The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.


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Lemon Wedge?

We went over to Rosie’s Clam Shack for dinner tonight.  There was only one other table of customers in there and the service was really lacking.  There was no one to greet us when we came in.  Luckily the waitress came out to bring something to the other table and saw us.  The whole experience was a little odd.  The other people there commented on it more than we did, but the waitress just seemed unhappy to be there.   One of the things that really stuck out to me though, was that with every drink or plate that we ordered she specifically asked if we wanted a lemon wedge with it.  I don’t know if they were just trying to save money or didn’t have a lot of lemons in the back, but after the first few times she asked, it just seemed weird.

We started off with the fried calamari.



It had a good crunch, but it was a bit on the chewy side.  The tomato sauce served with it had a good flavor.  You could tell it had actually been simmered for a while.  For his entree, Loren got the bacon wrapped scallops with fries & pasta salad.



He said the scallops were cooked perfectly and the bacon added a nice flavor.  But then again, doesn’t bacon do that to everything it’s added to??  He didn’t really want the huge plate of fries or the pasta salad for that matter, but the choice of sides is limited to fries, pasta salad, cole slaw or parsley potatoes.  I think he would have liked a green vegetable of some sort.  I ordered the Ipswitch clams with cole slaw and parsley potatoes.



The clams are the reason I come here.  Perfectly crunchy and plenty of them on the plate. We enjoyed the apple blossom dessert the last time we were here, so had to get it again.



Last time, the waitress added whipped cream to the plate, but not so this time.  This is a tasty little dessert though.  Very simple apple filling in a baked crust.  Total bill with a drink was $54.

Rosie’s Clam Shack
6657 49th St
Pinellas Park, FL

Rosie's Clam Shack on Urbanspoon


We went for a late lunch at Hot Tuna in Oldsmar today.  It was about 20 minutes before they closed for lunch and the first thing the waitress said to us was that it was last call for food. There was just something about the way she said it that really made us feel uncomfortable about coming in and ordering.  The rest of the meal was fine, but that initial greeting kind of rubbed us the wrong way.

We ordered the lunch 2 rolls & salad for $9.99 as well as an additional Rainbow Roll.





Loren got the Gator and Tampa roll and I got a California and Mexican roll.  The Rainbow roll here has a crawfish salad inside that’s a bit on the spicy side for me.  I do like the colorful tobiko on top of it though.  The other rolls were fresh & tasty.  Total bill with a drink was $34.

Hot Tuna Sushi Bar & Grille
3689 Tampa Road #302B
Oldsmar, FL

Hot Tuna Sushi Bar & Grille on Urbanspoon


  • Filed under: Oldsmar, Sushi
  • For the last few years, we’ve tried to catch a sunset on the last night of the year.  Unfortunately, mother nature hasn’t been very cooperative.  Last year it was fog, this year the clouds were just too thick so we ended up just going over to Cafe Alfresco in Dunedin for dinner.  Quite a few other people had the same idea tonight and we ended up waiting about 20 minutes for a table.   They remodeled the restaurant recently and removed the high top tables and changed the seating a bit.  We ended up at a nice table in the back against the windows which was perfect for looking out at the holiday lights.

    We started off with some pot stickers, salad & bread



    The pot stickers had a tasty pork filling and the dipping sauce was sweet and spicy.  Loren ordered the grouper francese for his entree.



    The only thing he didn’t like about it was the overly eggy taste that the batter had.  He expected to get more flavor from the sauce and capers, but his first few bites all he could taste was egg.  The fish was perfectly cooked though.  I decided to try the pork osso bucco that was on the specials menu.



    The dish came with a wild mushroom risotto that was very creamy and tasty.  The osso bucco was extremely tender and flavorful.  It slide right off the bone.  Definitely a dish I would order again. There was enough food on the plate for at least two meals. I know what I’m eating for New Year’s Day.  And we had to close out the year on something sweet, so we ordered the Devonshire chocolate cake.



    It had layers of mousse and cake and all sorts of chocolately goodness.  A great way to end 2013.  Total bill with a drink was $56.

    Cafe Alfresco
    344 Main St
    Dunedin, FL

    Cafe Alfresco on Urbanspoon


    Back up to Tarpon Springs today to have lunch at Johnny Grits.  The place was packed when we got there.  We made a conscious effort to try something different on the menu this time.  Loren got the roast beef sandwich with a side of fries.



    Though the sandwich had good flavor, the roast beef wasn’t as tender as he’d have liked.  It was sliced thick, so even slicing it thinner may have helped.  I went for the chicken fried chicken with mashed potatoes and cole slaw and we shared a skillet of three cheese grits.




    The chicken had a crunchy exterior and was tender and juicy in the middle.  The batter had a good flavor to it and fulfilled all my requirements for a yummy fried chicken dish.  The mashed potatoes were real, which is such a delight nowadays.  Too many restaurants use fake potatoes and the taste difference is enormous.  The grits were cheesy and perfectly cooked, though they did need a little extra salt.  It was a hearty down home kind of meal for $23.

    Johnny Grits
    857 E. Klosterman Rd
    Tarpon Springs, FL

    Johnny Grits on Urbanspoon


    We were out in Plant City this morning and stopped at Yummy House on our way back home.  I don’t think we can eat here without ordering the salt and pepper calamari.



    It has the perfect crunch, the perfect saltiness, the perfect tenderness.  It’s just awesome.  I also wanted some egg rolls.



    These were very fresh and tasty as well.  The shells were crispy and the filling flavorful.  I think I could just stop with appetizers and be quite satisfied.  For his entree, Loren ordered the Kung Po chicken.



    Note the evil peppers trying to hide among the veggies.  He said it had a wonderful flavor, lots of peanuts, and perfectly cooked chicken and vegetables.  I ordered the sweet & sour shrimp and scallops.



    I wasn’t as happy with my dish.  The shrimp were good, but the scallops had an odd taste to them.  Everything was drenched in the sweet & sour sauce, so there wasn’t any crunch left.  I wouldn’t order it again.  I ended up ordering some beef & broccoli to take home for later.  It was very tasty.  Total bill with a drink was $54.

    Yummy House China Bistro
    2620 E Hillsborough Ave
    Tampa, FL

    Yummy House China Bistro on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: Chinese, Tampa