Gino’s Bar & Restaurant is my favorite place for Italian food in Tampa. I love Italian food. I do not claim to be an expert. I have dated an Italian girl whose grandmother made the best sauce I have ever tasted. Still, I don’t think that qualifies me as an expert.
I would like to add I am not a fan of the more popular Italian chain restaurants. Frankly, if I never ate at Carrabba’s and Olive Garden again, I would feel no loss at all.
But I digress…
Gino’s Bar & Restaurant is located at 10006 N. Armenia Avenue in the Forest Hills area of Tampa.
It is truly the textbook definition of a neighborhood hangout.
When you first arrive, there are two doors right next to each other which open into the bar or the restaurant. I prefer to eat in the bar at one of the tall tables with bar stools. The full menu is available.
Let’s get to the good stuff. The menu has some outstanding items. Starting with the appetizers, DeeDee, Jack and I have ordered two different types of pizza, but the Chicken Alfredo Pizza appetizer is SOOOO good.
Bread is generally brought to the table. It is tasty, but if you are looking something really yummy, try the garlic bread knots. Oh My!!
I personally have eaten about one-third of the entrees including the Lobster Ravioli, Seafood Pasta, Spaghetti, Healthy Choice Grilled Chicken with Steamed Vegetables. Delicious.
Do yourself a favor and add the house salad. I like the Italian dressing that they serve, but DeeDee LOVES the homemade ranch dressing. As she has told me many times, “it is all about the ranch dressing.”
For my review, I chose my favorite entrée, Chicken Parmigiana. I think the picture speaks for itself. It truly is a cholesterol-induced coma on a plate. The breading is crispy, and the cheese is gooey, but the marinara sauce is really authentic.
I cannot tell you how much I hate Carrabba’s marinara sauce. Realizing I may be in the overwhelming minority I will not elaborate further, but will state that Gino’s red sauce is the best I have had in a restaurant. Period.
While it may not be the most convenient place because of where I live (Seffner), Gino’s Bar & Restaurant will continue to be one of my family’s favorite places to eat.