Law School graduation in St. Pete
I am graduating from law school in May and having my parents fly in from Singapore. I want to make plans for pleasurable dining. I was thinking about the startlite dinner cruises, but don't know how the food/experience is. Also, I want to do a brunch, but have read that the Don's is overpriced. I called and it is something like $46/person. Is it worth it? Any suggestions?
Congrats on your Graduation!
The Starlite dinner cruise is a nice ride through the bay, but ,IMO, is over-priced for mediocre food. You would probably have a nicer time simply taking one of the many no-meal boat rides then going to dinner. For local flavor, Snapper's on Gulf Blvd in SPB has wonderfully fresh seafood , exquisitely prepared. We've never been disappointed there.
Or how about the Habana Cafe in Gulfport for Cuban food in a charming setting (and some very good champagne sangria!) ?
Or, as everyone always recommends for a celebration, there's the Salt Rock Grill or Columbia.
I don't care for buffets so I'll stay away from the brunch question.
All good suggestions. As you're going with your parents, another option is Bob's Beachcomber in Clearwater Beach. Very good traditional American, country-club style menu, excellent bar, nice wine list, and a terrific pianist Friday & Saturday nights. A bit pricey, but worth it, if your parents enjoy this type of food and atmosphere. More beachy suggestions - spicy, fresh seafood in a semi-bohemian atmosphere at Keegan's in IRB, and good northern Italian at Al & Stella's, also in IRB. My favorite local breakfast (sit down, diner style - not a buffet brunch) is Beverly's La Croisette in on Corey Ave. in SPB - the best home fries in Pinellas.
I am assuming you are graduating from Stetson? If so, right in Gulfport, try the Backfin Blue for casual dinner (you absolutely have to order the crab and corn chowder!), and if you want a "special" meal, there is a restaurant in the Peninsula Inn (which is a B&B) called Six Tables, with a prix fixe gourmet menu. Reservations a must.
I like Habana, but it's very casual, more for lunch IMO.
I tried the Backfin Blue out the other night and really like it. It was very cute. I split a bowl of the corn chowder with another person....glad I did b/c it was very rich! Good nonetheless though. I have also dined at the Peninsula Inn and I love it! My folks love Habana...so I am sure that we will be getting food there at some point!
We just tried the new Brazilian steakhouse in Tampa called Boizao. Really interesting experience, nice atmosphere, great bar. Be forewarned, the meal will be very meat-heavy (the various meats are brought out on huge sword-like things by men in gaucho pants who then slice off a piece onto your place...as I said, unique dining experience.)