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Mar 14, 2008 09:16 AM

1 breakfast, 1 dinner, 1 lunch in Tampa

Visiting from NY with my 12 year old son this weekend. Did you guess Spring Training??
He likes most everything. I made a deal that I can pick 1 local place for 3 meals, and he can pick a chain place for 3 meals..

I would love good BBQ...I remember Kojaks from many years ago, still good?


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  1. My own opinion is that I have never enjoyed Kojaks. I know that is in contridiction to a lot of other people but I'm sticking with it. In Tampa, I like Jimbo's on Kennedy and in Brandon I like First Choice BBQ.

    If you like mexican, I would suggest Taconazo on Hillsborough. For cuban, I would recommend Arco Iris on Columbus.


    1. Breakfast: Pinky's. Lunch: Pane Rustica. Dinner: Cappy's. These have the admittedly slightly weird feature of being within a few blocks of each other, but they are what I would choose.

      1. The original comment has been removed
        1. For breakfast check out Mom's Place on N Dale Mabry just north of Legend's Field; not only is the food great - all the classic diner foods done right - but there's a chance of a Yankee encounter (and if not, lots of autographed Yankee photos near the register). Pane Rustica is best bet for lunch - great salads and sandwiches and the best burger I've ever had. If you can afford Bern's and can get in, it's a must as a Tampa institution, but may be a bit much for a 12-year-old. I like Kojak's for the atmosphere - if you can sit on the porch - and Jimbo's for the food. There's a great new burger place on Henderson called Square 1, with lively atmosphere and juicy, fresh burgers with lots of choices. And there's a terrific new place on Davis islands called Chez Bryce that has sublime outdoor tables that would be perfect in this fabuouls weather (and there's a good pizza place across the street for the 12-year-old).

          4 Replies
          1. re: Bergerman

            OK, it's a year later and my husband and 25 year old son are attending a couple of spring training games. These suggestions sound great, except for Bern's. They are big Peter Luger fans and don't want any "fancy" meals. Please let me know if these places are still your choices. Mom's sounds great for breakfast, Pane Rustica for lunch and now which BBQ place?
            Thank you for any and all suggestions

            1. re: lukshen

              Ive always had a great experience at Pach's in South Tampa for breakfast(havent been to Mom's in a while), and also First Watch downtown Tampa.

     MUST, i mean MUST go to Datz Deli on MacDIll Ave in South Tampa. Pane Rustica is still a good choice.

              BBQ is Jimbo's on Kennedy, although Smoke on Platt has gotten much better since I was there when it first opened.

              What about some of the BEST Italian in Tampa - Laughing Cat on the corner of 8th Ave and 15th Street in Ybor City.

              1. re: rshally

                Unfortunately, I have had two really not good breakfasts at Pach's: great service, bad food, I'm sorry to say.
                But here's a thought: Datz serves breakfast, so why not go there for that meal?

                1. re: Miss E

                  Thank you rhally and Miss E, between the two of you we've got them covered. If I were going I'd be looking for Cuban food, but I know my boys. thanks again