Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Search for Boxty Continues, Irish 31, Tampa, Florida

For those of you who read this blog you probably remember that we love boxty and every time we go to a new city we check all the Irish Pubs in search of boxty. When we found ourselves in Tampa, Florida recently, my wife identified Irish 31 and their boxty appetizers. Needless to say we paid a visit on the first night we were in town.

After driving through a residential district and thinking we were lost, we took a right onto West Swann Avenue and there was Irish 31. This is located in a small mall area with free parking across the street.

The restaurant itself is small with a few booths and several high top tables near the bar. There was live music playing in the background, a nice touch and they were busy on this weekday night.

Their menu has a number of the old Irish favorites like bangers and mashed, pot pie, sandwiches, flatbreads, burgers, salads and of course their boxty. You can get it filled with corned beef, shepherd’s pie, ham n cheese or Velveeta cheese, bacon and chives. It is always difficult to know if the boxty will be the way that we like it which is a thin potato crepe stuffed full with your favorite fillings along with a creamy sauce.

To start, our server suggested the boneless wings. As she explained, these are hand cut with kitchen scissors and we ordered them medium with ranch and blue cheese dressing.

So these didn't blow us out of the water but they weren't bad either.

For the boxty we both chose the shepherd’s pie that was served with gravy.

These are not what we usually think of when we refer to boxty, These were a ball of mashed potatoes that were fried and lightly covered in panko bread crumbs. They were filled with very little hamburger mixture.

Don't get me wrong these were good just not what we expected and think of when we hear the word boxty. If they had been filled with a lot more meat and less potato we would have been happier.

Our dessert was a homemade bread pudding:

Delicious! This made for a sweet ending to our meal.

This is a tough one for me, I like Irish 31 as a bar and if you are in the area and understanding that the boxty is different you might enjoy a visit. Sadly, we can't recommend Irish 31 since their boxty missed the mark.

Irish 31 on Urbanspoon