The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

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We were walking through downtown Safety Harbor tonight admiring the artwork from the Bloom and Chalk Festival when we saw a sign for LuLu’s Restaurant.  It’s only been open for a month and just had its official grand opening this weekend.  It’s located just off of Main Street in the space where Brady’s BBQ used to be.  They added an additional patio which was perfect for the beautiful weather we’re having right now.

It’s a Portugese/Brazilian restaurant.  They have a buffet plus they come to your table with skewers of different kinds of meats for $20/person. 

The buffet had salad, soup, potatoes, rice, black beans, chicken and veggies.  I didn’t care for the veggies, but the rest of it was pretty good.  The chicken was very tender and flavorful. 

As for the skewers of meat, they brought around ribeye, two types of sausage, lamb, tri-tip, and pork tenderloin.

All of the meats had good flavors.  I thought the ribeye was a little oversalted though.  The tri-tip was by far the most tender and tasty.  Both sausages were good.  The “spicy” one had a lot of flavor but wasn’t overly spicy.  Be sure to go hungry when you dine here though because they keep coming back to the table to offer you more food.  We were both stuffed and yet when they said they had chocolate mousse cake for dessert, I just couldn’t say no.

It was yummy.  Loren kept trying to slide it to his end of the table.  The mousse layers inside were a little too cold, so they weren’t fluffy, but rather it gave it an almost ice cream like texture that I really liked.   Total bill with a drink was $51. 

LuLu’s
122 Third Ave N
Safety Harbor, FL
(727) 216-6648

LuLu's on Urbanspoon

Food4/5
Service4/5
Atmosphere4/5
Value4/5
4.0/5

The thing that has impressed us the most about Indian cuisine is the amazing depth of flavors in the dishes.  Unfortunately, our trip to the Bollywood Cafe in Westchase didn’t live up to our expectations.

They had a large menu plus a smaller portion lunch menu which we ordered from.  Loren got the chicken 65 burger.

He said the bun was stale and though the chicken was spicy, it lacked any deep down flavors.  I ordered the butter chicken which came with rice or naan, but I went ahead and ordered both.

The first thing I tasted was the rice and to me, it tasted like Minute Rice with butter on it.  Not a good start.  Then I tried to break off a piece of naan to find it hard as a rock and completely inedible.   The chicken did not have a good texture and the gravy just lacked flavor.  It was a complete disappointment.  The waitress did bring me another order of softer naan, but given it’s temperature, I would have to guess it was placed in a microwave to soften it up. 

The dining area wasn’t very big and they had the music up way too loud for a Sunday afternoon.  When the waitress asked how we enjoyed our experience, we told her we won’t be back.  If you want authentic Indian food, there are much better places in town to go.   Good thing we got the lunch portions.  Total bill was $14.

Bollywood Cafe
9648 W Linebaugh Ave
Tampa, FL
(813) 926-4000

Bollywood Cafe on Urbanspoon

Food2/5
Service3/5
Atmosphere2/5
Value3/5
2.5/5

We’ve eaten at the Tia’s on Fowler Ave a few times and both times that we’ve sat in the bar area, the service has been terrible.  If you go in and the hostess starts to seat you to the right in the bar area, ask to be seated in the main dining room instead. 

Once we finally got some menus, drinks, chips and salsa, we ordered some queso supremo, which is really the only reason I ever come here to eat.

Mind you, we waited for a very long time before our waiter brought it out.  I don’t know what it is about their queso, but I just love it.  It’s the combination of cheese and taco meat that’s just so yummy.

Because it took him to long to bring it, our entrees came out soon after.  Loren ordered the beef fajitas.

He said they were pretty good, but it was more than enough food for him.  We should have just split them.  Instead, I ordered a pick three and got a chicken and beef empanada and a chicken taco.

There really wasn’t anything on this plate that was very good.  The rice didn’t taste good and the refried beans were dry.  The beef empanda was extremely cheesy inside, but still better than the chicken one.  The taco was pretty bland.  Next time, we’ll just split something and I’ll stick with the queso.  Total bill was $34.

Tia’s Tex Mex
2815 E Fowler Ave
Tampa, FL
813-977-5025

Tia's Tex & Mex on Urbanspoon

Food2/5
Service2/5
Atmosphere3/5
Value3/5
2.3/5
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  • Filed under: Mexican, Tampa
  • We ate dinner at Panos Kouzina tonight.  They were fairly busy, with several tables coming in at one time, so service was a bit slower than usual.  We ordered off their specials menu, which is a great deal.   I got a Greek salad and Loren ordered a house salad.

    The Greek salad had big chunks of feta on it.  Unfortunately, I forgot that they put sliced onions on the salad, so I had to pick those off. The dressing was very tangy.  One of my favorite things here is the bread.

    Loren got the souvlaki and I ordered the eggplant parmesean.

    He liked the souvlaki.  He’s had it here a few times before.  This was the first time I tried the eggplant and unfortunately the last.  It was just too mushy.  I expect a bit of crunch and texture to fried eggplant, but this just disolved in your mouth, no chewing necessary.  Total bill for both dinners and a drink was $20.

    Panos Kouzina
    3101 SR 580
    Safety Harbor, FL
    (727) 797–2667

    Panos Kouzina on Urbanspoon

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

    Free FroYo


    Had lunch at Green Market Cafe today.  The Florida Wrap is one of my favorites, chicken, avocado, lettuce, tomato, and goat cheese.  Yummy, yummy! 

    It also came with kettle chips and a free small frozen yogurt.  I got the cookies and cream.

    It was tasty, but the creamsicle one my friend Cathy got was even better.  Lunch with a dessert was $7.50. 

    Green Market Cafe
    3150 Tampa Road, Unit 1a
    Oldsmar, FL
    727-787-5494

    Green Market Cafe on Urbanspoon

    Food5/5
    Service3/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value5/5
    4.1/5