Does the Local Restaurant Selection Bite?

I've heard enough grumblings to know there are Land O' Lakes residents out there hungry for more when it comes to dining choices. Are you satisfied?

When you want to go out for a good meal— sit down, relax, enjoy the company of friends and loved ones—where do you go locally?

"We rarely if ever eat in Land O' Lakes," resident John Dolac said.  "We live pretty close to Wesley Chapel and frankly there are more and better choices there."

Do we need more choices in Land O' Lakes?

What types of restaurants would you like to see open in the area?

More chains? More home-grown local eateries?

(Who's hungry now?)

Let's talk. Tell me what you think in the comments.


Cherylann Bellavia April 30, 2012 at 12:23 PM
We DO need more selection here especially on Rte 54 - some "big box" places like Olive Garden and Maggianos would be great and even an Anthony's Coal Fire Pizza would be awesome. We have plenty of fast food places but not much in the way of nicer dining options.
Dina Asuras April 30, 2012 at 12:35 PM
Slow service, unidentifiable pieces in the chicken salad which the manager said was a left over burnt and crisp onion from the grill, still more burnt and shaved pieces of apparently chicken in the salad and all this after waiting more than 20 minutes for the food at lunch time. What did we get? The manager followed us out and told us never to return to his place, Beef O'Brady's on north RT41. WE WON"T!
Fisher Honey Bees April 30, 2012 at 02:57 PM
With the options like Harry's BBQ, Rapscallions, Ukuleles, ABC Pizza, Chili's....it keeps my family of 8 happy with ages from 3 to well I won't post it :) I would much rather support the local guys than any chain that brings in pre-prepared food and warms it up.
Sherri Lonon April 30, 2012 at 03:34 PM
If someone new were eying the area, what kind of food would you like to see served up? I think my family would go gaga for a good steak restaurant or a Southern-style buffet. Any thoughts?
Lisa April 30, 2012 at 04:23 PM
Please know that your less than acceptable experience is not indicative of Beef O' Brady's as a whole. Please come give us a try at The Original Land O' Lakes Beef's (Village Lakes Shopping Center on 54). If you have only limited time available for lunch, please feel free to give us a call and we will have your lunch ready and waiting for dine in or takeout!
Joy Todd Coykendall April 30, 2012 at 06:00 PM
I would love to see a Pofolks ( if those are still around)!
Robert Martin April 30, 2012 at 08:35 PM
Yep, Po Folks is @ 22 ave and 34th st. in St Pete. As a matter of fact, ate there today. Still have the best chicken livers anywhere too. And yes, it is a hot topic of conversation for me and the wife as we eat out twice daily. We are both retired, and don't like or want to cook any more since it's just us. So we are constantly on the hunt. Ever set up a site for the best ones we've found. www.FLAlinks.com . For us it's seafood, Md style blue crabs is the passion. Found a few places who try to please within 60 miles of LOL, but am looking for more/better. Any suggestions out there? I agree with Fisher Honey Bees. More mom n pop awesome food shacks and dives! We love um. :>)
Sherri Lonon April 30, 2012 at 08:44 PM
I had no idea a Po Folks still existed anywhere. I loved that place!
Robert Martin April 30, 2012 at 09:26 PM
Yepper. The one in St. Pete is a one off, family owned franchise. Been there along time and is consistently good. Go, have some good food! ;>) (old fashioned candy shop at the register is fun too!)
Keli Sipperley (Editor) April 30, 2012 at 10:41 PM
Robert, any chance you might be interested in blogging on Patch about your hunt for great eats ? That would be such an awesome blog to have on the site!
Megan Hendricks May 01, 2012 at 01:13 AM
I would love to see more locally owned, independent restaurants in the area. It seems like all Wesley Chapel and New Tampa have are chains. LOL and Lutz could really benefit from local, artsy places with high quality food. I've been to some in the area, but wasn't that impressed.
Dennis Costantino May 01, 2012 at 03:35 PM
Yes for one reason, there are very limited local restaurants that serve lunch and breakfast foods after 2PM, ie no diner type places. If you want a burger or an egg sandwich after 2pm it is a lousy chain or go home. Late night(after 9 here) is equally awful.
Dale Miller May 01, 2012 at 08:32 PM
We would like to see a steak restaurant like Longhorns or Italian like Carrabas. We love the Homer's Smorgasbord (buffet) in Sebring which has a large variety of veggies, meats, pizzas, salads and the desserts are out of this world. Homer's Texas Tornado pudding is mouthwatering! D & S Miller, LOL
Judi Fisher May 01, 2012 at 10:05 PM
If you haven't been to Elsa's Mexican restaurant on Hwy 54 and Sunset, it is a great family place with good food and staff.
Joy Todd Coykendall May 02, 2012 at 12:37 PM
Robert, thanks for the information. I will have to go to St. Pete just to eat there! I always loved going there with my family when I was little. They had the best cobbler!!
Robert Martin May 02, 2012 at 02:55 PM
Ok, just a side note to Ms. Lisa. We have been to all the local Beefs, and as in most every restaurant chain, some have better cooks and staff then the others. Not sure why, but if you go to the Beef's at Land O Lakes on 54 (next to the old Sweetbay) then go to the new one out on 54 west heading towards 589, you will see a marked difference in both. Not going to debate which was better, but let's just say that there is a big difference between the menu food preparation and service. I say keep trying your best to please the customers. In this economy, and the rate the restaurants are closing these days, it seems that those shops that work hard at their craft, succeed where the other fall short and are never heard from again. Just a bit of advice from someone who eats out 7 days a week. Specialize in customer care and proper food service and presentation. People will flock to you in droves when you are constantly doing it right. ;>)
Robert Martin May 02, 2012 at 03:42 PM
Sure Keli. I'd love to do a blog for the food spots that are noteworthy. How do we proceed? Write to me direct if you'd like. installsupport@gmail.com .
Sherri Lonon May 02, 2012 at 03:50 PM
Robert, I'm so glad to hear you're interested in blogging. Sounds like you have a lot to say! Keli is on the road this week, but I'm sure she'll be in touch as soon as she gets back. (Can't wait to hear your recommendations!)
Robert Martin May 02, 2012 at 05:09 PM
Thanks Sherri! Dennis, I totally agree with you on this. The Breakfast Nook on 41 isn't bad for sandwiches etc, but closes at 2:30 pm. Nancy's too, but same problem. So Within 20 miles of LOL (I know they siesta in Mexico, but 2:30 closing time for a restaurant is silly!): 1. Forget about Family Inn. Yuck on so many levels. Just eww. 2. And then you have IHOP. Cook issues. The staff is OK, but not a great spot like it was in the past. (Remember "pigs in a blanket" No longer on the menu!) 3. Waffle House. Only thing I'd say here is we need one on 54. Don't care where as long as it's within the LOL city limits. 4.Wolf's Den on 54. Eh...Could be allot better. 5.Cracker Barrel (see Waffle House idea) 6.GRILL next to Big Lots @ 41 & 54. Ivan, please come back and cook! :>( 7.Big Apple Bagels on 54 east. Not too bad an effort, it's geared to a more yuppy crowd then I like in a morning bagel joint, but the wife digs the Blueberry muffins and the everything bagels n shmear, so it's suggested, but also closes early. 8. And lastly, if you want to pick it up n run (up till 5:00) try Larry's Sandwich shop on 41 in LOL. Probably the only place you can get an egg salad sandwich on whitebread anywhere in Land O lakes. (We need a decent deli / Chinese / & Country style Buffet too, but that's for another blogging.) If I missed any, it's likely because I can't find them, or they simply sucked alot and I won't waste my time on it. Anyone have more to add????
Dave R. May 09, 2012 at 03:42 PM
Just got a pizza from Paulie's (on 41, same plaza as Walton's Ice Cream. Very good thin crust pizza, healthy amount of toppings. Our new go to place for pizza


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