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Food & Drink

Best Beach Bars In Tampa Bay

June 25, 2014 8:00 AM

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Tampa Bay is home to literally dozens of beach bars, each one as unique as the locals that frequent it. While each bar is a little different — some energetic, some loud, some with mostly seafood menus, some with more varied menus, some with live entertainment, some without, and so on — each one is an important part of the culture of Tampa Bay. Check out some of the locals’ favorites and decide which one will be your new favorite.
The Hut Bar & Grill
190 Boardwalk Place
Madeira Beach, FL 33708
(727) 233-3311
www.thehutbarandgrill.com

Shopping in the John’s Pass area of Madeira Beach can certainly make you hungry. After you’ve browsed all of the hand-made jewelry, flowered Hawaiian shirts and everything else that these local vendors have to offer, head to The Hut Bar & Grill for a satisfying snack or a tasty island-inspired meal. This beachfront restaurant has a beautiful view, relaxing atmosphere and delicious items like coconut shrimp, grouper nuggets, conch fritters and tacos stuffed with chicken, beef or fish.

Jimmy B’s Beach Bar
The Beachcomber Beach Resort and Hotel
6200 Gulf Blvd.
St. Petersburg Beach, FL 33706
(727) 367-1902
www.beachcomberflorida.com/jimmy-bs-beach-bar.asp

If you’re looking for an afternoon of escape, Jimmy B’s has an ideal blend of beautiful beach, live music, hot food and cold drinks. The bar is located beach side and has a regular rotation of some of the best local bands, including Phoenix, Stormbringer and The Flats. The menu has a diverse offering including appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, flatbreads and wraps. Then you can quench your thirst with an ice cold beer, a glass of wine or one of the house specialties, such as the Coconut Slammer, made with Smirnoff vanilla-flavored vodka, coconut rum and pineapple juice.

beach2 Best Beach Bars In Tampa Bay

Beach view (Credit, Amanda Mole)

Frenchy’s Rockaway Grill on the Beach
7 Rockaway St.
Clearwater, FL 33767
(727) 446-4844
www.frenchysonline.com/frenchys-rockaway

Frenchy’s has four locations in the Tampa Bay area. The Clearwater location is not only located right on the beach, but is also the largest. Here, you can enjoy open-air dining, fresh seafood, live music, a full bar and a lounge area with games and pool tables. The menu includes some truly unique dishes, such as sweet chili calamari, grouper jambalaya, grouper santorini and the famous She Crab Soup.

Related: Best Bars With Boat Docks Around Tampa Bay

Rick’s on the River
2305 N. Willow Ave.
Tampa, FL 33607
(813) 251-0369
www.ricksontheriver.com

Rick’s is situated right on the Hillsborough River, giving diners a view that is different from a beach view but no less spectacular. Rick’s hosts live musicians and a full oyster bar in addition to a regular menu. Seafood lovers will find a vast assortment of Gulf-fresh dishes, including catfish, shrimp, crab, clams and oysters served every way imaginable. Land-lovers can stick to menu items like burgers, sandwiches and salads.

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Enjoy your drink by the beach (Credit, Amanda Mole)

Bongos Beach Bar & Grill
5250 Gulf Blvd.
St. Petersburg Beach, FL 33706
(727) 360-1811
www.grandplazaflorida.com/dining/bongos

Bongos is unique in that you can sit outside on the deck and put your toes in the sand while you dine. You can take in a sports game or just relax and watch the sun set. Its extremely popular menu includes scrumptious treats like coconut crusted shrimp, crab cakes and mango glazed scallops, as well as non-seafood dishes such as buffalo wings, pasta dishes and seasonal salads. As the evening rolls in, you and your sweetie can cuddle up in a deep-cushioned sofa by the fireside and enjoy live entertainment. It’s the perfect setting for an evening of relaxation and romance.

Related: Best Seafood Restaurants In Tampa Bay

Amanda Mole has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pencil and cooking since she was tall enough to reach the stove. She believes that food provides more than just vital nutrients: it is an irreplaceable part of countless cultural and social activities. As a Tampa Bay resident for the past 21 years, she is well acquainted with the incredibly diverse range of restaurants, bars, and food festivals that the area has to offer. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.
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