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Experience a Japanese Izakaya at Haiku Tampa

Posted at 4:36 PM, Jun 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-29 16:41:56-04

TAMPA, Fla. — If you love Asian fusion cuisine, you need to add Haiku Tampa to your to do list.

Haiku opened in January 2021 and has stunning Instagram-able decor, complete with floral displays and inspirational sayings on the walls.

This Downtown Tampa hot spot offers Izakaya vibes, which is a type of informal Japanese bar that serves cocktails and small plates. From noodles to fried rice to sushi, there is no shortage of options on Haiku’s dinning menu.

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Sashimi/nigiri (foreground) and Tuna Avocado Roll (background) from Haiku Tampa

“We dabble in a little bit of...more of an eclectic flare,” said David Reyes, Haiku’s executive chef. “We stay traditional at times and then at times we allow for an international influence.”

Some fan favorite dishes include:

  • Chicken Udon—soy glazed broccoli, red peeper, green onion, mushrooms and chili tendril
  • Hamachi Crudo—edamame gazpacho, pickled veggies and crispy rice
  • Wagyu Beef—tasting portion served on a hot stone

In addition to small plates, the restaurant also has an array of sushi, sashimi and nigiri. Check out the full menu online.

Haiku often puts a modern twist on the traditional. The cocktail program uses Japanese ingredients to do different interpretations of classic cocktails, like the Twisted Buddha, which is a spicy mango margarita made with tequila and sake, or the Japanese Sour, made with Japanese Whiskey and pineapple juice.

Not only are Haiku’s dishes and cocktails unique, but the presentation is artistic.

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Hamachi Crudo from Haiku Tampa

“We like on the fact that we’re named Haiku and say that, you know, we put poetry on a plate,” said Reyes.

Haiku Tampa is located at 808 N Franklin Street on the ground level of Element Condos and they are open Wednesday through Sunday. The restaurant also has an ever-growing wine menu and serves brunch on Saturdays and Sundays.