The small variation: Since 1905, the Columbia eatery has actually served Spanish and Cuban-inspired meals and beverages that represent a long-standing family history. Created by a Cuban immigrant in Tampa, the Columbia remains a local preferred due to its conventional meals and personable service. Over the years, people from world-wide came into the attractive bistro to celebrate involvements, anniversaries, birthdays, as well as other monumental moments. Nowadays, the next and fifth generations with the family is the owner of and runs 13 various restaurants throughout Fl. If you’re looking for fine eating with a decent conventional family feel, you can reserve a table when you look at the stunning and enchanting dining rooms of Columbia Restaurant.
For the past thirty years, my family’s favorite vacation destination has-been an oceanfront hotel in Sand Key, Florida. We have now gone there over several occasions to construct sand castles, spot dolphins, and consume delicious dinners on patios overlooking the gulf coast of florida.
There is completely explored the town’s restaurant variety, looking around from best neighborhood bones around, nevertheless simply very takes place the one restaurant most of us enjoy many is within walking length of our own hotel. The Columbia eatery’s white linen tablecloths, mindful service, and mouth-watering meals make it all of our go-to spot for dinner.
When we had been children, my personal parents would purchase united states a parmesan cheese pizza while they went to this romantic Spanish cafe by yourself; however, we currently enjoy tapas and wine just as much because they do, therefore we’ve begun crashing their own night out â sometimes providing along dates of our own very own.
Since 1905, the Columbia eatery has actually wowed patrons with Spanish and Cuban meals and an old-world atmosphere. Although it’s the earliest cafe in Florida, business continues to be run by descendants of the initial founder. Every item on the eating plan has actually a tale behind it, and lots of associated with meals being transmitted from one generation on the Hernandez Gonzmart family to a higher. Household heritage is a large the main Columbia’s menu, record, and way of solution.
“The staff can also be quite like family members,” stated Michael Kilgore, the principle promotion Officer for all the Columbia. “Many of our workers remain for 20 or 30 years. Among the many situations we love about all of our party is how long they stick with us. They come right here and discover a property.”
You can enjoy this comfy and pleasant atmosphere in your after that night out by going to any one of the Columbia’s seven different restaurants. The Columbia eatery presently acts friends in Tampa, Sarasota, St. Augustine, Clearwater Beach, and party. Whether you’re sipping wine on a picturesque balcony or enjoying flamenco dancers light the period as you eat tapas, you’re certain to have a memorable night during the Columbia.
In 1905, a Cuban Immigrant went a Saloon That Became a Sensation
The Columbia Restaurant can trace the history back again to Dec. 17, 1903 â the exact same day the Wright brothers successfully tested the entire world’s first airplane. Which was when a Cuban immigrant called Casimiro Hernandez Sr. started operating a saloon for a regional brewing company in Tampa’s Ybor City.
In 1905, the industrious entrepreneur turned the saloon into popular 60-seat cafe noted for their authentic Cuban coffee-and sandwiches. Following his success, Casimiro ordered a cafe or restaurant next-door and switched it into an attractive living area. In 1930, their daughter got over ownership and procedure associated with flourishing cafe.
Throughout the Great Depression, his boy Casimiro Jr. built one air-conditioned kitchen in Tampa. He hoped their trendy appearance and raised dancing flooring would draw men and women to the restaurant that assist them forget their unique worries for per night. The Don Quixote Room had been a success, while the Columbia was able to keep its doors open although various other businesses folded.
In 1953, Casimiro Jr. passed the Columbia onto their only son or daughter, Adela Hernandez Gonzmart, an accomplished musician who had fulfilled her partner, Cesar Gonzmart, during the Tampa restaurant. This theatrical pair introduced enjoyment and art towards the Columbia, establishing a showroom that hosted many skilled Latin dancers and artists. Under Adela and Cesar’s management, the Columbia extended to Sarasota along with other locations in Florida.
These days, certainly one of Adela and Cesar’s two sons has brought the reins and kept his family’s business heading. Richard Gonzmart is working at his family members’ restaurants since he was 12 yrs old, so he or she is thoroughly knowledgeable about the environment and record. Richard can in fact suggest the dining table at the Columbia Restaurant in which the guy along with his girlfriend had their own very first big date more than 43 in years past.
“there’s lots of romance right here, therefore have an excellent story,” stated Michael. “not as much as 15 restaurants in the United States are family-owned and most 100 years outdated, therefore we’re in pretty elite company.”
Florida’s oldest cafe features a satisfied and enduring history rooted in food, family members, and enjoyable. Michael informed all of us the fifth generation of founding family members is now being groomed to take over 1 day. Richard’s daughters and nephew have taken on active management parts in the restaurants and so are prepared to keep your family practice going for many others a long time.
The Columbia has become known which includes on the highest honours inside the bistro business, such as induction into Nation’s eatery News’ “Fine food Hall of Fame,” gained the “Distinguished Restaurants of America (SiRoNA) honor of Excellence,” Fl Trend’s “Golden Spoon Hall of popularity,” and Wine Spectator’s “better of honor of Excellence.”
Look In! A Delectable Menu of Sharable Tapas & Indulgent Desserts
The Columbia Restaurant establishes a lavish dining table and provides a delightful escape from everyday life. It seduces your senses as soon as you walk in the doors. You are surrounded by greenery, h2o fountains, and artwork just like the noises of laughter plus the odors of new fish dishes waft through environment. Before my order even reaches me, my personal mouth area is obviously watering with expectation. The good news is, each visitor gets their very own newly generated loaf of Cuban breads, and so I have actually one thing to satisfy my preferences while I wait.
The 14-page eating plan is filled with good food but also provides effortless conversation beginners for daters only learning the other person. Each entrÃ©e, appetizer, and treat comes with an enticing description and additionally interesting background information. For example, the bistro’s coconut ice cream had been a preferred of ice-cream business owner Gustavo Hernandez, the third boy on the original Columbia president, and after this this nice dish is actually served in the honor.
From vegetarian paella (Spanish grain mixed with satisfying greens) towards shrimp supreme (shrimp covered with wafer-thin bacon), the meals in the Columbia are bursting with flavor. The shareable dishes, known as tapas, get this to restaurant perfect for couples on a night out together since you can come closer together by discussing small plates of empanadas, sliced chorizo, croquetas, or stuffed peppers. You can generate a budget-friendly food by buying multiple of these appetizers with each other â keep in mind to truly save space for dessert!
The TrÃ¨s Amigos churros would be an outstanding selection for partners because they’re tactile, sweet, and just a tiny bit dirty. You can easily drop the piping-hot churros in candy, caramel, or guava sauce so there’s something for everyone. Additionally, Columbia’s trademark light Chocolate Bread Pudding is an indulgent dessert ideal for splitting with a romantic date who has got a taste for white chocolate and rum sauce.
In 2017, the Marriott Traveler web log named the Columbia eatery among St. Augustine’s top date-night spots, motivating couples to “start with Columbia’s famous 1905 Salad, assembled table-side with a lot panache, then discuss an enormous plate regarding the Paella a la Valenciana, filled with shellfish, fragrant grain, and chorizo.”
Your enchanting evening will be-all the greater amount of enjoyable any time you set with your food a glass of the Melanie Chardonnay, a refreshing wine called after Melanie Gonzmart, Richard’s high-school sweetheart and partner.
Plus, from the Columbia Restaurant, the sangria would be to die for. Seriously, it comes by the cup but you can also divide a pitcher of white or reddish sangria with a night out together to improve your eating experience. Generously huge cuts of fresh fruit drift inside the drink and infuse it with rich flavors. Whether you are purchasing this traditional sangria or one of the restaurant’s household wines, the high-caliber products don’t let you down.
Michael informed united states the team can make an attempt to offer affordable however top quality wines to whet guests’ appetites. “Our drink selection must certanly be perfectly fitted to the foodstuff we serve plus price,” the guy stated.
Countless partners & households Have Shared specialized Moments Here
When I think of the Columbia, i do believe associated with the night we decided to have treat for lunch, and my personal parents bought churros, important lime pie, mango mousse meal, white candy bread dessert, and five spoons. I think of my personal twin-brother attempting grouper for the first time on our very own twentieth birthday celebration and stating excitedly, “just take my personal image” because the guy wished to program his sweetheart (who is today his wife) he enjoyed eating fish everything she did.
In so many methods, the Columbia feels like the place, but my children isn’t really the only real family to own produced recollections as of this restaurant and its own six sister areas across Florida. People reach the cafe anyway stages of existence since it provides an unique environment that sets well with any party.
Famously, Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio had been regular visitors in the Columbia in early 1950s. The Columbia staff settled tribute into pair and warm recollections they shared during the bistro by naming a dish after all of them. The Marilyn & Joe “Salteado” â a sautÃ©ed combination of tenderloin tips, boneless chicken white meat, shrimp, and pork â is actually a delicious indication associated with lengthy reputation of relationship inside the Columbia’s dining rooms.
Whether you’re taking place a first date or honoring a marriage anniversary, you will find closeness and passion flourish in the smooth candlelight on the Columbia Restaurant.
“It is our targets,” Michael mentioned, “to have men and women feel as if the Columbia is where to come calmly to celebrate life’s goals.”
The Columbia Restaurant offers household Values on Table
The Columbia Restaurant charms daters with real dishes, divine atmospheres, and friendly service. The servers, no less than at the Columbia in Sand Key, watch their unique visitors and generally are quick to express “Welcome straight back” to devoted consumers which, like my children, end up returning to the stylish eating spaces time and again.
This long-standing food business has expanded and changed throughout the many years, however it hasn’t forgotten about the century-long family sources. Richard has ambitious intentions to offer diners and daters throughout Fl for the a long time. “Our manager doesn’t rest,” Michael said with fun. “he is constantly thinking right up new things.”
The Columbia group intentions to start no less than two brand new restaurants within the upcoming decades. One will be conveniently found right down the street from the original Columbia in Tampa. Casa Santo Stefano, set-to open up in autumn 2018, pay honor to a small village in Sicily where a lot of Tampa’s Sicilian immigrants came from â the authentic eating plan is designed to deliver these people a tasty reminder of residence.
Suffering management and high quality types make Columbia eatery and all sorts of their aunt restaurants certainly remarkable locations where singles and partners can invest a night with those they love finest.