Posts tagged ‘restaurant review’

July 8, 2011

Fourth of July 2011 – Part 3 – CJs Crab Shack for dinner

by Nicole Lee

After our mediocre Cuban we decided it was time for some seafood. CJ’s Crab Shack came up on Yelp! and was close to where we were wandering on Ocean Drive. So we settled in for what we hoped would be a delicious meal. For starters we grabbed a margarita for me and a mojito for Scott. They were $10 each, which is steep, but we knew where we were and had already been paying about that much since we arrived. To start we also ordered two appetizers: clams and drunken shrimp. There appeared to be some sort of mix up because we never received the clams, but we got two orders of the shrimp- fortunately they tasted delicious. Buttery, fatty and garlicy. Could I ask for anything more?

For entrees we followed it up with blackened mahi with a side of hush puppies and corn on the cob (for me!) and fish and chips (for him, but we share). I didn’t get a good photo of mine unfortunately (we’d been doing a hell of a lot of drinking over the weekend). It tasted good. The winning dish though was the fish and chips. Scott made the right choice and we devoured everything on the table.

To finish off we had some key lime pie. It was good, but to me when you start adding sauces and soaking the crust in…well…something (I couldn’t tell what, but it was was too sugary). I like my desserts tart and unadorned for the most part. But thankfully they didn’t dye it green or do anything equally as cheesey.

Overall the food was a definite 4-star. We sat outside and I didn’t look inside, but the sidewalk seating was great. People watching was fun and the weather was beautiful. Service? Meh. Like I said with the appetizers, she missed the one, brought two of the other one. She never asked if we wanted a second drink, was somewhat inattentive and distant, but we didn’t really care. The real kicker though? We got the bill. Now, I know. Two drinks, two apps, two entrees and one dessert. It adds up fast. But let me show you exactly how it added up. Make sure you’re sitting down when you click this link, okay? Ready, set, GO!

…THAT’S CRAZY! Am I right? I mean day-um. Either way, the food was pretty damn good. I don’t think I’d go back, but for where we were, what we got and the memories? Yeah, I guess it was worth it.

July 7, 2011

Fourth of July 2011 – Part 2 – Sazon for dinner

by Nicole Lee

One of the biggest things that drew me to the Miami area was the promise of delicious Cuban food. Something about “the closest you can get to Cuba while remaining continental”? So if that’s what I was going for- Sazon was delicious food.

That said, If you’re looking for a great dining experience and going to Sazon is in your plan the single most important question you can ask yourself is this: Do you speak Spanish? If the answer is yes then you’re good to go. If the answer is no you’ll be in the somewhat unfortunate position that I found myself in. See, thing is I understand a good bit of Spanish, so I know what you’re (being the “Spanish speaker” in this case) saying. I’m just not able to speak back (though I would love to change this). So when we didn’t get our menus for fifteen minutes, but the Spanish speakers beside us did immediately, and when I ordered drinks and they both cost too much and took too long, but the Spanish speakers beside us got theirs immediately, I was a little put off. I guess it must be a cultural thing, right?

The arroz con pollo say it would take twenty minutes, but I don’t think it did. There was a hearty crowd, and the food was really tastly. But when push comes to shove? I missed the Taco Bus. Or Sukothai, or any of my other Tampa hang outs. And fact was they got $60 of my hard earned money. In that case does my language matter? Apparently yes and apparently too damn much.

July 2, 2011

Review – Tampa, FL – Daily Eats

by Nicole Lee

Last Sunday Scott turned to me and said, “Entertain me, monkey!” No, no, that’s a joke, but we did have a little trouble deciding what we wanted to do. Most of our lives together revolve around food. What to eat, where to eat, how long it will take to get to the places we do eat, etc. So I grabbed my Yelp! bookmarks list and started naming breakfast/brunch restaurants I had thought about trying over the two years I’ve been collecting. We skimmed over a few in Clearwater and St. Pete, but there was a gay pride festival going on which we feared would end up keeping us waiting for hours and hours.

Instead we settled on Daily Eats in Tampa. I knew I had never been and Scott thought he hadn’t (turns out when we pulled in he realized he had, but oh well). Reviews looked good and it wasn’t a huge distance.

The place was packed! We chose to sit outside on the island bar facing the street. We started with grapefruit mimosas (decliiiious!!) and each had one of the special breakfast bowls. I with “The Boot”: Scrambled eggs with pepperocini, kalamata olives, green peppers, diced tomatoes, and feta cheese on a bed of fresh spinach (pictured first); and Scott with “The Tijuana”: Eggs scrambled with vegetable chili, shredded pepperjack and guacamole, served over homefries (pictured second). I have to say I think I preferred his. I added jalapenos to mine, but they were pickled and just didn’t have the kick I was looking for. Also, the feta doesn’t melt and there was no “sauce”, whereas his had the chili, guacamole and cheese. Either way, they were both delicious and we definitely polished them off! I’d go back again and would like to see what the lunch and dinner menus have to offer. It was a great day.


June 14, 2011

Review – New Tampa, FL – SukoThai

by Nicole Lee

I think I’ve made it pretty clear at this point in the game that I love trying new things- even if I hate them and wish I’d been dead instead. So when Scott and I stumbled across a Japanese-Thai restaurant tucked into a completely dark parking lot across the street from the New Tampa movie theater I was all for it. That was last December and we have DEFINITELY been back. Just this past weekend we went with Scott’s dad and girlfriend to share the love.

Not only is their menu fabulously large, but the cooks are Thai. The first time we went in we asked for our food Thai hot as we always do. We insisted it’s what we wanted, we knew what we were doing and they couldn’t scare us off. Did it happen? For the first time since I’ve been Stateside YES. It was Thai hot and tasted like heaven. The cooks came out to watch us and started snickering before we started in. They were a little surprised we could take the heat, but it was clear they were impressed and appreciative. Each time they’ve held up their end of the bargain, producing great flavors, hot food, and attentive service.

We haven’t tried the sushi or Japanese menu, but if it’s half as good as the Thai they’re on the game and I advise everyone to drop what you’re doing right this moment and go here STAT. Just kidding. But really. I would recommend you put this on your “list of things to try” and let me know what you think. Trust me, I think you’ll be more than pleased. :)

Thai spring rolls

tom yum gai       tom kha gai

 ต้มยำ (tom yum)                                                                   ต้มข่าไก่ (tom kha)

กระเพราไก่ (Thai basil chicken)

ผัดซีอิ๊ว (pad see ew)

 แกงมัสมั่น (masaman curry)

May 28, 2011

Review – Brandon, FL – New Hot Wok

by Nicole Lee

Nestled in a nearly abandoned shopping center on Kingsway Road, New Hot Wok could possibly be the best Chinese/Thai take out in town! We used to hit a couple of different joints but this one has stolen the show. It’s no more expensive or greater distance to make pick it up (as they do not deliver) but they do absolutely everything right.

My suggestions are: flip the menu over and order from the Thai side. The curries are heavenly, the spring rolls (not summer) are spectacular and the fried rice is to die for.

The owners are the cutest and sweetest people I’ve ever met. They give us Thai tea while we wait for our food to be delivered, the mango/cucumber salad pictured below is also tossed in on the house. They recognize us when we walk through the door and offer a kind good bye when we exit with way more food that is necessary.

I would recommend this hole in the wall to anyone in town and am sure to make a visit myself at least once a week!