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Chowdown at the Refinery?

Manderley Jun 18, 2010 02:54 PM

Anxiously awaiting report. Sorry I had to miss it. Well????

  1. Mild Bill Jun 18, 2010 11:39 PM

    I thought it was really fun and interesting...
    The super nice folks who own and run the place have put together just the type of restaurant I dream of doing myself... Cool, homey, casual, creative, welcoming, and happy...
    I wish them the best...

    They don't use the terms 'appetizer' or 'main course’ on the menu…
    They call them 'Small Plates' and 'More Than a Small Plate'...

    I can only talk about the things I ordered, and I had The Bone Marrow with Crostini and blueberries (small plate), the Stroganoff (small plate), and their Burger with Yukon Gold Fries...
    ------ and two or three pints of craft beer...
    ------ and a big ‘ol pickled pig’s foot!
    ------ Ooooo, and the S'mores dessert!!

    I would recommend that folks try to join us for these occasional gatherings because each time we get to know each other better, loosen up a little more, and have more fun...

    My juicy, flavorful, perfectly cooked, medium rare burger, along with those Yukon Gold (crispy well-done) fries were the best thing I ordered...
    That was a damn good burger, and the fries were killer…

    The Stroganoff (small plate) was an unexpected preparation, but an interesting treat...
    I’m absolutely glad I got it…

    The beers were excellent…
    The home-made S’mores for dessert blew us away!
    Rhnault thought it was the best thing she ate all night…

    3 graham cracker tartlets filled with a spectacular semi-sweet chocolate mousse (I think), topped with home-made marshmallow--- torched a little!

    I’m furious I don’t have three in front of me right now!

    The Marrow Bone ‘Small Plate’ consisted of one 4” tall bone segment, and mine was over-cooked, because only oil poured out of mine as I tried to scoop & push something out onto the crostini...

    Finally, the pig foot!

    Ay Dios Mio!

    I love them for making this, I do! ----- and I think three of us took the challenge...
    I ate every edible bit off the thing, and in the thing, in an effort to understand it completely---all the while laughing & saying; “this isn’t food”....
    I’m glad I got it--- but I prefer the hot, soft, silky, collagen-rich saucy, Latin or Soul versions I’ve had in the past, served over rice or grits, with added lovey-dovey pork cuts to make up for the lack of meat on the pig foots…

    I know--- that's another dish...
    I mention it just so maybe they might make it! ;-)

    OK, that’s all I got….
    I’ll be keeping an eye on the online menu, and again, I thank those folks for being creative, passionate, a little crazy, and perfectly hospitable…

    Look at this whole thing I wrote!
    Why can’t I simply say; ‘it was great--- can’t wait to go back’?

    37 Replies
    1. re: Mild Bill
      askdrtodd Jun 19, 2010 04:48 AM

      Bill is spot on. The prices at the restaurant are more than reasonable, my wife and I ate for under 50 dollars with drinks, and everything was great.

      Their take on Caprese was well executed, with added dimensions of citrus and mint that were well received, but the presentation was what really won the dish with the use of both yellow and red cherry tomato slices - beautiful.

      The bite of Bill's burger I got was one of the best bites of a burger I've had in a long time. In as long as I can remember. Every time I drag people to Pane Rustica I usually make them order the burger so I can bogart a bite at some point (I don't usually order richer dishes) but this was a contender for the PR burger, if not even better.

      I loved the earthiness of the Stroganoff, it complimented the slight richness of the dish well in my opinion, and like all the other dishes the presentation was great too.

      The group was great, the beers the restaurant had on tap were great, the owners were great, and I'm pretty sure we're all really looking forward to doing this again, perhaps early July.

      1. re: askdrtodd
        Manderley Jun 20, 2010 02:09 PM

        wow great reviews. can't wait to go...my sweetie's coming for a visit july 4th weekend, we will DEFINITELY hit this place. Do we need reservations? I just looked at the menu prior to reading your posts, and the bone marrow had me salivating...mmmmm thanks, guys, and next time PUH-LEEZE try to make it on a Saturday night or Sunday so i can join you. i work crazy hours during the week and can't ever do anything on a weekday :( (shouldn't complain, i'm glad to have a job in this economy)

        1. re: Manderley
          TampaAurora Jun 20, 2010 06:25 PM

          I'm seconding the request for a Chowdown on the weekend please! My work schedule is crazy during the week and I would love to finally meet everyone. I can't eat everything on the menu, but I am intrigued.

          1. re: Manderley
            askdrtodd Jun 21, 2010 05:43 AM

            we were toying with the idea of doing one at the Wat Mongolian Temple out in Brandon on a Sunday in the near future, you guys game for that?

            1. re: askdrtodd
              Manderley Jun 21, 2010 06:09 PM

              absolutely! Sundays are perfect for me; Saturday night or Sunday all day or all night, that's all I've got free. i'm in!

              1. re: askdrtodd
                TampaAurora Jun 23, 2010 05:19 PM

                Is there shade? Florida in the Summer can go from fun to frightening quickly...

                Either way, I'm in!

                1. re: TampaAurora
                  askdrtodd Jun 24, 2010 05:34 AM

                  pretty sure there is shade by the picnic tables, can anyone else confirm?

                  1. re: askdrtodd
                    andy huse Jun 24, 2010 07:07 AM

                    yes, there's shade and an indoor option if the weather gets nasty.

                2. re: askdrtodd
                  The_Refinery Jun 26, 2010 08:47 AM

                  Mmmmmmmmmmm. Thai Temple. Greg and I may have to skip out of the Refinery's brunch service a little early for this Chowdown. WE LOVE THE THAI TEMPLE! All the curries and the grilled meats and the little white green onion cakes and the noodles. mmmmmmmmmmmmmm


                  1. re: askdrtodd
                    blitzchamp Jun 26, 2010 01:43 PM

                    Ah I love the Wat. I'm down!

                    1. re: blitzchamp
                      askdrtodd Jun 28, 2010 06:29 AM

                      cool so is this pretty much locked then? for 7/11?

                      1. re: askdrtodd
                        Mild Bill Jun 28, 2010 07:31 AM

                        Is Wat locked?

                        1. re: askdrtodd
                          Manderley Jun 28, 2010 09:52 AM

                          7/11 works for me. what time? where are we meeting? i've heard about the wat but have never been. todd feel free to email me info or a message on facebook. looking forward to it!

                          1. re: Manderley
                            askdrtodd Jun 28, 2010 12:04 PM

                            I'll send out an email.


                            1. re: Manderley
                              TampaAurora Jun 28, 2010 07:09 PM

                              Can't do 7/11....Rays event...erg

                              1. re: TampaAurora
                                TampaAurora Jun 30, 2010 08:24 PM

                                Woot, event was cancelled. My SO and I are now in! Please email me at cowarth at-sign gmail dot com.

                            2. re: askdrtodd
                              blitzchamp Jun 28, 2010 08:56 PM

                              Aw man I think I'll be in Gainesville on 7/11. =[. I would be down any Sunday though I live close by.

                              1. re: blitzchamp
                                askdrtodd Jun 29, 2010 02:44 PM

                                7/11 is a sunday tho?

                                1. re: askdrtodd
                                  blitzchamp Jul 2, 2010 01:39 PM

                                  I meant any other Sunday. Sorry.

                    2. re: Mild Bill
                      rhnault Jun 21, 2010 05:23 AM

                      I think one of those smores daily would be really good for my disposition ;-)

                      1. re: rhnault
                        Manderley Jun 21, 2010 06:11 PM

                        lol yeah me too

                      2. re: Mild Bill
                        andy huse Jun 21, 2010 07:22 AM

                        below is just quibbles. I'm sold on the Refinery as a whole--- in seminole heights, no less.

                        i thought the stroganoff was more like a hash. I would have loved a fried egg in the middle. to make it more like stroganoff, i would have replaced the creme fraiche with sour cream and drizzled a little red wine reduction. as it was, it just didn't seem complete or fit the prfile of stroganoff.

                        I wanted something light, and the grits and greens were just what i wanted. The braised greens had just the right touch of vinegar, and the polenta wasn't too smooth, but still had a little grit to them, which was perfect.

                        I brought my Tuesday appetite, so that's all i ate.

                        1. re: andy huse
                          blndroot Jun 21, 2010 10:30 PM

                          HI I t I was wondering where The Refinery is? It sounds interesting. Thanks

                          1. re: blndroot
                            rhnault Jun 22, 2010 04:55 AM

                            It is just south of the intersection of Florida and Hillsborough in Seminole Heights.


                            1. re: rhnault
                              Manderley Jun 22, 2010 03:35 PM

                              oh i didn't realize that's where it is, i work right near there. okay then! look out!

                              1. re: Manderley
                                askdrtodd Jun 22, 2010 03:43 PM

                                I highly recommend the everything ;)

                              2. re: rhnault
                                blndroot Jun 23, 2010 02:59 PM

                                Thank you, the menu looks delicious and I love that they use local produce. I think it's pretty far from where I live but maybe one day I will make it up that way.

                                1. re: blndroot
                                  Lauracooks Jun 24, 2010 06:08 AM

                                  favorite spot in tampa right now. i love everything about this place

                            2. re: andy huse
                              rhnault Jun 28, 2010 10:29 AM

                              I have a quibble. I was very disappointed with the pate. It was the one thing I have had there that was almost flavorless. Not sure if you tried it or not. Before I would order it again I would confirm the recipe had been re-tooled.

                              1. re: rhnault
                                Mild Bill Jun 28, 2010 04:12 PM

                                I didn't taste it, but I bet it was Foie Gras compared to that Pig Foot!

                                I thought I was in 'Shaun of the Dead' chompin' away on that thing!

                                1. re: Mild Bill
                                  rhnault Jun 29, 2010 05:09 AM

                                  At least I got to giggle for 5 straight minutes watching you all gnaw on those things. John has some excellent shots on his phone that could eventually surface ;-)

                                2. re: rhnault
                                  andy huse Jun 29, 2010 02:15 PM

                                  i agree about the pate. I think you let me taste yours. I'm thrilled anyone is making pate, but they need to reassess their recipe. If they improve it, i'd love to try their pate melt. it sure would piss off my doctor. and sometimes, that's enough.

                                  1. re: andy huse
                                    rhnault Jun 30, 2010 05:16 AM

                                    My chef friend who will soon be back on the scene with a new restaurant makes wonderful rich decadent pate. I miss it!

                                    1. re: rhnault
                                      Manderley Jun 30, 2010 02:40 PM

                                      i just made reservations for saturday night. can't wait. :)

                                    2. re: andy huse
                                      askdrtodd Jul 1, 2010 03:57 PM

                                      Andy we had some pate there maybe two weeks ago on a sunday evening up at the bar (only thing open sunday evenings) and it was very decent, it wasn't too rich and had great texture. maybe worth a second shot?

                                      1. re: askdrtodd
                                        Lauracooks Jul 2, 2010 09:10 AM

                                        I had the coutry pate a few weeks ago and it was quite good. sometomes it is just having th right condiments to counter the richness. I am going tommorow and wat to try the pate melt. I have high hopes.

                                        1. re: Lauracooks
                                          rhnault Jul 2, 2010 12:54 PM

                                          What we were served was not rich at all and had very little flavor.

                              2. r
                                RibDog Jun 18, 2010 07:07 PM

                                I'm sorry I had to miss it too.

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