Tampa Bay Brewing Company in Ybor City has a name we couldn’t resist. Not only do they have an on-site brewery with a big craft beer selection, they also have a full restaurant. The brewpub/restaurant was even featured on Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives.
Located in the Centro Ybor entertainment complex, it’s centrally located just a few steps off Seventh and another block from the public parking garage.
We arrived for a weekday lunch and there was plenty of seating on the outside patio and inside dining. The inside is mostly exposed redbrick and dark woods with lots of brewery items on the walls.
An intense aroma of hops and yeast filled the air. The interior is mostly exposed redbrick and dark woods with lots of brewery items on the walls. It’s a cool spot that was comfortable and buzzing with happy customers.
Our server was by quickly to take our drink orders. Jeff ordered the Old Elephant IPA and I went for the Reef Donkey. We were enjoining our beers in no time and looked through the menu. I stuck to the lunch specials and ordered the Half Stout Sheppard’s Pie and Jeff went for the Black & Bleu Burger. We also added on a few appetizers. The menu was a lot larger than expected and you really could come here regularly and always order something new. They even had some healthier options if you are eating lighter.
Famous Beer Cheese Soup, cup ($5.00) – with cheddar jack cheese & blonde ale. The soup was smooth and thick with lots of cheese flavor. A few bites seemed to have some chopped peppers (maybe jalapeño), which I really liked.
Gumbo, cup ($5.00) – classic New Orleans style with andouille sausage, chicken, creole peppers & Old Elephant IPA. This was a heart version with lots of flavor. If you a gumbo fan, Jeff suggests you give it a try. It wasn’t high in the heat scale..
Black & Bleu Burger ($11.00) – Blackened burger with Bleu cheese & tobacco onion strings. The burger had lots of flavor and was pretty thick. They cooked it perfectly and Jeff liked the large portion of Bleu cheese. The onion strings were good, but might have been made a little too far ahead. The black beans and rice side was a little different than expected. The rice was yellow and at the bottom of the cup and the black beans had too much liquid. It was more like a soup than a side. The flavor was there, just not as expected.
Small Iron Rat Stout Sheppard’s Pie, lunch menu ($6.00) – chopped sirloin, peas, carrots & sweet white onions in a stout gravy topped with white cheddar mashed potatoes & cheddar jack cheese. While the potion was small, it was a perfect size for lunch. We liked the gravy and they really loaded up the dish with big chunks of ground sirloin. The mashed potatoes went really well with the gravy making this a great comfort food dish. While the size looked small, it’s a very heart dish and I was stuffed. Don’t forget that the lunch price of $6 and this is one heck of a good value.
The prices are in line with most restaurants and we love the brew pub atmosphere. Pair that with house beer brewed on-site and you have a winner. Tampa Bay Brewery is located at Centro Ybor, 1600 E 9th Ave, Tampa, FL 33605