A Taste of Rise Kitchen & Bakery at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa

Located in the Seminole Hard Rock Casino, Rise Kitchen and Bakery is a modern casual café with a variety of food items to fit every taste. Rise Kitchen and Bakery is located in the non-smoking gaming room, near the pool. Rise Kitchen is open 24 hours.  The menu was recently revamped and I was invited to come in and enjoy several of the menu items courtesy of the Seminole Hard Rock of Tampa. As you know I would never lead you astray; I am serious about my food and would only tell you my honest opinion.

 

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I entered the venue through the Lucky Street Garage. Pay attention to the signs for the restaurant if you are not familiar because I missed my turn and ended up in the casino. That’s what I get for thinking I knew my way, huh? After asking for directions I was able to find the restaurant with no issue.  Being a non-smoker, I was pleased to see the café was located in the non-smoking section of the casino.

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As you enter the restaurant you are immediately welcomed by the pastry case filled with fresh baked pastries and desserts which are all made in-house.  I am a huge sweet fiend, so resisting the urge to grab dessert first was very difficult.

 

The All Day Menu offers a variety of options ranging from breakfast to dinner including snacks and desserts. The menu is extensive but the variety is great to me. The options are not limited which is what makes this restaurant a perfect place to enjoy with your family and friends.  There is literally something on the menu for everyone.

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We started our meal with breakfast.  After some contemplation, we decided on the French Toast with advice from our server Zack.  This option did not disappoint!  I usually avoid French Toast because I am not a fan of the fried egg taste most develop on the exterior.  This French Toast was made with brioche bread and lightly battered such that there was no eggy exterior. It was light and delicious. It was slightly sweet but not overwhelmingly. The French Toast comes with a side of meat and of course we chose bacon. This is a French Toast that I would without a doubt order again. Next time I will probably add fresh strawberries or blueberries on top though too.

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Next, we ordered a few snacks to help us transition from breakfast to lunch. Since we were both Tampa natives, the Devil Crab was a must. We also sampled the French Onion Dip which comes with homemade chips.  Our mothers would have objected if we did not have a few greens so we ate the Pear and Gorgonzola Salad which we loved!

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If you are not familiar with Devil Crabs, they are crab croquettes. Think of a seasoned crab cake with a crispy exterior. They are often football shaped but at Rise Kitchen and Bakery they are formed into small round balls. The order came with 5 and a side of hot sauce and remoulade sauce. I do not eat hot sauce because I am a wimp when it comes to spice but the remoulade is a great compliment.  The Devil Crab bites were filled with a lot of crab. I always hate when crab cakes are mostly filler, but you do not have to worry about that with these bites as you can see.  Priced at $8, this is a great value.

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The French Onion Dip was served with house made chips.  The chips were crispy and lightly salted if at all. The dip was creamy and flavorful.  We enjoyed this snack and thought it would be a great appetizer for several friends to share before the meal. Priced at $3, you just cannot beat it.

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The Pear and Gorgonzola Salad was delicious. It was large enough to share but small enough that I could have eaten it all by myself if we had not ordered other food items. We really liked this salad. It was served already dressed and very well mixed with a perfect balance of greens and toppings. This could be a perfect entrée salad with the addition of protein on top. This salad is also available in a combination with a sandwich as well for just a few dollars more.

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After finishing the snacks we ordered a couple of sandwiches. There are so many amazing options on the menu so it was very hard for us to decide. After consulting with our server Zach, we decided on the Grouper Sandwich and the Chicken Bacon Ranch Sandwich. After tasting them both, we were very pleased with our choices.

The Chicken Bacon Ranch was a fried chicken breast topped with cheese, bacon, lettuce, and tomato. We saw the ranch on the bread but could not taste it when eating the sandwich as a whole.  Even without the ranch dressing, this is a good sandwich. In fact, this was my favorite sandwich of the two.

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The Grouper Sandwich was served open face with remoulade on the side.  The grouper was a fresh filet of fish. We chose to have it blackened instead of fried since the chicken was fried. It was cooked perfectly and the fish was flaky and moist within. This was my friend’s favorite sandwich of the two.

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Sandwiches are usually served with chips but since we had chips as an appetizer we selected fruit and cole slaw as the sides with our sandwiches.

 

Lastly, we sampled a few of the diner classics for our entrees. We had the Chicken Pot Pie wich was highly recommended by Zack and the Chicken Carbonara which I really really wanted to try.

The chicken carbonara was served first, it looked creamy and cheesy.  The portion was large enough for two to share. I was excited to sink my fork in and taste it but I must admit that this was the one thing neither of us liked. It is really popular, I am told though so please feel free to try it. If you do, please comment below and tell me what you think.

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The Chicken Potpie was huge! Seriously, it could serve a family of six (now maybe that’s an exaggeration but it is pretty big, so maybe just four).  The top is a puff pastry layered atop a thick and creamy filling of chicken and vegetables.  My friend really loved it. I thought it was good too but I really wish the chicken had been cubed instead of shredded and more plentiful.  I love a meaty potpie and this was mostly roux and veggies. Nevertheless, you will not go wrong with this selection.

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Now if you know me, you know I did not eat this meal without having dessert. The bakery is full of pastries and confection for you to choose.  The recipes have been updated and all of the items are now made fresh in-house.

We started with the new featured desserts on the menu, the eclairs. We had the Cookies and Crème Éclair and the Tiramisu Éclair. Although both were good, the cookies and creme eclair was my favorite.

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Last we sampled a few  of the bakery mainstays:  the chocolate mousse which is a best seller and the carrot cake which is a personal favorite of mine.  Both of these cakes were delicious. I love a rich and flavorful dessert to end a great meal and these cakes did not disappoint.

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Overall I would highly recommend you give Rise Kitchen & Bakery a try if you have not yet. The price and portions are perfect for the frugal foodies, definitely all the bang for your buck. The menu options are abundant.  And the food is very good overall.  I will definitely be back again soon.

 

*Parking at the Seminole Hard Rock Casino is $10 per car unless you are an Elite member.

 

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