Local Bites: Carriage House Tampa

A social haven is coming to downtown Tampa, and I cannot wait for the official launch! Last week, I was invited to a special preview of Carriage House, a new restaurant in partnership with Saltblock Catering Co. built off the concept of handhelds and baskets.

The idea is to pair great eats with entertainment offered at soon-to-open Franklin Manor, where Carriage House will be housed. A huge outdoor patio will also welcome furry friends with open arms.

The preview was such a great time, and the food was phenomenal. As usual, I'll let the images do most of the talking:

Frosé: Blended rosé, vodka and fruit purée  

Cuban Nachos: Mojo pork, queso, mixed pickles, cotija cheese & chili-scallion sauce

Queso, ceviche & black bean hummus

Meat & Cheese: Genoa salami, soppressata, Irish cheddar, queso, fried bread sticks & olive tapenade

The Double Burger: American cheese, bread & butter pickles, minced onion, Saltblock sauce

Wings: Sesame-soy, classic buffalo & bourbon BBQ

Grouper Taco: Chili-rubbed Gulf grouper, pickled onion, cilantro, chili-scallion sauce & Texas Pete aioli

Roast Pork Taco: Shredded cabbage, pickled onion, cotija cheese, jalapeno mayo

Strawberry Shortcake Soft Serve

S'mores Soft Serve

True to Saltblock Catering Co.'s philosophy, each dish was thoughtfully crafted and creatively delivered. I absolutely loved their take on a classic double cheeseburger - it was juicy, savory and all-around delicious. Each handheld/basket was full of flavor and paired various textures for a well-rounded meal that definitely satisfied my palate. I really enjoyed the deconstructed soft serve and waffle cones - I'll admit, it was fun to break off waffle cone pieces and dip them into the ice cream like chips and dip.

I'm really excited about the location - between Fly Bar and Restaurant and the Tampa Theatre, this portion of downtown Tampa is barren and calling for rejuvenation. The addition of Franklin Manor and Carriage House will help bridge the gap in this part of downtown and hopefully pave the way for additional establishments to cultivate the area.

In about 6-10 weeks, Franklin Manor and Carriage House will open its doors at 912 N. Franklin Street in downtown Tampa. For additional updates from Carriage House, follow along on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.