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Reviews by jonknee

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Red Brick Pizza

rfienes, you can watch them make the pizza (it's an open kitchen) so they are definitely not frozen. It's perfectly round because they use a press--not the way I make a pie, but that's why they are round. It's not the best pizza I have ever had, but I'll go again if I'm in the neighborhood.

Smoke Barbecue & Grill

I've been several times and have never been disappointed. This is legit BBQ at a really convenient location.

Bamboozle Cafe

I had lunch today and loved it. The chicken noodle salad was delicious, lots of ingredients but still very light. I can see this being a popular spot.

La Creperia Cafe

La Creperia is a European Cafe in the middle of Ybor. What a hidden gem. I have gone several times, the latest being this past Sunday. I had the Metro crepe which was a crepe stuffed with eggs, cheese, caramelized onions and green peppers. It was killer. You should definitely check it out.

Spain Restaurant & TOMA Bar

Excellent Sangria that also counts for happy hour (2 for 1). I haven't been for the music, but the bar and lunch is excellent.

Carmine's Seventh Avenue

I went to Carmine's for lunch today and had quite possibly the worst Cuban sandwich of my life. I didn't think you could get a bad one in Ybor (it's the birthplace of the damn thing), but wow. I sent it back before even trying it because the "pressed Cuban" was cold. A few bites into the barely warm version and I was done. It wouldn't have passed muster at a quickie mart, let alone a sit down restaurant. I complained to the manager and he was only willing to make another sandwich, not comp it. The last thing I wanted was more food from Carmine's. Fail.

Square One Burgers

Square One is brand new and may still be finding its groove, but I enjoyed my lunch there today. It reminds me of Burger Bar in Las Vegas, though the Square One burger isn't quite at the same level (yet). I'll definitely be coming back and trying out another meat and topping combination.

Five Guys Famous Burgers and Fries

The only thing bad I can say about Five Guys is that it sometimes takes a while to get your food (or a parking spot!) because it's so popular. It's best to go with a friend so that you can share one of the monster orders of fries. My favorite toppings are: pickles, fried onions, lettuce, ketchup and sometimes jalapenos.

Thai Corner

I had been meaning to eat here for a while and finally made it last week for lunch. It was past the rush so the service was very fast. We got lots of food and the check (for two) was only $12 something. I suggest the pad thai.

Bern's Steakhouse

Bern's has a (mostly valid) reputation for being stuffy, but the secret is to go and sit at the bar. You can get the same great food without having to feel like your grandmother out to dinner. Even better, from the bar you can order a burger which is not actually on the menu. I guess you could call it the secret menu. It's made from the same aged prime beef that Bern's is famous for and is absolutely fantastic. It's reasonably priced too, under $20 with a drink.

Piazza Roma

I had a white pizza at Piazza Roma the other day and it was quite tasty. Large enough for two if you can decide on the same toppings to share. I have been before and was unimpressed with the service, but this time the waiter was funny and attentive.

The Wine Exchange

I hadn't been in a while and it appears the menu has been updated somewhat. I had the blackened chicken sandwich and really enjoyed it. The chicken was really spicy which balanced nicely with the tomato and caesar dressing. Overall a nice lunch.

Grape

I have been to a Grape in Atlanta and wasn't super impressed... But I gave it another shot here in Tampa. I got the "Kobe beef sliders" and they were incredibly salty. I have never tasted anything so salty before. It was surprising because there is no good reason for a salty burger (there isn't a reduction or anything that could fairly easily cause over seasoning). The Asian BBQ sauce that came with the burgers was about the consistency of water, which in my book means it's not a BBQ sauce. It was fairly tasty, but couldn't mask the oppressive saltiness. I left hungry with 2/3 of my food uneaten. I won't be going back.

Fly Bar & Restaurant

There is a new chef and his food is ridiculous. I had the ribeye last night and finished with a butternut squash soup. Ate every bit of both.

The Loading Dock

I had a Cuban sandwich for lunch today and really enjoyed it. Fresh tomatoes and good quality mustard. It was pretty busy, which is always good to see. It's also locally owned and operated (the owner is there most days), which is a big plus in my book.

NOLA Cafe & Newsstand

I was in the mood for something different today and NOLA is definitely different. I had the gumbo and it was pretty tasty. I think I'll be going back soon in the AM to grab some beignets.

L'Eden

I had the croissant au jambon today for lunch and it was great. I forgot how good a freshly baked croissant could be.

The Laughing Cat

Try the sweet potato gnocchi, it was some of the best I've had.

Cafe Dufrain

Great view and great food. I visit frequently, especially when the weather is nice so I can sit outside.

Cafe Hey

Bravo for fresh scones. I'll be back to use the WiFi.

Fly Bar & Restaurant

Fly is one of my favs in the city. Check out the late night menu and the martini list.

Bella's Italian Cafe

My favorite local italian place. The pizzas are especially tasty after some drinks somewhere else on S Howard (nothing soaks up alcohol like pizza). The sandwiches at lunch are also great.

Pane Rustica

I usually try and go after the lunch rush, which can be huge. You can't go wrong with any of the sandwiches, the grilled chicken one is especially tasty.

Good Luck Cafe

Great Cuban sandwiches. The whole ones are huge (way too big for me), so I go with the half which is also pretty cheap. There is a reason this place has been in business so long.

Taqueria Cantina and Burrito Joint

A fairly big menu for a taco place and an even larger beer menu (tons of imports). I keep going back to the fajita taco, but the burritos are pretty good as well.

Lenny & Vinny's All American Pizza

The crust is always doughy like they don't have the oven hot enough. Pick up a slice and it just droops back to the plate because there is no char on the bottom. It's often pretty busy at lunch, but I have never been impressed.

Deck Pizza & Pub

Deck has a decent pie and they are open late which means its the favorite Hyde Park place to soak up a night's worth of drinking. I've never had anything besides their pizza, though I have been tempted by the sandwiches a few times.

Malio's Prime

When you walk into Malio's for the first time you will forget you're in Tampa. This is a big city steakhouse on all levels. Great food and a great atmosphere.

New York New York Pizza Bar

I love NY NY's pizza. One of my top choices in Tampa and the top for places that deliver.
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