Columbia Restaurant in Florida has been selected by Mashed for having one of the best soups in America. Located In Ybor City, Columbia Restaurant’s history goes back 117 years. It opened in 1905 by Casamiro Hernandez Sr., an immigrant from Cuba. Since that time, it has been well-known for its flavorful Spanish-style cuisine.
Soup gets its own category on both the lunch and dinner menus at The Columbia. Atop the list, you will find their infamous “Spanish Bean Soup.” This is immediately called out on Mashed’s list. In fact, of the 12 restaurants selected, this is the first soup discussed. To this day, it still is made from following the original recipe of Casimiro Hernandez, Sr.: Garbanzo beans simmered with smoked ham, chorizo sausage, and potatoes in a delicious broth of chicken and ham.
Another Columbia is a vegetarian option. The “Black Beans Original” is described as a large bowl of black bean soup, topped with Florida tomatoes and dressing, tossed with julienned sweet onions.
Furthermore, Columbia Restaurant offers a Caldo Gallego soup, a Gazpacho, and a Cuban Black Bean soup. If you’re having trouble deciding, a half Cuban Sandwich, half soup combination is available to you as well.
Cooking Up The Best Bowl
To compile their thorough list, Mashed looked for the most flavorful soup options nationwide. A criteria here was that soup needed to be a menu mainstay as opposed to a seasonal selection or special. Mashed describes the perfect bowl by describing soup as, “simply a perfect way to kick off any meal at a restaurant before the entrees make their appearance. While the other guests in your party might opt for a salad or some other handheld munchable to start their meal, you just can’t go wrong when you see a great selection of soup on the menu.”
At Columbia Restaurant, the soup is hearty enough to enjoy as your main meal or it can accompany another dish. Either way, the restaurant takes pride in crafting and delivering freshly prepared options. Each is available in cup or bowl portions.
This Florida restaurant that was named one of the 12 best soups in America now has six additional locations. The greater Tampa region has the most with the original Ybor restaurant, one in Clearwater, and a Columbia Café at the Tampa airport.