Tasty food and drink events to hit up in Tampa Bay over the weekend

Plan accordingly.

click to enlarge Tasty food and drink events to hit up in Tampa Bay over the weekend
Meaghan Habuda

Yes, the back patio of Nueva Cantina's South Tampa restaurant is as awesome as it looks (see above). That's why you should make plans to hang there — and the other destinations listed in this round-up of weekend food and drink events.

• DJ Elmo provides the soundtrack for Nueva Cantina's happy hour sipping and snacking from 5 to 6 p.m. Friday. Best part? The beats of Cantina Fridays continue till 9 p.m. Free, money for food and drinks. 4918 S. MacDill Ave., Tampa. 813-831-1101.

• Also on Friday, enjoy specialty cocktails while downing oysters from the Unlimited Omakase Raw Bar. Modern Brine chef-owner David Morris leads this tasting adventure, which begins at 6 p.m. inside Intermezzo Coffee & Cocktails. His "unlimited" omakase menu is different from a traditional omakase, however, in that everything is priced per course (meaning guests can indulge in their choice of one course, or 100). Free, money for food and drinks. 1111 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. 727-342-0156.

• Liters of beer (think German lagers and pumpkin ales) and traditional fare await at Pair O' Dice Brewing Company's 5th Annual Oktoberfest, so come dressed in dirndls or lederhosen. On Saturday, highlights of the all-day celebration between 1 and 11 p.m. include a stein-hoisting competition and the Best Beer Stein Contest. Brats Sensation provides the wursts and pretzels. Free, money for beer and food. 4400 118th Ave. N. #208, Clearwater. 727-755-3423.

• In partnership with Ladies Heights Happy Hour, the co-ed "Old-School" School Bus Bar Crawl! allows participants to hop aboard a giant school bus with throwback tunes at c.1949, and then roll around to four local "bus stops" (The Refinery, Independent Bar and Cafe, Bodega/Mandarin Heights and Angry Chair Brewing) for adult beverages. Proceeds from the ride, kicking off at 7 p.m. Saturday, benefit the needs of Tampa classrooms. Tickets can be purchased online. $12. 6905 N. Orleans Ave., Tampa.

• Anybody else a total sucker for desserts and local beer? Flying Boat Brewing Co. combines both during the Beer n' Bake Cook Off on Sunday. With proceeds benefiting the St. Petersburg Free Clinic, the brewery's sixth food competition for charity asks contenders to showcase their best recipes for baked goods — made with a house beer. The battle from 1 to 3 p.m. is free to enter online (or in person), and admission gets the crowd access to the tasting and voting, plus one free pour. To nab another beer on the house, attendees are asked to contribute five nonperishable food items. $15 donation. 1776 11th Ave. N., St. Petersburg. 727-800-2999.

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