Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Review of Park Shore Grill, St. Petersburg

My writing muse has abandoned me, so it has taken a few days to get around to posting this review which is a shame as Park Shore Grill was an absolutely amazing experience. Also they actually have a website which you can click on here.

From our table looking at the bar
Ambiance – You can dine inside or outside. Since it was a little on the hot side when we went there we choose to sit inside. The decor is tasteful and modern, the booth we sat it was comfortable and had a nice private feel to it.

The Mixed Grill
Food Quality – Everything was absolutely perfect. I had Grouper and it was some of the best fish I have ever had, served on a small bed of mashed sweet potatoes and a mushroom type sauce off to the side. The taste of everything was excellent. My wife had the mixed grill which consisted of pork belly, filet mignon and a lamp chop served with garlic mashed potatoes. Not only was everything perfect, my wife made two more meals out of it since the portions were so generous. The rolls were good, the salad my wife had was good and the wines that we choose were outstanding.  

Service – Zoey was our waitress and she was as good as the food and far more pleasant to talk with. Professional, attentive without being always there and showed what felt like an actual concern to make sure we were happy with everything.

Price Point – Before tip $121. It sounds steep, but it really wasn’t. Three glasses of wine added $30 plus to the tab and my wife got the special of $45, which also included a desert (which was excellent). Finally she got three meals out of her dinner order, so the bang for the buck is there. My entrĂ©e was $28, so without alcohol two people could get a great meal for around $60.

Overall Rating – A place that is on my list to go to again and one I would gladly recommend. Top flight.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Frog Pond - North Reddington Beach

North Reddington
The Frog Pond is a place for breakfast and lunch, but we have only gone there for the breakfast. They have two locations that I'm aware of, one is North Reddington Beach and one is at St Pete Beach. Both are very close to the actual beach and both have the same type of atmosphere. 

Ambiance - Ambiance seems a little too high brow for what the place is, it is an eatery with as many tables as they can fit in and a wait staff that is almost running from table to table. When crowded the place is noisy and the place is almost always crowded. With no reservations taken, unless you get there really early you can have a 15-30 minute wait before being sat.

Frogs Everywhere
Food quality - Excellent. I have had omelets, waffles, french toast and my wife has had the pancakes and waffles. The food is outstanding and the portions are very generous. If you are counting calories (like I have at times) make sure this is your main meal for the day. They have home fries with many of the meals and while I'm a shredded hash browns fan, the home fries are very good.

Service - Is decent, but not fantastic. They have two great features, one is when you order iced tea they drop off a small pitcher full of tea, which makes my wife very happy as she never has to look for a refill. I'm happy as they always have someone running around the tables with coffee pots and your cup seldom, if ever hits empty. The kitchen turns around the orders very fast; it is just sometimes a little slow in first seeing the waiter and a little long in getting a check.

One Last Thing -  Something of an annoyance is that they do not have a website. In today's world I can't think of a solid reason why you do not have a website that can at least denote locations and show your menu.

It can be crowded
The price point - $25 before tip for breakfast for two. I had the western omelet and fruit and my wife had the pancakes. Add in the drinks of orange juice, coffee and  iced tea and it is not the cheapest meal in town, but the bang for the buck is more then worth it.

Overall Rating - A great place. The best breakfast in the area we have found.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Salt Rock Grill, Indian Shores Florida

This place is one of my wife and I's favorites. The early dinner special (no we are not that old, but if it is a good deal it is a good deal) makes it easy to go there again and again. I'm trying to upgrade as we go along with this mini-review and have added pictures and a link if they have a website, so click here to see what Salt Rock has to tell you about themselves. 
The Front

First up is ambiance. The place has a relaxed atmosphere. The dinning room has a quiet elegance, that is not too fancy. In my view some of the tables are a little close, but all it all it is a very nice setting. My wife and I prefer to sit outside weather permitting. They have an upper deck and a lower deck, which also has an outside bar. You can come dressed up or dressed down and feel at home.

Second is food quality. I have yet to have a bad meal at this place. I have had Tuna Sashimi,  Red Snapper, Beef Tenderloin, Filet Mignon kabobs, Aztec Chicken Pasta and all of the meals have been good. I was not thrilled with the grouper cakes I got, but I think it was more about what I like as opposed to actual quality of the food.We also have had an issue with the temperature of the meat we ordered but usually everything is spot on. The early dinner includes a small salad, entree, vegetable or potato, and a small desert.
The back deck

Service is next. We have had everything from great service to okay service. Our waiter tonight was a little too chatty and let our drinks sit empty too long, but it was still decent service and normally it is better then average.

Last and not least price point. For two early dinners and a glass of wine $31 before tip. The bang for the buck with the early dinner special is excellent. Going after the special the price point is what I would call moderate with the dinners ranging from $13 to $30 for almost the entire menu.

Overall Rating - Very good food, close to home and a great price with the early dinner. Again already a favorite spot that we have been to at least five or six times already. 

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Review of 400 Beach Seafood and Tap House, St. Petersburg, FL

My wife and I recently move the Florida Gulf Coast and we like to go out to eat at various restaurants and I thought it might be fun to give some quick reviews of our experiences. We eat at everything from dives to high end dinning places. Instead of going backwards and telling about all the places we have been I will instead review each place as we go to them.

As time goes by I'm sure I will be able to add some enhancements like photos and hyperlinks and other sorts of things. I find that a blog format tends to evolve over time as I learn as I go. So the first post will have many growing pains.

First up is ambiance. For me this encompasses an overall feeling of the place as well as the actual looks. 400 Beach scores high in this category. An open atmosphere with inside and outside sitting. Today we were doing an early diner as we had skipped lunch, so it wasn't crowded and we had a choice of tables. From ours you could see the harbor and boats at the docks. The high ceilings and modern, yet comfortable decor was very well done.

Second is food quality. It was a home run for my meal of a grilled piece of grouper, with rice and stir fried vegetables. An outstanding meal. My wife had the braised ribs and was unimpressed. She felt she could easily achieve the same effect making a pot roast in a crock pot and it did not match up with some braised ribs she had at a French Bistro from our former home town in the Baltimore, Maryland area. Still it was good.

Service is next. It was excellent, attentive without being intrusive and he kept the iced teas full.

Last and not least price point. For two full dinners and a glass of wine $63 before tip. I thought this was a decent price point. It has the atmosphere of a fine dining restaurant, great ambiance and a great location. A good bang for the buck. My personal rule of thumb is that for a nice meal it will run $50 per person with tip, especially with alcohol.

Overall Rating - It is a keeper and I would go back again.