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“Heavenly”

Columbia Restaurant
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Ranked #10 of 2,461 Restaurants in Tampa
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $40
Cuisines: Cuban, Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Romantic, Business meetings, Special occasions, Local cuisine
Dining options: Late Night, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Delivery, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighborhood: Historic Ybor
Cross street: 21st street
Description: Open 365-days a year, including all holidays. Serving lunch and dinner daily. Reservations accepted. Children's menu available. In addition to award-winning Spanish/Cuban cuisine, Columbia Restaurant in Ybor City features Flamenco dance performances nightly, Monday - Saturday. There is no show on Sunday. The Café offers live jazz Tuesday through Saturday. The Hernandez Gonzmart family has been making restaurant history since 1905 when they opened their landmark Columbia Restaurant in Tampa's Historic Ybor City, which today is Florida's Oldest RestaurantSM. Today, 4th & 5th generation family members work hard to preserve the family's legacy that their great-grandfather Casimiro Hernandez, Sr. created over 112 years ago when he opened the Columbia as a corner café frequented by local cigar workers. Casual attire is fine, but we don't allow sleeveless shirts on men. Our guests enjoy many of the same century-old family recipes that have made the Columbia famous like Paella "a la Valenciana," Snapper "Alicante" Pompano en Papillot, The Original Cuban Sandwich, and Filet Mignon "Columbia". Don't miss Columbia's Original "1905" Salad(R), prepared tableside with our delicious, freshly-made dressing, a family recipe of fresh garlic, oregano, wine vinegar and Spanish extra virgin olive oil. Enjoy an ice cold pitcher of Sangria or Mojitos, or sample a fine Spanish wine like Montecillo or Campillo from our award-winning wine list.
Reviewed January 17, 2014

Friends who live in the Tampa area took us to the Columbia Restaurant in Ybor (Eee-bore) City and I'm so glad they did. The beauty of the many dining areas, the decor, and the beautiful painted tiles are reason enough to stop in. Add the wonderful food and you have a match made in heaven.

Our stop was in mid-afternoon for lunch. Even at that time, there was a wait of about 1/2 hour. It was definitely worth it. We were seated at a table for four with lots of green foliage at our side as well as a fountain. So, in spite of the number of people in the dining room, it didn't feel crowded. Crusty, warm Cuban bread, wrapped in paper, was brought for each of us. It was delicious! Our order included a crab appetizer, a fish entree, and bean cakes. I ordered a half salad with a Cuban sandwich. What a surprise when the waitress came to the table to prepare my salad in a large bowl. She squeezed a fresh lemon over the lettuce, added some vinegar and shredded cheese, and lightly tossed it. Again, delicious!

Next door is a small gift shop that also sells cigars. I felt things were a bit overpriced, but the items do make a nice souvenir of a very unique restaurant.

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Thank Beatriz121
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,452 - 3,456 of 4,662 reviews

Reviewed January 17, 2014

Excellent service and the best paella I've had in years. We got there early (5:15) and didn't have a reservation, and only waited a few minutes to be seated. They fill up very quickly, so make the reservation to be safe. Excellent wait staff. Somewhat expensive, but well worth the price. Not an everyday place, but not just special occasions either.

Thank glenn g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 15, 2014

Located in Ybor area of Tampa, This area is being revitalized and a nice walk around, if you have to wait for your table. The food is well worth the trip. They have 3 types of Paella, including vegetarian. This is more food than I could eat. Everyone took home enough food for another meal. The house salad is a must have. The dressing is wonderful and you can get the recipe on line.

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Thank EFHOWE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 14, 2014

Before you get in the restaurant you get to see some of Old Ybor and tile on the outside of Columbia Restaurant.But then the food is really tasty, server really know the flavor of all the food they serve .Ant the have dancer shows.It make you feel like your in another country .

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Thank Kathy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 14, 2014

It's expensive first off and the food is good, you get a good amount but I swear we were ther for over 3 hours! It takes forever to get a 3 course meal. I butt was numb and asleep by the time we left. It took so long thats what made me give it a poor rating.

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Thank Matthew D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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