The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

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Need a Knife

We went over to Rumba Island in Oldsmar for dinner tonight.  They were pretty busy tonight & we ended up with a table in the bar area.  Surprisingly, the noise level wasn’t too bad.  I think the fact that the bar area is open to the outside makes a big difference.  We started off with some conch fritters and my favorite little corn muffins.





The conch fritters were really good.  They were tender and just a little spicy, nothing that overwhelmed my taste buds.  Overall, they just had a really nice flavor and texture.  Loren got the tuna rumba salad for his entree.



He said the tuna was cooked a nice rare and had good seasoning.  I went for the kbobs & shrimp which came with a salad.





The shrimp were cooked ok, but the batter had very little seasoning.  They were just kind of plain.  The kbobs weren’t tender enough for me and some of the chunks were bigger than bite size and really hard to cut with a butter knife.  I also got the island rice and mashed sweet potatoes which were both tasty.  Total bill with a drink was $43.

Rumba Island Bar & Grill 
3687 Tampa Road
Oldsmar, FL
(813) 475-5974

Rumba Island Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon 


It was around 2pm when we got out of the movies and Loren suggested we give Ozona Pig another try.  Unfortunately, we walked in and were told they closed at 2pm, so we walked across the street to Molly Goodheads instead.

We split a bowl of clam chowder.



This was so thick and rich and yummy.  Definitely one of the better versions in the area.  For his lunch, Loren went for a blackened mahi sandwich.



He said the mahi was cooked perfectly and the fries were nice & crunchy.  I decided on an avocado burger and onion rings.



The burger was very thick & juicy, though not quite cooked to the medium I asked for.  The onion rings were a bit on the salty side and needed to be a bit crunchier.  The only thing I really dislike about Molly’s is that they allow smoking on the patio and even though we were inside, as people walked in & out the door, you could still smell the smoke.  Total bill with a drink was $26.

Molly Goodheads 
400 Orange Street
Ozona, FL

Molly Goodheads Raw Bar on Urbanspoon


I attended a luncheon at Oystercatchers with a group of about 20 people.  The restaurant is very pretty, overlooking the bay, but the service was lacking and although the food was good, it seemed very overpriced for the quantity of food on each plate.

We started off with some calamari fries & crabcakes, though I forgot to take a photo.  Both were very tasty.  The calamari wasn’t cut in rings, but rather long, thick pieces.  It was tender and the breading was good.  The crab cakes had lots of crab in them.

For my entrée, I ordered the sautéed scallops and side salad.

I guess I was just a little surprised that there were only 3 scallops in the dish.  They were tender and sautéed nicely in garlic and butter; but for the price, the serving size seemed rather small.  They actually serve a single fried oyster with the dish, and I’d have been happy with a plate of those, though I didn’t see them on the menu.  I also ordered the Godiva Chocolate mousse for dessert.

When I think of mousse, I imagine a very light, fluffy chocolaty dish.  This was more like a piece of fudge.  It was thick and rich and yummy, but not exactly what I was expecting.

As for the service, I think a lot of us were unimpressed.  The wait staff for our table seemed very abrupt and unfriendly, even rude at times.  When our entrees came out, they placed the wrong plates in front of several people and one lady had to send hers back because her salmon was undercooked.  I believe every entree was $20+ each, so for those prices you expect better service.  Several people told me they’ve enjoyed the Sunday brunch here, but many of them said they wouldn’t come back for lunch.

2900 Bayport Dr
Tampa, FL

Oystercatchers on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: Dessert, Seafood, Tampa
  • We have a habit of getting out of the house later than expected for dinner on Friday nights and most places are just mobbed.  We drove into Dunedin thinking we’d eat at Casa Tina, but there was a line out the door, so we walked down the street to Cafe Alfresco.  The restaurant was busy, but not full, and pretty quiet which we kinda like.  We started off with potstickers.

    Yum!  These were perfectly fried with a tasty, slightly spicy filling.  I could just eat a plate of these and be happy.  Loren’s dinner came with a salad and I went ahead and ordered one for $1 as well.

    The rolls were warm and soft and very tasty.  For his entree, Loren got the chicken piccata.

    He tried to explain to me the difference between a good piccata and a not so good one.  This was a good version, the chicken was perfectly cooked and the sauce was buttery and lemony, but not overly so, and the capers made the perfect accent to the sauce.  He was a happy guy.  I went for the Friday night fish & chips.

    It didn’t have an overly crunchy batter on it, but it was good.  The fries were nice and crunchy and the cole slaw had just enough tang and sweet to it.  We were really bad tonight & got two desserts.

    Loren wanted some carrot cake and I got the raspberry cheesecake.  Both were delicious.  He said his cake was moist and flavorful and mine was creamy and decadent.  We were quite stuffed by the time we rolled ourselves out of there.  Total bill with a drink was $49.

    Cafe Alfresco
    344 Main St
    Dunedin, FL

    Cafe Alfresco on Urbanspoon



    A new seafood restaurant recently opened up in Safety Harbor.  The Nantucket Bucket is located on 2nd Street S, just off of Main Street.  Their indoor seating was full when we got there, so we sat out on the back patio.  As we walked back there we noticed the kitchen was in what looked like a trailer to the left of the building.  There were plenty of long tables on the patio and we were seated on one end while another couple was at the other end.  This wasn’t really an issue, but as the place filled up, there was a family of four seated between us and it felt a bit crowded to me.  I’m just not a fan of community seating, I prefer having my own table.

    We started off with some potato bites (tater tots) and lobster based corn chowder.

    The key word here is lobster based, meaning there wasn’t actually any lobster pieces in the chowder.  In fact, the only thing in the chowder was corn.  It tasted like frozen corn to me which has a texture I’m not fond of.  The chowder itself was ok; rather peppery, but the amount of corn in it was ridiculous. I can’t imagine anyone being able to consume that much corn in one sitting.  It really needed some other vegetables to alleviate the monotony of the dish.

    The tater tots were good; but in all fairness, it’s hard to mess up a tater tot.   Loren said the cheese sauce was pretty bad.  Basically canned cheese sauce with canned jalapenos on top.  For his entrée, Loren ordered the house salad with blackened mahi on top.

    The salad was huge, but he said the menu indicated it should have had bacon on it and it didn’t.  He liked the mahi and said it was cooked well, but he didn’t finish the salad.  He also had to wait for the salad dressing since the waiter didn’t ask him which kind he wanted when he took the order.  I decided to try the lobster roll and lobster based mac & cheese.

    Let me start off by saying I’m originally from a fishing family in New England and we had fresh lobster quite frequently right off the boat.  There is very little that needs to be done with lobster in order to make it delicious.  A lobster roll, in my opinion, needs just a little bit of mayo, some salt & pepper and you’re done.  Maybe a little celery or lettuce for crunch.  I don’t know what they did to this lobster roll but it was quite inedible.  The only word I can use to describe the taste is briny.  It just got more and more unpleasant to eat with every bite and after just a few bites, I gave up completely.  Loren tasted a chunk of the lobster and didn’t think it was bad, but then took another bite and tasted exactly what I did.   The mac & cheese suffered the same fate.  It had that same briny flavor to it.  It was also a rather waxy mac & cheese versus a creamy version.  Even the coleslaw had way too much vinegar in it.

    When our waiter came back to our table and saw my uneaten meal, he asked if I wanted a box.  I said no because it wasn’t very good.  He cleared our plates and an experienced server would have mentioned something to the manager.  That didn’t happen in this case.  He brought the check and that was it.  Granted, this place has only been opened a few weeks, but there was absolutely nothing about the experience that would make me go back again.  Total bill with a drink was $41.

    Nantucket Bucket
    519 2nd Street South
    Safety Harbor, FL

    Nantucket Bucket on Urbanspoon