As all foodies probably know, Tampa Florida has dozens of nationally acclaimed restaurants, and each one is amazing. With all the entertainment you can find at Tampa, along with all of the delicious food it offers, it’s no wonder that people are visiting it constantly.
When those tourists visit, they see tons of available options to choose from, tons of different restaurants to pick, so to say the least, it can be kinda annoying figuring out a good place to go for the entire group. With a list that I had to cut in half twice for time’s sake, here is a list of the absolutely best restaurants in Tampa.
The Oxford Exchange is not at the top of the list because it’s the absolute best restaurant to choose, as there is no best, preference wise. This is on the top of our list because of its ability to multitask. It is the perfect place for anyone that wants to get work done, as its environment and atmosphere replicates a work studio and library, on top of being a restaurant.
The food of course is amazing, as everyone on this list is going to be, they serve a variety of food at all times of the day. You could try some smoked salmon, breakfast tacos, American burgers, etc. This place doesn’t disappoint given the tons of options it lets its patrons have, the atmosphere they want and the food. The service though is the only mandatory thing provided to guests, all the staff are awesome, serving you with a smile.
The C House
The C House is a stark contrast from the Oxford Exchange, this restaurant is thought up in its entirety of giving a warm homey feeling for its guests. As soon as you step through the front door, you feel like you’re about to sit down for a holiday meal with the family. It’s a nice feeling to have as you scarf down their amazing food.
The food choices on the menu resemble what you would have at. anormal family dinner, but better. Burgers, smoked fillets, chicken wings, crustacean rolls, etc. It’s what I imagine a big family would have for special occasions, not a holiday though, not a big turkey and stuffing, but like a family get together. The theme of course is the warm family feelings as I said, and the staff are a part of it as well, they give you a warm welcome, make sure you’re comfortable at your table, the whole nine yards. So, if you’re feeling a little nostalgic about your childhood days, you can stop by here on your trip.
Big Ray’s Fish Camp
Big Ray’s Fish Camp is as fun as it sounds, which is amazing as it trying to replicate the theme of a fishing shack. You grab your food from the bar, and then you can go out on the deck or at some for the picnic tables they laid out. The seafood front is doing great at this place, and it is amazing for anyone who’s craving dishes from the deep.
Ironically though, Big Ray’s most famous dish is not a seafood themed one. There most famous dish is the Grouper Burgers, which are mouth watering good, and something that I highly recommend. Of course, though, if you want seafood, they have shrimp po-boys, lobster corn dogs, and onion rings that are to die for.
There is an annoying problem with this place though and it’s that it has no indoor seating, your gonna have to go and eat your food in the heat, and in Florida that’s not too much fun. Now, you’re probably wondering why this got put on this with such a big flaw, but the food is really just to good not to talk about it. So, if it’s a cool day out, or you want to take it to go, then Big Ray’s is one of the best options.
Oak and Ola
This snazzy place is located in the Heights Public Market and is one of the absolute best restaurants in Tampa, which is surprising, because it is also one of its youngest, only opening a few years ago back in 2019.
What’s not surprising is why it’s grown so big, so fast. The interior of the place is a renovated TECO streetcar warehouse, which just from that one description makes it the coolest restaurant on our list. The food though is what you need to come for, the selection being Euro-American Fare. All the dishes are simple in comparison to other places, but the taste is much better than what said other places can offer. Being on this list, Oak and Ola is definitely a place for you to check out.
We’ve talked about the homiest restaurant, and the coolest, and the one with no indoor dining, but this one’s claim to fame is for its iconic everything. Ulele is a renovated waterworks building, giving it a chic, industrial kind of vibe, which is an all-around good choice as it obviously draws in tons of guests, all of which leave singing its praises.
The food takes an interesting take in Ulele, as it is based on Florida. With fresh and local ingredients, they create amazing, exciting dishes, which spectacularly change with the seasons. In the summer they could be serving some classic Florida burgers, or in the fall be serving some nostalgic pastries for dessert.
While many of those dishes are amazing, I am obligated and delighted to mention that Ulele has a must try dish, that everybody has recommended to me. The yellowfin tune crusted pumpkin seeds with alligator hush puppies. It sounds like an amazing array of random words put together, but like the dish itself blend so seamlessly to deliver the best title for it, blunt and beautiful. Seriously stop here if you get the chance, it’s to die for.
I have got to admit that I have not personally tried Thai food, and probably won’t for quite a while, but this place is starting to make it a priority. The Thai Temple is also not an ordinary restaurant, but a strange sort of market, where you can try an assortment of delicacies to your hearts content. I certainly will be trying as much of the food as I can when I eventually drop by.
I’ve heard that they make fried bananas, top of my list personally, pad Thai, mango sticky rice, spring rolls, etc. So, plenty to choose from, and easily seen as why it’s on this list. Interesting food, interesting place to see, an all-around new experience for lots of people. If you ever decide to go, then lets us know which dish was your favorite.
Café Creole is amazing with its New Orleans Creole, making amazing, delicious dishes for every patron to enjoy. The service with the food combination is a crazy one two hit of excellence that will leave you feeling happy on your drive back to your bed.
You can try their famous red beans with rice and sausage, fried okra, which is complimentary, jambalaya, and dozens of other amazing dishes to try. Every local in the area says it’s one of the best restaurants in the area, most saying it’s one of the best in Florida, those daring enough say it’s one of the best in the world. I will definitely be having dinner their next time I’m in Tampa.
Ella’s Americana Folk Art Café
If you like comfort food, then this should be your pick. Ella’s Americana Folk Art Café has some of the most scrumptious foods to date, with different choices for every part of the day. You can get some amazing food at the Sunday brunch, or get a juicy meal for dinner any other day.
Along with the food is plenty of art and live music for you to enjoy, making it onto our list as one of Tampa’s all-time best restaurants to eat at. This restaurant has really grown online with the use of one of the best Tampa SEO Company.
This is the second restaurant to feature the sea food fun, and luckily this place has the nice refreshing A.C of indoor dining. The Heights Seafood is loved by everyone who visits with its natural ambiance and delicious dishes of culinary delight. You can’t go wrong with any of the choices on its menu and the service will make you want to leave a big tip. This is honestly one of my favorite sea food places, they just have some of the best hush puppies around.
This restaurant is the one that’s the most fun, it’s been described as if “Willy Wonka owned the place.” Datz is another comfort food hobble for guests, and is one of best restaurants in Tampa, which is even agreed upon with the Food Network, claiming that this establishment is one of the reasons that Tampa is so popular with food in the first place.
The food here is also the strangest on this list as they take classic American or otherwise dishes that you love and put a wacky twist on them for the guest’s enjoyment and discovery. You could get any sort of food combination placed in front of you and you wouldn’t know what it was even though you asked for it. you would still love the taste of it no doubt, it being some of the best food in the Florida no doubt. I can’t wait to go and see first-hand how amazing this place is, everyone one of the people I’ve talked to about it can’t seem to stop bragging about it.
The Columbia is the best for a romantic dinner between a couple, the atmosphere is just perfect for it. It boasts over a hundred years of culture, food, and history, this sleepy café was turned into the energetic, fun, lively place perfect for dancing and inspiration.
The hospitality from the staff is unparalleled as they have been doing it for over a hundred years, this restaurant is a family business, and has been handing it off to the next generation, letting them make the experience better for each new guest with every renovation or idea.
The menu is downright one of the best in the country and is cooked in the perfect amount of time for a couple to dance to a few songs on the dance floor. When you get back, your delicious Columbian food will be waiting for you, still warm.
This is my friends all around favorite, every one of them all ways suggest for couples to come here if there looking for an amazing place to go have dinner. As such, the glowing recommendations, the delicious food, and amazing atmosphere we’ve put The Columbia on this list.
Moving on from the Columbian food, we head into the fu Caribbean experience that is Yah Mon. This fine dining restaurant is the best reviewed and highest rated place in Tampa, so we decided to put it as the last on our list, saving the best for last.
The atmosphere is filled with fun energy, love, and excitement that you rarely find in any other restaurant. The décor all screaming of high quality, yet welcoming invite for anyone who may want to try the food they offer.
Similarly, to others on this list, Yah Man is a family-owned establishment and has been for quite some time, though not as long as The Columbia has been a family-owned place. The staff welcomes you in to be a part of their family for an hour or two as you enjoy the delicious food, they prepare for you, hot and ready in a timely manner.
Something that is just really great to know is that all of the dishes served at Yah Mon is used with organic products and seasoning, making most of the dishes served, gluten free, and healthier than other places you might want to visit. This is on the top of my list to visit, it’s just looks to amazing to ignore.