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Jun 11, 2010 07:53 AM

Restaurant ideas for small foodie wedding reception near Tampa?

We are planning a small, but elegant destination wedding in Florida next June. Our parents both live in New Port Richey and we would like to find a waterfront/beach restaurant in the Greater Tampa Area to have our reception. There will only be about 30 guests and our two most important factors are 1) quality of food, and 2) location/view. Any suggestions???

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  1. Oystercatchers or Armanis. Both will have amazing food, amazing view, and be very elegant.

    1. The Rusty Pelican has potential.

      More up-scale, try the Don Cesar in St. Pete (Pass-a-Grill)

      2 Replies
      1. re: TampaPete

        Don Cesar is amazing, the Pelican has gone WAY downhill unfortunately.

        1. re: askdrtodd

          Sorry to hear that Rusty Pelican has crashed & burned.
          The last time I was there for a function it was OK (it's been a while).

      2. Try Ocean Breeze Lounge & Tapas Bar on St. Pete Beach...they have a private beach front room and great food. Their catering menu is very creative and not too expensive.


        2 Replies
        1. re: laboheme

          Do they have a separate location for banquets? Because the restaurant is on the intercoastal not the beach. I have had some of their tapas and it was quite good.

          1. re: juli5122

            They can cater anywhere, but for doing a reception there--yes, it is on the intercoastal but they have a private bit of beach on the intercoastal and can do a 20' tent on their beach for free or very reasonably.

        2. Have you checked out Island Way Grill? Near Clearwater beach? I know they frequently do wedding receptions and the food is great.

          On the other hand, I think the Rusty Pelican is one step above the banquet food at the Holiday Inn.


          Island Way Grill
          20 Island Way, Clearwater, FL 33767

          3 Replies
          1. re: UptownKevin

            Bon Appetit in Dunedin (which isn't terribly far south of New Port Richey) is classy and has sort of an "old-school" waterfront elegance. They do a lot of weddings. There's a fairly recent writeup about it (with pics) in my blog.


            Sorry...I meant to reply to the OP, Not UptownKevin, although I do agree with him re: Rusty Pelican. :


            Bon Appetit Restaurant
            148 Marina Plz, Dunedin, FL 34698

            1. re: sweet_polly

              I agree with Bon Appetit. Very scenic, good reputation. The Rusty Pelican management is not what you would expect, a rag tag bunch. If you want to stay in NPR, talk to Catches about using their terrace for cocktails and indoors, for food. They have access to wonderful fish. Excellent wine list last I looked.

              Bon Appetit Restaurant
              148 Marina Plz, Dunedin, FL 34698

              1. re: Sumodo

                catches? omg. i'd rather eat at denny's. seriously.

          2. Several entries have mentioned Duneden, but I'd suggest the very tiny but wonderful Black Pearl (http://theblackpearlrestaurant.com). I've never seen more perfectly done food. It is very small, so you'll need to make arrangements. If you can't fit there, and you want some place easier for a wedding especially if you have edlerly relatives, you might try the Vinoy Resort (Rennisance - Marriott). The Marchands Bar & Grill (http://www.marchandsbarandgrill.com/) may be notch below your style, but not everyone in your wedding party will have your taste. I hate dumping good Champagne when the guest can't tell it from Miller beer. There are lots of interesting and solid restaurants in walking distance for the rest of the week, too. Be sure to visit the Dahli museum, too.

            1 Reply