Shrimpy’s Blues Bistro; Treasure Island

Treasure Island is located near Tampa Bay, on an outer, Gulf of Mexico facing, sliver of island. We stopped here before traveling a short ways north, to Clearwater.

Treasure Island was quaint, not overly crowded (in August), and had unique touches here and there that coincided with its name.

Shrimpy’s Blues Bistro 

Our first stop on the Florida island was a small bistro, attached to a strip of other stops. It’s simplistic outside look almost had us worried, but usually these places turn out to be favorites. Shrimpy’s Blues Bistro turned out to be a treasure (that pun was too easy).

Inside, the restaurant is narrow but filled with unique, quirky decor and a vibrant blue bar, which nicely complimented the New Orleans theme.

Shrimpy’s aims for a natural and sometimes organic menu, while serving wildcaught fish, oysters, shrimp, clams and other seafood. While we all love eating seafood on our beach vacations, a unique twist on Cajun seafood kept things interesting, so you don’t get tired of delicacies from the sea.

So what should you eat here?

Anything with seafood; but I’ll narrow it down for you. For the “low carbers”, you can get a fantastic salad topped with fried, wild caught oysters for a nice balance of indulgent and healthy. Gulf oysters are ever so lightly battered and fried; the golden crust is flaky and crisp.

An Apalachicola Clam Po’ Boy is certainly heartier, on a soft hoagie roll with crisp lettuce and a side ( go for the red beans and rice). My husband loved the Surfer Quesadilla with white pepper shrimp and scallops; it’s very cheesy with a little avocado, while being extremely filling.

There are also non seafood selections like the Cajun Chicken Steak Quesadilla and pork based Po’ Boys. As you’ve probably noticed, there is some Cuban flare on the menu as well, being that your getting further south of Florida where the Cuban population starts to influence the food.

Worth a Detour

When driving anywhere close to the area, it’s worth going a bit out of your way to get here. It’s small, simple, but big and elaborate in flavor. The staff was beyond amazing and even warmed our niece’s bottle of milk; it was just one of those charming places that has that “something”,  that makes it really special.


  1. I used to be the night chef here before moving to Biloxi, and can personally attest to the owner, Richard Briggs’ absolute passion and pride in his little place on the beach. It shows in everything he does. He does big things out of a small kitchen! Miss You Guys!

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