I had the pleasure of enjoying a Ladies Night Out Happy Hour with my fellow Tampa Bay Bloggers at Armani’s recently. I cannot believe I have been sleeping on this gem. If I am honest, Armani’s isn’t exactly in my usual broke girls budget but what I did not know was that they offer happy hour at the bar during the week. Now you know I love a happy hour and being able to experience a place like this on a budget is one of the many reasons why.
Armani’s is located in the Grand Hyatt on Bayport in between Tampa and Clearwater in an area called Rocky Point. Even as a Tampa native, I sometimes forget about this hotel (which is why it makes for a perfect getaway). Its location is ideal for those wanting to enjoy the Tampa city life in tandem with great views of the water and quick access to the beaches.
Armani’s is on the 14th floor of the hotel so the rooftop views are spectacular. It is a perfect place to wind down and watch the sunset over a great cocktail and bite to eat. We sat in the lounge area but there is not a bad seat in this restaurant. The restaurant has floor length windows from front to back with views of the bay visible from every single one.
Happy Hour at Armani’s is available in the lounge area Monday through Thursday from 5:30 – 7:30 pm. The menu includes a selection of both food and wine. You know the hour ain’t happy for me if there is no food included so I was pumping my fist when I saw this menu.
I started my night with the featured cocktail, a Peach Martini which was made with Vodka and Peach Schnapps.
Armani’s treated us to a sampling of all of the food items offered. I have pictured them below.
I loved the Crispy Pork Belly with Polenta. This was like having chicharrón with cheese grits, it was all of the comfort food this fat girl could desire on a plate. I loved it so much I asked for a second portion and ate it all by myself.
The Bison Carpaccio was another fave of mine too. I am not usually a fan of carpaccio because it is often paired with horseradish. This, however, was a culinary creation that surprised and delighted me. I was so glad we had a few people who do not eat raw meat in our group so I was able to enjoy their portion. The carpaccio was topped with truffled yolk frivolezza, pickled red onion, smoked sea salt, and crostini.
The Lamb Ragu Tortellini, I mean who doesn’t love freshly made pasta especially when it is stuffed with lamb.
The charcuterie was a great combination of meat and cheese for the land and sea lovers. Even the veg heads were able to enjoy this platter as well.
The Grilled and Chilled Octopus was served with a garlic-milk braised fennel puree and carrot top pesto. This was the most unique dish we sampled. It was very different from any other octopus dish I had ever tried before.
Even though I am not a fan of the rubbery octopus usually served other places, this was not a preparation I loved either. It’s hard to write about this dish because I appreciate the fact that Armani’s presented something different from what’s usually served but the texture and flavor did not appeal to me. This is the only dish I sampled during happy hour that I would not order again.
Armani’s takes pride in its product and it is evident in the quality of all of the food we tasted. The General Manager, Mike explained to us that everything is locally sourced and in-season as much as possible. As someone who eats out a lot, having good quality food is important to me.
Based on this experience I would definitely return to Armani’s again. After sampling the happy hour menu, I am going to save up for a splurge so I can dine in for dinner sometime soon.
As a member of the Tampa Bay Bloggers, I was afforded an opportunity to sample the happy hour menu at Armani’s in exchange for sharing my experience with you. As always my opinions are my own and there is no fluff here.