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NEWS: Seminole Hard Rock Tampa Expansion Grand Opening Celebration

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Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa has spent nearly $ 720 million on upgrading their venue adding an 30,000 square foot event center, 562 rooms (77 suites), a 1.3 acre swimming pool deck, and 4 new food and drink areas including an Italian restaurant, wine shop, coffee bar, and indoor-outdoor pool bar and grill.

One of the cool new additions is a 24-karat gold leaf piano that belonged to Elvis Presley.

Today the new additions were revealed. Here are some updates from the opening celebration:

 

Carlos Eats

October 4, 2019 |

NEWS: Florida Eats now permanently closed in Seminole Heights

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Florida Eats is now permanently closed in Seminole Heights after being open just a few months. The Chipotle-style eatery posted on Facebook about their end of business due to “circumstances out of our control”.

Friday, August 2nd, 2019 was the last day of service. Florida Eats had a controversial upstart when a lawsuit (since cancelled) was filed by Brew Bus Brewing against the restaurant and owner, Greg Spaddy, for infringement of the name Florida Avenue Brewing.

Next door neighbor King of the Coop seems to have lots of momentum and be performing well in the next door space, it doesn’t seem like the location was an issue.

The Refinery also recently closed in Seminole Heights and is converting into a event/wedding hall. The Refinery was part of an early investment into the Seminole Heights neighborhood and brought several businesses into the fold after the tumult of the financial crisis began to wane with a focus on attempting to provide local ingredients at an affordable price.

Carlos Eats

August 5, 2019 |

Valentine’s Day 2019 specialty menus at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa

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Looking for a romantic day at the casino on Valentine’s Day 2019?

The Rez Grill Valentine's Day 2019 special in Tampa at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
The Rez Grill Valentine’s Day 2019 special in Tampa at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casnio

Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa, located I-4 at North Orient Road and Hillsborough Avenue, about 10 minutes east of downtown Tampa, has a few options available for hungry visitors at four of its dining destinations:

  • Council Oak Steaks & Seafood: Steakhouses and Valentine’s Day dinner pretty much go hand-in-hand. Council Oak is offering specials such as strawberries and baby greens ($ 15), tournedos of filet and lobster ($ 90), king-crusted Chilean sea-bass ($ 70), and a dark chocolate pot de crème or wild berries and citrus sabayon for dessert ($ 11 each).
  • The Rez Grill: You’ll find quality, original cocktails and delicious food by Chef Frank Anderson at The Rez Grill from 4PM-10PM. Valentine’s Day specials include cocoa-nib crusted filet mignon ($ 75) and warm valrhona chocolate cake for dessert ($ 14).
  • Fresh Harvest Buffet: If you’re looking for a buffet option before or after hitting the slots, Fresh Harvest is offering a special buffet on Valentine’s Day from 4PM-9PM for $ 40 per person. Seminole Wild Card members can enjoy a $ 5 discount at the buffet. ELITE and XCARD members can enjoy comp. dollars for Valentine’s Day. There will be a carving station, Cucina Italiana, noodles, greens, dessert (called “Sweets a la Mode”), and more.
  • Hard Rock Cafe: Guests at this Hard Rock staple can enjoy a grilled filet mignon and lobster special ($ 40).

Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is a AAA Four Diamond rated property and offers seven award-winning Zagat-rated restaurants, including the upscale dining venues Council Oak Steaks & Seafood and The Rez Grill. 

Visit Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino online at www.seminolehardrocktampa.com 

Follow them on Instagram @hardrocktampa and on Twitter @shrtampa

Carlos Eats

February 3, 2019 |

Guide: 10 Places to Eat and Drink in Seminole Heights

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Did you hear that Tampa is now ranked one of the most hipster cities in the United States?

If we’re talking hipsters, Seminole Heights has taken the mantle from Ybor City in the past few years as restaurants, bars, breweries, and cafes have popped up all over this small town that supports local busines.

Here are 10 places to eat and drink in Seminole Heights when you visit:

1. Brew Bus Brewing / Florida Ave. Brewing: Brew Bus has quickly grown to be one of the most successful businesses in the Seminole Heights neighborhood. The owners have Exectuive Chef Max Sherard making gourmet food in the kitchen and plenty of beers rolling out of the brewery all the time. They also recently added craft cocktails to the menu. You can jump on the Brew Bus here and ride all around town to some of Seminole Heights less parking friendly businesses. It’s a good hub to the neighborhood. 4101 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33603 (813) 990-7310  

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2. Angry Chair Brewing Co.: One of the most popular local breweries in town. Parking is a conondrum, but you did jump on the Brew Bus like I told you above right? Angry Chair has craft beer fans lining up hours before release parties and most people in town will tell you it has grown to be one of their favorite local breweries. 6401 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33604 (813) 238-1122 

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3. Chop Chop Shop: No one can deny that what is cooking in this kitchen is delicious. The cuisine is a mixture of Japanese and Korean inspiration and whatever the chef is cooking up in the kitchen. No complaints from hungry fans who happily call in orders and show up to eat whenever they get a chance. 6605 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33604 (813) 770-7306 

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4. The Independent Bar & Cafe: I hope you’re noticing a theme that Seminole Heights is a bit of a watering hole. The Independen has long been a local stronghold in the neighborhood where you’ll see local business owners and residents grabbing a beer and having a blast. 5016 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33603 (813) 341-4883 

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5. The Refinery: Always give credit where credit is due. The Refinery was one of the first restaurants to take a risk inside Seminole Heights and helped to form the foundation of the restaurants all over Florida Avenue now. It’s unfortunate that the original location is now closed as I was a fan, but you can find them a few blocks away now in the former Fodder & Shine spot. The burger is my go-to. 5910 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33604 (813) 234-3710 

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6. Revolution Ice Cream: After making a name for themselves in Brandon, Revolution Ice Cream brought their delicious desserts to Seminole Heights and saved many people a trip on I-4 or I-75 and that’s truly a miracle. Their ice cream incorporates many local businesses into their flavors and they are constantly changing and evolving. 6701 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33604 (813) 513-5053 

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7. Rooster & The Till: If you want a truly gourmet experience, Rooster & The Till is arguably one of the best restaurants in Tampa offering that. Be prepared to spend some money, but you’ll want lick your plate as you taste their creations. 6500 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33604 (813) 374-8940 

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8. Lowry Parcade: We nerds needed a spot to join together and Lowry Parade has provided done just that. Where else can you catch a rock band playing Mega Man on a speedrun, sip a local craft beer, and hit an arcade or pinball machine. I hope Lowry Parcade grows and expands so they can increase their selection and add some more fighting games and retro throwbacks, that’s my dream personally. 1213 W Waters Ave, Tampa, FL 33604  (813) 915-9180

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9. The Mermaid Tavern: This dive bar is much more of the core, original feeling that Seminole Heights was founded on. This is a great spot to catch up with friends or unwind. DJs spinning regularly. 6719 N. Nebraska Ave., Tampa, FL 33604 (813) 238-5618 

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10. Spaddy’s Coffee Co.: Every neighborhood needs local coffee and Tampa wouldn’t be a hipster town without our coffee scene. Spaddy serves local roasts from Zeal Coffee Roasters and offers a wide menu of choices. His truck is open early and has really grown into the neighborhood. One of the great things about Seminole Heights is the local feel of it and Spaddy embodies that feeling all the way. 5206 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, FL 33603 (954) 829-2111 

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Carlos Eats

June 27, 2018 |

The Rez Grill now open at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa

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Full disclosure: I was invited to The Rez Grill for a tasting of the menu in exchange for my opinion. These opinions are my own and do not represent Seminole Hard Rock Tampa.

I stopped by The Rez Grill at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa for a taste recently. The inside is a mixture between retro and modern decor – the seating was quite comfortable even in the communal area. The manager and mixologist take just as much care of the experience inside as the Executive Chef Frank Anderson. Chef Anderson is a transplant from Los Angeles and it shows.

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Many of the menu items at The Rez are easily approachable American cuisine, but with culinary twists and additions that amplify the dishes to a more gourmet level. Chicken & Waffles and St. Louis Ribs aren’t anything new to people in Tampa, but I really enjoyed the consistency and moisture of the waffles and chicken. Bacon Jam was a nice touch. The ribs were also quite tasty.

One thing that was different was that many of their dishes invite you to share and trust me the portion is plenty for a party of 3-4 people or more depending on your appetite. I was surprised at the large portion sizes, but I think the idea behind The Rez is to offer some great food at a price point that can draw both older and younger diners with different amounts of cash to spend. Splitting entrees will lead you to spend around $ 10 per person in a party of 3-4 people for entrees.

A major winner to me on the menu was the appetizer options. They were all incredibly delicious.

The Benton’s Ham with Biscuits were fantastic. The oysters were probably one of the best I have had in Tampa – you must try those if offered the chance. The Chicken Liver Toast and Pimento Toast were also winners in my book. I would be happy to stop by The Rez sometime and grab a cocktail with an appetizer and share it with a friend or family member.

The dessert options were also excellent and my favorite two were the Espresso Creme Brulee and Chocolate Budino. Chef Anderson also created the dessert menu and executed it well.

There are quite a few things I didn’t try including the prime meats, burgers, sandwiches, and Florida-caught seafood. The price points of these dishes suggest different offerings between fine-dining and casual dining. Dinner entrees can range from $ 17 for Cavatelli Pasta to $ 85 for Wagyu A-4 Japanese Steak.

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From the cocktail menu I tried the Improved G & T which features St. George Gin, Elderflower, Tonic Water, B’lure Ice and makes the cocktail turn blue. It was a fine gin and tonic drink, but personally I’m not a huge fan of Gin. I’m still waiting for my moment when I become a fan.

What did impress me was The Rez Cocktail which has house-infused pineapple tequila, mint, lime, and club soda. It tasted like a mojito and was incredibly delicious. I would order this drink anytime at The Rez. The wine selections that were poured during the tasting were also great. You’ll find quite a number of California wines on the list which may be a homage back to Chef Anderson.

Speaking of Chef Anderson, he was very hospitable and definitely not hard to talk to for a chef. His methodology behind each dish was explained well and I think he has lots of potential to create some great eats at The Rez Grill and at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa in general.

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Overall, The Rez Grill has some great options and if you find yourself at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa, I’d recommend making a stop and giving it a try. Do bring a friend or two or three.

Carlos Eats

February 16, 2018 |
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