diners still get to enjoy the outdoors.

The spot from chef Richard Sandoval opened shortly before the pandemic began, and the menu has changed somewhat in the interim. Though a few dishes that were favorites of mine (the hiramasa crudo, for one) have since been replaced, I was happy to find that there are still plenty of great options to choose from.

Plus, a lazy afternoon snack by the water on a beautiful Friday afternoon really can’t be beat.

What we ate

Sautéed mussels are served in a smoky tomato broth with paprika butter and sourdough toast for dunking.
Sautéed mussels are served in a smoky tomato broth with paprika butter and sourdough toast for dunking. [ HELEN FREUND | Tampa Bay Times ]

Sautéed mussels: My favorite dish of the day, these arrived swimming in a smoky tomato broth flavored with paprika butter, studded with fat garlic cloves and cherry tomatoes. It was served with thick wedges of sourdough bread for dunking, and we didn’t let a drop of the delicious broth go to waste.

Fried calamari is served with a chipotle aioli.
Fried calamari is served with a chipotle aioli. [ HELEN FREUND | Tampa Bay Times ]

Fried calamari: A step above others in the genre, these arrived crispy-battered, paired with thin rings of juicy bell peppers. The bundle of tentacles came nestled in a creamy chipotle aioli and dotted with pickled chiles for heat and a splash of charred lemon, which lent a smoky jolt of acid that tied everything together.

Ceviche amarillo features squid, scallops and shrimp in an aguachile with orange segments.
Ceviche amarillo features squid, scallops and shrimp in an aguachile with orange segments. [ HELEN FREUND | Tampa Bay Times ]
Dig in to Tampa Bay’s food and drink scenes

Dig in to Tampa Bay’s food and drink scenes

Subscribe to our free Taste newsletter

Get the restaurant and bar news, insights and reviews you crave from food and dining critic Helen Freund every Thursday.

You’re all signed up!

Want more of our free, weekly newsletters in your inbox? Let’s get started.

Explore all your options

Ceviche amarillo: Perfect for the scorching day we were having, the refreshing bundle of shrimp, scallops and calamari arrived lightly marinated in a cooling aguachile, fiery with jalapenos but with plenty of cucumber, radish and juicy orange segments to temper the heat.

A classic Hemingway Daiquiri is served at Anchor and Brine in Tampa.
A classic Hemingway Daiquiri is served at Anchor and Brine in Tampa. [ HELEN FREUND | Tampa Bay Times ]

Hemingway Daiquiri: Named for the writer who put this lovely rum-forward quaff on the map, this classic rendition featured Havana Club rum, grapefruit juice, Luxardo maraschino liqueur and fresh lime.

If you go

505 Water St., Tampa. 813-204-6388. www.anchorandbrine.com

Advertisement

This site no longer supports your current browser. Please use a modern and up-to-date browser version for the best experience.

Chrome Firefox Safari Edge