The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.

Categories

Search Site


Meta


Archives

    view my food journey on zomato!

So Slow


We went over to Jack Willie’s in Oldsmar for lunch today with a friend.  We haven’t eaten there in a while because the food had been hit or miss the last couple of times we went.  There was a pretty good crowd on the patio and around the bar, but it didn’t seem busy enough for how slow the service was.

Between the three of us, we ordered the Oyster Po Boy, the grouper sandwich and the Fish & Chips .

The food took way too long to come out of the kitchen.  I don’t think I could have eaten the Oyster Po Boy as a sandwich unless I wanted to wear half of it.  The oysters were fried nicely though.  The grouper portion seemed a little small, but it was blackened ok.  Besides the service, the other issue I had is that they allow smoking on the patio which completely ruins a meal for me.  Total bill with two drinks was $44.

Jack Willie’s Tiki Bar and Grill
1013 St Petersburg Dr
Oldsmar, FL
813-854-1972

Jack Willie's Bar, Grill, and Tiki Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Food2/5
Service1/5
Atmosphere2/5
Value2/5
1.7/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Oldsmar, Seafood
  • Extra Crunchy


    We went over to the Thirsty Marlin in Palm Harbor for dinner tonight.  Our experiences here have been hit or miss.  From the food to the service, you never quite know what you’re going to get.  The food tonight was good for the most part, but the service could have used some improvement.  Loren got a salad & we started off with a Rainbow Roll.

    DSC01336

    DSC01337

    The rainbow roll was tasty.  It wasn’t rolled quite as tight as you get from most sushi restaurants, but the fish was fresh and the rice had a good consistency.  It could have used a little more avocado on it though.  For his entree, Loren got the blackened mahi sandwich.

    DSC01338

    He enjoyed it.  The fish was perfectly cooked and the blackened seasoning had a bit of a kick to it.  I went for the fried grouper sandwich.

    DSC01339

    I found the coating on the grouper to be way too thick & crunchy.  It was hard to eat.  I ended up pulling most of the coating off and just eating the fish which was tender and flaky.

    Our waitress was friendly enough, but compared to the one waiting the table behind us, she just didn’t offer up the things I wanted to know.  If there are specials, I expect to be asked if I want to hear them and at the end of the meal, I expect to be asked if I want dessert before the check is brought to the table.  Total bill with a drink was $41.

    Thirsty Marlin
    1023 Florida Ave
    Palm Harbor, FL
    727-784-3469

    Click to add a blog post for Thirsty Marlin Grill & Bar on Zomato

    Food3/5
    Service2/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value3/5
    2.7/5

    Madfish Grill


    I have an obsession with Ipswich fried clams, so when I see them on a menu for a restaurant, we have to go eat there.  Madfish Grill in Sarasota is supposedly the only place in town that carries them.  They weren’t very busy when we arrived around 6:30pm which was fine with us.  We started off with some bread & the lobster fondue.

    DSC00999

    DSC01000

    The fondue was tasty with the toasted Cuban bread, but we didn’t like the strips of crunchy whatever it was that they put on top of it.  They tasted ok and we tried to remove most of them, but they sort of melted into the fondue so you couldn’t get a clean scoop without getting some of the now mushy garnish.  It was just unnecessary.  For his entree, Loren got the grouper Florentine.

    DSC01001

    The asparagus was perfectly cooked and still crunchy, so he really liked that.  The grouper was also perfectly cooked, but after just having the fondue, the cheese sauce was a bit much.  It also had mashed potatoes on the bottom of it.  He was happy and very full.  The whole belly clams were the only thing on my mind.

    DSC01002

    The clams were delicious.  Just like I remember from when I was a kid in New England.  The fries were ok, but the cole slaw was too tart for me.  I needed a touch of sweetness, so we got the chocolate lava cake.

    DSC01003

    Pretty standard lava cake with ice cream and whipped cream.  Tasty end to a a tasty meal.  Total bill with a drink was $68.

    Madfish Grill
    4059 Cattlemen Rd
    Sarasota, FL
    941-377-3474

    Madfish Grill on Urbanspoon

    Food4/5
    Service4/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value3/5
    3.7/5

    I honestly didn’t think we’d have an hour wait at 3pm on a Sunday, but it looks like Rusty Bellies in Tarpon Springs is busy no matter the time of day.  We wondered around the sponge docks for a while and then got seated out on the porch which was perfect.  Our waitress brought over some hush puppies while we looked at the menu.

    DSC00324

    I had to make myself stop eating these or I was never going to eat my dinner.  They weren’t overly seasoned which is the way I like hush puppies. Quite addictive though.  It was a chilly afternoon, so we started off with a cup of crab corn chowder and a cup of seafood gumbo.

    DSC00329

    DSC00328

    Loren was amazed at all of the seafood in the gumbo. It had a little kick to it and he really enjoyed it.  The crab corn chowder was quite tasty.  Everything in it was cooked perfectly and it had a nice flavor.  For his entree, Loren tried the grilled grouper souvlaki pita.

    DSC00330

    He said the tzatziki sauce was a bit too runny, but other than that, he said the fish was perfectly cooked and tasty.  I saw whole belly Ipswich clams on the menu and I was sold.

    DSC00331

    Mmmm.  I love fried clams and these did not disappoint.  Crispy little bundles of memories growing up in Massachusetts.  For my sides, I got the potato salad and corn pudding.  I’d easily order this entire plate again.  And although we were both stuffed, I just couldn’t pass up the homemade orange pineapple cake.

    DSC00334

    This was moist and flavorful with sweet bits of citrus and a creamy frosting.  We ate every last bite of it.  Total bill with a drink was $51.

    Rusty Bellies Waterfront Grill
    937 Dodecanese Blvd
    Tarpon Springs, FL
    727-934-4047

    Rusty Bellies Waterfront Grill on Urbanspoon

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

    We don’t get out to Johnny Grits as often as we like because they were only a breakfast and lunch restaurant, but we were happy to see that they now serve dinner Wednesday through Saturday.  No surprise that they were busy this Sunday morning, but luckily we didn’t have to wait too long for a table.  The table next to us had the most amazing looking fried chicken benedict, but I’d been craving shrimp and grits so I had to just put that benedict on my list for next time.

    DSC00277

    Perfectly cooked shrimp on a bed of creamy grits and one of my favorite sauces.  It’s not spicy, but it has a wonderful blend of flavors in it.  The only thing I’m not keen on is the bacon.  Loren likes it, but I feel like it adds an odd texture to the dish.  Loren tried the grouper sandwich with a side of mac & cheese.

     

    DSC00275

    DSC00276

    He said the grouper was cooked nicely, but the ratio or bread to fish was a little off.  It was a big bun.  It was also served in this metal pail that made it difficult to try to cut the sandwich.  A plate would have worked just fine.  I admit, I couldn’t keep my fork out of the mac & cheese either.  Total bill with a drink was $27.

    Johnny Grits
    857 E. Klosterman Rd
    Tarpon Springs, FL
    727-942-4748

    Johnny Grits on Urbanspoon

    Food4/5
    Service4/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value3/5
    3.7/5