Sushi with a Side of Ninja

As many of you know, Ryan’s birthday was last month. As part of his “birthmonth” celebrations (not really, but it did seem like we were celebrating for three weeks straight) we partied one Sunday Funday afternoon at Splash Sundays at The Epicurean Hotel.  After the daytime festivities came to an end, Allison, Ryan and I found ourselves sitting on the couch and VERY hungry. Fun fact about us: When we aren’t indulging on a trio dip and street tacos from Green Lemon, we love chowin’ down on some sushi. And that’s where the search began.

So, we were on the hunt for some sushi late on Sunday night. It just so happens we did some searching and it was the grand opening night of the Tampa location of Sushi Ninja. Located on Kennedy Boulevard right near Miguel’s, Sushi Ninja serves up a combo of Japanese and Korean food all under one roof. With their modern flair, the “ninjas” at Sushi Ninja have perfected their star throwing, tucking and rolling and judo chopping to put together delicious sushi combinations. We walked in not sure what to expect and were greeted by a live singer serenading patrons with his best vibrato.

Sushi Ninja Tampa

Once we got to our seat, we were told that as part of the grand opening, they were serving up some free lychee sangrias to celebrate. Obviously, we didn’t want to be rude, so we accepted the offer for the free cocktails and cheers’ed up to another great night in Tampa Bay. After looking through the menu, there was so much to choose from. I started light with a fresh, chicken broth soup and Ryan ordered a ginger salad.  So far… we were off to a fresh and authentic start!

Sushi Ninja Tampa

As we continued our eating tour of Sushi Ninja, we learned that Executive Sushi Chef, Mimi Kang, has been serving the highest quality of fresh sushi and sashimi at their Brandon location for over 13 years. We had finished our first course and ordered up some more food to enjoy. Ryan went for the Ninja Beef (love the name) and Allison and I went for sushi. I got the Shrimp Tempura and Spicy, Crunchy Tuna Rolls while Allison got the Volcano Roll. While we waited for the food to come, Allison commented on the HUGE mural behind us on the wall, so we obviously felt it would be the prime time for a photo op #bambooroom #sushininjaselfie. The food came pretty quickly and as you can see by the lack of photos, it was eaten so fast I couldn’t get a pic. I would take this as a definite sign of success.

Sushi Ninja Tampa Fried Ice Cream

After dinner, we were planning on heading home, but couldn’t resist the offer of some of Sushi Ninja’s fried ice cream. After all, it was STILL Ryan’s birthday. So they brought out the fried ice cream, we serenaded him with some Happy Birthday and we dug right on in to that fried ball of deliciousness!Sushi Ninja Tampa Fried Ice CreamAfter the meal, we took a quick tour of the place and got to meet the owners. They were very excited to have us and were so overwhelmed at the response they got on their first day of business in South Tampa. The room we were in was relatively small, but do not worry, there is PLENTY of restaurant space for customers to enjoy the ninja awesomeness. So if you are on the hunt for some sushi in South Tampa, look no further than Sushi Ninja. You won’t be disappointed!

 

-Nicholas

 
Sushi Ninja on Urbanspoon

SoHo Hunt

Hey Everyone! We are so pumped to announce our latest adventure! SoHo Hunt is a fun-filled scavenger hunt around South Tampa that challenges YOU and a teammate to local trivia and tasks. Check out our video announcement for more info and the link to buy tickets. Get them quick before there are none left! We also want to thank our friends at Chais Realty, our presenting sponsor, for all of their support.

http://www.eventbrite.com/e/soho-hunt-tickets-13275468283

Wining and Dining

Another weekend, another festival (not that we’re complaining) and this particular festival  just so happened to feature two of my favorite things- wine & food (clearly I’m the PG-21 rated version of Julie Andrews. Raindrops on Roses? Get real) I am talking about the Tampa Bay Wine and Food Festival which was held at the Straz Center over the weekend. It featured the Southern Charm Wine and Food Gala and Auction on Friday night and continued into Saturday for the Grand Tasting. We were lucky enough to be invited out to both events and let’s just say I’m still coming off my wine buzz days later.

Friday night’s event was black tie optional and not wanting to be scrub status I had to make sure my outfit was acceptable. Therefore lots of outfit changes and roommate advice were experienced before I was good to go. Once decided a friend and I Lyfted over to the event. We grabbed our glasses and headed upstairs to the VIP area. First things first, get in line for a drink. Here is where I was confused, the first drink I had at the Wine and Food Festival was a margarita (I do love myself some tequila) While it was delicious I noticed throughout the weekend the event featured not only wine but some liquor as well. I guess wine isn’t for everyone…

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We grabbed scallops from Publix, lobster rolls from Tampa Palms (and a member for the day card. 18 holes here we come!) cheese from Target (although it was frowned upon by some people- you know who you are) and much more. Now I’m not sure if I missed multiple food stations, but to be honest it didn’t seem like there was much to munch on. There was definitely plenty of wine to go around though. As we weaved our way in and out of the large crowd to the silent auction area we checked out the night’s prizes. Besides items you could bid on, there were a few vendor selling wine glasses and accessories and a band for entertainment. Leaving I wasn’t sure if I could do the whole thing again less than 24 hours later. But who are we kidding, I rallied like a champ.

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Saturday was a lot more laid back, and way more comfortable in my sandals. Also, way more crowded. A few friends had purchased their tickets on Living Social a few weeks back so we headed over in a big group for a day of drinking and eating. Like I said, Day 2 was packed and it was almost uncomfortable trying to maneuver in the narrow spots but after a few glasses of wine we were making new friends in tight corners. Saturday’s event spanned an even larger area and seemed to have way more food. We were upstairs, then downstairs, there was even Jersey Mike’s serving food outside.

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One thing I will say for this event was thank god it was inside. After being outside at events all summer it was clutch to be cool in the AC. Sure, we know it’s getting into fall but it’s still Florida people!!  Despite the amount of wine I consumed this weekend I still may go home and have a glass tonight. After all, I did find a few new favorites!

Salud- Allison

Techies on a Pirate Ship

We like new experiences as you know and this time we are bringing you the ultimate party on a pirate ship! That’s right, Collaborative Technologies of Tampa Bay is hosting its quarterly networking party on the Buccaneers Pirate ship at Raymond James Stadium. Wahoo! We are so excited to mix and mingle with Tampa Bay’s techies overlooking the stadium, sipping on a drink and snacking on some food.

Buccaneers Pirate Ship Raymond James NFL

This event isn’t just another networking event, with vendors and sales people. CTOFTB promotes an environment of collaboration among technical professional. Founder and CEO, Sylvia Martinez says, this event is all about, “collaboration at its finest and opportunity to be surrounded by true peers that understand the day-to-day of the grind.”

There will be giveaways and special offers to those who attend. Make sure you register by using EventJoy.

Event starts at 5:30pm and ends at 8pm. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are playing the Atlanta Falcons at 8:25 so consider this the ultimate tailgate.

Tickets include free light appetizers & the first 100 get a free drink! 

Hope to see you all there!

- Ryan

Turn Down For Rum

As most of you know, tequila is our go to. Very rarely do we drink anything else (we’re snobs that way) but when we happened to fall into some Summer of Rum tickets, we made an exception. My drinking history goes a little like this, vodka and pink lemonade (like any good freshmen lady), rum & cokes (diet to be exact, because you always have to save those extra calories even though you’ll probably end up eating New York New York around 2am) and finally, tequila and Sprite, because you finally learned what you can handle after a few years of experimenting (and if you’re very lucky, what gives you the least hangover). So in late August I was feeling a bit nostalgic as I threw it back to Junior year and my days of rum drinking when we headed to the Summer of Rum Festival at the Cuban Club in Ybor.

Unlike Margarita Fest, this was our first time so we had no idea what to expect. A group of six of us Lyfted it over later in the day and headed right inside, as there was barely any lines. Even though there was no line, there was still tons of people. We thought we were being smart heading over later in hopes that it would have cooled down by then but there was no such luck- it was HOT. Those of us with VIP tickets were instructed to cruise up to the 3rd floor to get our wristbands for our rum tasting. We headed inside, made our way through “Club Rum” (more about that later) and onto the 3rd floor. With our wristbands on, it was tasting time. Let me just put it this way, starting off our Rum Fest basically taking mini shots of different rums was a poor choice. Note to self: have a drink first to get yourself mentally prepared. After a few sips I was ready for a cocktail. We headed downstairs, past the large theater which was appropriately playing Pirates of the Caribbean and out to the VIP tent.

Summer of Rum Fest Tampa Drinks

 

Here we had an option of six drinks. I went with my old school classic of rum & coke while the boys branched out and tried “The Instigator” & “Shakedown Highball”. After a few sips they decided it was a no go and switched it up to a classic rum & ginger ale. With our drinks in hand we decided to see what else was going on. There were tons of different rum companies on hand and each was serving up some delicious drinks. We stopped to check out the band playing and take a break in front of one of the fans. (did we mention how hot it was?) We headed inside to cool down but things only got hotter as we made our way toward the dance floor. (Oh yes, we said dance floor) As previously mentioned, it was “Club Rum” on the first floor (note: this name was dubbed by NHIE, not the event itself- we would hope they would come up with something a little more clever) None the less – this had to be my favorite portion of the event. We had such a fun time on the dance floor and it was apparently everyone else was too. The band played everything from Turn Down For What to Reggaeton and the crowd never stopped dancing.

Summer of Rum Fest Tampa

All the dancing made us hungry and we finished off the day with some grub from the line of food trucks on location. While it did take us a drink or two to get back into “Rum Mode” it was a nice change of pace from our usual drink of choice. Despite it being the end of summer, the drinks and dance floor were enough to keep our minds off the heat and on the awesome time we had!

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XOXO- Gossip Girl

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