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  • Pearl in the Grove

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Pearl in the Grove
Pearl in the Grove

Pearl in the Grove Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.pearlinthegrove.com
  • Phone: (352) 588-0008
  • Hours of Operation: A la carte dinner: Wednesday - Thursday: 5 - 8ish
    Friday - Saturday: 5 - 10ish

    Sunday Brunch: 11 - 3
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Southern, American
  • Executive Chef: Curtis Beebe
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Beer, Chef's Table, Farm to Table, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Wine
  • Catering: We offer custom catering for a wide variety of events. Call the restaurant to talk about your requirements.
  • Special Events & Promotions: We offer monthly wine dinners, generally on the first Wednesday of the month, that feature up to 8 courses with carefully paired wines.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Lake Iola Rd.
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: We have plenty of room in our shell lot. If you arrive by horseback, there is a hitching post to the south end of the lot.
A word from Pearl in the Grove
Elegant, hand crafted foods and boutique wines are the focus in this relaxed and intimate 40 seat dining room, just north of Tampa in rural St. Joe. A winding bucolic drive through orange groves, hills and cattle ranches, this is an unexpected haven away from congested cookie cutter Florida. The Pearl in the Grove is a European bistro with Panhandle roots and definitely an experience worth the drive out of town.

The experience is many things at once: ancestral Southern with hints of Creole, a dash of Western European simplicity, easy Sunday suppers served family style, luxurious, leisurely Brunch. Wine pairing dinners. Craft and local beers. Simple ingredients feel sophisticated but fun and effortless, like the New Orleans heritage jazz that plays in the background.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
Diner Reviews
  • "Our party of 4 thoroughly enjoyed our dinner on Saturday night. Reservations were easy, welcome was warm, server was friendly and knowledgable, food was excellent, setting was comfortable, cozy. Fried green tomato caprese had housemade mozzerella that was yummy. Best fried chicken livers I have ever had. The lamb was excellent. Desserts were interesting and varied and tasty. We will certainly return."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Upon a friends recommendation, I took my nearly-a-chef husband for his 65th birthday dinner. He LOVED the attention to detail and fine dining and the unique and amazingly delicious menu choices. We were too full to try dessert but maybe next time. We plan to return and bring our friends."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "I have passed this place a few times while riding my motorcycle out that way. It is actually in the middle of a grove and made for a great scenic dinner ride for my husband and I as we rode our motorcycles out there for dinner. The food was a surprise even though I had read the reviews, it was incredibly delicious. The service was also great. Our waiter was not only efficient but friendly. The owner's wife was also on hand to stop by our table and say hello. The owner was actually cooking over at their new restaurant (Local) which I plan to try real soon. Pearl in The Grove was wonderful and I also plan to try their brunch in the near future."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "We ordered dishes off the menu and some seasonal specials. I had fried chicken which was tasty, but it was very small for $22. My husband had a seasonal dish with Chanterelle mushrooms that were not cleaned and so the whole dish was gritty. The dessert was the best part of the meal. We drove over an hour to try this place but we were overall disappointed."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Out of town guests (from California and Maryland) enjoyed conversation on the scenic drive to Pearl in the Grove. We all ordered different entrees and enjoyed tastes from each plate. Ended the evening at Local down the road, perfect for one last beer before a good night's sleep. Thank you Curtis & Rebecca!"
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "very disappointing, they were "out" of potatoes, collard greens, and we were informed that they couldn't serve the hamburger that was on the menu before 12 although the brunch starts at 11. Very limited menu choices"
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "Pearl in the Grove is one of the best restaurants I can think of in the Tampa Bay area. The food is unique, fresh and cooked to perfection. The presentation is as fine as any five-star restaurant you could find. From the cheese plate to my entree to the exquisite dessert, the whole meal was outstanding. Even better, the owners and wait staff are friendly, knowledgeable and there is absolutely no pretentiousness. We are lucky to live just down the street but our friends made quite a drive to dine with us and they were blown away. It's truly a dining experience not to be missed."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "After driving by this restaurant many times, my family and I bit the bullet for a birthday dinner. Their construct is 'farm to table,' meaning they try to use fresh, locally sourced ingredients (under 50 miles). They have a small, but nice craft beer and wine menu. Everything was delicious, but the best was the catfish, although the handmade pasta was a close second! At the end of the evening, the pastry chef brought out her baked goods that did not disappoint. Great food and WONDERFUL service. We will be sure to visit again."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "We had three small plates, two entrees, and two desserts, and everything from start to finish was amazing! All of their meats are free range and most breads, cheeses, and pastas are made in-house. We were blown away by the presentation and flavor of each dish, we will definitely be back!"
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "Pearl in the Grove is a great little restaurant with excellent food, a very friendly and knowledgeable staff, and an owner/head chef who makes it a point to come out and personally thank you for visiting. I worry about it's location though. It's the Dade City exit but actually in a small town called San Antonio. I worry that the restaurant's isolated location, over time, could spell its demise. Let's hope word of mouth and great reviews will create a loyal and large enough following to keep this pearl in the grove for a long time."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "This restaurant, in a small converted house, among the Florida "rolling hills" and orange and peach groves, is a special find. Lovely down home decor, friendly service, awesome locally-sourced food leaning toward New Orleans/southern style. The rooms are small and quiet, making for a very special meal at a fair price."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "From the moment you walk through the door, you begin to understand that Curtis and his staff at the Pearl in the Grove "get it." Real food, locally-sourced, treated with the respect it deserves. Our visit was a special night for my wife and I. As we walked into the clean, welcoming, open-air dining room, it felt more like going to friend's home for a dinner party than going out to a restaurant. The other patron's glanced up and smiled, as they carried on their conversations, while the hostess walked us to our nicely-appointed table in the corner of the room. The dining room air was filled with a pleasant level of buzz generated by people enjoying themselves, and their company. The food was conceptually-risky, yet superbly prepared!"
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "Want something different. This is the place. Organic beers available. Natural cheese platter. Flavors that jump out at you. Items available that opened a new taste experience . Unique entree's that you would come back for again. Looking forward to the season change and the new entree's available........ Will be back."
    Dined on 6/12/2014
  • "An outstanding find in the most unlikely place...the food is fresh and amazing. It is obvious that you are welcome there...the chef makes a point to visit tables and the servers are attentive, but not overly, giving you time to enjoy the experience. We love this place and highly recommend it to anyone looking for farm fresh ingredients and creative dishes."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "a lovely dining experience in a most unexpected location. we all loved it...natural and organic choices, great service, fabulous desserts. Yum, yum, yum."
    Dined on 6/4/2014
  • "We honestly found the dinner experience to be excellent all fresh from local farmers. For me their catfish was superb. Brunch was also very tasty... However don't actually go there hungry.. Their portions were pretty slim with prices on the high side. Again the food was excellent and unique.. "
    Dined on 6/1/2014
  • "It was my first time having Pork Bellies and they were delicious. I would have them again. I also tried the Heirloom salad which was really good. The wife had the Pecan Salmon and it was also very good. They had the wine my wife and I really enjoy which was great. They also had a nice dessert tray which I ordered the "shot glass" of blueberry, caramel and chocolate pudding. It was all very good. The atmosphere, the food and the service. We'll be back. "
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "Took the kitchen an inordinate amount of time to produce our entrees. Worth waiting for.....BUT!"
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "Absolutely lived up to the reviews! We had the pork belly and rabbit dishes, which were scrumptous. Fried green tomatoes and sweet potato chips w/ blue cheese & balsamic to start and homemade Snickers for desert. Only flaw was there was no espresso machine. This was a 9 on a scale of 10 and we will DEFINITELY be back."
    Dined on 5/23/2014
  • "The perfect dining night for our 47th anniversary!"
    Dined on 5/23/2014
  • "Looking for a unique restaurant in a unique location with a unique farm-to-table menu? This is the place! Highly recommend it."
    Dined on 5/22/2014
  • "Great to find a place where food is prepared fresh! No Sysco food here."
    Dined on 5/18/2014
  • "Don't let the exterior fool you - it may look like it should be a biker bar. In truth it is more like a comfortable farm house. The feel is homey. The food is very tasty. The staff are well trained, courteous, friendly (but not overly so) and attentive. The owners came by a couple of times to check on things - they were both very down to earth. Would and have recommended it to friends. "
    Dined on 5/17/2014
  • "I wanted to take my Husband somewhere special and a little different from the restaurants we've been to before. He was very pleased with the atmosphere and the food. Everyone was friendly and eager to please with the menu options. Generous portions and an expansive wine and beer list that also pleased him very much. We will definitely make plans to go back in the near future."
    Dined on 5/17/2014
  • "A friend recommended this restaurant to me so we could take my mother for her 92nd birthday. The service was wonderful - everyone acknowledged my mother, which made her day - and the food was excellent - especially the onion rings!!"
    Dined on 5/16/2014
  • "The food and selection for Mother's Day was awesome. My only disappointment was that they ran out of blueberries for dessert. We were one of the last reservations of the day, so that is excusable. I hope to have an opportunity to try it another time. Our waiter was a bit surly when we first arrived, but he quickly came around and gave us the excellent service we have come to expect at Pearl in the Grove. The owners always make it a point to make us feel welcome and comfortable. Looking forward to our next visit! "
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "From the moment we walked in the staff was very accommodating. The meal was well planned and the fixed menu was delicious. Loved the fried green tomatoes!!! The server was able to answer all of our questions and even added a sample of the "poor man's pudding" to take home with the leftovers. There was so much to eat!!! The only negative was the temperature in the dining area, just too warm. We will be back!!!"
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "We dined at Pearl in the Grove for Mother's Day Brunch. The food was amazing and the atmosphere was charming. I would have preferred the price included on the menu, as some of our party were surprised by the $40 per person price."
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "Menu was set 3 course. We were all mulling over the 5 or 6 choices - all of which sounded delicious, when the waiter brought a platter to the table containing every item of the 1st course, and later every item from the 2nd course - enough for each guest - and it was all good. It was so nice not to have to choose. We got to taste everything. Such a nice mix of southern (fried green tomatoes, pimento cheese, sweet ham with a great sauce), fresh, organic, with a little flair of "foodie" gourmet (frittata w/ goat cheese). Setting is very "shabby chic," with a little French country thrown in for good measure. Staff and owners were so friendly. It was delightful, and can't wait to show friends culture to be found outside of south Tampa."
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "I have been wanting to try this restaurant for over a year. Now I am sorry I waited so long! I had a friend staying with me who prefers out of the ordinary places, so finally I had someone to take to the Pearl in the Grove! It was an outstanding experience from the moment we walked in the door. Our waiter was "tall Paul", and what a gem he is! He is extremely knowledgeable, and happily answered all our questions. He made some recommendations, like the wine, and he was right on the money! From the appetizer, to the entrees, the wine, and finally dessert, everything was perfect. I live in San Antonio, so I am over the moon that we have such a wonderful restaurant in our midst! We will definitely be back.....over and over again!"
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "We love Pearl in the Grove for the ambience. It's a quaint atmosphere that is worth the 30 minute drive for a special occasion. The current chef is not outstanding, but decent enough for a fun place to go that is completely unique to any chain restaurant. "
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "Great food and service, just a little pricy. However, you do pay more for organic grass fed foods; it's worth it. Would go for another special occasion."
    Dined on 5/9/2014
  • "Excellent service. Decent food. The homemade pappardelle pasta was bland. It had herbs in it but you couldn't taste them. Better to toss in an herbed sauce. The yellow beet salad had only red beets and very very little dressing. The goat cheese was virtually non existent. I would recommend the selections of Abita beer products. I would also recommend the fried green tomato caprese appetizer and the blue cheese balsamic vinegar coated sweet potato chips. The desserts were presented partially dressed. This seemed odd. The Meyer lemon basil panne cotta was served with a delicious strawberry coconut whipped pie bar. The two competed terribly together. The panne cotta was bland. It needed the fruit in it. I would return, they are trying."
    Dined on 5/9/2014
  • "We came here for an anniversary dinner and we were really surprised as the place is in the middle of nowhere. What a find."
    Dined on 5/3/2014
  • "I first discovered this gem with a good friend Easter good Friday while visiting my daughter it was so good two weeks later my good friend & I drove 3 & a half hours from Fernandina Beach to eat here on my bday May 3rd. We loved every aspect of Pearl in the Grove. The service was excellent as all of the food. The desserts are to die for. First time had bread pudding the best ever had. On my bday had a wonderful cornmeal cake with pecan brittle possibly the best dessert ever we both lived it. My new favorite resturant can't wait to go again."
    Dined on 5/3/2014
  • "Our biggest regret was waiting for so long to come here. From the warmth of the owners' reception to the exceptional wait staff the environment was absolutely lovely. All the staff make themselves available to talk about the food and the restaurant. The chefs aren't just proficient, they really know their local /southern cuisine and how to make ingredients work together in ways that most of us would never consider. Just beautiful food and a beautiful experience."
    Dined on 5/2/2014
  • "This is a regular stop for us when we want to go out to dinner. The food is consistently good with original daily menu items selected by the chef. When ever possible they focus on local seasonal selections."
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "From the warm welcome to the tasty desert, Pearl in the Grove lives up to its name. Easter dinner was an amazing assortment of tastes and textures. The service was attentive but not rushed. I have already made our Mother's Day reservations! We love this place!"
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "Everything and everyone of you were great. Thanks for the great Easter meal. Will be back again"
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "Made last minute reservations & we didn't know what to expect or what the menu was going to be. We just went for it & I'm so glad we did. The food was simple, but the chef out did herself in the preparation. The best fried chicken I've ever had. Fresh & local sourcing is great. The website is informative too. Everyone was pleasant & friendly. We'll be back...well worth the drive from Tampa. "
    Dined on 4/20/2014