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Dockside Dave’s

by Hilton Kean Jones on April 22, 2009

in Florida, Food

GROUPER FRITTERS AND BLACKENED GROUPER SANDWICH
GROUPER FRITTERS AND BLACKENED GROUPER SANDWICH

This is the place I take out-of-town guests to impress them with the quality of local seafood: Dockside Dave’s! It’s in my personal top 10 favorite places to eat in the Tampa Bay area.

PART OF MADEIRA BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE'S INTERIOR
PART OF MADEIRA BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE’S INTERIOR

Why? Well…

  • the grouper is locally caught
  • the seafood is as fresh as you can get and tip-top quality
  • it’s open grill cooking
  • best grouper sandwich in town (prepared choice of 5 ways)–huge!
  • seafood bisque (with grouper, scallops, and shrimp)
  • grouper or chicken Caesar salad (for when I’m feeling the need to diet)
  • wine and beer (draft & imported)
  • soft drinks like raspberry tea
  • stellar appetizers (entree sized portions in my opinion) like…
  • U Peel-em shrimp
  • grouper bites
  • grouper fritters (I almost always buy some to take home)
  • crab cakes
  • fried calamari
  • smoked amberjack fish spread and others
  • plus…
  • black grouper, jumbo shrimp (a variety of ways), scallop, and whole belly clam dinners
  • and various pasta and landlubber dinners

It’s my opinion, but also the opinion of many others, that Dockside Dave’s has the best seafood in town.

MADEIRA BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE'S FRONT PORCH
MADEIRA BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE’S FRONT PORCH

Now remember, this is a beach bar. Very casual. It’s rustic (but very clean). The food is served in baskets (but with real tableware). If you’re sitting outside in front at the Madeira Beach location, the traffic noise can be intense and the view of the Gulf is only what realtors would call a “peek-a-boo view.” But, I put up with that because the food and the service at Dockside Dave’s is SO good. I’ve yet to have a server that wasn’t a delight. The food never takes a long time coming. And, it’s great food.

Please remember, as the Inkwatu Restaurant page says: “These restaurants fit my taste for independently owned establishments with tasty food, pleasing ambiance, friendly staff, ethnic authenticity, inventive dishes, and reasonable prices.” I don’t critique restaurants; I report on the ones I like. (I ignore the rest.) So if it seems that I like all the restaurants reviewed in Inkwatu in some way (not always in the same way), that’s because I do!

However, even among the ones I like. There are some I like better than others. When it comes to seafood, Dockside Dave’s is my personal favorite.

EXTERIOR VIEW OF MADEIRA BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE'S
EXTERIOR VIEW OF MADEIRA BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE’S

There was an item among the daily specials last time that almost tempted me away from my usual grouper sandwich: “Spicy shrimp tacos!” Sounds wonderful. That’s the kind of problem to have, right? Now some might think the following is also a problem (I sure don’t): they only serve one dessert: “Barbara’s Homemade Key Lime Pie!”

Dockside Dave’s is at two locations: 14701 Gulf Blvd., Madeira Beach, FL 33708 (727-392-9399) and 7141 Gulf Blvd., St. Pete Beach, FL 33706 (727-360-4200). Hours are Mon-Sat 11-10, Sun 12-10. They take Visa and MasterCard.

EXTERIOR VIEW OF ST. PETE BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE'S
EXTERIOR VIEW OF ST. PETE BEACH DOCKSIDE DAVE’S

Dockside Dave's on Urbanspoon


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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

STEVE SHUBA, FLORIDA ARTIST October 11, 2009 at 12:59 am

IV’E BEEN EATING YOU SEAFOOD BISQUE FOR MANEY YEARS SINCE I WAS A KID, I,M 58 NOW AND WE MOVED UP TO DUNNELLON. ABOUT 115 MILES FROM YOU. AND I MISS THE BISQUE SO BAD, I HAD ONE OF MY KIDS BRING IT UP TO ME FROM TIME TO TIME, THEN I,M IN MY OWN LITTLE WORLD AND HAPPY W THE MEMORIES OF ALL THE GROUPER I USED TO CATCH THERE. WAS BORN IN JOHN,S PASS, MY DAD WAS THE NIGHT BRIDGE TENDER ON THE OLD BRIDGE FOR 30 YRS. I GO ON SOME WHEN I TALK ABOUT HOME,,BUT THE REAL REASON IS THE MY DAUGHTER CAME UP TO SEE ME 3 WEEKS AGO AND SHE BROUGHT UP 6 LARGE STYRAFOME CUPS UP TO ME( bless her heart) but something had happened ! the bisque was all wrong, did,t taste the same or wasn,t even close..Big disappointment, did somethinghappen to the cook who normally prepares it or was there anyother answer. I would really like to know. because if the original recipe has bee lost or distroyd. please tell me as i seen all my friends there and always have ….

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STEVE SHUBA, FLORIDA ARTIST October 11, 2009 at 1:04 am

really enjoyed the bisque, jusy trying to fing out that the bisquewill be ok again,,,STEVE SHUBA jr.

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