My favorite part of Tampa is the access to nature, the fabulous weather–I even like it in the summer–and Tampa is the unknown party town of the U.S.A, there’s always a celebration going on!
My father collected wine and it was something that always fascinated me. I realized that wine is a never-ending journey. It’s always changing, there’s always something new and different and the stories are fascinating. The people, places, travel, food, geography, I could go on. At the end of the day, wine is about connecting with people and places.
MY LOCAL KNOWLEDGE
For a dinner and wine pairing, At Rocca, we order Raviolini del Plin or Agnolotti – either with a great Barolo, Brunello or wine from Sicily. At Osteria Natalina – the Caesar Salad with Verdicchio is a must-have pairing.
Everyone should try the wagyu carpaccio dish at Olivia. Wowzers.
For wine, there are too many great places, but my wife (also a Master Sommelier) and I live right around the corner from Cru Cellars and Bern’s Steak House so you’re likely to find us there. On top of that Rococo Steak, Rocca, West Palm Wines and Chateau Cellars. Plus, the eclectic wine lists at Willa’s and Rooster and the Till and the amazing Spanish wine list at Columbia.
When guests visit, we take them to unique spots that scream Tampa: Hattricks for killer wings and Salt Shack on the Bay are two of our favorites.
For a quick lunch, try chicken frites and a glass of clean, crisp white at Counter Culture or at Oak and Ola, the Octopus is insane.
My hidden gem is Mad Dogs and Englishmen for their awesome fish & chips and a cold beer.
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