The Restaurants at My End of the Universe

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Time for Thai

Ate dinner at Bua Siam Thai in Palm Harbor tonight.   Our friend Bill joined us since Hurricane Irene thwarted his travel plans.  We started out with some sushi, a couple of Mexican rolls and a Christmas roll.

They were both very good.  The Mexican roll had a nice crunch from the fried shrimp and the Christmas roll was very smooth and flavorful.  Bill got the Pad Thai for dinner and really enjoyed it.

He even had some leftovers.  I always tease Loren that he gets the same thing everytime we go to a Thai restaurant, so he decided to be different tonight and ordered the yellow curry with chicken.


It had a bit of spiciness going on, but very flavorful.  The fragrance was amazing when it came to the table.  Along with the other sushi, I also had a Ocean roll.

This is one of my favorites.  It’s just such a burst of freshness with every bite.  It’s a cucumber wrapped tuna roll with no rice and the flavors just dance on your tongue.  Service tonight was very unobtrusive, which is something we really appreciated.  In the past, so many people came to check on us that it got annoying.  Total bill for the three of us was $62.

Bua Siam Thai
35903 US Hwy 19 North
Palm Harbor, FL

Bua Siam Thai Cuisine and Sushi on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: Palm Harbor, Sushi, Thai
  • Love Boat

    Another new sushi restaurant opened up in Palm Harbor, so of course we had to check it out.  Wasabi Japanese Restaurant is now in the space that used to be the Eagles Landing Restaurant in the Brooker Creek Shopping Center.

    As soon as we opened the door, the chemical smell was overwhelming.  It was like a combination of disinfectant, new paint, and other cleansers.  Totally and completely unappetizing.  Not a good first impression by any means.

    We ordered the vegetable tempura as an appetizer and then the Love Boat sushi combo.   Soup and salad came with the meal.

    Loren liked it more than I did.  Neither of us like miso soup, but he said it was better than others he’s tried.  I wasn’t a fan of the salad dressing either.  I prefer a sweeter ginger dressing and this one wasn’t very sweet.

    The vegetable tempura was one of the most bland appetizers I’ve ever had.

    It had the crunch, but not an ounce of seasoning.  The veggies were broccoli, potato, sweet potato, mushroom, and zucchini.  We left half of it because it just offered nothing to the palette.  Not to mention, our sushi came out very soon after the appetizer.

    There wasn’t much on the sushi menu that called out to us.  The specialty sushi roll menu was small, so we just decided to try the Love Boat, thinking we’d get some interesting things that perhaps we wouldn’t have thought to order on our own.   Sadly, there was no originality to what we got.  Salmon, tuna, and snapper, plus a California and Dragon roll.

    The California roll was ok, but the nori in the Dragon roll didn’t have the right texture.  It was hard to eat. 

    The ahi tuna and the salmon were ok, but neither of us was too keen on the snapper and I’m not a big fan of yellow tail.  Overall, the sushi was very bland.  Total bill with a drink was $49.  This entire experience was average at best.  If I’m going to drop $50 on sushi, I want it to be memorable and there are definitely better places around.

    Wasabi Japanese Restaurant
    36221 E Lake Road
    Palm Harbor, FL

    Wasabi Japanese Restaurant on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: Palm Harbor, Sushi
  • We’ve driven by Mike’s Sushi in Palm Harbor quite a few times, but never went in because of the name.  We just couldn’t picture a guy named Mike making awesome sushi.  What we didn’t realize, until we looked up the website, is that Mike is a Japanese gentleman whose name is just difficult to pronounce so he goes by Mike instead.  I’m so glad we decided to give it a try because the sushi and atmosphere were both great.

    From the moment we walked in, we were greeted with friendly hellos and smiles from the entire staff.  It’s not a very big restaurant, but they had quite a few people working there which meant drinks were kept filled and empty plates were removed quickly.

    Loren started off with a salad and they also brought over some sprouts.

    For sushi, we ordered a Rainbow roll, a Mexican roll, a Special Scallops roll, a Spicy Salmon roll, a Lobster roll, and a “make your own roll”, plus two pieces of salmon.  Surprisingly, we ate every last bit of it.

    I liked being able to create my own roll.  I chose salmon, tuna, avocado, cucumber and mayo.  It was tasty. 

     The fish on all of the rolls was very fresh.  One of the things I really liked about this place is that they didn’t drown everything in goopy sauces, so you could actually taste the freshness of the fish.  Another nice touch is that they had a bottle of eel sauce on the table, which I like way more than soy sauce.  Loren said the spicy salmon was spicy enough to be enjoyable but not overpowering.  Both the lobster & shrimp were cooked perfectly. 

    We’ve been to a few places where they slice the rolls very thick, making them difficult to eat in one bite.  Here, you got 10 thinner pieces which were much easier to just pop in your mouth.  There really wasn’t anything about this experience that I didn’t like.  It’s definitely on our list of sushi places to try again.  Total bill with a drink was $58.

    Mike’s Sushi
    33855 Us-19 N
    Palm Harbor, FL
    (727) 410-3234

    Mike's Sushi on Urbanspoon

  • Filed under: Palm Harbor, Sushi
  • Went back to Ban Thai tonight for sushi.  They were busy as usual on a weekend night, but we were able to get a table without a wait.  We started off with some soup, Loren got the chicken & rice and I got the wonton.

    I need to remember not to order the wonton soup here.  Don’t get me wrong, the wontons are pretty good (there were only 3 of them) and the broth is flavorful, but the majority of the dish is bean sprouts and I really don’t like bean sprouts. 

    We ordered a lobster roll, a screaming orgasm roll, a rainbow roll, and a Tampa roll.  We also ordered some salmon, but it never made it to the table.  How hard is it to turn over the sushi menu to see if there’s anything on the other side?  Since we had way more sushi than we needed, we didn’t mention it to the waitress.

    The Rainbow roll was very good.  It was light and tasty and the fish on top was very fresh.  The Tampa roll had good flavor, but there was hardly any snapper inside of it.  There was plenty of crunchy batter that the fish was cooked in, but it definitely lacked fish.

    The lobster roll is the most expensive on the menu, but also the biggest I think.  Besides what’s in the roll, there are also some remaining lobster chunks on top.  It’s one of my favorite rolls here.  The screaming orgasm roll didn’t really do it for either of us.  It’s a no rice roll, but had an odd consistency.  There was way too much sauce on top of it and that’s all you could taste.  I couldn’t even begin to tell you what was actually in the roll because I couldn’t taste any of it.  Total bill was $53.

    Ban Thai Restaurant
    2519 McMullen Booth Road
    Clearwater, FL

    Ban Thai on Urbanspoon


    Ocean Blue

    Ocean Blue Sushi just opened up on McMullen Booth in the same space where several other restaurants have come and gone recently.  At first we were surprised to see another sushi place in the same plaza as Keiko (one of our favorites), only to discover that both restaurants are owned by Charlie.  We overhead a conversation where his son said if had any issues, he’d just walk next door and ask his dad. 

    The decor and atmosphere are very different between the two restaurants.  Ocean Blue is a big space with a large bar, plus they also have outdoor seating.  It seems to be catering to a younger, late night crowd.  There are a lot of items on the menu and we settled on 5 rolls and some salmon.  Loren also started off with a salad.

    All of the sushi was tasty.  We got a Mexican Roll, Ex-Wife Roll, Haha Special Roll, Rainbow Roll, and a Super Crunchy Roll.   Now, I love the super crunchy roll at Keiko and hoped for the same love here, but unfortunately, this one was spicy.  Loren liked the one here more, since it did have some spice to it, but I’ll be heading back to Keiko for my super crunchy fix from now on. 

    Loren commented that some of the rolls were rather loose.  They weren’t as tightly wrapped as they should have been and some of the ingredients kept trying to escape.  Overall, though, this is a great addition to our sushi choices close to home.  Total bill was $58.

    Ocean Blue Sushi Bar & Japanese Restaurant
    2475 McMullen Booth Road
    Clearwater, FL

    Ocean Blue Sushi on Urbanspoon