A lot of my friends lately have been asking me to write an article on the best restaurants in Florida, because they have been having trouble deciding where to eat. So, I’m compiling this list of all the things that make each of my favorite restaurants in Tampa so great.
First on the list is Malio’s Prime Steakhouse. Steakhouses are generally seen as higher-end establishments that end up really cutting into your wallets. Malio’s Prime Steakhouse breaks the cycle by affording the same quality of food, but for more affordable prices that enable entire families to eat without busting the bank.
Malio’s Prime Steakhouse is located in downtown Tampa, across the water from the Henry B. Plant Museum. Don’t go in expect to only be able to order steaks, though. This restaurant offers a wide, diverse selection, ranging from things like French onion soup to filet mignon. Malio’s Prime Steakhouse actually has my favorite French onion soup in town. I know its not everyone’s thing, but if you really enjoy it then this restaurant has what you’re looking for. All the waiters were friendly and accommodating, and they don’t pester you too much while you eat.
Some restaurants just have pesky waiters who are bored and don’t want to attend to their other tables, so they just annoy you the whole time while you try to eat. Not at Malio’s Prime Steakhouse, however. Anybody who wants to eat at a fine establishment that doesn’t entrap you with high prices, make sure to check out Malio’s Prime Steakhouse. If you don’t believe me, check all of their positive online reviews on google.
All of my friends would shame me if I didn’t put some amazing Cuban food on this list as well. The Columbia Restaurant in Tampa serves great food that I don’t get to eat on a regular basis. This time around, you’ll be eating in East Ybor in Tampa. While there are tons of Cuban restaurants in Florida, not all of them have such a great menu with unique items. Personally, my favorite item on the menu is their pollo riojana. Just thinking about it makes me wish that lunchtime wasn’t already over. Maybe for dinner.
The ingredients that Columbia Restaurant’s chefs use always taste very fresh, to the point where I’m curious where they get all their produce. I’ll have to ask the owner next time I dine there. Speaking of the owner, he regularly tours the restaurant, making sure that all of the customers have everything they need to enjoy their meal. He is so friendly, in fact, that the first time I visited Columbia Restaurant I asked if I could look inside their kitchen and he agreed to let me in.
It’s a strange request, I know, but I worked with a great Tampa hood cleaning business for a while so if their exhaust hood needed some cleaning I could hook them up. Unfortunately, it looks like my old employer might be put out of business pretty soon because Columbia Restaurant’s hood was squeaky clean. I’ll have to ask the owner where they get their hood cleaning appointments from. After you’ve had your meal, make sure to let them know your thoughts in great online reviews. I know I did.
Platt Street Borough is next up on the list, and for good reason. This one’s found in the North Hyde Park area of Tampa. The truffle nachos are killer, but my wife enjoys ordering the poutine and arancini. I’m not sure what my kids love to order, because they apparently like the food so much that I never get to see what it looks like on the plate. You definitely won’t have to worry about ordering seconds, because Platt Street Borough’s food is very filling.
It’s a great place to bring your kids, because they can even share a meal and still be full. I have seen lots of families do that across the many times I’ve eaten at this restaurant. The interior is also very well decorated, making it easy on the eyes and a pleasure to be inside. Even if you don’t order any food. Very family friendly overall.
I appreciate the fact that all of the tables are kept very clean, because my kids always manage to find something gross at every restaurant and I can’t stand it. You would be surprised at how many “high-end” restaurants have gum or other residue under their tables.
Even the bathrooms were very clean, and if it wasn’t for washing my hands before eating I probably wouldn’t have felt the need to wash them. My wife and I both left positive reviews online after the first time eating at this restaurant, and I highly encourage anybody else who enjoys their meal to do so as well.
Last but not least, all you adults out there who need a stiff drink after raising your bratty kids all day should check out The Front Porch Bar and Grill. This restaurant is found in Tampa’s Seminole Heights. It’s not purely a bar, so your kids can eat there as well if you can’t find a babysitter. However, the selection of ‘adult’ drinks is amazing on top of the wide variety of food they have available.
I always the order the mushroom swiss burger, and my body always punishes me for not exercising afterwards. In addition, my friends and I all have a sweet spot for the garlic bread that they spread this compound cheese/butter condiment all over. It’s a very open establishment, so don’t worry about drunkards dancing around and bumping into you. The Front Porch is also another example of a restaurant where the owner is regularly walking around and making sure everybody enjoys their meal.
Good job, Front Porch Bar and Grill, and make sure to keep doing what you are doing! All of these reviews may seem to only have positive things to say, but you have to remember that these are the top places in Tampa for eating. Clearly everyone who writes all of the great online reviews has the same idea as us.