As I write this post, I’m surrounded with the sounds of a live musician and dozens of patrons. The wooden floors, open-frame ceiling, bus lights, and comfortable chairs surrounding glass-topped tables adds to the ambiance. Chanda just refilled my dad’s iced tea. And my dessert (my favorite drink) is en route shortly.
Last night who would’ve guessed that clicking the “pubs” option on my GPS would put us at such a place. Usually the GPS options aren’t obviously good. (Certainly it can find places I already know of.)
After driving from Durham NC to Jacksonville FL Monday, and then to the Kennedy Space Center on Tuesday, my dad and I were looking for some place local. Some place with modest prices, and, hopefully, and interesting beer selection. So for kicks, while we were tolling across central Florida on I-4, I punched-up restaurants -> pubs -> Tanner’s on the GPS. It was simply the closest location to where we were when we decided we were hungry.
What a choice it has turned out to be. Tuesday night I ordered their chicken piccata. Let me warn you: they put crack in their sauce. They must. It’s the only reason I can come up with for wanting to finish what was obviously too much food!
My dad ordered pork chops. I don’t like chops at all, but I was tempted to steal a little off his plate. After dinner we split their chocolate lava cake – and should have passed. It is the richest dessert I’ve had in months!
While we sat letting dinner settle, I checked for where our hotel was, not knowing the town we were in (Winter Haven). Turns out that our reservations were just down the road – literally less than a mile from Tanner’s. How serendipitous.
After we started dinner, we independently decided we’d come back Wednesday after going to Sun ‘n Fun in Lakeland – the whole reason we’re in Florida to start with.
So tonight we came back. And we’ve migrated to other menu choices – since the first two were so good, why not try something new? Tonight I was in a seafood mood, and ordered their blackened mahi mahi, while my dad got the tornadous oscar – angus slices with asparagus, hollandaise, and crab meat.
Two dinners in a row we couldn’t finish fast enough. An impressive feat indeed for a place we found off the GPS’ restaurant list.
It’ll be a little saddening when we have to leave 325 W Central Avenue tonight, because we’ll be heading back north tomorrow, and probably won’t be able to come back till we’re next in Florida – whenever that may be. But I know the next time I’m anywhere close, I’ll be back.