Something’s just can’t be helped. It was late in our first day of vacation and we were famished. Having survived the truly bizarre turnpike system of Tampa, we had no ambition to go anywhere far. Wearily we scanned the half dozen restaurants near us when one jumped up and grabbed our attention.
I couldn’t believe the screen. Hulk Hogan owns a restaurant? I had to check this out. I pulled up the menu and called Carol over. There were a lot of choices and the prices were good. Carol was so intrigued, she played the embedded video.
This was exciting. How often do you stumble upon a famous person’s restaurant? It ranked up there with going to Ditka’s in Chicago or Joe Mantegna’s Taste Chicago in Burbank. It’s on the Bucket List of places to eat that you don’t even know you have. We had to go.
I did check out a few reviews before we went. There were only five, but half seemed to rate the place pretty harsh. Mainly the complaints focused on horrid service. My mind did quietly wonder if we would get the same treatment. It was Memorial weekend after all, but we’re on vacation and what’s a vacation without a little adventure?
The place was surprisingly nice! Hulk Hogan memorabilia from his wrestling years was displayed in cabinet or adorned on the walls of the hallway leading to the restaurant proper.
The inside of the restaurant was nicely done with in the ubiquitous Hogan colors of red and yellow. A large saltwater aquarium separates the dining area from the sushi bar.
In fact, the sushi bar is so well hidden that Carol and I didn’t notice it until we walked across the floor to view the aquarium. I should also take this moment to let you know that Hogan’s Beach also has and outside beach bar for those who like to view the latest in bikinis and swimsuits instead fish swimming happily around.
Bikinis outside doesn’t mean that the dress is formal on the inside. Far from it. Swimsuits aren’t allowed inside, but relaxed casual is standard inside. Shirts, shorts, and sneakers are all ok.
“How was the food?” You ask. In a word, great! It may not rank up with the top ten restaurants of the United States, but Ribeye steak and salad I had was wonderful.
Cooked just the way I liked it and in large portions, I was very happy. The steak was juicy, the potatoes thick, and the greens were crisp. (The salad and the beans.)
Carol enjoyed her meal as well, but was blown away by the French Onion soup.
“It’s hearty.” She said, sipping the caramel colored broth.
I never knew there could be such a thing. Hearty French Onion soup? Wow.
Our waiter was fantastic too. Raul was polite, kind, friendly, and most of all, there whenever we needed him. We never felt that we were ignored or put down upon. He served us well.
Bottom line: Would we go back to Hogan’s Beach? Definitely! The prices were right. The food was great. The service was on the spot. What’s not to like.
We never saw Hulk Hogan, but it didn’t matter. The experience was memorable.