Delicious Dining at the New St. Pete Pier
The amazing new St. Pete Pier District has equally fabulous restaurant options, many of them with views of Tampa Bay.
Roam around the pier’s 26 acres of waterfront greenspace, and you're sure to work up an appetite. Happily, the St. Pete Pier has no shortage of dining options, with everything from the elegant Teak restaurant to a snack bar and ice cream stand (with plenty in between). Soak up gorgeous views of the bay and the St. Pete city skyline while you enjoy a memorable dining experience.
Doc Ford’s Rum Bar & Grille
The menu at this Caribbean-themed sports bar focuses on fresh, local seafood. Pull up a seat at the bar and revel in the fresh breezes wafting in the wide-open garage doors or choose a seat outside – grab a table on the covered deck or head to the patio overlooking the marina. In the mood for a grouper sandwich? Go for Doc Ford’s Original Lime Panko Crusted Fish Sandwich served on a fresh-baked roll, topped with house slaw and spicy remoulade. The Captiva crab cakes and the bar’s signature mojitos are popular choices, too. This is the latest in a small group of restaurants owned by mystery writer Randy Wayne White and named for the main character in his novels, which are set in coastal southwest Florida. Reservations are strongly encouraged on weekends. (Lunch, Dinner)
Fresco’s Waterfront Bistro
Located just south of the entrance to the pier, Fresco’s is a laid-back spot with a spacious wrap-around deck that makes the most of its water views. Stop in for lunch (try the shrimp tacos or grouper bites), dinner (the St. Pete Bowl is a delicious medley of red beans, bruschetta, quinoa, spinach, veggie noodles, avocado and balsamic glaze) or weekend brunch (go for the crab avocado eggs Benedict, a scrumptious twist on the classic). If you’re feeling adventurous, order a spicy jalapeño margarita to wash it all down. No reservations. (Lunch, Dinner, Sunday Brunch)
Spa Beach Bistro
Billed as the St. Pete Pier’s only outdoor café, Spa Beach Bistro is aptly named, as it’s near Spa Beach and Spa Beach Park. A large pavilion with beach umbrellas provides ample shade, making it an ideal spot for sharing a pizza (vegan versions and cauliflower crust are available) and indulging in casual fare such as chicken tenders, sweet potato fries and ice cream. A cold brew or specialty cocktail from the bar is the perfect wind-down after a day spent exploring. This is an easy-going, family-friendly place (no inside voices required). (Lunch, Dinner)
On the lower level of the new Pier Point building at the end of the pier, the Driftwood Café is a low-key but far-from-boring takeout spot. Grab a breakfast sandwich and a mocha latte or a charcuterie board and glass of prosecco, then find a shaded table and dig in. Ice cream, pizza, salads and sandwiches round out the menu. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Up on the fourth floor of the Pier Point building, the views and the cuisine are elevated at Teak, a restaurant named for the beautiful tropical hardwood often used in marine environments. Be mesmerized by panoramic views through floor-to-ceiling glass, and fire up your tastebuds with conch beignets, spiced fish spread with plantain chips or fried oysters served with chipotle-citrus remoulade. Next, rise to the challenge of choosing from the Personal Paella (who would want to share?), short ribs served with ginger guava barbecue sauce or the Florida Yard Bird (half a heritage roasted chicken served with sweet-and-spicy jezebel sauce), among other tempting dishes. Reservations are strongly encouraged. (Lunch, Dinner)
Climb up one more flight to the open-air, fully shaded rooftop Pier Teaki, a tiki bar with limitless fresh bay breezes and unobstructed views. Both Teak and this hopping new gathering place have the same local ownership as the Birchwood on chic Beach Drive, nearby. Quench your thirst with a local draft beer – give 3 Daughters Beach Blonde Ale or St. Pete Orange Wheat a go. In the mood for rum? Good luck narrowing down the list of nearly 30 varieties including local fave Siesta Key Coffee Rum. Bar bites include wings, fish tacos and sweet empanadas. (Bar Snacks & Drinks)