23 Sep

One of my favorite things to do on vacation is eat.

I love to try out the local cuisine and eat at places local to the area.   I can spend hours looking for restaurants, analyzing menus, and picking just the right spot.  I’m lucky to have a hubby who’ll go along with just about anything I want.

And I must say they got some real good food here in Florida.

We arrived in Orlando at 10 AM local time, starving!  We dropped our bags at the hotel and walked across the busy street to a little strip mall.  We checked out a few of the restaurants, and agreed Hot Krust looked the best.

The young man behind the counter was so excited about his menu, and eagerly explained that everything was organic, fresh and delicious.  I ordered the tilapia panini and cactus chili.  Hubby ordered the mahi mahi panini and baked sweet potato fries.


Yeah... I ate it all.

Yeah… I ate it all.

A great way to start the trip!

The next day we headed to Cocoa Beach, and to me, if you’re on the water, you should eat what comes out of the water, BY the water.  We asked a few locals for their suggestions,  and most of them suggested some restaurants along Port Canaveral.   We headed in that direction still not sure of which place to choose.  Until we got there, that is.

We passed by a worn down “bar food” restaurant, which I snubbed my nose at.  The next restaurant,  Rusty’s, looked way more promising.  The menu looked great, so we headed to the deck.  A single guitarist was playing music, the breeze was coming off the water, and the view was fantastic.  THIS was where I wanted to eat lunch.

Rusty's Seafood and Oyster Bar

Rusty’s Seafood and Oyster Bar

The view from our table

The view from our table


Having way too much fun taking selfies. (Are they selfies if two people are involved?)

I completely forgot to take a picture of my fish tacos, but you can see how happy they made us. The slaw was great too.  And the fries my hubby shared with me were some of the best I’ve had.

We wanted to recreate this experience on Saturday, when we traveled down to St. Pete.  We found a place on the water, but the food and service were not what we were hoping for.  It wasn’t Grumpy’s, but it wasn’t Rusty’s either.  Just ho-hum.

On Saturday, we hung around the Orlando area.  By this time, we’d had our fill of fish sandwiches, and decided it was time for Greek cuisine.  I love authentic Greek food and will try it just about everywhere we go.

Based on the menu, we decided on Opa’s.  And let. me. tell. you.  THIS was probably the best authentic Greek food I’ve had outside of Greece itself.

Fresh baked pita bread and hummus

Fresh baked pita bread and hummus

We started with their freshly made hummus, and perfectly seasoned pita bread.  I’d have been thrilled with just that, but shorty after she brought out the Greek salad.  I dug into it so fast, that I forgot to take a pic, but it was full of fresh cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, feta cheese, olive oil….  mmmm, mmmm mmmm.

Then came our main meal.  As usual, I chose the gyro with the tzatziki sauce on the side and french fries.


I know I told you, but I gotta tell you again.  I was taken back to Greece with this meal, and enjoyed every single bite.  Absolutely perfect.

These meals always hold us through supper, but of course, come 7 – 8 o’clock, I’m ready for some ice cream.  Lots of Fro Yo places around to meet my sugar fix each evening.

Probably the most heartbreaking part of my vacation, especially since we’ve been eating so much, is not being able to run here.  I’ve been hittin’ the gym each morning, but I’m restricted to the elliptical.  I would love to be able to run outside in the early morning at a lake nearby or along the beaches.  But as long as I feel that twinge in my foot, I won’t do it.  It’s been 5 weeks.  sigh.  (I did try a few miles after week 3, and my foot hurt for a few days after, so I gotta stay patient.)

BUT, I’m not lettin’ it bring me down.  It has been a fantastic vacation.  Soon we’ll be heading back to reality, but I think we both feel that the St. Petersburg area could someday become our home.

Unless we choose Colorado.

or Nashville.

or San Antonio.

The suspense is killing us.


Posted by on September 23, 2013 in Everyday Living, Running, Vacation


Tags: , , , , ,

16 responses to “Foodie

  1. lottajoy

    September 24, 2013 at 12:42 am

    We soon discovered that the locals around here (Hernando/Homossassa) will usually recommend a hole in the wall you’re afraid to walk through, but in our area, it’s a hole in the wall or nothing.

    We used to love eating at a little restaurant ON a pier in Cocoa beach. Rustic? Yep. But THE BEST food tastes even better in fresh air by the ocean.

    • shadowrun300

      September 25, 2013 at 1:40 am

      We passed up so many great looking restaurants in search of one on the water.
      Perhaps YOU need to open up a restaurant in your area, so the locals have a decent place to eat. In the very least, Joe must be relieved HE can get a decent meal.

  2. Rock Chef

    September 24, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    Mmm, you have made me hungry and I only ate lunch an hour ago!

    I have never found Florida at all appealing, but you are doing a good job here!

    • shadowrun300

      September 25, 2013 at 1:42 am

      The food was SO good! And I think there are places in Florida that would make a wonderful home for us. Just like most states, it’s got its good and bad parts. The problem with Illinois, is we can’t find ANYTHING good.

  3. Abby

    September 24, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    Mmmm… all of it looks de-LISH (well, except maybe the pelican)!
    I need a vacation, but will settle for living vicariously through you. Keep up the good work!

    • shadowrun300

      September 25, 2013 at 1:45 am

      We did and saw and ate so much. It was perfect!
      Here’s hoping you can have your own vacation soon! But if not, I’ll gladly go on another just so you can experience more. 😉

  4. meleah rebeccah

    September 24, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    Wow. I’ve never even heard of cactus chili!

    “And to me, if you’re on the water, you should eat what comes out of the water, BY the water.” — Absolutely! Rusty’s Seafood and Oyster Bar looks AWESOME!

    And now I am drooling over your Greek Food! OMG!

    I am thrilled your enjoying your vacation so much! That’s wonderful.

    • shadowrun300

      September 25, 2013 at 1:52 am

      The cactus added a little sweetness to the chili, and was surprisingly good! But nothing beat the Greek food. In fact, we about went back the next day. Tell me you’re not allergic to Greek, ’cause you gotta have some!

  5. territerri

    September 27, 2013 at 2:00 am

    Ummm… I didn’t notice Minnesota in that list of possible new places to live? Smart girl! 🙂

    All that food sounds just delicious! I have to step outside my comfort zone sometime and try new and different things! You make it sound so fun!

    • shadowrun300

      September 27, 2013 at 11:41 am

      Minnesota has a lot of great qualities, I’m sure. But your winters last forever! We can’t get past that part.
      YOU were the one that tempted me to try Thai food for the first time. I love trying local cuisine, but Greek is my favorite – IF it’s authentic. We discussed BBQ, but it really didn’t seem to fit the Florida/beach theme.

  6. The Thin Lady Inside

    September 27, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    Ah! Everything sounds and looks delicious!! Enjoy all your traveling!

    • shadowrun300

      September 30, 2013 at 1:19 am

      It was and I am! Back to reality now with a turkey sandwich and apple for lunch. 😦

  7. agg79

    September 30, 2013 at 12:38 am

    I love it when you do food porn. Those meals were something to make a monk swear off his vow silence. I hope you got your fill while you were down in Florida. I’m glad to hear Texas is still in the running, despite your Austin trip. San Antonio is a really great town and there are a bunch of places around SA that would really be interesting. I’d be glad to serve as tour guide if you would like to explore those options. Some really great places for foodies. . .

    • shadowrun300

      September 30, 2013 at 1:23 am

      The food was SO much better in real life. We got our “fill” for sure.
      San Antonio came up a few times while we were in Florida. Having one of our hotels right there would make for an easy job switch for me. And it’s warm! And there’s lots of great places to eat! What more could we want?
      Oh yeah…. less traffic.

  8. llcooljoe

    October 2, 2013 at 10:56 am

    You know I’m dieting. Actually maybe you don’t. While I’m looking at this I’m eating a low calorie wafer. 😀

    • shadowrun300

      October 2, 2013 at 11:42 am

      Yeah… I do know you’re dieting, so I shoulda been more thoughtful. But it was SO GOOD that I had to share the pics. Unfortunately I have gone back to my regular eating habits. Well,, maybe it’s fortunate otherwise I would have to be dieting too.


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