Give and Grub’s Give Back Event

Remember when I told you all about Give and Grub?

Give and Grub is still going strong and working to fight hunger in Tampa Bay. For each delicious meal they sell they give one FREE meal to a child in need in Tampa Bay.

The last time I was at Give and Grub I got to taste some of their delicious meals. But there’s two sides to this amazing organization. Give and Grub reached out to me and asked if I’d like to join them for their monthly Give Back event, where they give out the free meals to kids. Being an avid volunteer and having passion for giving back to the community I was ecstatic to be able to see first hand the other side of Give and Grub.

I met up with the Give and Grub crew at the Boy and Girl’s Club in Tampa. The truck was set up in front of the building and they had a fun photo booth set up inside. The kids all got their meal from the truck and had such fun with the photo booth.

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Now that it’s summer Give and Grub’s mission is even more important. Without school kids miss out on meals they would have normally gotten at school. Give and Grub partners with Feeding America who let’s them know the centers that have kids who are most in need of meals. They then plan on doing a Give Back event at a center such as the Boys and Girls Club and they not only give the kids a free meal that day…they also give them 5 meals to take home with them to have during the week. How amazing is that?

By now you may be thinking: how can I help?? I want to be involved! It’s so simple. Visit the Give and Grub website: http://www.giveandgrub.com/, locate the truck and go buy a tasty lunch or dinner! OR even better…request the truck! Give and Grub goes to offices all the time. What better way to give your coworkers an awesome lunch resource and also give back than with the Give and Grub truck?

Thank you again to Give and Grub for letting me be a part of their Give Back event. It was a great experience and I’m so glad to see you all continuing to make great strides at striking out hunger in Tampa Bay!

 

Coffee Class at The Blind Tiger Cafe

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This past Thursday I had the pleasure of attending The Blind Tiger Cafe‘s coffee class. They had a contest on their Instagram account for a free seat in their class and I actually won! 

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The Blind Tiger Cafe is located in Tampa, FL in Ybor City. It’s a coffee shop that also sells textiles (books, gifts, clothes, etc.) They locally source their coffee beans (most are from Buddy Brew) and all of their pastries come from a local baker, Rise and Grind.

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Thursday was my first time stepping into Blind Tiger and I instantly felt welcome and at home. The cafe has a very chill and relaxed vibe. There were a few people set up with their computers, some visiting with friends and others just coming in for their after work fix.

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Roberto, the owner, greeted me as I walked in and led me over to the area where class was being held. We were a small group of four, which was nice. We got to get to know one another and ask questions through out the class.

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Our barista was sweet and very knowledgable. Throughout class she walked us through four different brewing methods.

The first was the vac pot.

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Look at this thing! Are we in a cafe or a laboratory? 

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A vac pot uses two chambers where vapor pressure is used to brew the coffee.

The next was the Chemex, which I have heard of before, but never seen used.

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With the Chemex, hot water is poured little by little over the grounds as it drips through a filter into the bottom bowl.

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Next up was the AeroPress, which our barista and another girl in class raved about. 

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The AeroPress steeps the coffee grounds and then, using your hands, you push down forcing them through a filter.

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The last method was the pour over method.

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This method was very simple. The hot water is poured slowly over the grounds and it drips through a filter into a container of your choice.

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For all of these different methods our barista used different ground coffee. I’m normally an espresso girl so it was especially neat to me to be able to taste different types of coffee back to back. I was able to taste the different flavor notes and strengths.

And since I love espresso I was excited that we also got to try some of their espresso!

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Delish.

You can order a coffee using any of these brewing methods at The Blind Tiger Cafe. I wish Blind Tiger was closer to me…I’d be going in all the time! So next time you’re in or near Ybor City make sure you stop by Blind Tiger for your caffeine fix.

I highly recommend going to Blind Tiger’s coffee class either yourself or with a few friends. It’s a really neat way to learn about coffee and different brewing methods. If you’re interested in taking a coffee class you can purchase it through Groupon

Have you ever been to a coffee class before? Do you use one of the brewing methods we learned about?

 

Sandwiches and Sushi

New restaurants are popping up in St. Pete faster than you can say “Where should we go to eat?” From Italian to Sushi to New American, as a foodie I am thrilled to have so many awesome options for my tastebuds.

Pom Pom’s Teahouse and Sandwicheria

One new place that I’ve been to twice now is Pom Pom’s Teahouse and Sandwicheria. Originally started in Orlando, a long time fan decided he wanted to bring Pom Pom’s concept to St. Pete. Pom Pom’s serves a variety of teas, as well as inventive sandwich creations. It’s become one of my new favorite lunch spots. It’s also located high up on Central Ave, which is nice and close to where we live in south St. Pete. 

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The first time I stopped by I was surprised when I walked in. The inside does not quite match the outside. Inside there’s funky art and eclectic furnishings. To the left you’ll see numerous cubbies filled with bags of bread you can take home. At the counter there’s numerous delectable desserts. 

Their menu is vast and some combinations may have you scratch your head, but ask the staff and they’ll assure you that it will all make sense once you take a bite.

On my first visit I got the Fu Man Chu (Asian Pulled Pork, Watercress, Goat Cheese, Ginger Cranberry Chutney and Red Onion) and the Smoked Salmon BWT (Smoked Salmon, Bacon, Tomato, Watercress, Cheddar Cheese, Cream Cheese and Lemon Caper Aioli). I also got a side of the potato salad and cole slaw.

They were both excellent. The bread is fresh and has the perfect consistency and let’s what’s in between the slices do the talking. The chutney and the goat cheese were a surprising pairing with the asian pulled pork…smokey yet sweet with the right amount of tang. The Smoked Salmon BWT tasted like a more awesome version of my favorite breakfast, bagel and lox. The potato salad and cole slaw were both good, but nothing too exciting. 

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On a more recent visit I got The Cobb (Turkey, Tomato, Melted Bleu Cheese, Watercress, Red Onions, Bacon and Avocado) and their House Salad (Mixed Greens with Apples, Goat Cheese, Almonds and Red Onion). The Cobb was perfection…tasted just like it’s namesake salad in between bread. The salad was also very good except that the lettuce needed to be chopped up more.

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Hook’s

There are a lot of sushi places in the Tampa Bay area, but there are few “go to” sushi places. The right sushi place needs a nice atmosphere, friendly service, fresh fresh fresh fish and inventive rolls. Hook’s fits the bill.

I haven’t been to Hook’s original location on MLK for years, but was glad to see they were opening a second location on 4th St. One night after seeing Pitch Perfect 2 (so good) with my friend Ashley, we decided to give it a try.

The inside is much smaller than I thought it would be, but the space is bright and intimate and tastefully decorated. Our server was great and when asked which rolls were his favorite he rallied off about 10 of them, haha. 

They have amazing sounding appetizers like sushi nachos, steamed buns and rocket fritters. But I just wanted #allthesushi that night. So I ended up with two rolls…First Love and the Mexican. They were both oh so fresh and oh so tasty.

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What is your favorite new spot?

 

 

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