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Showing posts from January, 2015

A Weekend of Dining (and other things) in Tampa / St. Petersburg - Edison Food + Drink Lab, Ted Peters Smoked Fish, Fodder & Shine

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I was shocked when I learned that Mrs. F had never been to Bern's Steak House, a Tampa institution that goes back to the 1950's, looks like a bordello, serves excellent in-house dry-aged steaks, and has one of the most remarkable wine lists of any restaurant in the world.[1] I resolved the next time we had a free weekend that we'd remedy that oversight. So over the MLK Day long weekend, we reserved a room at the Vinoy in St. Petersburg, a Mediterranean Revival style grand old dame built in the 1920's (of the same era and in much the same style as the Biltmore in Coral Gables) and made plans to hit the road.

As it turns out, Bern's was fully booked the entire weekend. But even though the motivating purpose of the endeavor was defeated, I still had a list of places along Florida's west coast to visit. It's only a few hours away, but I've not spent a lot of time on Florida's Gulf Coast, and in my admittedly limited experience the dining options seemed …

CobaYeo at Khong River House

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For Cobaya experiment #47, we returned to the site of experiment #30, almost exactly two years ago: Khong River House, just off Lincoln Road on Miami Beach. In the interim, there had been changes in the kitchen – owner John Kunkel had lured Chef Patricia Yeo down from Chicago to head up the restaurant – and we were excited to see what was new.


Chef Yeo worked with Bobby Flay at several of his New York restaurants before opening several of her own places, first in New York and then Boston, including Om and Moksa. In 2012, she left Boston to join Chicago's Lettuce Entertain You group, for which she served as creative director of a fast-casual Asian mini-chain, Big Bowl. Some of you may also remember her from her appearance on Bravo's Top Chef Masters show. She only recently joined Khong and has been in the process of making its menu her own.

But when we do Cobaya dinners, we don't want the restaurant menu, and I was happy that Chef Yeo did not constrain herself. Rather, she …