It’s crazy to think how long I glossed over the local food fare that Clearwater has to offer.
I’d come home from every trip that Ben and I would take wondering why I couldn’t find that same lust for foodie adventure here. We’d go to new cities uncovering local gems and eating at places that really embodied the city we were in. My limited assumption was always that Clearwater’s food scene was lacking, but boy was I wrong about my hometown.
You know how people say you should be a tourist in your own city?
Well, people are right. I absolutely recommend it so you get the chance to discover your own city as if it’s brand new to you. It took me becoming a blogger and dedicating time to exploring my own city to realize what Clearwater was holding all along.
It turns out my hometown is FULL of local gems, but I just never took the time to find them. Mostly because I was stuck on visiting the chains I knew and loved. This was clearly a local rookie mistake.
Last year Amplify Clearwater hosted Ben and I at Taste Fest.
It was the perfect tour of Clearwater food fare and it was held at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. Over twenty Clearwater and Clearwater Beach restaurants participated in the event. Each one had its own stall with a setup of light bites to enjoy.
Taste Fest was a culinary capade through Clearwater’s array of restaurants. The evening was full of small bites and big flavor. Not a single stall held back on serving up vibrant curations that pleased the palette. The theme appealed to me as comfort food with a tropical flare – very fitting for the Clearwater foodie scene.
Ben and I ate our way around the room of food stalls and I got to discover some new favorites.
I absolutely loved the pan seared scallops and mushroom risotto from Water Colour Grillhouse. Rusty’s Bistro also had a notable cavatelli bolognese. We even got a sneak peek at Crypto Street Restaurant – a brand new spot on Clearwater Beach. My local heart was happy. Clearwater truly does have so many beachside gems and they’re all around just waiting to be discovered.
Taste Fest was the perfect way to discover even more foodie spots around Clearwater. The best part is that thanks to the event it was all in one place! I’m already watching for next year’s event announcement so I can add the date to my calendar.
Thanks so much to Amplify Clearwater for hosting us! All thoughts and opinions expressed here are more own.
Here is a list of some of the participating restaurants (*’ing my long time faves below):
- Bob Heilmans Beachcomber *
- Bobby’s Bistro
- Island Way Grill *
- Poke Havana
- Rumba Island Bar & Grill
- Opal Sands Resort Sand Bar *
- Sandpearl Resort Tate Island Grill *
- Cabanas Coastal Grill
- Crabby’s Bar and Grill
- Crabby’s Dockside
- Crypto Street Restaurant
- Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach Doc K’s
- Evy’s Terrace Bar & Bistro
- Ocean Hai *
- Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Off Shor
- Salty’s Island Bar & Grille
- Salty Crab North Beach
- Rusty’s Bistro
- Clearwater Beach Marriott Watercolour Grillhouse