Thursday, September 3, 2009

Dinner and a Stroll in Tarpon Springs, FL

In August I packed my bags once again and headed to visit family and friends in Tampa Bay Florida. I love visiting whenever I can because it is a little bit like going home. My brother still lives in New Port Richey and I have friends in Tarpon Springs and St. Petersburg. Every time I go back something has changed, but I can still count on my friends and family to welcome me and for a great time.
I can also count on The Sponge Docks in Tarpon Springs to not have changed too much. I know, it is a tourist trap-ish kind of place. But it is also one of the best places in the US to get wonderful Greek food. Yummy.
The first night of my visit my friend and I took our daughters to Hella's. On the way we were talking about food and the foods that other friends won't eat or even try. I made the mistake of saying I'd try just about anything. So of course my friend called me on it and challenged me to try some pickled octopus.

Now for me, octopus is one of those foods that look too much like the animal even in prepared form. I know it's a bit silly, but I was not looking forward to this challenge. I was looking forward to the saganaki, skordalia, baklava, and a good open face gyro.
To fulfill my challenge we started off with the cold plate that included octopus, shrimp, skordalia, taramosalata, tzatziki, olives, peppers & feta cheese. Everything was good. The octopus wasn't so good I would eat it all the time. It was pickled and I'm really not a big fan of pickled anything except dill pickles.

After that we got the sapanaki, or flaming cheese, just for the fun of it (something you can do on vactaion). OPA!!!!!!!

The kids love the show much more then the cheese.
By the time we finished the appetizers and half our gyros we were full so we took our extras and headed for their bakery to bring some baklava and galaktoburiko home.
After dinner we walk for a bit and stopped in the wonderful little soap shop, Lori's Soaps. They sold hand made olive oil soaps and some of them had a sponge added right into them. What a great idea. I only got two, but now that I'm home I wish I had more.
Here are some photos I took with my point and shoot during our stroll after dinner:

To see more photos of the Sponge Docks visit my last post: Wordless Wed.: The Sponge Docks


Melanie @ Whimsical Creations said...

Ewwww....I would not have been up to the challenge.

Visiting with family and friends is wonderful! It's always fun to see how much has changed over time.

Momma J said...

Looks like you had a great trip!

April said...

So, yeah for getting to visit family and friends (wish we had still been there so you coulda popped over to Bradenton)... Not so yeah for eating octopus, pickled or otherise for that matter!!

Lorissa J. Longfellow said...

LOL - really it wasn't that bad, the octopus that is.

Thanks for the comments. And yes April, I would have loved to have an excuse to visit Bradenton.

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Don't bother about being modern. Unfortunately it is the one thing that, whatever you do, you cannot avoid.
- Salvador Dali

Living is more a question of what one spends than what one makes.
-Marcel Duchamp