The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

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For dinner tonight we went over to Bawarshi Indian Cuisine on Hwy 19. It wasn’t very crowded and our food came out pretty quick.  I went for my tried & true butter chicken and Loren tried the chicken curry.

He got his medium spicy and it had some kick to it.  He liked the flavors in the dish.  Mine was just yummy.  The creamy tomato sauce just has amazing flavors, plus I love dipping the garlic naan in it too.  I have to swat Loren’s hand away when he tries to dip his naan in my tomatoey sauce.  Total bill was $33

Bawarchi Indian Cuisine
34832 US Hwy 19
Palm Harbor, FL
727-789-9760

Bawarchi Indian Cuisine on Urbanspoon

Food5/5
Service3/5
Atmosphere3/5
Value3/5
3.8/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Indian, Palm Harbor
  • Every time we go out for Indian food, we’re both amazed at how many flavors can be packed into what look like rather simple dishes.  The sauces are so rich and have such a warmth as you’re eating it that we both can’t seem to find the right words to describe it.  The same held true for our trip back to 5th Element Indian Cuisine in Oldsmar tonight. 

    We were there for their opening a couple of weeks ago and decided to try it again tonight to order off the menu.  I was happy to see at least half of the restaurant full with customers.  New restaurants come and go so quickly nowadays. 

    Loren munched while we looked at the menu.  He loves the green sauce.

    We wanted to try the lamb samosa for an appetizer, but they didn’t have any, so we ended up trying the veg samosa instead.

    It had some spice to it.  I used the sweet sauce with it, but it still made my tongue tingle.  For a potato and peas deep fried pastry, it packed a lot of punch. 

    Loren ordered the chicken tikka masala with medium heat.

    The heat level on this dish was very deceptive.  I tasted it and it didn’t taste overly spicy to me, but Loren said he really didn’t feel it until later in the evening.  The chicken was very tender and the sauce creamy and flavorful.  He really enjoyed it and even had a little left for lunch tomorrow.

    I ordered the chicken makhani, mild, and some garlic naan.

    The chicken was julienned, so the pieces were thin, but really tender.  The sauce was amazing.  Again, I just can’t find the words to describe it.  It’s smooth and silky with an overall warmth and a spice combination that just works.  The naan bread was good, but I couldn’t really taste a lot of the garlic.  Mind you, by this point, my tongue was probably numb anyway.  I had some leftovers as well.  For $31, we left full and our taste buds were really happy.

    5th Element Taste of India
    3780 Tampa Road
    Oldsmar, FL
    (813) 475-5955

    5th Element Taste of India on Urbanspoon

    Food5/5
    Service4/5
    Atmosphere4/5
    Value4/5
    4.4/5
  • 1 Comment
  • Filed under: Indian, Oldsmar
  • Quiet Dinner


    We started out tonight with plans to eat at Carmel Cafe in Safety Harbor.  We walked in the door and the noise level was deafening.  Even if there hadn’t been a 20 minute wait, I don’t think we’d have stayed.  Have to try them on a less busy night. 

    Next stop was Cheddars in Clearwater, but they also had a very long wait.  Guess everyone decided to go out to eat tonight around 6:30pm.  We ended up at Deeya Indian Cuisine.  It was serenely quiet in there which is a wonderful thing after a long day at work.

    We started out with the Keema Samosa.

    Deep fried pastry with lamb and peas inside.  It had a little bit of spice, but nothing overwhelming.  It was pretty tasty. 

    Loren got the chicken Tikka Masala. 

    He got it medium spiced and after a few bites, thought perhaps he should have gotten it mild.  He ended up stealing some of the mild sauce from my Butter Shrimp and mixing it in with his.

    The last time we ate here, I got the same dish, but I thought it had more flavor.  Tonight, I found it to be fairly bland and the shrimp were a little overcooked.  We also had to get some garlic Naan bread to sop up any remaining sauce.

    Fresh, hot, buttery, and garlicly.  Good stuff.  Service during our meal was pretty good, they filled my water glass regularly.  However, once we were finished, we waited for a while before anyone came back to clear the plates and get our check.  Total bill was $42.

    Deeya Indian Cuisine
    5166 East Bay Drive
    Largo, FL
    727-539-273

    Deeya Indian Cuisine on Urbanspoon

    Food3/5
    Service3/5
    Atmosphere4/5
    Value3/5
    3.2/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Clearwater, Indian
  • Had lunch at the Cop Shop today. My son, Alex, has applied for work there a couple times, but I’d never been there before. It didn’t take long to realize why he didn’t have a shot in hell at getting hired as a server there. He just doesn’t have the right equipment! The place has the appearance of a classic dive bar. Big wide-open room with cheap paneling on the walls, a big bar and lots of TVs. But, it tries to be a lot like Hooters or Wing House with the hot waitresses and big focus on chicken wings. Their “uniforms” work. Leather, handcuffs and cleavage all go well together, and it sort of supports the “cop” theme of the restaurant.

    The menu is a little goofy. It plays the “cop” theme way too hard. It’s difficult to find what you’re after with all of the cutesy names. Themes are good, but they shouldn’t get in the way. On this menu, that’s what they do.

    Eventually, we figured out what we wanted. Between the three of us, we ordered 15 wings (breaded and tossed in medium sauce), a club sandwich (that would be the “Billy Club” found under “Probations” on the menu) on a hoagie roll with provalone cheese, and a side Caesar salad (called “The Cooler”, found under “Misdemeanors”… yeah). Hot young waitress with leather vest and black leopard-print push-up (hey, I didn’t even HAVE to be looking to notice this!) took our order, and we waited. Then we waited some more.

    Finally, after we waited a little more, our food came out. I’m very happy to report that it WAS worth the wait! The wings were great! Good sized wings, just like they claim they are, and the medium sauce was very tangy and just hot enough. I’m not a big wing fan, but I could have eaten more of these!

    Alex and I split the club sandwich with curly fries. The curly fries were fresh, hot and crispy. Good enough to not require catsup, I was pleased. The portion of fries was a little light, however. The sandwich was toothpicked and quartered, like a good club should be. For some reason, I thought it looked kind of small at first glance, but it turned out to be just fine. Fresh turkey and ham, really good and well-cooked bacon, lettuce and tomato… some kind of condiment? (I didn’t give it much thought at the time, it just tasted good!) I ate half of the sandwich, two wings and some fries and didn’t leave hungry.

    Our friend, Ed, had 10 wings and the Caesar salad. Looked like a fresh, tasty salad and Ed had no complaints.

    Overall, I’d say that this is (surprising to me) one of those places where somebody “gets it”. They understand the importance of the food, from the ingredients used to the preparation and presentation. What could have been better? Not a lot. Even the celery and ranch dressing was great! Okay, maybe a pickle with my sandwich and a couple more fries. The tea was a little on the strong/bitter side for those of us who drink it without sweetener, but it was drinkable.

    Sorry I didn’t take any pictures. I know you all wanted to see our waitress!

    The Cop Shop
    3780 Tampa Road
    Oldsmar, FL
    813-855-1052

    Oldsmar Cop Shop on Urbanspoon

    Food5/5
    Service3/5
    Atmosphere2/5
    Value3/5
    3.7/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: American, Oldsmar
  • The last time we ate at Bawarchi Indian Cuisine, they had a buffet.  Tonight we went back to try some of the entrees.  Several groups came in at the same time and the one waiter was completely overwhelmed.  It took a long time just to get our drink orders placed and brought to the table. 

    We started off with the Onion Bhaji. 

    The menu said it was dipped in a spicy batter and it wasn’t kidding.  There was quite a bit of heat going on in this dish.  The dipping sauces were sweet, but nothing could overcome the spice.

    Loren ordered the Chicken Bhuna, medium spicy.

    He thinks he should have gone mild on this dish.  He said it was delicious though.  Lots of interesting melded flavors.  He also said between this and the appetizer, his taste buds got all out of whack.  For some reason, anything with a hint of sweetness tasted much sweeter to him. 

    I ordered the Lobster Makhani, but they were out of lobster, so I ended up with shrimp instead.

    This was awesome.  I ordered it mild, but it still had such a complex array of flavors.  That’s the thing we’ve noticed most about Indian cuisine, the flavors just continue to build on one another.  And of course we had to have some garlic Naan to dip in the sauce.

    Yummy Naan bread.  It was buttery and garlicy and just scrumptious dipped in the rest of my Makhani sauce.  

    Our waiter never returned to our table to ask how we were doing or to refill drinks.  The food was awesome, but expect to be there for a while and don’t expect too much in the way of service.  Total bill was $40.

    Bawarchi Indian Cuisine
    34832 US Hwy 19
    Palm Harbor, FL
    727-789-9760

    Bawarchi Indian Cuisine on Urbanspoon

    Food4/5
    Service1/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value3/5
    2.8/5
  • 1 Comment
  • Filed under: Indian, Palm Harbor