Priority Pass is the world’s largest network of independent airport lounges, with over 1,200 locations around the world. The number of Priority Pass members has increased greatly the past couple of years, ever since the Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card was introduced, as the card comes with a Priority Pass membership (there are also several other credit cards with lounge access).
Priority Pass has gotten creative when it comes to the “lounges” they’ve added to their network. For terminals in which they struggle to reach a deal with a traditional lounge, Priority Pass has in some cases come to agreements with restaurants.
The idea is that Priority Pass typically pays a lounge a fixed amount for each guest who enters, so instead Priority Pass pays restaurants a fixed amount, in exchange for giving their members a dollar credit that they can spend towards food and drinks.
At this point Priority Pass has about two dozen restaurant locations at US airports, including the following:
- House Spirits Distillery Portland Airport
- Capers Cafe Le Bar Portland Airport
- Capers Market Portland Airport
- Timberline Steaks & Grille Denver Airport
- Corona Beach House Miami Airport
- Viena Miami Airport
- Air Margaritaville Miami Airport
- The Pasta House St. Louis Airport
- Kentucky Ale Taproom Lexington Airport
- Bobby Van’s Steakhouse New York JFK Airport
- Bar Symon at Cleveland Airport
- Johnny Rockets at Syracuse Airport
- Bracket Room at Washington Reagan Airport
- The Fan Zone Indianapolis Airport
- RJ Rockers Flight Room Greenville-Spartanburg Airport
- Jerry Remy’s Sports Bar & Grill Boston Airport
- Stephanie’s Boston Airport
- San Francisco Giant’s Clubhouse San Francisco Airport
- Yankee Pier San Francisco Airport
- American Tap Room at Washington Reagan Airport
- Landry’s Seafood at Houston Airport
- Cadillac Mexican Kitchen & Tequila Bar Houston Airport
- P.F. Chang’s Los Angeles Airport
- Chef Geoff’s Washington Dulles Airport
- The Cafe by Mise en Place Tampa Airport
I’ve been doing what I can to review Priority Pass restaurants, and in this post wanted to review a Priority Pass restaurant at my (former) home airport.
The Cafe by Mise en Place Tampa Airport
Until recently Tampa Airport didn’t have any Priority Pass locations, which is probably due to the airport’s general lack of lounges. Fortunately in October 2018 Priority Pass reached a deal with an airport restaurant, The Cafe by Mise en Place (alrighty, that name is a bit much, no?).
Today I had the chance to check out this restaurant, and wanted to share my thoughts. As far as basic things to be aware of go:
- Members receive $28 of credit per person
- Priority Pass members can bring as many guests as their particular membership type allows (for most credit cards this includes two guests)
- In order to be eligible you need to have a same day boarding pass with confirmed travel, though it can be either a departing or arriving boarding pass
- You can’t use the credit for any to-go orders
- The restaurant is located in Concourse F, which is used by American Airlines, British Airways, Cayman Airways, Copa Airlines, Edelweiss Air, Lufthansa, Norwegian, and Swoop; none of the concourses at Tampa Airport are connected airside, so if you’re departing from a different concourse you’d have to clear security twice to visit this restaurant
The Cafe by Mise en Place is open daily from 4:30AM until the last flight, so it’s useful whether you want to grab breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
As a reminder, here are some of the popular credit cards that come with a Priority Pass membership:
|Card||# Of Guests Who Get Free Access||Authorized User Access||Cost To Add Authorized User|
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||2||Yes||$175 For Up To 3 People, $175 For Each Additional Person Beyond That (Rates & Fees)|
|The Business Platinum® Card from American Express||2||Yes||$300 Per Person (Rates & Fees)|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve®||2||Yes||$75 Per Person|
|Citi Prestige® Credit Card||2||Yes||$50 Per Person. ($75 Per Person for Cardmember Anniversary dates after September 1, 2019)|
|Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card||2||No||$0|
|Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card||2||No||$0|
The Cafe by Mise en Place TPA review
The Cafe by Mise en Place is located airside (after security) in Concourse F. The restaurant is located just past the security checkpoint, across from gate F85, so you can’t miss it.
Tampa Airport Concourse F
The restaurant has two areas — to the left is an area with bar seating and high-top tables, and to the right is an area with booths.
Cafe by Mise en Place Tampa Airport
There was a friendly host who immediately seated me. I saw the Priority Pass signage on the host stand, and asked if my card would be swiped then, or at the conclusion of the meal. He swiped it immediately, and for what it’s worth didn’t verify my boarding pass.
Cafe by Mise en Place Tampa Airport Priority Pass signage
I sat over on the bar side at a high-top table, which had an outlet right next to the seat.
Cafe by Mise en Place Tampa Airport seating
Cafe by Mise en Place Tampa Airport seating
Since I was there in the morning, I was presented with the breakfast menu, which read as follows (here’s the lunch & dinner menu, should you be interested in that):
The server taking care of me was an absolute delight. It’s rare to have great service at an airport restaurant, in my opinion, and even rarer at those that participate in Priority Pass, given that some people don’t tip.
I started by ordering a cappuccino. I was happy to see that this restaurant uses Kahwa Coffee, which is my favorite coffee place in the area. The cappuccino was big and tasty.
Cafe by Mise en Place cappuccino
Then to eat I ordered the garden omelet, which came with mushrooms, tomatoes, spinach, goat cheese, and fresh herbs. I had the choice of yucca home fries or white cheddar grits (I chose the former), and also had the choice of what kind of bread, and selected multi-grain toast.
The meal was served within about 10 minutes, and the omelet was excellent. Like, not just “excellent by airport standards,” but actually very, very good.
Cafe by Mise en Place breakfast
Since I had swiped my Priority Pass at the beginning, the server let me know that I was all set to go. I asked if I could tip by credit card or if it needed to be in cash. She initially said I could tip by card, but then noted that she’d have to charge me for something to do that, since they couldn’t generate credit card transactions with no purchase amount.
She said “don’t worry about it all, it’s not a problem, honey.”
Fortunately there was an ATM nearby so I was able to get some cash, and she was very appreciative.
The Cafe by Mise en Place Tampa Airport bottom line
The Cafe by Mise en Place is a great Priority Pass restaurant, possibly my favorite yet. The food was actually very good, location convenient, and service excellent.
The downside is that it’s in a specific airside at Tampa Airport, so it’s most useful if traveling from Concourse F.
The interesting thing is that my mom was here just a couple of weeks ago as well, and she commented on how good the food was and how friendly the service was, so hopefully this is consistent.
If you’re passing through Tampa Airport and a Priority Pass member, make sure you check this place out!
The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: The Business Platinum® Card from American Express (Rates & Fees), and The Platinum Card® from American Express (Rates & Fees).