The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

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    The Restaurants at My End of the Universe Tampa Bay restaurants

Archive for the ‘Safety Harbor’ Category

We went over to Taverna Skara for dinner tonight.  It was really empty for a Saturday night and you could almost feel the disappointment in the staff as they continually looked out the windows to see if any customers were heading toward the door.  We’ve been here a couple of times before and every time, they bring something different to the table.  Today it was bread and an olive spread.

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The bread was thick and dense.  Loren liked the olive spread.  I’m not a fan of olives and even the smell was too strong for me.  For so few customers in the restaurant, it seemed to take a really long time for our entrees to come out of the kitchen.  Loren ordered the salmon salad.

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He said the salmon was cooked well, but needed seasoning and his salad wasn’t dressed properly.  It lacked flavor.  I ordered the chicken lemonati.

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With a name like “lemonati”, I expected an amazing burst of lemon flavor and to be honest, I almost didn’t order the dish, thinking the lemon may be overwhelming.  Boy, was I wrong.   There wasn’t even an inkling of lemon flavor in the chicken or mushroom sauce.  The only thing that had any lemon flavor were the potatoes.  I liked the mushrooms, but the chicken could have been a bit more tender.  My salad was heavily dressed with vinegar.  Loren ended up mixing some of it into his salad to try to get an even balance of dressing.  Service was also a bit on the hit or miss side.  Our waitress would disappear and someone else ended up clearing plates, getting our check and doing a lot of the customer service.  We keep trying to give this place the benefit of the doubt, but they tend to underwhelm each time we visit.  The loud thumping background music was also a bit on the annoying side and did not fit the atmosphere either.   Overall, it was just a very mediocre meal for $31.

Taverna Skara
2454 McMullen Booth Rd
Clearwater, FL
727-726-9000

Taverna Skara on Urbanspoon

Food2/5
Service2/5
Atmosphere2/5
Value2/5
2.0/5

Popeye


Sometimes it’s the silly little things that amuse us to no end.  Something that just catches you off guard and makes you giggle.  We went over to Athens in downtown Safety Harbor for breakfast and they had the Popeye omelette on their specials board.  What does Popeye love?  Spinach and Olive.  Loren had to order it just because it made us giggle.

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Along with the spinach and olives, it also had bacon in it, everything’s better with bacon, right?  He really enjoyed the omelette.  I went for the blueberry pancakes and eggs over easy.

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The pancakes were very tasty, but I forgot just how hot blueberries can get and burned my tongue on the first bite.  The eggs were perfectly cooked as well.  Our waitress was a little frazzled this morning, but other than that, it was a very enjoyable $15 breakfast.

Athens Restaurant
226 Main St
Safety Harbor, FL
727-726-3471

Athen's on Urbanspoon

Food4/5
Service3/5
Atmosphere3/5
Value4/5
3.6/5

Very Crowded


We went back to Woodstock on 5th tonight in Safety Harbor.  They were really busy and we ended up at one of the high top tables right next to the kitchen.  It was really uncomfortable sitting on bar stools, the table was small and we could see & hear everything going on in and around the kitchen.  I just felt cramped and crowded.  We started off with the white bean chili again and Loren got a salad.

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They also served it with pita bread and apple butter this time, which they didn’t the last.  The chili was thinner this time, which was good.  It was really thick the first time we had it.  It seemed to have a lot more chicken in it as well.  For his entree, Loren got the Molly Hatchet, which was a grilled swordfish.

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It was served with arugula and a spicy tomato puree, but Loren didn’t think it was spicy at all.  He wasn’t a big fan of the arugula, but said the swordfish was cooked perfectly.  I went for the Janis Joplin.

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This was a seared salmon on top of spinach, zucchini, corn, & red peppers.  It also came with a potato pancake that was really dense and flavorless.  I didn’t care for the tomato vinaigrette on it either.  Too much vinegar and was way too sour for me.   The salmon was perfectly cooked though.

Overall, I just found the experience to be very uncomfortable.  There seems to be a lot of people working there which made it feel even more crowded in such a small space.  Though we both enjoyed the fish, the items served alongside didn’t impress.  Total bill with a drink was $54.

Woodstock on 5th
155 5th Ave N
Safety Harbor, FL
727-797-4444

Woodstock on 5th on Urbanspoon

 

Food3/5
Service3/5
Atmosphere1/5
Value3/5
2.7/5

Quick Lunch


We went for a quick lunch at Athen’s in downtown Safety Harbor today.  Luckily, we got there before the crowd because it was standing room only by the time we left.  Loren got a Greek Salad with chicken and I got a gyro.

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He said the chicken was flavorful and tender.  My gyro was good, but I think I would have liked a little lettuce on it.  It needed a little crunch since I get it without the onions.  Total bill with a drink was $17.

Athens Restaurant
226 Main St
Safety Harbor, FL
727-726-3471

Athen's on Urbanspoon

Food3/5
Service3/5
Atmosphere3/5
Value4/5
3.2/5

Far Out, Man


Woodstock on 5th recently opened up in the space where Crepeology used to be in Safety Harbor.  It’s a really small building and I’m amazed at the quality of food they were able to put out of that tiny kitchen.  There aren’t a lot of tables, but there is a patio out back and they had live music tonight.  The whole restaurant and staff are decked out in a 60′s music theme and the menu items are all named after musicians and bands of the era.  We started off with some of the white chili.

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When it came to the table, we both thought it looked like a bowl of cheese queso dip.  And to be honest, it would have gone great with some tortilla chips.  It was very thick, creamy, and cheesy. It had a nice flavor to it, just a hint of heat and overall very tasty.   For his entree, Loren ordered the “Grateful Dead”.

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It was two tri tip grilled steaks with potatoes and green beans.  The steak was cooked a perfect medium, seasoned wonderfully, and was very tender.  I ate some of it because it was actually too much food.  Drop the price a little and just serve one steak and it still would have been enough for an entree.   I ordered the “Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young”.

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It was a pappardelle pasta with wild mushrooms.  One bite and I was hooked.  The cream sauce was amazing.  The only thing I really didn’t like were the wild mushrooms.  Some of them were really tough and chewy.  The pasta was cooked perfectly and I licked every last bite of that sauce off the plate.  We also decided to try the desserts.  We got the citrus cake and a strawberry mousse tart.

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They don’t make the desserts in house, but instead get them from a local bakery.  Loren really liked the citrus cake.  It was moist and had a wonderful orange flavor.  I found the crust on the tart to be a little hard, but the strawberry mousse filling was tasty.

Overall, the food was amazing; however, other aspects of the experience weren’t as great.   It did take a while to get our food, but, it was definitely fresh and homemade.  They have a very young and inexperienced wait staff.  They were very sweet and pleasant with bubbly personalities, but seemed a bit over their head when it came to actually keeping up with their tables.  The other thing we found annoying was that the door to the patio is in the small dining room, so there was a constant opening & closing of the door as people went in & out.

They post their weekly menu specials on their website and also serve breakfast & lunch.  We’ll probably go back again as the food really was delicious.  Total bill with a drink was $61.

Woodstock on 5th
155 5th Ave N
Safety Harbor, FL
727-797-4444

Woodstock on 5th on Urbanspoon

Food4/5
Service3/5
Atmosphere3/5
Value3/5
3.4/5