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NEWS: Hot Pot BBQ is now open on Fowler Avenue and serving unlimited hot pot and Korean BBQ

Update: The owners of Nine Spices Hot Pot in St. Petersburg have reached out to clarify that they are not affiliated with the Hot Pot BBQ spot on Fowler. The business licenses were strangely similar.

The rumor mill has been swirling for quite some time, but now Hot Pot BBQ is now open to the public.

Diners can enjoy unlimited hot pot and Korean BBQ for around $30. The option to exclude bbq will save you a few bucks, but I don’t suggest doing that.

I stopped by for a visit earlier this week and tried the Korean BBQ and hot pot and was pleasantly surprised at how delicious the food was. The quality of the meat and seafood were far superior to competitors throughout the Tampa Bay area and although the prices are a little higher than Izziban BBQ in Orlando, I do think the higher price-point is worth it.

The quality of the spicy pork belly cut and bulgogi was noticeably great. The Korean BBQ grills cooked the meat cuts quickly and efficiently. The restaurant offers butter to grease the surface. Hot Pot offers your standard lettuce wraps available and side veggies to add to your meats. I highly recommend the Korean BBQ at Hot Pot BBQ.

The seafood selection was also satisfactory and on-par with popular hot pot places in Orlando and St. Petersburg with crawfish, squid, clams, mussels, fish balls, and more. The broths for the hot pot are a little on the blander-side, but you can easily spice it up with their sauces and side offerings including heaping of garlic and cilantro.

Veggies, fruits, and desserts rotate around the restaurant on a conveyor belt that is similar to many modern Asian eateries around the country. Diners can simply pick up anything they like to eat and add it to their food. Some things we enjoyed were the cake desserts, oranges, instant ramen, dumplings, and more.

Beware that there is a fee for those who do not finish their food that is marked at $13.99 and a 2 hour limit for enjoying the buffet.

I recommend Hot Pot BBQ and suggest you give it a look if you’re interested in trying something new in Tampa. Soon Yum Yum Hot Pot AYCE will also be joining this area. The winner, of course, is diners in Tampa.

Restaurant Name: Boil Spot Hot Pot BBQ

Neighborhood: Uptown, USF

Cuisine: Hot Pot, Korean BBQ

Address: 1120 E Fowler Ave, Tampa, FL 33612

Phone: (813) 374-9947

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Articles Food News Restaurant News

NEWS: Sweet Buns Bakery opens by USF in Tampa’s Uptown

Sweet Buns Bakery is now open by USF in Tampa’s Uptown. The Asian bakery is originally from Gainesville and has the same ownership as Yummy House. It is yet another new business to come to the area in recent months.

The concept is similar to a popular chain called 85°C Bakery Café, a Taiwanese bakery chain that serves a variety of baked breads and pastries as well as drinks to customers. 85°C Bakery Café is currently experiencing rapid expansion across the United States.

Here’s a list of the cake offerings at Sweet Buns.

This concept is notably going to compete with a number of bubble tea shops already in the area which usually sell snacks and sweet beverages. There is a quite a few other Asian concepts currently in the works for the neighborhood.

According to the Sweet Buns website the stores “feature free wifi, made-to-order baked goods, cakes, and a relaxing environment to study or just hang and enjoy some sweets.”

Sweet Buns Gainesville photo from @eldublibrarian
Photo credit: Instagram user @xo_jt_xo

The bakery is located at 2788 East Fowler Avenue,Tampa, FL 33612.

Visit them online at sweetbuns.co

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Articles Dining Guide

Dining Guide: Where to eat in Tampa’s Uptown (University Area)

I spent quite some time at USF in my late teens and early 20s. One of the interesting things about that side of Tampa, now called Uptown, is that many people seem to be unaware how multicultural the area is.

You can find food from most cuisines within a few miles of each other and some food that you cannot find anywhere else in Tampa Bay. Places have come and gone over the years and the neighborhood is still evolving from when I lived, studied, and worked there, but there are definitely great food finds in Uptown.

Here is what I recommend:

Tacoson Mexican Grill

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bvc3O84ghzP/

The original founders of El Taconanzo which was sold and became the Taco Bus, Tacoson is the only entity to survive the numerous changes in the Mexican scene in Tampa. It remains a solid spot for the taco faithful in Tampa. It gets crazy packed (especially around lunch time) so come ready to wait, but the food is filling and tasty. Daily deals and breakfast specials are part of the rhythm here.

Tacoson Mexican Grill. 7521 N 56th St., Tampa, FL 33617. (813) 989-2080

Chuck’s Natural Fields Market

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Chuck’s Natural has a few locations around Tampa Bay with vegan friendly food options. They opened a cafe next door called Windmill that serves food as well. The thing I notice the most about this place is that prices are still fairly approachable despite being organic, GMO-free, and healthy. The shakes are also excellent. This spot can easily rival local restaurants and is a good spot for when you need to detox.

Chuck’s Natural. 11301 N 56th St, Temple Terrace, FL 33617. (813) 980-2005

Soul of Korea

Korean restaurants are a rare find in Tampa, but Soul of Korea is a solid restaurant with a home-cooking feel to it. The owner previously owned a restaurant in Seoul and bought Soul of Korea this past year from some other proprietors. Most of the menu has stayed the same with some extra additions to the menu. I would call it comfort food.

Soul of Korea. 7612 N 56th St, Tampa, FL 33617. (813) 989-9030

Babushka’s Traditional Russian Cuisine

 

Russian food is pretty much unheard of in Tampa Bay. Babushka’s has a great menu with absolutely delicious pierogies, draniki, sweet kasha, blinchiki, and more. Service can be a little slow when they get packed so make sure you are not in a rush if you visit.

Babushka’s. 12639 N. 56th St, Temple Terrace, FL 33617. (813) 515-7415

Quickly USF

When it comes to bubble tea and snacks, QuicklyUSF is where its at. They serve some lite Vietnamese food and Taiwanese-inspired dishes. My favorite drink on the menu is their Kiwi Lychee Fruit Tea which is a must-order for me. They have a huge menu though and the cafe is a great place to work out of and study at or meet a friend.

QuicklyUSF. 5731 E Fowler Ave, Temple Terrace, FL 33617. (813) 860-8841

Mojo Books & Records

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White chocolate strawberry latte with almond milk

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Mojo is one of the last standing record stores in the Tampa area and they have great coffee and books for-sale as well. I just love drinking a coffee inside of a bookstore. It’s the best. They serve Zeal Coffee which is one of my favorites in Tampa. The baristas are super friendly and they also have a nice tea list as well. Support this great Tampa gem.

 Mojo Books & Records. 2540 E Fowler Ave, Tampa, FL 33612. (813) 971-9717

Mr. Dunderbak’s Brewpub

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fuck

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Mr. Dunderbak’s is a Tampa institution that goes back to when the University Mall once a busy and bustling mall. They are now their own restaurant and brewery in New Tampa just off Bruce B. Downs by USF. It is the best place to be on Oktoberfest and during the World Cup (if you’re rooting for Germany). The food is great and the beer selection is even better. They have one of the largest beer lists in Tampa and prices are fair. You haven’t experience Tampa until you go here on a busy day.

Mr. Dunderbak’s. 14929 Bruce B Downs Blvd, Tampa, FL 33613. (813) 977-4104

Tacos Gone Mobile

I’ve never really understood why Tampa lacks a taco truck phenomenon. Tacos Gone Mobile is the closest I have ever had compared to quality Mexican food in California. These tacos are affordable and delicious. It’s a take-out truck, but they do have seating if you want to eat there. One thing you’ll notice is that actual Mexican people eat here which you hardly see in Tampa’s popular places that have Americanized menus.

Tacos Gone Mobile. 1309 E Fletcher Ave, Tampa, FL 33612. (813) 400-9439

Enjoy!