The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

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Hot and Saucy

We drove over to Tampa tonight for some BBQ at Alex’s Southern Style BBQ.  Let me preface this review by saying that it was a very hot August evening and there was a definite lack of air conditioning in the restaurant.  Couple that with the overwhelming BBQ smokiness in the air and you end up with an overall uncomfortableness that definitely had an effect on how we felt about the food.  After a while, the air felt so thick and pungent that my eyes started to water.

Our initial reaction when we walked in the door was that the BBQ smokiness in the air was a good sign; that the food was going to have that deep rich smoked flavor to it.  We wanted to try a little bit of everything, so we got two of the two meat meals, one with chicken and pork, the other with beef and ribs.

Unfortunately, there was so much BBQ sauce on everything that we couldn’t really taste the meat.  It was a sweet and tangy sauce and a little went a long way.  The meats were all tender, but neither of us could make a good judgement on the flavor.  What’s funny is that so many of the other reviews we’d read said that they usually didn’t put a lot of sauce on the plate.  As for the sides, the onion rings and okra were both crispy and tasty, the cole slaw was good, but Loren didn’t like his greens.  He said it had a flavor that just wasn’t what he expected.

Total bill was $22 and the smell of BBQ smoke lingered on our clothes for hours.  I began to understand why people were coming in and getting take out instead of eating in the restaurant.

Alex’s Southern Style BBQ
5362 W Village Drive
Tampa, FL

Alex's Southern Style Bar-B-Q on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: BBQ, Tampa
  • Always a Line

    We’ve been wanting to try Eli’s BBQ in Dunedin for quite a while, but every time we think about it, they’re closed.  They’re only open from 11am to 6pm on Friday & Saturdays, but we were determined to make it over there today.  It’s a small little shack with some picnic tables out back, but they make some mighty fine BBQ.

    We got there around 12:30pm and the entire time we were there, the line never got less than 5 deep.  People have learned to get there early before they run out of BBQ goodness.  We settled on some ribs and pulled pork and grabbed ourselves a bench out back.

    The ribs were very tender and the bbq sauces were both very good.  I really enjoyed the pulled pork.  It was so juicy and tender and there was a lot on the sandwich.  They only have 2 sides available, baked beans and cole slaw, and I enjoyed them both.   With 2 drinks, the total was $16.  Definitely a place we’ll eat at again.

    Eli’s Bar-B-Que
    360 Skinner Blvd
    Dunedin, FL
    (727) 738-4856

    Eli's Bar-B-Que on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: BBQ, Dunedin
  • We were headed down to Boyd Hill Nature Preserve in St Petersburg today and ate lunch at Munch’s Sundries.  Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive Ins and Dives filmed there earlier this year and based on our experience, I think it was a good pick. 

    It’s got that diner feel to it.  Been around since the 1950’s and the photos on the walls bring you back to an era long gone.  We started off with some onion straws.

    It was a big ol’ basket of lightly battered, very yummy onion rings.  This is one of those addictive appetizers.  Loren even found a few bonus items in the basket, some okra and a piece of fried chicken.  The waitress said sometimes you may even end up with a fried shrimp in there.  For lunch, Loren got a cheeseburger with fries.

    He said the burger was good, but that the bun had a bit too much mustard and relish on it for this taste.  He ended up having to help me eat my lunch, the BBQ rib sandwich.

    Ok, I’m not really sure why they called it a sandwich, maybe because there were two pieces of bread on the plate?  It was just three of the tastiest BBQ ribs I’ve had in a long time.  They were so tender and had lots of flavor.  I didn’t even bother with the BBQ sauce.  I would definitely come back for more BBQ.  Loren’s even thinking about using them to cater BBQ for one of their autocross events.

    And when there’s homemade apple pie on the menu, I find it very hard to resist.

    Lots of apples and cinnamon on a tasty crust.  And the best part was that the whole meal with a drink was $21.  Next time we’re in south St Pete, we’re definitely stopping here again.

    Munch’s Sundries
    3920 6th St S
    St Petersburg, FL
    (727) 896-5972

    Munch's Sundries on Urbanspoon


    We got a rack of ribs from Georgia Boys BBQ in Oldsmar tonight. 

    That’s a lotta ribs for $20.  They were tender and flavorful and way more than the two of us could eat in one sitting.  They have two different bbq sauces, but I thought the ribs tasted just fine without anything on them.   The place looks like a hole in the wall, but they make some mighty fine ribs.

    Georgia Boy’s BBQ
    205 E St Petersburg Dr
    Oldsmar, FL
    (813) 854-4498

    Georgia Boy's Bar-B-Que on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: BBQ, Oldsmar
  • We decided to try the Island Outpost in Dunedin for lunch today.  It was pretty busy for 1pm on a Monday and the waitstaff was completely overwhelmed. 

    When the hostess seated us, she mentioned they were out of the pulled pork and one other item.  After we’d been seated, we waited for a very long time before our waitress came to take our drink order and then she mentioned that they were also out of several other items on the menu including most of the appetizers.  They did however have the ahi tuna.

    It was pretty good.  A little spicy around the edges, but otherwise a nice piece a rare tuna.   Unfortunately, the plate remained on our table through the entire meal. 

    Loren ordered the baby back ribs with a side salad and I got the haddock special that came with a salad and onion rings.

    When the waitress brought our entrees, I noticed neither one of us had salad dressing and she said she’d bring some.  Sadly, that never happened.  In fact, she didn’t stop by our table again until it was time to bring us the check.  

    The haddock and onion rings were pretty good.  The batter was crispy and it was a nice piece of fish.  Loren’s ribs, however, were not good at all.  We had false hope as we walked into the restaurant because we could smell the BBQ, but his ribs had no flavor.  It was very disappointing, especially since neither of us could eat our salads either. 

    Total bill was $30 and I don’t expect that we’ll be back again.

    Island Outpost
    466 Causeway Blvd
    Dunedin, FL
    (727) 734-4300

    Island Outpost on Urbanspoon

  • 1 Comment
  • Filed under: American, Seafood