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  1. As a frequent business traveler to Tallahassee, I like Cypress the best, 320 E. Tennessee St. It's a little pricy, with entres in the $15-$30 range, but the quality is high and the service is better than most. The atmosphere is lively, not stuffy. A more casual choice is Kool Beanz, with food nearly as good and the crowd a little younger and louder. I've also enjoyed Mozaik, which is on the other side of town but owned by the same folks as Kool Beanz(with higher prices and a more upscale atmosphere). If you want southern, try the Old South, which has moved to a shopping center from its original location; we're talking casual, fluorscent lights and formica tabletops, but excellent fried chicken and greens at lunch.
  2. Just curious, did you find anything during your recent trip to Tampa?
  3. I like Save on Seafood, 4820 N Armenia Ave. The prices are reasonable, the fish is fresh and the selection is pretty wide. They even have fresh dungeness crab in a tank, along with the usual blue crab. I got some sushi grade tuna that was half the price you'll find anywhere else, because they were smaller pieces, not large steaks.
  4. Probably your best bet for food is Mise en Place, which is on Grand Central, on the west side of the river. It's a bit of a hike, especially when it's as hot as it's been here lately, but it's a very short cab ride there. The trolley doesn't go there, but it is a great way to get to Ybor City, where you can check out Big City Tavern (a beautiful space, too), the Columbia (the food isn't much but at least you'll get to see the Tampa's oldest restaurant and its fabulous historic building), Bernini (upscale Italian on 7th Avenue with a great vibe). Channelside is closer and has a lot of choices, but I haven't been to any of them so I won't offer an opinion. You could walk to Shalimar, an Indian restaurant on Morgan Street with a tandoori oven. Frankly, downtown Tampa is ghostly after dark; most of the restaurant action is on Howard Avenue, which is pretty walkable but a good ride from your hotel. Hope that helps, but maybe too late!
  5. We had a memorable meal at Wish in late December. The vibe was as good as the food - outdoor tables under twinkling lights amid lush landscaping, with attentive service, outstanding foi gras and sea bass and an interesting lobster soup/salad. And it's in the middle of the South Beach scene but away from the restaurant barkers on Ocean Drive. As for Cuban, head to Calle Ocho and try Versailles; it's humble, noisy and a Miami landmark (be sure to have some after-dinner cafe con leche from the sidewalk window to get the full Little Havana experience). Tap Tap on Miami Beach is also worth trying; not upscale at all, but great food at reasonable prices, with excellent mojitos and colorful Haitian murals. You should have a blast, the weather's great this time of year....
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