Spring training is almost upon us — pitchers and catchers report report to camps roughly one month from now, during the last week of February.
Around here, the beginning of baseball season means a slew of fans and spring breakers will migrate down from the North and Midwest, and they will be looking for places to eat, drink and sleep during their stay in Pinellas County.
Here's a list of five places to eat while in Dunedin for Toronto Blue Jays spring training.
1. Flanagan's Irish Pub. No trip to Dunedin would be complete without a pub visit, and Flanagan's, a Dunedin institution for more than 20 years, is the perfect place to stop for a pint and a bite before or after a Jays game. Conveniently located on Main Steet near the Pinellas Trail, Flanagan's embodies what Dunedin is all about — good food and cold beer.
2. The Living Room. Just a few yards away from Flanagan's, The Living Room offers a more upscale dining option than its Main Street counterpart, but it's not so fancy that you can't wear your team gear in there. A varied menu featuring brunch, tapas, seafood and veggie platters, plus wine events and live music, means there is something for everyone.
3. The Black Pearl. Spending time with someone who's not a huge baseball fan but loves fine dining? Check out this Main Street restaurant for a fantastic meal that will be remembered for a long time to come. The intimate eatery has a limited menu and seating, but the food, such as rack of lamb, filet mignon or shrim scampi, is sensational. Oh, and don't leave without trying the falling hot chocolate cake. You can thank us later.
4. Iris's Family Restaurant. Looking for a quick, simple bite to eat on your way to or from the game? Located a long foul ball away from Florida Auto Exchange Stadium, Iris's is a great place to catch breakfast or a sandwich before a Jays game, or perhaps stop for a light dinner afterward without having to dress up or deal with the crowds on Main Street.
5. Serendipity Cafe. If all this talk about beer and fatty foods is making you contemplate going on a diet, don't worry, Dunedin has plenty of healthy dining options, too. Serendipity Cafe, on the corner of Main Street and Skinner Boulevard, is one of those options. With a menu focusing on organic, whole-grain and gluten-free foods, the combination of a walk to the ballpark and a trip to Serendipity will help wash away all the calories you built up by sampling Dunedin's wide variety of food and brews.
Enjoy the games, and the food!