I have been to my share of restaurants, nightclubs and cafes in many parts of the world. This is why it is no small thing when I say that Skipper’s Smokehouse in Tampa, FL is by far the coolest, most unique establishment I have ever visited.
Skipper’s is a fish-shack sort of a restaurant and bar. The only food I have eaten there so far is one deep-fried mushroom, which was awesome. I assume I will try a meal there before too long.
Skipper’s has many small buildings that connect one to another, leaving an open-air area in the middle, which is the music venue. There are huge trees that seem to be incorporated into the structures and provide something of a ceiling for the music venue. I would probably choose not to see a band in the rain.
The way it is set up you can have a meal and hear the music without paying the cover for the band, but if you want to be in front of the band and on the dance floor, you pay the seven dollar cover.
The prices, overall, seem very reasonable – especially after five years in South Florida where everything is overpriced.
I was at Skipper’s last Thursday to get my Grateful Dead fix. Every Thursday is Grateful Dead night at Skippers, featuring Uncle John’s Band. Yes, they rock.
One of the things that makes Skipper’s so unusual is that they have a live band every night of the week. I haven’t known a club to do this since Toad’s Place in New Haven before Connecticut raised the drinking age to 21.
Skipper’s is decorated in graffiti art. Even the (clean) women’s room has inspirational graffiti scrawled in the stalls.
One of the oddest (and most fun) thing I noticed at Skippers were a rack of guest hoops. Yes, if you want to hoop to the music, go for it.
The scene Thursday night was tremendously cool. Under the canopy of trees and stars children, young adults and senior citizens danced together. Vendors in the back sold tie dyes and jewelry. People watched the band while munching on fish, fries and wings.
All I can say is I can’t wait for next Thursday.