Some of the Best Restaurants in St. Petersburg and Clearwater

When visiting St Petersburg/Clearwater, you’ll soon discover that it’s more than just a pretty place framed by soft, sugary beaches and scintillating sunsets. Fortunately for foodies, there’s a burgeoning gastronomic scene with new restaurants opening all the time.

They run the gamut from cozy, hole-in-the-wall beach “shacks,” to family-owned restaurants – some of them with an ethnic flavor – to chic, upscale bistros and eateries.

There’s no chance that you’ll ever go hungry when visiting these sunny shores as there are so many options to choose from. One of the longtime favorites - Maritana Grill – remains a favorite even after the iconic Don CeSar came under new ownership earlier this year.

Another of the area’s other jewels can be found in Gulfport, in Pia’s Trattoria, where you'll find fine Italian cucina in an Old-World ambiance. Lovers of fine dining will also enjoy Il Ritorno, Café Ponte and Birch and Vine, located in the historic Birchwood Inn.

Seafood lovers shouldn’t miss Sea Salt St Pete with its extensive raw bar and fresh seafood. It’s hard to narrow the choices down to just 10, but here are some choices, sure to get your taste buds humming.


Indian Rocks Beach
Salt Rock Grill


Whether you arrive by land or by sea, this legendary landmark will welcome you with tasty food, refreshing drinks and scenic waterfront vistas. For seafood lovers, there's a wide range of choices which includes lobster bisque, calamari, clams,...  Read More

St. Petersburg
Photo courtesy of Bella Brava


If burgers with a Tuscan twist, savory antipasti, pizzas and pasta - combined with a view of Tampa Bay appeal to you, then you've come to the right place. Pizzas, flatbreads and calzones cooked in a wood stone oven and European- style outdoor...  Read More

Clearwater Beach
Carreta on the Gulf
Photo courtesy of Sandpearl Resort


Located on Clearwater Beach, Caretta on the Gulf is Sandpearl Resort's AAA four-diamond restaurant. Perched above the beach, this elegant eatery offers indoor/outdoor seating and a private dining room. The restaurant also features a ceviche bar,...  Read More

Sea Salt St. Pete
Photo courtesy of Sea Salt St Pete


Situated in downtown St Petersburg's trendy Sundial Shopping Center, Sea Salt St Pete has been showcasing a sophisticated vibe along with tasty cuisine since it opened in 2015. An expansive raw bar, freshly caught seafood crafted with high...  Read More

Cafe Ponte
Photo courtesy of Cafe Ponte


Showcasing contemporary American cuisine peppered with Italian, French and Asian touches, Café Ponte is a trendy, New York-style café with high Zagat ratings. The brainchild of Executive Chef Christopher Ponte – a graduate of Paris' renowned...  Read More

St. Petersburg
Noble Crust
Photo courtesy of Noble Crust


Indoor, outdoor dining and an open kitchen situated in a stylish, contemporary setting make Noble Crust a must-visit along your restaurant quest. Known for their Italian cooking with a touch of Southern "vibe," you'll savor Italian cuisine as...  Read More

Birch & Vine, The Birchwood
Photo courtesy of Birch and Vine


Tucked into the 1920's Birchwood Hotel – listed in the National Registry of Historic Places – the award-winning Birch & Vine is noted as one of the best restaurants in town. An ample wine and beer menu, and signature cocktails complement...  Read More

St. Petersburg
Il Ritorno
Photo courtesy of Il Retorno


Conveniently located in downtown St Petersburg just steps from some of the city's stellar attractions, Il Ritorno has been offering discerning foodies a new twist to Italian fare since 2014. The food is not only delicious, it's pleasing to the...  Read More

St. Pete Beach
Maritana Grille
Photo courtesy of Loews Don CeSar Hotel.


Always a favorite with locals and savvy visitors alike, the iconic Don CeSar's award-winning restaurant is at once romantic and classy and known for its excellent service, extensive wine list, contemporary coastal menu - and dazzling aquarium...  Read More

Pia's Trattoria
Photo courtesy of Pia's Trattoria


Set in an Italian-village-like ambiance in charming Gulfport, Pia's lends new meaning to Old World charm meets la dolce vita. Freshly made salads, delicious paninis, and a wide array of robust pasta selections draped in savory sauces, combine...  Read More


Meet Michelle da Silva Richmond

Michelle da Silva Richmond is an award-winning travel editor and member of the Society of American Travel Writers and other journalism organizations. 

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