The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.

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We tried to eat lunch at Craft Street Kitchen today after going to a movie in Oldsmar, but they haven’t started opening for lunch yet.  Instead, we came back for dinner with some friends.  We got there around 6pm and the place was already crowded, but we were able to get a table without a wait.  They have both inside and outside seating and rearranged the space quite a bit from the restaurant it used to be.  It’s a bit on the loud side, but we didn’t have any trouble hearing each other across the table.

The menu had a lot of interesting choices and the waitress came by and explained her favorites (they’re to die for and simply amazing!) in vivid detail.  I’m not sure if she even took a breath while she recited almost the entire menu to us.  We skipped the appetizers tonight and went straight for the entrees.  Our friends ordered the Southwest flatbread and the Roma Chicken sandwich.

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The flatbread was huge!  It had BBQ’d chicken, pepperjack cheese, avocado, corn relish, pico de gallo, black beans, cilantro and a chipolte crema on top.  It had a nice crispy crust and a mix of sweet and spicy that our friend really liked.  The chicken sandwich also went over very well.  It had mozzarella cheese, prosciutto, tomatoes, arugula and a basil mayo.  On our end of the table, we ordered the Angry Pig Sandwich with a side salad and the shrimp and grits.

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The salad was supposed to come out first, but Loren only got a few bites in before the entrees arrived.  The ranch dressing was unusual.  I think it had dill in it or some other herb that made it unique.  The Angry Pig was mojo braised pork, apple slaw & fried pickles with an Angry Orchard BBQ sauce.  It was tasty.  It had a nice sweetness to it that I really liked.  The shrimp and grits were also good.  It had smokey cheddar grits with a very mild andouille sausage and shrimp swimming in a roasted poblano buerre blanc sauce.  The only think I didn’t really like were the herbs on top.  They really overpowered the other flavors.   We were all happy with our entrees and decided we’ll be back again.  We got some desserts to go, the peanut butter pie and the Founders raspberry chocolate cheesecake.

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I wasn’t as impressed with the dessert as I was with the meal.  The cheesecake was not one of the ones on our waitress’s “to die for” list and I could understand why.  It was thick, but not at all creamy.  The chocolate flavor wasn’t rich enough and the whole thing was just kind of crumbly.  Not something I’d order again.  Our total came to $40, not sure what our friend’s total was, but probably pretty close since the prices are all very reasonable.  Overall though, we’ll be back and when they start opening for lunch it’ll be a perfect after movie place to eat.

Craft Street Kitchen and Drinks
3153 Curlew Rd
Oldsmar, FL
727-314-4270

Craft Street Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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

Our favorite Thai restaurant, Pacific Thai in Oldsmar, is now serving sushi so we had to check it out.  They have a bunch of rolls to choose from and we settled on some of our favorites.

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I have to get a Mexican roll wherever we go and this one had a nice crispy shrimp tucked inside a tight roll.  We also had a rainbow roll, a spicy kamakazee roll for Loren and some salmon.  All of it was fresh and tasty.  I really enjoyed the salmon.

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The lobster roll was a little difficult to photograph.  The glass made for an unusual presentation, but difficult to get at the pieces of lobster inside. The lobster was cooked well and the roll was yummy.  Loren also ordered a Nam Sod.

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Overall, we enjoyed their sushi options.  Total bill with a drink was $65 which is right in the price range of all of the other sushi places we visit.  They also expanded the restaurant to the space next door, so it’s not quite so crowded in there.

Pacific Thai Cuisine 
4058 Tampa Road
Oldsmar, FL
813-855-6633

Pacific Thai Cuisine Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Food4/5
Service4/5
Atmosphere4/5
Value4/5
4.0/5
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  • Filed under: Oldsmar, Thai
  • Loren wanted a Japanese hibachi dinner for his birthday so we drove over to Kuchi Sushi & Hibachi in Tampa.  Being a Wednesday night, they only had two tables of diners and two hibachi chefs when we arrived.  The manager actually asked us if we were in a hurry because they could cook the food in the back while the two chefs were busy.  Instead we ordered some sushi to start off with and by the time the chefs were finished with the other tables, another family was seated with us so we got the full table side experience.

    The soup came out first.  It was typical mushroom broth and then they brought out the sushi.

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    The rainbow roll was very tasty.  It’s one of our favorite rolls whenever we get sushi since it has tuna, salmon, and a whitefish.  This was the thing that really stood out for us for the entire meal.  Next up, salad and fire.

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    Our hibachi chef seemed to have the enthusiasm of a wet blanket.  He was going through the motions but really didn’t seem like he wanted to be there.  He was also really difficult to understand.  He spoke softly and fast with a thick accent so most of the “jokes” he told went right by most of the table.  I get that part of the show is to toss food for the people at the table to catch in their mouths, but when it’s very clear that you don’t want food tossed your way, I expect the chef to respect that instead of just tossing it anyway.  Loren ordered the steak & shrimp and I ordered the filet & shrimp which was a few dollars more.  There really wasn’t any noticeable difference in the meat because it and the shrimp were both overcooked.  The shrimp was kind of tough.  Loren also commented that the steak dipping sauce which is usually a tangy ginger type sauce was a lot sweeter than he’s had at other restaurants.

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    The dinner came with rice, veggies, and noodles, but we’ve definitely had better hibachi dinners at other restaurants.  There was vanilla ice cream for dessert and even it was on the icy side.  I like creamy ice cream, not ice cream filled with ice crystals.

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    Overall, there wasn’t anything about the experience that would make us want to go back.  Total bill with a drink was $61.

    Kuchi Sushi & Hibachi
    9206 Anderson Rd
    Tampa, FL
    813-889-7733

    Click to add a blog post for Kuchi Sushi + Hibachi on Zomato

    Food2/5
    Service3/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value2/5
    2.5/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Japanese, Tampa
  • My sister & I were in Winter Park today and stopped at Orchid Thai for lunch.  It was a gorgeous day so we sat outside and had soup and appetizers.

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    I got the coconut soup and she went for the lemongrass soup.  The aroma of both were amazing.  The lemongrass soup was a bit spicy with lots of vegetables.  The coconut soup had a beautiful lime, coconut, lemongrass flavor to it.  Yum!  We settled on the Orchid Sampler and an order of the golden purses to munch on.

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    The sampler had summer rolls, spring rolls, crispy shrimp, dumplings and curry puffs.  The dumplings and spring rolls were my favorite.  We both found the curry puffs to be a bit overpowering.  The golden purses are basically crab rangoons.  They had a nice crunch on the outside with a creamy filling.  It was a fresh, tasty lunch for $38.

    Orchid Thai
    305 Park Avenue North
    Winter Park, FL
    407-331-1400

    Orchid Thai Cuisine on Urbanspoon

    Food4/5
    Service4/5
    Atmosphere4/5
    Value3/5
    3.9/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Thai, Winter Park
  • We wanted something scrumptious for dinner so we headed over to Dunedin to Bistro Atlantis.  Surprisingly, there was only one other table of customers.  The last few times we were there, they were pretty busy.   This is one of those places where we’re tempted to eat everything on the menu, but after we scarfed down the fresh bread, we landed on the Shrimp Atlantis for an appetizer.

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    It’s shrimp and tomatoes and feta in this delicious cream sauce over bread.  I think we sopped up every last bit of the sauce on the plate.  The shrimp were cooked perfectly and the flavors made us both very happy.  Loren went for the salmon and asparagus for his entree.

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    It was served over rice with a tasty hollandaise sauce.  The salmon was cooked to perfection.  He also liked the added saltiness of the capers.  I went for the grouper topped with crab cake.

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    It was served with red potatoes and spinach and though I really enjoyed all the flavors, I wish there had been a little crunch to the crab cake.  There just wasn’t much of a texture difference between the fish and crab cake.  As usual, there was no way I could pass up dessert.

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    This was a delightful Limoncello cake with raspberry sauce.  The cake was moist and had a deep lemon flavor which paired perfectly with the raspberry.  Start to finish, it was an absolutely delicious meal.  Total bill with a drink was $67.

    Bistro Atlantis
    1140 Main St
    Dunedin, FL
    727-733-1909

    Bistro Atantis on Urbanspoon

     

     

    Food5/5
    Service5/5
    Atmosphere4/5
    Value3/5
    4.6/5