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Real Southern Cooking in Tampa Bay?

HeatherFL Mar 16, 2007 10:07 AM

I am going to Nashville tomorrow, so I was over in the "South" area of the Chowhound boards asking for recommendations. I realized that I don't know of any places in Tampa that do the down home southern meals. Fried chicken, peas, bisquits, etc.. I know we have Cracker Barrel, but I'm not talking chains. Anyone know where to find the real stuff? Thanks!

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  1. rhnault RE: HeatherFL Mar 16, 2007 10:58 AM

    To me Lee Roy Selmon's is more of a southern restaurant than a barbecue restaurant. That said, it's still not like the places I remember growing up in N Florida. There is supposed to be a good one down in St Pete but now I can't remember the name of it. Some type of cafeteria.
    When I want good southern food i usually make it myself. You can get good zipper peas at Publix in the summer and when I see them it usually motivates me to make a good southern meal. Smothered steak and gravy, mashed potatoes, peas, greens, and cornbread.

    2 Replies
    1. re: rhnault
      triff RE: rhnault Mar 16, 2007 11:24 AM

      The place you are probably referring to is Atwater's Cafeteria, on the NE corner of 22nd Ave. S. and Martin Luther King Jr. St. S. in St. Pete. It is decent, no-frills home-cooking the Southern way, started in the 60's. Generous portions, too. Here is a link to more info:



      1. re: triff
        rhnault RE: triff Mar 16, 2007 11:36 AM

        yes, that's it
        I have to make the trip down sometime for lunch!

    2. d
      dianew RE: HeatherFL Mar 16, 2007 11:22 AM

      Fred's Market in Plant City is the only place that comes to mind. When my grandparents go out to eat southern food they go there, Golden Corral, or Picadilly's.

      1. rhnault RE: HeatherFL Mar 16, 2007 11:35 AM

        Oh yeah! Buddyfreddy's in Plant City has a southern buffet. Lots of southern style veggies.

        1. HeatherFL RE: HeatherFL Mar 16, 2007 11:52 AM

          Thanks, everyone! I will definitely have to try Atwater's. I've been to the Buddy Freddy's in Brandon, but it's been awhile. I'll have to check out Fred's Market in Plant City too! Thanks again, everyone.

          1. donh RE: HeatherFL Mar 16, 2007 09:51 PM

            In Pinellas I would try two places both in Safety Harbor. The Whistle Stop, for great Fried Green Tomatoes and Lincoln Heights Bistro for a chef from Brooklyn that has gotten rave reviews for her southern cooking

            1. l
              laurie RE: HeatherFL Mar 17, 2007 12:43 PM

              I tried Lincoln Heights Bistro for the first time the other night. Maybe my expectations were too high from all I've heard and read about it, but to be honest, I was underwhelmed. My DH and a couple other people I went with felt the same. For shrimp, grits and sausage (which is what I ordered), I much prefer Green Springs Cafe, also in Safety Harbor.

              I have read about a little soul food place in Clearwater called Manna from Heaven I've been wanting to try. Has anyone been there?

              1. l
                Little T. RE: HeatherFL Mar 17, 2007 02:23 PM

                Have not been to Manna from Heaven nor have I heard of it. But, it is a stones throw from my office. So with that said, I have lunch plans for next week :)

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