Tampa has sun, fun and a diverse food scene. The restaurants here have everything from freshly caught seafood to popular cultural dishes. Some of these including Italian dishes, BBQ, deviled crab, Spanish bean soup, grouper and Cuban sandwiches have stood the test of time. Handcrafted and local make the best menus!

You will not want to miss any of the 12 restaurants on this list. There is something here for every craving. They are all a must-try next time you are in the Tampa area!

12 Best Restaurants in Tampa


This vibrant restaurant is perfectly situated on Tampa’s Riverwalk. The food here is a fusion of local Florida ingredients and Native American inspired. You will want to try the Florida Pompano “Pallardy”, Gouda Grouper and pretty much everything on this eclectic menu. The famed barbacoa grill cooks everything from burgers to seafood. This restaurant is a celebration of culture and community “just as their ancestors did.”

Rooster & The Till

Located in Tampa’s trendy Seminole Heights this cool spot specializes in farm-to-table dishes. The menu is full of meals prepared with local ingredients. Everything is beautifully plated. It is an experience for all your senses! This innovative restaurant has won many accolades for both its food and impeccable service. Run, don’t walk next time you are in Tampa!

The Rusty Pelican

The Rusty Pelican has a beautiful setup right on the water surrounded by palm trees. You will really feel like you are on a tropical vacation!  The menu includes some of the freshest locally caught seafood and other tasty American fare. The Crab-Stuffed Gulf Grouper and Crispy Whole Local Snapper are well-known favorites. They also host private events and a great happy hour! You can’t beat dinner, drinks and sunset over the water!

Whiskey Joe’s 

Whiskey Joe’s brings a little of the Caribbean to Florida. They are affiliated with the Rusty Pelican and also offer delicious local seafood with a Caribbean flair. Additionally they have a super fun World Famous Barefoot Tiki Bar. This tiki bar boasts 30 types of margaritas and over 40+ tiki cocktails, local beers, palapas, fire pits and live entertainment. What more could you ask for? This is a great spot to enjoy a cocktail, great meal and watch the sunset.


Ever tried a Nashville chicken donut? Well, you need to! Datz has all the delicious, inventive, fresh comfort food you could imagine. The menu is full of local items and is a flagship place to stop next time you are in the Sunshine state!


Haven has 300 bourbons, 40 wines by the glass, 60 cheeses and a variety of charcuteries along with a rotating menu based on seasonal ingredients. The atmosphere is inviting and the service is fantastic!

Edison Food + Drink Lab

The flavor combinations here are next level. The menu is creative and frequently changing and the interior is just plain cool. The well-known Chef Jeannie Pierola is a 4X James Beard Best Chef Semifinalist. You better believe you are going to have the meal of a lifetime!


This steakhouse has been around for over 35 years. They graciously offer USDA Prime Beef, the freshest seafood available (featuring coldwater lobster tails) and over 200 curated wines. The service is impeccable. The atmosphere is formal, but welcoming.

Rome + Fig

Rome + Fig offers a wide variety of global inspired cuisine made with seasonal ingredients. The interior has a coastal feel and open-kitchen. The menu has many special items you will want to try including fried green tomato caprese, bison meatballs and pan seared scallops. All mouthwatering and perfectly prepared!


This traditional Italian restaurant serves up authentic flavors with a twist. They mix cuisine from northern and southern Italy to create a rich rustic flavor. The craft cocktail list is also incredible. One of the most unique things about this place is the working dough room. You can actually see mozzarella and dough being made. It doesn’t get more homemade than that!

Deviled Pig

BBQ at its finest! Deviled Pig offers pitmaster pizzas and amazing BBQ creations. The “Deviled Pig” which is a combination of smoked pulled pork, onions, peppers, Tampa original spices and then panko crusted and deep fried with a dusting of pig powder is a local favorite along with the Pitmaster Queban. Come here hungry!


This popular Italian restaurant has a simple, but modern menu. They have all the classics! The interior is clean and modern as well. This spot has a large local following because of the food quality, great service and fantastic wine list. Everything is expertly prepared and plated beautifully!


Hi, I'm Jen and I love to travel, go to the beach and write about all the places I have visited. I also have a bucket list of places I can't wait to try! I've visited Cape Cod every summer since I was a kid and now enjoy traveling to all great beach destinations, including Florida! I have worked in the travel industry for all of my career. I love sharing my experiences of different restaurants and places and helping travelers find the best fit for them!

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