Had a nice Valentine's Day dinner at the new Front Porch Grill on Florida. This area of Tampa (Seminole Heights) is re-developing nicely with restaurants like Rigo's (cofee shop w/sandwiches and decent dinners), Nicko's (cheap neighbrhood diner), Viva La Frida (Mexican food accompanies art, cultural events), etc.
Front Porch Grill serves a typical blend of sandwiches, wings, pizza, and burgers, along with a limited selection of entrees. It also has a full bar.
The Valentine special for 2 included 2 entrees, a bottle of wine, and 2 desserts for $50. Service was spotty at best, with our confused, forgetful waiter doubling as cashier.
The broccoli/cheese soup was okay but lukewarm. The salad was standard witha few greens to punctuate the iceberg lettuce. My companion's 8 oz filet with bleu cheese was good, cooked perfectly to order. My 10 oz grilled pork chop was excellent, flavorful and tender. However, the entire restaurant inexplicably ran out of baked potatoes, so we were served mashed, with no butter, gravy or other topping, despite the fact that I'd asked for gravy several times. The sauteed veggies were okay, with a little garlic.
he turtle cheesecake was good, but not distinctive enough to convince me it was made on site. The mud pie was the same--- good.
The ambiance madse up for all the lapses in service, and our overworked server still got plus 20%. The $50 special was well worth it.
overall, I'd say the grill would do a great job at burgers amd such, but needs to clean up kitchen and service problems before marketing itself as an upscale eatery.
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