Posts Tagged ‘Tampa’

Last week, we were down in the Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg area sampling Bloody Marys.

Our final Bloody Mary in Florida was my favorite, but I have to say it is because I had a little more say in the matter.

Before we go into details, here are the original stats on this drink at Rumfish:

Mix: Unsure… it was sweet and tasted “vegetable-y” to my companion. I think it was Campbell’s if I had to take a guess.

Chaser: No

Fixin’s: One lime and two olives, originally, but we took care of that.

Price: $?

We were here for a brunch buffet ($25/person), so I picked up some Bloody Mary essentials at the buffet and used them to spruce up the drink. Crab, shrimp, asparagus, cheese, meat…. ah, I almost felt like I was back home for a minute there.

I really wish restaurants outside of the Midwest would catch on to this trend. Especially in places like Florida, where they have a heavy population of defectors from the cold weather states!

Aside from having to doctor up my own drink, the brunch here was quite good and filling. We also enjoyed seeing the indoor aquarium, where people also have the chance to swim with the fishes!

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Cheers!

 

 

Last week, we were down in the Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg area sampling Bloody Marys.

We headed to the Postcard Inn for lunch and some football watching on Saturday.

I don’t know about you, but I really can’t watch football without a Bloody Mary in hand, so that’s what I ordered.

Postcard Inn (1)

Mix: Homemade

Chaser: No

Fixin’s: Three olives, 2 lime slices, 1 lemon slice…and  side of celery sticks.

Price: $?

I think my dining companions were sick of me lamenting that the Bloodies were subpar in Florida so far, so they gave the waiter a bit of a hard time. They told him I like Bloody Marys with a lot of fixin’s… so he added an extra olive and lime slice and brought me a side of celery.

Come on people, haven’t you seen the Bloodys with sliders on top? Cheese? Meat sticks? I mean, come on, this is Florida! Would it kill you to spare a shrimp?

I appreciate the thought in bringing out the celery, but really wish those snowbirds from the Midwest would teach Floridians a thing or two about how a real Bloody Mary is made.

 

 

 

Last week, we were down in the Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg area sampling Bloody Marys.

We wanted some really great seafood (particularly oysters), so we headed to the Island Grille and Raw Bar in Tierra Verde.

Here, in addition to the oysters, shrimp and smoked fish, we also had a Bloody Mary Oyster Shooter and one of their Bloody Marys:

Island Grill and Raw Bar Shooter

Island Grill and Raw Bar

Mix: Homemade

Chaser: No

Fixin’s: Lime

Price: $?

Here, I wouldn’t waste your time or money on the Bloody Mary.

The oysters are fantastic, so make sure you order enough of those to go around. If you have that Bloody Mary craving, order a Bloody Mary Shooter or two, then move on to a Rum Runner.  Cheers!

 

 

While in Florida, we paid a visit to one of the top steak houses in the country, Bern’s Steak House in Tampa.

And, it was more than just steak, it was an entire experience.

The place is much bigger than I was expecting. It seemed like there were rooms upon rooms (each with unique decor, themes and names) filled with people having a great time. Yet, it wasn’t so overcrowded that the service wasn’t attentive.

The entrees here come with a lot of food: soup, salad, onion strings, vegetables and potatoes, so we didn’t need to order any appetizers or sides (however, we did order extra asparagus).

We enjoyed a pre-dinner drink and of course, I had to try their Bloody Mary:

Bern's

Mix: Homemade

Chaser: No

Fixin’s: Lemon

Price: $?

Normally at steak houses, I have found that they have excellent Bloody Marys. This one was average, or even a bit below. I wish I would have stuck with wine, but now I know. So, we ordered a bottle of wine with our meal, which was quite good.

Following dinner, we were taken on a tour through the restaurant’s kitchen and impressive wine cellar:

Bern's Steak Wine Cellar

They have a huge supply at the establishment and another warehouse full. They have a 1947 wine that is their most expensive, retailing for $30,000 for the bottle. (We stuck with a more moderately priced bottle this time.)

Then, it was up to the Dessert Room, yes you read that right, ROOM.

This was my favorite part. Located upstairs, each party is treated to their own private booth (but not in the restaurant sense, they are almost like a phone booth instead) where they can select the music they want to hear, their after dinner drink of choice and one of the amazing desserts.

I settled on a pumpkin spice coffee and this peanut butter cup treat:

Berns 2

 

I would not say that the food here is any better or worse than your typical high-end steak house, but I will say that they thing they have going for them most is the dining experience. Until we got to the tour and dessert room, I was not very impressed, but when I left, I felt like I had really enjoyed my laid-back, relaxed evening in an unforgettable setting.

I recommend you check this place out at least once, but don’t waste your time or money on the Bloody Mary. Save it for wine and/or dessert instead!

 

Last week, we were down in the Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg area sampling Bloody Marys.

Our first stop, based on a lunch recommendation and not necessarily a beverage, was Z-Grille.

When we pulled up to the restaurant, I was a little skeptical. It is on the first floor of what appeared to be an office building; however, inside, the place was funky and eclectic, with a definite skater-culture vibe. Skateboards hang as decor and one of the main walls is essentially a skateboard ramp.

The menu is also a little eclectic, but excellent. I had the seafood salad and it was divine.

As for the Bloody Marys… when I inquired as to their Bloody, the waiter was kind enough to allow me to sample the mix. It was quite spicy and had a bit of a stronger texture than most–almost like a salsa.

Z Grille Bloody Mary

Mix: Homemade

Chaser: No

Fixin’s: Two olives, lime

Price: $?

I give them bonus points for the mason jar (love that!) and the salted rim. This drink was probably my favorite in the Tampa area.

Definitely check them out!