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  1. Distance: 0.22mi
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Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.22mi
  2. Distance: 0.24mi
  3. Distance: 0.28mi
  4. Distance: 0.28mi
  1. Distance: 0.22mi
  2. Distance: 0.24mi
  3. Distance: 0.28mi
  4. Distance: 0.28mi

About Cena

Cena is a modern, fresh and simple Italian food served in a contemporary and stylish setting. Located in the Grand Central building at the heart of the vibrant Channel District of Tampa, Florida – Cena is dining from the roots – great ingredients, traditional dishes, and attentive service. Join us.

Cena – “dinner” or “supper” in Italian.

1208 E Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33602
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Italian

Hours of Operation:
Monday-closed
Tuesday-closed
Wednesday-Saturday 5 -10
Sunday 5-9

Cross Street:
Kennedy and Madison in the Grand Central

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(813) 374-8840

Website:
http://www.cena-channelside.com/

Catering:
For catering inquires please contact Kate Hardy, General Manager, at 813-374-8840 or kate@cena-channelside.com

Parking Details:
There is a parking garage for the building, free for the first two hours and two dollars after that. Parking in the west garage is easiest, parking on the up ramp taking the "stageworks" elevator down.

Executive Chef:
Michael Buttacavoli

Additional:
Bar Dining, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Takeout, Wine

Cena Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.7

ambience

4.4

value

4.1

noise

Moderate

96% would recommend it to a friend

Neighborhood Gem (23)
Good for a Date (23)
Creative Cuisine (20)
See All
Special Occasion (18)
Fit for Foodies (16)
Authentic (14)
Worth the Drive (13)
Modern Decor (12)
Bar Seating (12)
Romantic (12)
Good for Birthdays (11)
Casual (11)
Good for Anniversaries (11)
Business Meals (10)
Pre/post Theatre (9)
Notable Wine List (9)
Quiet Conversation (8)
Good for Groups (7)
Cozy (6)
Great for Outdoor Dining (6)
Hot Spot (5)
Good Vegetarian Options (4)
Tasting Menu (4)
Happy Hour (4)
Vibrant Bar Scene (4)
Local Ingredients (4)
Comfort Food (3)
Handcrafted Cocktails (3)
Healthy (3)
Kid-friendly (3)
People Watching (3)
Disabled Access (3)
Sunday Lunch (2)
Great for Lunch (1)
Waterfront (1)
Gluten Free Options (1)
Tapas (1)
Scenic View (1)
Quick Bite (1)
Late-night Find (1)
Fun (1)
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224 reviews
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 (New Orleans)·Dined 3 days ago

Not worth the price. Very average tasting food. Was looking forward to this place, very disappointed.

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food2
ambience3
service3
value1

vip
 (New England)·Dined 4 days ago

Excellent as always. Flora is the best. Always a friend or business associate is there.

Tags: People Watching, Happy Hour, Casual, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Tampa)·Dined on May 21, 2017

So so food, service was par...nothing special. Much better restaurants in better surroundings for equal cost.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience2
service3

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on May 20, 2017

Wonderful food and the servers are always well trained and very pkeaaant. So conveniebt, especially if you're going to a Stage Woks production which are always fun and well dobe

Tags: Authentic, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Tampa)·Dined on May 17, 2017

This location is a local gem. Their food is great and now that they have full bar, their specialty drinks are fantastic.
Visit this place. A great restaurant with yummy food.

Tags: Hot Spot, Vibrant Bar Scene, Neighborhood Gem, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on May 17, 2017

The Eggplant appetizer is a must try! Presentation of the entrees was lovely and the desserts were not only tasty but a true work of art!

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Orlando)·Dined on May 14, 2017

Cena is an excellent restaurant. The food is absolutely Amazing! We can't say enough about how Wonderful our meal & service was. We absolutely cannot wait to go back soon!

Tags: Worth the Drive, Modern Decor, Business Meals, Creative Cuisine, Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Authentic, Cozy, Special Occasion, Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic, Fun, Great for Outdoor Dining, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List, Bar Seating, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on May 13, 2017

My husband and I were visiting our daughter and son-in-law for the weekend. Cena is a favorite of theirs and it was a great choice! We felt welcome from the minute we stepped through the doorway. Overall, the food was fabulous with one exception - the pasta carbonara was dry. It really needed something to make a bit of sauce. To be honest, our server told us that it was made with just egg yolks - no cream - and that's what we got. Despite the carbonara, all the other entrees were great and we will return!

Tags: Happy Hour, Handcrafted Cocktails, Bar Seating, Healthy, Worth the Drive, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 13, 2017

The best kept secret in Tampa. Excellent staff, good, and ambience

Tags: Cozy, Bar Seating, Romantic, Notable Wine List, Authentic, Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Overall a nice dinner. The wine and pasta were tasty, and the service was excellent. Nice ambience for a romantic dinner. Quite expensive.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on May 13, 2017

It was a great experience!!! The food was awesome! The service was fantastic and the night air was absolutely perfect

Tags: Worth the Drive, Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Business Meals, Handcrafted Cocktails, Hot Spot, Authentic, Romantic, Great for Outdoor Dining, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Always very good

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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Orlando)·Dined on May 6, 2017

Superb meal at a reasonable price! I would highly recommend dining here for special occasions or just a night out.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on April 27, 2017

Best salmon dish I've had in so long. The food taste very homemade and fresh. Portions are enough and desserts are to die for. Definitely a new favorite spot. Everyone was so nice and helpful.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Authentic, People Watching, Modern Decor, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Bar Seating, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Business Meals, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on April 23, 2017

Food was delicious. Waiter, aloof. Host, friendly. A little cramped. I'll come back.

Tags: Authentic, Sunday Lunch, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service2
value3

vip
 (Tampa)·Dined on April 21, 2017

It looks better than it tastes. This was my second time and it was not as good as the first.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience1
service1
value1

vip
 (New England)·Dined on April 21, 2017

Our FAVORITE, must visit every time we come to Tampa, restaurant!

Tags: Worth the Drive, Neighborhood Gem, Happy Hour, Authentic, Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good for Birthdays, Modern Decor, Tasting Menu, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Tampa)·Dined on April 15, 2017

In a word, underwhelming. In another word, underseasoned. In a 3rd word, forgettable.

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food2
ambience2
service3
value1

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on April 15, 2017

Food is not good and only thing Italian about it is the name. I've lived in Italy. And btw, tiramisu is coffee flavored lady fingers surrounded by cream. Not a big custard ball with 2 little wafers in the middle.

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food1
ambience4
service4
value1

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on April 8, 2017

While I personally find Cena a bit pricier than my usual dining spots, the food is good and so is the service. They also aren't very lenient about substitutions, charging a $7 upcharge to substitute a pasta listed on the menu for the white beans that came with my meal. I don't go there often and consider it a special occasion when I do.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

vip
 (Kansas City)·Dined on April 8, 2017

Wonderful! Cena should be listed as one of Tampa's Top Ten restaurants, for foodies, special occasion, casual night out, you name it! Great, great, great food in lovely setting with superb service.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on April 2, 2017

The manager was awesome, helpful with drink and menu questions and very friendly! Unfortunately the ambiance was lacking and the food was average at best especially for the price. The waitress we had was nice but not even close to stellar in her service skills. I would've expected stellar service from a restaurant of this caliber. I made reservations through open table and wanted a 7pm dinner time but it wasn't avail so I took the next best time of 8pm. When we arrived, the restaurant wasn't packed or that busy! How there wasn't a 7pm seating available is beyond me.

I want to end on a positive note...my friends and I really loved the manager that was working that night!

Tags: Quiet Conversation
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience1
service3
value2

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on March 27, 2017

A bit pricey for Italian fare but you certainly get what you pay for, flavor was excellent as were the ingredients. Service was some of the best I've had in ages. Wine list isn't bad at all but the option to taste the wine before will be from a bottle that's been open for a long while, not a deal breaker but just keep it in mind

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Quiet Conversation
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 24, 2017

Excellent food!! Very nice wine selection. Somewhat expensive but good value. We loved everything!!!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on March 19, 2017

Great service and god food. Tasty wines, the house wine was the best value on the list too. Only complaint would be that the carbonara sauce was not a true carbonara, I could not detect any egg in it at all so that dish was a bit of a miss but the homemade pasta was delicious regardless. Their tiramisu will have us coming back, unlike any I have tried, very unique presentation. Try it!

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food4
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Charleston)·Dined on March 15, 2017

We had 2 children under the age 10 and they were very sweet and accommodating! Food was fabulous!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on March 12, 2017

Not your typical neighborhood Italian restaurant even for Downtown/Channelside district - a cut above. Upscale dare I say "gourmet" menu is not inexpensive but you get what you pay for. Great food - a foody destination: appetizers, main courses and desserts were all excellent - very pleased with my 1st dining experience at Cena. Five of us dined before an event at the Amalie arena and all were very happy with their experience. Would recommend to others.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Good for a Date, Pre/post Theatre, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine, Casual, Worth the Drive, Disabled Access
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on March 4, 2017

Great meal, service facilitated very fun and enjoyable evening with friends.

Tags: Good for Groups, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on March 3, 2017

Just a very enjoyable evening. Fine dining, small place, intimate. Loved it

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 25, 2017

Loved the menu and the food was exceptional. We chose this restaurant to dine at before going to a play at the Performing Arts Center. The service was good. We had pasta dishes and the pasta was freshly handmade and the sauces were not overbearing or heavy. Portion size was just right. We will dine at this establishment again.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 25, 2017

Delicious dinner. Excellent service. Highly recommend.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 24, 2017

Cena is one of the best Italian restaurants in town. The ingredients are the tops, the dishes are both authentic and creative, and the wine list is good. I was with three other people and we all enjoyed our meals. For my part, one of the mushrooms in the mushroom risotto was perhaps the best mushroom I've ever had.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation, Authentic, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 22, 2017

I picked this place because they have three Rosoto dishes. I ended up getting the special Eggplant Rialto with cranberry sauce. It was really good. Portions are a bit small so plan on getting a salad if you're really hungry.

Tags: Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on February 19, 2017

This is one of those places that you forget about, a little off the main road, but after dinner you say, we should go there more often. The carbonata pasta with meat sauce was al dente and delicious, the branzino was cooked perfectly, they ran out of my husbands wine but brought him samples of three others to choose from, the cookie sherbet dessert was the perfect ending.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 19, 2017

The fried cheese with figs and honey was very good. The shriml carbanara was light but lackec a bit of flavor. We shared the almond macaroon desser. Just okay. Macaroon very hard and difficult to eat. Of all the times we have been here, and lovef it, this time was not as great food. Service was great!! Will give it another try, but used to be my fave, but food slipped a bit

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food3
ambience3
service4

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 15, 2017

Being Italian, I only eat where I found real Italian cousine, superb service and atmosphere. Cena is the place to go!
Grazie!

Tags: Business Meals, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic, Bar Seating, Tasting Menu, Healthy, Modern Decor, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Louisville)·Dined on February 12, 2017

Staff is great !!!! The Ricotta Cheesecake is out of this world.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 11, 2017

Received a warm greeting at the door. Everyone was so pleasant and helpful. Meal was fabulous. Thank you Cena's for a wonderful anniversary meal!!! Can't wait to bring our friends.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 10, 2017

The service (Eric), wine, food and atmosphere was absolutely amazing. It was our first visit to Cena but will definitely not be our last...Long Island transplant🍷🍷Cheers...

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on February 9, 2017

we were greeted and seated promptly, the service was excellent and the food was very good

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

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