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Anything Good Around Downtown Tampa Open on Sundays?

Hitting Gasparilla Art Festival on Sunday. I'm running into walls trying to find a spot for an early dinner with our friends very close to downtown. I'd rather avoid Channelside. What I'm finding open so far that I'm familiar with are Miguel's on W. Kennedy (been there and thought it was fine) or maybe Laughing Cat in Ybor (never been). Jackson's is also open, but I'm not a fan. Any ideas? What am I missing?

Laughing Cat
1811 N 15th St, Tampa, FL 33605

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  1. Is Fly not open? That's my favorite place downtown. Or Spain?

    9 Replies
    1. re: Miss E

      Spain was my first choice, but it's closed. Fly Bar's website says the bar and lounge open at 4:00 but doesn't indicate that dinner is served on Sunday. I had unimpressive food and terrible service the first time I went to Fly so I've never been back...but that was a couple of years ago. I might have to give them another shot sometime soon.

      1. re: sweet_polly

        Well, I'd try Fly before I'd head over to Channelside. But check which menu they'll be serving at 4, they have a bar menu that may or may not suffice for you. The website should help.
        How about Sono Cafe at the art museum? I don't know if they serve early dinner or how late they stay open.

      2. re: Miss E

        What about L'Eden? Bamboozle? Paninoteca? Fresh? Soma? They're all closed?

        There's Thai Thani and TinaTapas at Channelside...

        I guess the only reason I go downtown on Sundays is to go to Pour House haha (love that place, that's one of the best beer bars in Tampa!)

        1. re: askdrtodd

          oops I wrote Soma, I meant Sono Cafe. Not sure if they're open, they had some good sandwiches and a pretty space. hopefully it isn't morgue-quiet when you're there though, that was off-putting.

          1. re: askdrtodd

            During the Gasparilla arts fest, it sure shouldn't be!

            1. re: askdrtodd

              SOMA??? is that some kind of freudian slip, toddster?

            2. re: askdrtodd

              Good ideas, but we want something a little more substantial than Fresh (I'm not much of sandwich girl, and I've been eating salad all week...Sunday's pigout time!. L'Eden - closed. Bamboozle - closed. Sone - closes at 5:00 (about the time we want to eat). Paninoteca - closed (but thanks for bringing it to my attention...sounds like a must-try)!

              1. re: askdrtodd

                We decided to eat earlier than expected and went to Sono (thanks for the rec, askdrtodd...I wouldn't have even been aware of its existence otherwise). After a couple of hours of snorting beer, funnel cakes and corn dogs, it was perfect. The menu would've probably been a bit light if we were really hungry, but it was a very nice stop. The gurlz particularly enjoyed the nice selection of half-bottles of chardonnay (we had three of the Sonoma-Cutrer *hic*) and the guys seemed to like the interesting beer choices.

                We all shared the salumi and cheese plates as well as the speck ham, dried fig, red onion and arugula panini. Cookies & Cream and Blood Orange gelatos made for fine palate cleansers.

                It was a very pretty venue overlooking the river, and our service was quite professional considering the fact that it's basically an upscale coffee, sandwich and ice cream shop.

                Again, sandwich and salad places generally don't excite me that much, but this was very nice its own minimalistic way. Will do again. :)

                1. re: sweet_polly

                  Glad it worked out! I ended up at the art festival around 4, my buddy and I came from the Brewer's Ball at Skippers to meet his friend who is an artist, man a beerfest before an artfest makes for an interesting time. Really a sharp shift in crowd energy haha

            3. We sat outside at the Columbia Cafe weekend before last and had a great lunch. Cubans and sangria. Not sure of the Sunday hours but I am pretty sure they are open 7 days a week. We had a groupon for the history center and stayed for lunch.

              2 Replies
              1. re: rhnault

                And the Spanish Bean (garbanzo, potato and chorizo) soup with a basket of pan y mantequilla and a pitcher of Sangria. Near to heaven.

                1. re: rhnault

                  This might work...thank you! I had forgotten that there was a mini Columbia downtown now. Tapas, White Chocolate Bread Pudding, Cava Sangria...I'm down with that!

                2. Unfortunately for you, Mis en Place is not open on Sunday. It's hands down the best restaurant in the downtown area. O/w don't forget ol' faithful, Valencia Gardens or the Columbia.

                  Valencia Garden Restaurant
                  811 W Kennedy Blvd, Tampa, FL 33606

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: drjimdolan

                    Head up to Ella's for their "soul food sundays." looks like tons of fun and good food. Maybe not as close to downtown as you were looking for, but worth the extra couple minutes of driving.

                    1. re: Old E.

                      We've tried Ella's twice, once for soul food Sunday. Hipster ambiance and a soulless interpretation of a few Southern favorites served by a remarkably sullen wait staff. Not going back again.

                    2. re: drjimdolan

                      Valencia Gardens closed a long time ago

                      Valencia Garden Restaurant
                      811 W Kennedy Blvd, Tampa, FL 33606

                      1. re: drjimdolan

                        Agreed...Mise is one of my favorites in town, also. :) It's probably a little more upscale than we were looking for post-art festival, anyway.

                      2. Sweet_Polly, check out www.tampasdowntown.com for info about restaurants and more open in downtown Tampa. This is the official website for all things downtown Tampa.

                        4 Replies
                          1. re: tampasdowntown

                            Quite a nightlife section there haha. You should add the bars in Channelside and also Pour House.

                            1. re: askdrtodd

                              Thanks askdrtodd for the comments. Checkout the site again. Here is the link to the section you probably are looking for regarding nightlife in downtown Tampa: http://www.tampasdowntown.com/play/ta...

                              1. re: tampasdowntown

                                Hey cool, well done! That's a great list, sorry, I was just breakin' balls :)

                          2. Take the trolly to Ybor. It's a short walk to the Columbia for a 1905 salad.

                            1. I am sorry to see that several downtown Tampa restaurants open on weekends and walkable from the Gasparilla area consistently for years did not make this board list. I don't know what you were looking for as far as ambience and food type (dinner, you said) but here is just a sampling:
                              Bamboozle, Jerk Hut, L'Eden, Urban Cantina, Cafe Hey, Fresh, Paninoteca, Pizza Fusion, Cafe Dufrain (on Harbour Island) which is far too overlooked and has the best fine dining I think in Tampa next to SideBern's, and there are many many more that are there and I just can't remember them all.

                              BTW The Tampa Downtown list is too confusing,..and inaccurate.

                              Cafe Hey
                              1540 N Franklin St, Tampa, FL 33602

                              Pizza Fusion
                              7563 W Sand Lake Rd, Orlando, FL 32819

                              Cafe Dufrain
                              707 Harbour Post Dr, Tampa, FL 33602

                              1. Have you heard of Ciro's speakeasy?
                                It's on the corner of bayshore & south howard in the bayshore royal. Great drinks and food menu's. I know it's not downtown
                                But well worth it.
                                They are open on Sundays from 6pm until 1am!!