After taking the kayak out on the Bay on Thursday, on Friday a large group of us went over to CDB's Southside for some outdoor eats and drinks to end the week on Friday evening....as always we get the Chef Rolls(sliced Turkey, Ham and Roast Beef rolled up in Mozzarella Cheese)...and the dinners were actually tastier than usual this time around, (see my past reviews)...seems the tomato sauce was not as sweet, and with chunks of tomato and garlic, no complaints, good food, good service, good company.... and enjoyed the great weather overlooking Westshore Blvd. Afterwards it was a walk next door to the Wooden Door Irish Pub, busier than usual, but a funky crowd, not from the neighborhood.
Saturday was the St. Patricks Night Parade in Ybor City, an annual event for 14 years now. Similar to the Gasparilla Night Parade, but a wee bit more Irish, with some Bag Pipe players,a nd a few Irish floats, but most were the same Krewes out for anther parade through 7th Avenue of Ybor City. We started at the Double Decker, then onto Gaspars Grotto, made it over to Reservoir Bar just as the parade was starting(tried to go to James Joyce Pub, but they had a 49 persons limit in the bar), found a nice table outside of NY NY Pizza as the parade came down 7th Avenue, not crowded at all this year, so we enjoyed some slices, and the parade....during the parade we headed to meet some more friends at the old Adobe Gilas(now called Centro Cantina), the area round Centro Ybor was a little busier...then onto Coyote Ugly, and lastly the Green Iguana. Another successful parade night in Tampa, there were also alot of people in town for the SEC Championships taking place at the Forum in downtown.
Sunday started out with Dim Sum for Sunday Brunch...TC Choys on Howard Avenue in Hyde Park area of South Tampa, does a GREAT job with this Asian treat...chicken feet, tripe, jelly fish...no I didn't try any of those...we went for some of the Dumplings, stuffed with all kinds of seafood, pork, and also an Eggplant with Shrimp specialty and Asian Broccoli...very very good, and you know its good when your in an Asian restaurant and most of the clientele are all Asian as well. The carts just keep circling around the tables, servers are VERY friendly to explain all the Dim Sum being served on the cart.
Sunday afternoon led to Sunday Funday went a buddy of mine sent out the following text message: "I just checked the weather report and guess what, it's perfect BEER DRINKING AFTERNOON...where we goin?" so we all headed out to Four Green Fields, kind of empty at 3pm, but by 530pm it was getting very busy..we sat out on the front porch of this very authentic Irish Pub, with views fo downtown (the thatched roof was actually imported from Ireland), and there was live Irish music inside...my buddies wanted me to take them some place they never been, and I thought, where is the seediest joint in town...the Ki Ki Ki III on Kennedy Blvd, an alternative bar, very dark(no windows, the only light from because the door was propped open), one pool table, a juke box, smokey, and some not so distinguished people, good enough for a very cheap pitcher of beer and some laughs, an interesting spot. From there it was over to macDinton's on Howard Ave, large outdoor patio greeted quite a few people, we lasted about one beer, and then headed over to The Lodge a block away. A new place that just opened in January, with an outdoor patio along Howard Avenue. Friendly Jeff was able to accommodate our group outside..we started with some buckets of beer, and an appetizer tray that consisted of four tiny corn dogs, some calamari, beef and cheese spring rolls...a very small platter, it was a good thing it was on special. The place has a very different type of menu, lots of sliders, and Americanized version of Sushi, and "Always Eggs" dishes....we tried, sliders, Macaroni and Cheese with Beef, Omelet, Sushi with chicken, Chicken nachos...some of the meals came with three sides(they state TV dinner style)...like BBQ Beans, Cucumber slices that had no flavor, and my favorite of all, crispy Tator Tots. All in all it was an ok ...we were happy with the awesome service, and just good company as well. In the middle of the meal, we were able to also view the Space Shuttle taking off from Cape Canaveral, seeing the bright glow and the plume of smoke up into space...and awesome sight.
St. Patty's is around the corner...and the weather is STILL beautiful!!