Tampa Bay’s dining scene embraces local history even as it caters to the most forward-thinking foodies.

Tampa Bay – From its humble beginning more than a century ago to today’s cutting-edge culinary culture, Tampa Bay’s dining scene embraces local history even as it caters to the most forward-thinking foodies.

Withstanding the test of time.

Since 1905, diners at Florida’s oldest restaurant, the Columbia, have savored Spanish delicacies alongside authentic Cuban sandwiches — all under the guiding hand of five generations of the Gonzmart family.

The first drive-in restaurant east of the Mississippi, Goody Goody Burgers opened in 1925 catering to cars. Reborn as a sit-down restaurant in 2014, its crowd-pleasing menu still includes the signature POX burger (served with pickles, onions and a tomato-based special sauce) and delicious butterscotch pie.

The humble luncheonette called Bern and Gert’s Little Midway transformed in 1956 to become Bern’s Steak House, a national landmark famous for its aged steaks, endless wine list, and lavish Harry Waugh Dessert Room.

Recent and remarkable.

Since 2010, Chef Greg Baker, a favorite of the James Beard Foundation, has run The Refinery with a rule-bending menu that always exceeds expectations with dishes like Sunflowers Several Ways — which is made with every part of the sunflower.

Perched on the Tampa Riverwalk, Ulele welcomes a stream of diners to its outdoor patio and fantastic sunsets. Opened in 2014, its menu draws upon ingredients indigenous to local waters and farms. Beer drinkers delight in the restaurant’s on-site Ulele Spring Brewery.

New in town.

Since 2017, The Hall on Franklin has offered a stylish spot for a morning pick-me-up, a great place to grab lunch or a fun hang-out late at night. You can even purchase a table just like the one they’ll serve your delicious meal on.

Armature Works, opened in 2018 in the historic home of Tampa Bay’s old streetcar system. Today the mixed-use space houses Heights Public Market food hall, featuring a dozen local restaurants. It’s an experience like none other – just like Tampa Bay’s entire dining scene.

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