I can’t believe we haven’t written about one of Tampa’s most popular eateries. Datz opened their doors in 2009 and quickly made their name known in the Bay area. Datz is a modern day gastropub serving their take on the american style comfort food. We were invited to Dine Tampa Bay’s first Foodspotting event of the year. For anyone who doesn’t know Foodspotting, it is a “visual guide to good food and where to find it. Instead of reviewing restaurants, you can recommend great dishes and see what others recommend wherever you go.” (Foodspotting.com) Dine Tampa Bay and Datz use this platform to introduce new and upcoming menu items to foodies, like us.
It was my first Foodspotting event and I had no idea what to expect. When I sat down and looked at I was surprised to see that the menu was packed! There were two specialty drinks, three appetizers, two entrees and two desserts listed. Then I started getting nervous, how was I possibly going to fit it all and enjoy every meal. When we walked in there was a new twist to the margarita waiting for us at the table, it was made with cilantro flavored vodka and lime juice, which was perfect for me (being that I’m not a huge fan of tequila). Along with the fabulous drink was their Kim’s Kale Salad (kale, red onion, shaved parmesan, pine nuts, dried cranberries, toasted coriander-orange-balsamic viniagrette) – which in my opinion could have used a little bit more dressing and Curry Crab Spread (fresh jumbo lump vindaloo-curry crab spread served cold with house-baked lavash) – which was full of curry seasoning.
Next the first entree was served, quite possibly my favorite dish I have ever had at Datz. Their new Kentucky Colonel Bowl a true definition for comfort food. This dish was warm, filling, and made you feel amazing inside. It came with boneless fried chicken served over housemade garlic mashed potatoes, grilled corn and melted jack-cheddar cheese, topped with chicken gravy and bacon crumbles. Honestly how can you go wrong with bacon crumbles and garlic mashed potatoes. I soon found that this dish was so good I couldn’t stop eating it. I was worried I didn’t save room for the rest of the dishes. Of course I found room and couldn’t pass up the next dish that came out, which was called the Jerk (spicy, jerk rubbed chicken breast with sweet and spicy scotch bonnet sauce, grilled pineapple and lime-cilantro rice). Another meal to die for, the rice was cooked perfectly and the was was the perfect accent to the fresh grilled pineapple.
Now I know what you’re thinking, how much more food could there be coming. The next course, which Datz called “intermezzo” was definitely unexpected… This is a no words necessary description…
“Frito® pie grilled cheese: jack-cheddar cheese, roadhouse chili, Fritos® and pickled jalapenos all melty between two slices of grilled, house-baked sourdough bread.”
Wow! That is all we had to say as we tried to eat at least half of it because it was so delicious.
Finally it was dessert time! Now we love a good camp fire and the flavor cooking over a campfire delivers. This dessert that was served took us back to our first camping trip (how NHIE all started) when we made s’mores. The dessert was Campfire Tart which was a pie filled with warm chocolate ganache and topped with toasted fresh marshmallow. Before heading out we had to try Dough’s (Datz’s new sister restaurant serving pastries and light meals) homemade Gelato pressed in a homemade sourdough bread (CAN YOU SAY AMAZING!)
Make sure you check out these new dishes at Datz and all their original dishes as well! This Foodspotting event was above and beyond what I expected and all in all a great night
– Rob & Ryan