The original Columbia Restaurant in Tampa’s Ybor City is Florida’s oldest restaurant. They expanded their operation to St. Augustine’s historic district in the 1980s bringing the family’s traditional Spanish recipes with them. The cookbook is full of recipes for many of their signature dishes.
The restaurant has remained in the same family throughout its history and Adela Gonzmart, one of the authors, is part of that family. Ferdie Pacheco, the other author, is a Ybor City native who spent a good part of his life in and around the Columbia. Both add many anecdotes about the restaurant and the family. It is a delicious reading experience.