These mild autumn afternoons are the perfect time to take advantage of Seasons Fresh Cafe. Situated tightly between a sushi restaurant and a hair salon in the eclectic plaza at Bruce B. Downs and Bearss Avenue in North Tampa, Seasons Fresh stays true to its name: not only does the entire menu feature organic food, but the establishment is a reliable breath of fresh air in an area that can be hit and miss when it comes to lunch choices. Moreover, Seasons Fresh supports sustainable agriculture and socially-conscience food, utilizing local growers where possible.
The indoor café area is tightly-packed and can be somewhat crowded. Guests who visit during the lunch hour can expect to sit back to back with USF grad students and business professionals taking advantage of their free Wi-Fi. Since the beverage menu offers a range of Illy espresso drinks, teas, and organic fruit smoothies, guests can feel welcome to sit back and relax for a while after the plates have been cleared.
Seasons Fresh‘s true gem is its charming, European-style outdoor patio area. Although the restaurant is in a plaza, an unexpected nook lies between the Seasons Fresh kitchen and the next establishment. The walls of the buildings and a few well-placed oak trees provide enough shade to enjoy your lunch without constantly squinting against the sun.
On my visit, I ordered Number 17, the House Herb Roasted Chicken Salad Wrap, on a whole wheat wrap with chipotle sauce and provolone cheese. The portions were generous and the chicken salad was flavorful. If you’re wondering whether the “organic thing” actually improves taste, the dishes here will confirm that it does. I did wait longer than I probably should have for a lunch wrap, and then again for my to-go box and check once I had finished my meal. The day I visited was mild and breezy, and I didn’t mind lingering at my table for a few extra minutes.
Although Seasons Fresh may have some small kinks to iron out when it comes to service, it’s a must-try for anyone with a hankering for delicious, natural food at a reasonable price. When you visit, make sure to take advantage of the outdoor café area, an ideal environment to slow down to catch up with an old friend.
Seasons Fresh serves brunch, lunch and early dinner Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 pm. For more information, visit the Seasons Fresh website.