For those who haven’t yet visited, The Studio Public House is an absolute gem in the Grand Central District, located at 2950 Central Avenue. The pub was opened three years ago by Chef Michael Crippin, famed Executive Chef of Beach Drive’s Moon Under Water, and his culinary creations have taken on new life in their laid-back digs. The fish and chips and the Madras Curry (Chef Mike’s old Moon Under Water classic) are both I Love the Burg favorites.
And that curry is the perfect starting point for what is one of the best menus in town for the cooler fall weather in St. Pete (spice it up with the habanero-infused Dragon Vindaloo curry if you really need some heat). Studio Pub’s fall happy hour menu is practically a celebration of tasty comfort food, versatile enough to enjoy on their patio during live jazz Sundays or cozied up at the bar for some weeknight fish and chips.
We’ll start with the food, as one should always do when Chef Mike is involved, but the drink specials offer an excuse to grab a drink at any hour. The best part: every hour is happy hour Monday, Wednesday and Thursday with drink specials running from open to close.
- $10.99 curry: From 3-9 pm on Monday and Wednesday, get a full serving of any of Chef Mike’s famous curries for $10.99
- $10.99 Fish and Chips: All day and night Thursday, get a massive platter for fish and chips for $10.99
- $10.99 Fall Frenzy Lunch Specials: From 12-4 pm Monday, Wednesday and Thursday get any of the following for $10.99: Cup of soup and half fall salad; cup of soup and ham n cheddar melt; 5 oz beer battered cod and chips; coconut shrimp and fries basket; chicken tenders and fries basket; apple walnut cranberry fall salad with balsamic; turkey BLT with balsamic aioli; vegan veggie flatbread
- $3 beer, $5 wine and champagne, $5 Stella pints: Every Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 12-9 pm and on Friday from 12-6 pm, select beers are only $3, while wine, champagne and pints of Stella Artois are only $5.
- Champagne River: Get your brunch on with bottomless champagne rivers for $19.99 every Saturday and Sunday from 12-5 pm.
Of course, the great food and drink aren’t limited to the happy hour menu. We got shepherd’s pie and bangers and mash on our last visit, two cheat day-worthy meals unlike anything else in the neighborhood. And on weekends, Studio Pub is the home for sports and music. They open at 10 am every Saturday for Premier League games, while also showing any Bucs, Lightning, Rays and Rowdies games on tv. And Sunday afternoons on their patio with live jazz are hard to beat even without a heaping plate of fish and chips.
We certainly recommend following Studio Pub on facebook and on instagram, as well. Chef Mike’s rotating specials are more than worth a visit on their own anytime, and their social pages are often the best place to discover them.
Studio Public House brings pub life to St. Pete
Housed in a former recording studio, the venture by longtime Moon Under Water Executive Chef Michael Crippin has brought the pub life to St. Pete’s burgeoning Grand Central District. The Studio Public House is an homage to the building’s history and to the British public houses – or “pubs” – that inspired its warm and welcoming atmosphere.
Crippin describes the menu as simple, unfussy food that’s easy to enjoy and is meant to hit the spot when an empty stomach walks in. “Simple,” however, should not be confused for anything other than flavorful and interesting. From a crunchy BBQ chicken sandwich and Chef Mike’s famous dragonfire vindaloo to a Mediterranean salad and massive piles of fish and chips, the offerings pique the interest of any palate.
A carryover from the building’s time as Pom-Pom’s Café, there is an extensive list of sandwiches available, including a build-your-own option. Alongside the pressed sandwiches, Crippin’s curries take the main stage, plus a variety of dips, a long list of salads, an offering of tacos and flatbreads, and a decadent dessert menu starring Chef Mike’s Chocolate Guinness Cake.
Studio Public House has something for everyone
While the food is what gets people in the door, owners Michael and Alison Crippin say the friendly, laid-back vibes are what keep regulars around. It isn’t Cheers, but if you come more than once, they want to know your name. And for their staff, they’ve streamlined the side work – taking much of it on themselves – so that servers can spend less time cleaning and more time at tables and at the bar talking to customers.
Sitting in the dining room that used to serve as a sound booth, surrounded by records affixed to the walls, Michael and Allison described The Studio as a hangout that “can be lots of things to different people,” but is ultimately a comfortable place to have a pint and something to eat on your own or with a group.
“It’s a neighborhood bar,” Michael says. “An easy place to get what you want.”
Chef Mike flexing culinary muscles with grand plans
As for the food and drink itself, Studio Pub has anywhere from three to six food specials on a daily basis, plus rotating pastries. The draft and canned beer list features a wide variety of local breweries, with a particular emphasis on Grand Central neighbors. Specialty teas are available all day, and the wine list includes plenty of options, as well as several wine-based liquors.
But they’re not stopping there. Studio Pub also hosts live music and art galleries, with all wall art in the building hung and sold commission-free by local artists, with big events happening on a regular basis.
Suffice to say, The Studio is a true neighborhood pub with something for everybody. Come one, come all, and most importantly, come hungry.
More information and a full menu can be found here.