We took an hour long drive this weekend to have dinner at the Pierogi Grill. Now some of you might balk at the drive, but I'm here to tell you it's worth every minute of the trip. The Pierogi Grill has been around for at least 10 years that I know of. We'd happened upon it years ago while driving around Gulf to Bay Blvd exploring our new town of Tampa. For whatever reason (too busy schedules) it fell off our restaurant radar for several years until this weekend when hubby recalled the fine food. My husband was born and raised in Little Italy NYC, and being the melting pot that the lower east side is he was exposed to a myriad of ethnic cuisines and Polish food was just one of them. Kapusta (sauerkraut) and Kielbasa (sausage) oy! I had the Pork Schnitzel with half a dozen Pierogi (dumplings). The four of us each selected a different flavor Pierogi and then we shared and tasted and licked our chops. Potato, Potato with Farmers Cheese, Mushroom, and Pork with Sauerkraut......I couldn't decide which was better - they were all fabulous. Hubby had a dish charmingly names The Polish Prince Platter which consisted of a Stuffed Cabbage, Kielbasa, and half a dozen Pierogi. We all licked our plates clean.
One of the charming eccentricities of this restaurant is the incongruous Egyptian decor. Yes you heard me right. There are sarcophagi, sanskrit writings and other oddities along with indoor trees. The wait staff is friendly and very efficient, happy to explain their Polish dishes to the novice. In fact as I walked around the restaurant I heard snippets of Polish conversation coming from several tables, a sure sign of the authenticity of the restaurant as it attracts the Polish people from far and wide.
As a bonus, you can visit the Delicatessen at the back of the restaurant and pick up some wonderful international groceries and best of all a butcher section that sells Kielbasa and other meats as well as frozen Pierogis. Of course we took some goodies home so we can replicate the meal at home without having to make the drive.
Pierogi Grill is one of those places you lament is kind of far away, and in the same breath you are grateful that it is because surely if was closer we'd be there every week over indulging the most delicious food we've ever tasted.