I recently had the pleasure of dining at one of Tampa's top restaurants, a hidden treasure that is well known by food and wine connoisseurs and fine diners in the Bay area. Mise en Place, a true Tampa Bay jewel, started as a modest, six-table catering shop run by Mary Ann Ferenc and Marty Blitz. It then grew into what it is today, a renowned fine dining establishment with full event planning services for both in-house and off-premise events.

Tampa Bay DiningMy personal experience at Mise en Place was amazing. I ordered the roasted duck with lemongrass cashew jasmine rice (amazing by the way, best rice I've ever had), ginger chili sauteed baby bokchoy, pineapple daikon kimchee with red curry coconut sauce.

The description alone is what caught my eye, but the taste of this dish was better than I could have imagined. I also got the chance to try something that I've always wanted to try... fried green tomatoes. The fried green tomato salad featured jumpo lump crab, arugula salad, buttermilk chive vinaigrette and piquillo pepper oil. It was absolutely marvelous.

The food was outstanding, but on top of that, the atmosphere was exquisite and charming. The decor was beautiful and classy, with dim, intimate lighting that would play well for a reception, cocktail party or even board meeting. The Lafayatte Room seats 80 people in rounds and 150 people for a cocktail reception. And there is also the Minaret Room that seats up to 30 people for a smaller, more intimate event.

With full event planning services and catering combined with a lavish and contemporary decor, Mise en Place is definitely a unique venue choice, and very much deserves to be on my list of feature Tampa Bay venues.

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