We are Victoria and Terrence and we LOVE food. When Datz, a gastropub specializing in comfort food, invited us to dinner, we jumped at the chance. We had heard rave reviews about Datz and knew that had been featured by big names such as The Food Network, The Travel Channel, Good Morning America, and more, but had never visited ourselves. If you ever find yourself in Tampa, Florida, [or if they ever expand], you must take time out and pay Datz a visit. Until then, you are just going to have to take our word for it!
5 Things To Love About Datz:
1. Your [free!] starter is popcorn instead of bread
If there is one thing we love, it is popcorn! We eat it at night watching TV, pop some for the car during road trips, and were sad when it was so expensive in Europe. Instead of offering bread on the table like many restaurants do, Datz serves up Sriracha-flavored popcorn. Not only is this idea fresh and edgy, the popcorn is delicious and a tad hot. Neither of us are fans of spicy foods, but the amount of seasoning was just right and we kept our drinks nearby. We ate our entire basket in 2 minutes flat.
2. The appetizers are gourmet and affordable
We appreciated the fact that Datz offered a variety of appetizer options that fit different budgets. If we felt like splurging, we had tons of choices. If we wanted to taste something new without breaking the budget, we still had a few options. Our first choice was “Nom Nom and Cheese” which consisted of warm pretzel sticks and beer cheese made with locally sourced beer. It was delish!
Our second choice was “Mac Bites” which were bacon and jalapeno mac and cheese bites with an aioli sauce. We were bummed to find out that they didn’t make a vegetarian version of this dish so only Terrence could partake. Datz is well known for its mac and cheese hamburger bun which is literally a bun made entirely out of mac and cheese. We found out that this bun isn’t vegetarian-friendly either, although Datz offers a veggie burger. We would love it if Datz made vegetarian bun and bite options in limited quality for patrons with food preferences! In case you were wondering, the Mac Bites were essentially heaven on earth! That being said….
3. They are willing to work with vegetarians
Some restaurants won’t budge on substitutions for vegetarian meals but Victoria was thrilled that this wasn’t the case at Datz! Our Datz server was willing to make almost any dish [save the mac and cheese prepared in the morning] veggie friendly. This one little option really opens up the menu to vegetarians. Victoria chose to go with the cobb salad [with added olives] because she knew she would be eating so much food during our dinner, but it was a hard sell! Other contenders were the chicken and waffles dish with just the waffles, the veggie burger, and basically any sandwich sans meat.
4. Portion sizes are humongous
We are Americans and we like getting the best bang for our buck! We hate going out to eat and getting a child-sized portion after paying a lot of money. Before we even ordered, our waiter assured us that we would probably end up taking a box home after dinner. Guess what? We took home two! The salad was probably enough for four people to eat, and the fried chicken dish [Kentucky Colonel Bowl] provided Terrence with a delicious lunch the next day. If you are into sharing with your family or friends, rest easy that you will still leave Datz satisfied.
5. The desserts are insane
Datz Dough, the adjoining bakery, can only be described one way: epic. They have everything from a plethora of homemade donuts and pastries to house-made ice cream, milkshakes, coffee, and our favorite…the donut ice cream cone!
We particularly loved the donut cone because it was modeled after the traditional Czech Republic dessert known as the Trdelnik! We had a Trdelnik when we were in Prague and wanted to try Datz’s version! The Datz donut cone was absolutely massive and the cone itself was delicious! We tried the flavor of the week which consisted of a white mocha lining, custard ice cream, a confetti cookie, whipped cream, and a cherry. It was basically the Americanized version of a Trdelnik on steroids! We are beyond pleased with our decision to give it a try and would have regretted passing up the chance!
We loved Datz and would totally head back sometime in the future! In the meantime, keep a close eye out on their menu for old favorites and new additions! Maybe next time we will head over for breakfast!
READ NEXT: 6 “Can’t Miss” Things To Czech Out In Prague
(Disclaimer: Yes, Datz comp’d our meal, but all opinions are our own because we wouldn’t like it if you lied to us so we would never lie to you either!)
Have you been to Datz? What was your favorite dish? What do you recommend we try in the future?
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