Tampa Indie Flea, Ulele, and Other Sunday Adventures

A couple of weeks ago, my cousin Taylor texted my other cousin Shelby and I to see if we would be interested in driving down to Tampa to check out the Indie Flea. We were both up for it, so we made plans to go this past Sunday and create a full day of things. We ate some good food and came across some good finds, and I just can't pass up the opportunity of sharing!

We left Gainesville around 7:30am and made it to Tampa around 9:30am, so the first place we ventured to was Buddy Brew Coffee. Buddy Brew is a local coffee shop that has been in Tampa since 2010, and there are now several locations around the city. It's one of those places that you immediately love once you walk in the door.

I ordered a chocolate croissant and a cold brew coffee. Cold brew is always my go-to, so I feel the need to try it at every new coffee shop I visit. I loved the croissant...but I actually did not like the cold brew at all. It was no fault of Buddy Brew's...there was just some odd flavor that my taste buds were not a fan of. I guess you win some, and you lose some.

After coffee, it was on to IKEA! Can anyone tell me if it's actually possible to get out of there in less than two hours? We walked around the showroom to check everything out, and then spent a good portion of time collecting the items we wanted to purchase. We all found some great stuff! I walked out with new pillows for mine and Slade's bed (much needed), a new print to hang somewhere in our house, a cute little fake plant to take to work and put on my desk, and a toilet brush/holder for our second bathroom. I also found these adorable stuffed animals that look just like Bell and Rizzo, which I resisted the urge to buy in spite of how precious they were.

We had all worked up an appetite in IKEA, so lunch was next on the list. Taylor had made us reservations at Ulele, a restaurant on Tampa's Riverwalk.

The restaurant's website gives a better description than I could: "Ulele (pronounced You-lay-lee) celebrates the vibrant fusion of ingredients from Florida waters and land once home to many Native Americans, including the young princess Ulele. Expect intricately flavored, visually appealing dishes prepared on the 10' diameter barbacoa grill."

It is located inside of an old, preserved building, and has a really unique atmosphere. For an appetizer, we tried the alligator hush puppies. Yes, with actual alligator meat, ha ha. If you have never tried gator before, it is similar in taste and texture to chicken. The hush puppies were really different and tasty!

For our entrees, Taylor and I ordered the lobster roll with fries, and Shelby ordered the crab mac n' cheese. I have absolutely nothing bad to say about the food. Everything was fresh and wonderful. I will definitely pay Ulele another visit!

Once we were finished (and full), we walked to check out the fountain in front of the restaurant, which is a dedication to Ulele. I think the restaurant is doing a wonderful job with their style and their message. The fountain is proof of that.

Our last stop of the day was the main reason for our trip...the Indie Flea! The Flea takes place in the Rialto, an old theater in the heart of Tampa. Local vendors of every variety come to sell their products...everything from craft beer to tshirts to succulents to art prints.

There were so many different, quirky things to check out. It never ceases to surprise me how creative people can be. It's always awesome to see people sharing items that they put heart and soul into. I think Blue Poppy Gallery had my favorite booth of the day. They create prints with quotes and images on sheets of dictionary paper. I couldn't say no to this Jane Austen quote. It came home with me.

Do you have any events similar to the Indie Flea in your area? Tell me about something really cool that you have purchased recently.
Kristen from Pugs & Pearls said...

I keep hearing Tampa has so many cool things to do! We've been to the zoo but that's about it. I really like the Jane Austen print, that's so pretty and creative!

StephTheBookworm said...

Sounds like SUCH a fun day! I love poking around flea markets and I love the print you found!

Oh Tampa... I have lots of love for Tampa. We were there in November to get on our cruise and I got VIOLENTLY ill in the streets of Tampa. Workers came and called us an ambulance. All of the people we encountered and hospital staff were incredible. I'd love to go back to Tampa some day to actually enjoy it! HA!!

Jessica J-Marie said...

Buddy Brew is one of my favorites! Although, I've never tried their cold brew. I'm sad to say that I STILL haven't a) made it over to one of the Indie Flea + b) visited Ulele yet! There are so many new restaurants popping up around the city. Ulele is definitely on my list of must-try places. I'm so glad you had a great day down here :)

Audrey Louise said...

That flea market sounds awesome! I don't think I've ever explored Tampa but it sounds like there are some pretty cool places. Totally agree about alligator, too. It's very similar to chicken!

Vicky Hunt said...

Still a little bent out of shape that you went to Ikea without me...lol! Seriously though, I'm glad you all had such a fun girl's day out!

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