So you’ve decided to plant your feet in the Sunshine City. With the beautiful shorelines and sunny weather, there’s no limit to the number of sights you’ll see and the exciting things to do in St. Petersburg. But while you’re out on the town, you might find yourself hankering for some local tastes.
To help ease your hunger, we’ve collected a list of the best restaurants in St. Petersburg, FL. Based on the 2021 Foodies Restaurant Awards, these locations offer a great selection of local dining, with flavors that range from classic burgers to succulent seafood to Latin-with-a-spin.1
Take a look at some of the great options while living in St. Petersburg below.
Best Restaurant Overall: Beau & Mo’s Chicago Style Steakhouse
Located on 5th Ave, Beau & Mo’s is one of the best local restaurants in St. Petersburg, Florida. They feature a finer, upscale dining experience for those looking to get dressed up for their dinner—but if you want to take the luxury to go, there are also takeout options.
Listed as both the best steakhouse and the best upscale restaurant in the area for two years running, Beau & Mo’s masters steak and Italian cuisine. Try out their linguini carbonara for an Italian dish, or sample their mouth-watering rack of New Zealand Lamb Chops.2
Best Mexican Food: Red Mesa Restaurant
Opened in 1995, Red Mesa takes popular traditional dishes and tries new combinations. Dishes inspired by Latin recipes include Peruvian-inspired Tiraditos and Central American corn-on-the-cob that enhance classic flavors with fresh ingredients from all around the Global South.
You’ll want to check out their Sangria Bar —popular with the locals— which has award-winning red and white sangrias. For some savory selections, try the Shrimp Al Mojo de Ajo, Southwest Stuffed Chicken, or Chile Relleno con Enchilada.3
Best Seafood: Sea Salt
Located in Downtown St. Petersburg—in the popular Sundial Shopping Center—Sea Salt has the best seafood in the city. Since 2015, this seafood restaurant has a sophisticated dining experience, with fresh fish and a menu that has one of the largest varieties of ingredients in the area.
On any given day you’ll be able to try the catch of the day, including options like:4
- Ahi Tuna
- Faroe Island Salmon
This seafood spot also hosts a happy hour from 3 pm to 6 pm, allowing you to enjoy a selection of dishes like Conch Fritters or Ahi Tuna Nachos with your cocktail.5
Best Pizza: Gianni’s NY Pizza
Claimed as the best pizza place in the city by local residents, Gianni’s NY Pizza serves traditional New York City slices on the Florida coast. It even comes recommended by St. Petersburg’s mayor, Rick Kriseman. Gianni’s recipes are formed using traditional dishes from Naples, Italy—with a New York influence.6
If you’re wondering what to get, try out the Cosa Nostra. With Italian sausage, fire-roasted peppers, ricotta, and pecorino cheese, this pizza won’t disappoint. You can find this popular Neapolitan destination on 58th North Street..7
Best Burgers: Engine No.9
First opened in 2013, Engine No.9 has served some of the best burgers in Florida since its inception. This casual restaurant, located on the corner of 1st Ave North and 9th Street, is a sports bar destination, owned by the son of Tampa Bay Lightning hockey hall-of-famer, Tony Esposito.
The burgers are all unique, with creative names and interesting takes on classic American food. Take a bite out of the Black Flag, made spicy-hot with Cajun spices. Not feeling spicy? Try the Greek-inspired Saganaki with fried Kasseri cheese, tzatziki sauce, and feta.
Here are some other burgers that have earned Engine No.9 the best burgers award for eight years in a row:8
- One Bad Pig, with garlic pork, white cheddar, mustard braised onion, fried pancetta, and chipotle mayo
- Don Carlo, with hot Italian sausage, peppers, onions, and white cheddar cheese.
- Van Helsing, with roasted jalapenos, roasted garlic bulbs, pepper jack cheese, and crumbled bacon.
Best New St. Petersburg Restaurant: Urban Stillhouse
The brainchild of Horse Soldier Bourbon and the American Freedom Distillery, Urban Stillhouse is a trendy, modern spot on Fifth Avenue just west of downtown St. Petersburg. The 16,000 square foot space is a restaurant, cocktail bar, lounge, and event space all in one.
The dishes are all cultivated by the former executive chef of Sea Salt, Kenny Tufo. Here, you’ll be able to delectable items such as:9
- Brick Street Farms salad with beets, chickpeas, and sheep’s milk feta
- Broiled oysters topped with spinach parmesan cream and squid ink bread crumbs
- Key West shrimp ceviche with avocado
- Wagyu tri-tip steak with fried rosemary potatoes
These modern flavor combinations are sure to please any palate.
Enjoy St. Petersburg Restaurants as a Local With Common
If it’s not enough to simply visit and sample the best food in St. Petersburg, FL, consider making your stay more permanent. St. Pete is a city on the rise, with a thriving job market, access to beautiful beaches, and a downtown full of great places to eat.
If you’re looking to be in the heart of it all, then you need to check out The Wayland by Common. Our comfortable, beautiful apartments give you more for your rent, with access to amenities including a gym, pool, and coworking space, and exclusive Common perks, from local discounts to private events. Explore our downtown apartments at The Wayland by Common and book your tour today.
- St. Petersburg Foodies. St. Petersburg Foodies Restaurant Award Winners for 2021. https://stpetersburgfoodies.com/restaurantawards/winners/
- Beau & Mo’s. Chicago Style Steakhouse. https://www.beaunmo.com/
- Red Mesa Restaurant. Celebrating 25 Years. https://redmesarestaurant.com/
- USA Today 10Best. Sea Salt St. Pete. https://www.10best.com/destinations/florida/st.-petersburg/downtown-pier/restaurants/sea-salt-st-pete/
- Sea Salt. About Sea Salt. https://live-sea-salt-st-pete.pantheonsite.io/our-story/
- St Petersburg Foodies. 10 Best Pizza Places in St. Petersburg, FL 2021. https://stpetersburgfoodies.com/restaurants/best-places-in-st-petersburg/10-best-pizza-places-in-st-petersburg-fl-2021/
- Gianni’s New York Pizza. About Us. https://www.giannisny.pizza/about-us/
- Engine No.9. About. https://www.no9burgers.com/about/
- Tampa Bay Times. Urban Stillhouse, a new cocktail bar and restaurant, opens in St. Petersburg. https://www.tampabay.com/life-culture/food/2020/08/24/urban-stillhouse-a-new-cocktail-bar-and-restaurant-opens-in-st-petersburg/