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“Cuban Food in upscale Restaurant”

Columbia Restaurant
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Ranked #18 of 2,505 Restaurants in Tampa
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $40
Cuisines: Cuban, Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Business meetings, Local cuisine, Large groups, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, Late Night, Breakfast, Dinner, Delivery, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighborhood: Historic Ybor
Cross street: 21st street
Description: Open 365-days a year, including all holidays. Serving lunch & dinner daily. Reservations accepted. In addition to award-winning Spanish/Cuban cuisine, the Columbia features flamenco dance performances nightly, Monday - Saturday. The Hernandez Gonzmart family has been making restaurant history since 1905 when they opened their landmark Columbia Restaurant, 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 113 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," and the Original Cuban Sandwich. Don't miss Columbia's Original "1905" Salad(R), prepared tableside.
Reviewed March 11, 2014

This is a beautiful restaurant with Cuban food. We enjoyed trying food we had never eaten before. The food is well prepared and the waiter was friendly. There is free parking if you eat at the restaurant. We had a really fun time.

Thank Carol G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,599 - 3,603 of 4,919 reviews

Reviewed March 11, 2014

Excellent experience, the 1905 Salad and Sangria are top notch. This restaurant has a historic feel, the area is steeped in early 20th Century History, especially the Spanish-American War era. Ybor is worth visiting, do yourself a favor skip the the chain restaurants for one day and eat in Ybor City for authentic cuban food. There are several good choices.

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Thank RMF5630
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 11, 2014

While attending a convention in Tampa area, it was suggested that our party go to this establishment for an enjoyable Cuban meal. Not knowing what to expect when we arrived, we were promptly seated and then greeted by our waiter immediately. He presented us with warm greetings and was eager to serve us. Not being familiar with Cuban cuisine, we were explained in detail what the various meals consisted of. Through our waiter's recommendation, I chose a combo entrée, a taste of beef, chicken, pork and shrimp in a Cuban sauced mixed together with onions and peppers with a plentiful serving of yellow rice. Served with warm Cuban bread...what a delight! The establishment was full and the atmosphere was buzzing with happy patrons all the while as the servers and waiters work working hard at fast paces. Not to forget their award winning 1905 salad was outstanding! If you are in the Tampa area and looking for an establishment that dates back to the original owners, with traditions passed down from generation to generation, a authentic Cuban flair, then give this place a try, you will not be disappointed. Enjoy!

1  Thank Tom M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 10, 2014

How could this Restaurant be number 23 on the list? It should be up towards the top of Restaurants to eat in Tampa. By far it is the best in Ybor City. I eat there every time I come to town and sometimes I take people to the show. Jodi was my server this past Saturday night and she was great. Thank you

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1  Thank david S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 9, 2014

I had one of the Groupers with crab. The waiter helped me select between several choices. It was very nice. Unfortunately, the rice served with it was very tired. Not sure when it was cooked. Definitely, too early. Maybe hours earlier?

One in our party had a steak dish which was cold and tough. The black beans which accompanied it were also cold. Probably, bad timing on entree delivery. It must have sat for other dinners to be ready.

Our waiter was very un-attentive. We almost had to beg him for service.

Overall, an ok place but not a place I'd suggest you go out of your way to visit.

Thank Preston1884
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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