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In addition to all of the usual chains (Applebee’s, Outback Steak House, Ruby Tuesday) and restaurants specializing in American favorites like hot dogs and mile-high sandwiches, Tampa does a brisk business in Spanish/Cuban fare.

Top Restaurants in Tampa

Acropolis Greek Taverna

Take a culinary break from the neighborhood's Latin flavors with tasty Greek staples like gyros, kebabs, souvlaki, and a must-try flaming cheese dish. Outdoor tables are perfect for Ybor-crowd-watching at several locations.

FL, www.acropolistaverna.com
Tags: moderate | open late


An institution since 1956, this reservations-required steakhouse is renowned for choice beef, the world's largest restaurant wine cellar (they give complimentary tours of their 1-million strong collection!) and intimate dessert room.

1208 S. Howard Ave., FL, 813-251-2421, www.bernssteakhouse.com
Tags: expensive | editor pick | smart splurge


With its Wednesday-Saturday flamenco bar, outdoor patio and outstanding Northern Spanish dishes, this contemporary St. Pete tapas restaurant is a social magnet. It has Tampa location too (2109 Bayshore Blvd.; 813-250-0134).

10 Beach Dr SE, FL, 727-209-2302, www.ceviche.com
Tags: moderate | great value

Columbia Restaurant

The original tile-covered location of this family business from 1905, packs 'em in for Cuban/Spanish fare (paella, Cuban-style roast pork) and flamenco shows. The gift shop holds weekly cigar-rolling demos.

2117 E. Seventh Ave., FL, 813-248-4961, www.columbiarestaurant.com
Tags: expensive

Marc and Didi's

Overstuffed sandwiches and homemade pies are the hallmarks of this New York-style deli, a local lunch favorite with a kids' menu.

201 W. Platt St., FL, 813-250-6272
Tags: family | budget

Mel's Hot Dogs

A noisy guilty-pleasure palace where the Chicago-style dogs come with mega toppings; the Reuben version is a house specialty.

4136 E. Busch Blvd., FL, 813-985-8000
Tags: family | budget | editor pick

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