Dining and Drinks
Brianna KwasnikTBO Seen
It’s hard to resist a sweet treat, especially in Tampa.
With all of the delicious bakeries we have in the area, how are we expected to keep from stopping in and trying the unique flavors they develop?
Here are just a few of the bakeries in the area catering to discerning taste buds. What’s your favorite Tampa Bay area bakery? Tell us in the comments.
By Olivia Stacey
In this edition of “Behind the Bar,” we visit Ava, located on South Howard Avenue, where bartender Shannon Cohan shows us how to make one of their signature cocktails, a Farmer’s Daughter.
“It’s great to drink in summertime because it’s so light and airy,” Cohan said. “It’s got a lavender backbone to it, which we love.”
Crème de violette, a little-known liquer, adds a gentle floral character that Cohan said is sure to impress at your next dinner party.
Thai Prime, a new, 176-seat restaurant from the owners of Thai Samurai in Pasco County, is set to open this fall in Tampa.
The restaurant will join the high-end eateries at the MetWest retail and office complex across Boyscout Boulevard from the International Plaza mall that is already home to Cooper’s Hawk Winery, Kona Grill, Texas de Brazil and Del Frisco’s Grille.
Thai Prime signed a lease for a 2,613-square-foot space at MetWest, the development said in a news release.
By Olivia Stacey
When you walk into 717 South, you’ll find art deco paintings, a welcoming bar and a swanky dining area that boasts the charm of the 1920’s.
Korean-born chef Robert Masson runs the open kitchen, displaying a mastery of all ports and parts of the world, which is reflected on the menu.
717 South offers more than 200 bottles on the main list, 35 by the glass, and an extra reserve list.
By DONNA GORDON BLANKINSHIPThe Associated Press
SEATTLE – The pumpkin spice latte battle is heating up just in time for fall.
Starbucks and Panera are hyping reformulated versions of the popular drinks – which will include real pumpkin – in a fight to win over fans of the beverage in coming weeks.
Starbucks Corp. said Monday its version of the concoction this year will be made with real pumpkin and without caramel coloring. The change comes after blogger Vani Hari, known as the Food Babe, criticized Starbucks last year for the drink’s ingredients and its lack of transparency around the issue.
Celebrity chef and restaurateur Marc Murphy, well known as a judge on the competition reality series “Chopped,” is working with the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa to open a new 250-seat restaurant at the casino this fall.
The restaurant, which does not have a name yet, is described as a Mediterranean inspired grill with Italian influences and will be open for lunch and dinner seven days a week beginning sometime in November, the casino announced today.
The restaurant will also feature a 25-seat, round, zinc bar, a 50-seat area for private events and a Mediterranean seaside design, the casino said.
By Olivia Stacey
The classic combination of gin, lime juice and simple syrup gets a fresh-produce boost in the cucumber basil gimlet.
In this edition of “Behind the Bar,” we visit 717 South located on South Howard Avenue, where Karen Stagg shows us how to make their version of this refreshing cocktail.
Stagg said this gimlet is an ideal warm-weather cocktail that pairs well with lighter dishes, such as seafood, and poultry.
Jerome R. StockfischTribune staff
South Tampa party people will soon have another place to whet their late-night appetites.
Taco Bus, the school-bus kitchens known for doling out Mexican food in the wee hours — as well as at lunch and dinnertime — plans to open a restaurant on Azeele Street and South Howard Avenue, director of operations Jonathan Kilmer said.
The chain assumed a lease on the property this month and is in rezoning negotiations with the intent of opening a dining room with inside seating for 40 to 50 patrons, additional outdoor seating, and a trademark yellow bus turning out the chow.
Tampa’s up-and-coming restaurant scene has earned the attention of Travel + Leisure, which recently published an article headlined “Tampa, Florida, May Have One of the Country’s Most Creative Food Scenes.”
The Time Inc. publication, which says it has close to 3 million monthly readers online and just under a million circulation for its monthly print magazine, praised the city’s “unique culinary culture, poised between the food of Florida’s past and the future of cutting-edge cuisine.”
When the Rays win, you win.
Coffee lovers will be treated to a free small iced coffee from Dunkin’ Donuts when the Tampa Bay Rays win any Sunday home game this season.
The offer can be redeemed on the Monday following the win when you use the Dunkin’ Donuts mobile app on a smartphone at a participating location.