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Yelp’s Livin’ La Vida Local

by Meghann on November 12, 2012

Oops… Yelp did it again. They hosted an awesome event at one of my favorite restaurants in Tampa AND opened the event to EVERYONE on Yelp (not just Elites!), score!

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I gotta give it to Yelp, they sure know how to spoil their Yelpers! Last night’s event was a once-a-year opportunity for non-Elite Yelpers to experience the perks of being Elite and I have to say they did it up right. You can read more details on what it takes to be Yelp Elite in THIS POST. Yelp doesn’t pay me to write about them, nor am I given any extra perks that other Yelp Elite would not receive, I just truly enjoy their website and the amazing community that comes with it.

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The open Yelp event was held at Datz Delicatessan off of MacDill. LOVE this restaurant, HATE the parking situation. I arrived 15 minutes before the event was supposed to start and still struggled finding a good spot. Honestly, the fear of parking is what stops me from eating at Datz more than I do, which is sad because it really is a great place to eat or drink at. I love me some Datz!

Even though I was early, the crowds were already there ready to get the Yelping party started. The lines were a decent length, but they moved quickly and I was able to check in and get my name badge in less than 5 minutes.

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I ran into Caroline, snagged some of the truffle popcorn (sooo good)

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And took the obligatory photo in front of the Yelp wall.

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CHEESE!!!

At 6 o’clock on the nose, they ceremoniously opened the doors and welcomed everyone inside with offerings of Bacon Bloody Mary’s (I had a sip and it was good, but more of a brunch drink) and white cosmos (I didn’t have a chance to try one, but I heard good things about the lightly sweetened drink). I more or less beelined it to the back for Cigar City Beer (then switched to soda water for the rest of the night).

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HELLO CROWDS!! It didn’t take long for the restaurant to fill up. Since the event had filled up quickly online, I was expecting a good amount of people, but was still a little surprised with the amount of people who rushed in. Kudos to Yelp for ramping up this event!

We immediately spotted some sort of waffle cone station to the right and made a pit stop to see it what it was.

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Do you get it?

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Chicken and waffles!! hehe I was probably the only one who ate her cone – I <3 waffle cones!

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We were only downstairs for a few minutes before realizing the crowds upstairs were a little less crazy. We headed upstairs, picked a spot at the bar (right next to the kitchen area where all the food was coming out πŸ˜‰ ) and decided to stay put – let the food come to us, right?

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The mini ruben I’m holding up above was one of my favorite items from the evening. I love a good ruben, especially with really tender, salty corn beef – yum!

It wasn’t long before we had a mini TBLB reunion happening. We were all still coming off of our Pretty Muddy high and had lots of stories to share – good times.

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(Mary, me, Genna, Meghan, Kat, Diana, Beka)

When we checked in, we were handed a menu of everything being passed around.

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I had a chance to try a little of everything, but the crowds and poor lighting made it a little difficult to photograph everything as we went along. I will say that the flatbreads were delicious (loved the bacon!) and I liked the hummus, but thought the hummus/veggie ratio was a little off – there was too much hummus and not enough veggies! I was tempted to ask the kitchen for more veggies to polish the hummus off with.

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The meatloaf was another favorite, pictured below.

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It was just a bite, but I enjoyed the slight sweetness the bite had to it. The sweetness came from the tomato sauce coating that brought everything together. Also, please take note of Marcus and Chuck in the background. πŸ™‚

Desserts!!

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I don’t have a photo of the AMAZING peanut butter gelato I had, but I do have one of the toffee I added to it.

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Peanut butter gelato + dark chocolate toffee with pecans = DELICIOUS.

Oh, and just as I was complaining about the lighting situation, I found this little number downstairs.

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You know you’re at a food blogger/yelper event when there’s a lightbox set up for photos of the food. Well done, Datz. Well done.

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The pork slider is on the left, I was a little pork-ed out after my pork shank lunch, but everyone else raved about it. There’s also the hummus and veggies I referred to earlier and the vegetable bunny chow on the right. Unfortunately the bunny chow wasn’t my favorite of the night. The filling was okay, but the pastry crust was dry and flavorless.

THANK YOU Yelp for another awesome event and THANK YOU Datz for hosting all the foodies!! I can’t wait to return for more peanut butter gelato and meatloaf.

(p.s. you get a free dessert for your first check-in at Datz on Yelp!)

{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kristy @ Kristy's Health Revolution November 12, 2012 at 10:31 am

haha! LOVE the lightbox setup for the food. What a clever idea.
Kristy @ Kristy’s Health Revolution recently posted..Marshall Half Marathon Recap

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2 Chelsie @ Balance, Not Scale November 12, 2012 at 10:31 am

Meghann — you’re the one who introduced me to Yelping, and I honestly could NOT love it more!! I’m on my way to becoming an Elite and cannot wait! It’s such a fabulous community, I’ve met new friends already, and I love the new food adventures I’m embarking on. Thank you sooo much!! πŸ˜€
Ps. The evening looks like it was FABULOUS. Delicious and well put together? Can’t go wrong with that combo!! πŸ˜‰
Chelsie @ Balance, Not Scale recently posted..MIMM β€” Just an ordinary day

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3 Mary @ food and fun on the run November 12, 2012 at 10:35 am

Such a fun event! I’m so glad that you made it back in time πŸ™‚
Mary @ food and fun on the run recently posted..Getting Pretty Muddy

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4 lisa fine November 12, 2012 at 10:37 am

Very cool. And it looks like some local vendors were there to show off their good food.

I’ve only used Yelp’s app – is it worth it to use the website? Is that the best ways to write reviews? And what helped you become Elite – writing reviews, or checking into places, or something else?
lisa fine recently posted..curried bean and kale chili

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5 Meghann November 12, 2012 at 10:49 am

Yes, the website let’s you write the reviews instead of just the quick tips. To gain Elite status you want to add more reviews than check-ins or the quick tips. πŸ™‚

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6 Courtney @ Journey of a Dreamer November 12, 2012 at 10:47 am

I have heard nothing but good things about Datz! Maybe we should try to check it out while we are still in town!
Courtney @ Journey of a Dreamer recently posted..Weekly Workout Recap

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7 Meghann November 12, 2012 at 10:48 am

Yes! LOVE Datz! They have a great breakfast too – may I suggest the red velvet pancakes? πŸ˜‰

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8 Grace @ Grace Dishes November 12, 2012 at 11:18 am

I’m so sad I missed out! I love your Patriotic outfit πŸ™‚ – perfect for Veteran’s Day.

Hopefully I can make the upcoming events! Thanks for the recap and lovely photos!
Grace @ Grace Dishes recently posted..One of "those" women + FMM

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9 Rachel (Two Healthy Plates) November 12, 2012 at 11:35 am

Looks like a fun event! I totally would have eaten the waffle cone too =)

I love yelp – I ALWAYS use it when traveling.
Rachel (Two Healthy Plates) recently posted..Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

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10 Cher @ Weddicted November 12, 2012 at 11:46 am

Looks like a great time! The pictures are making me hungry!
Cher @ Weddicted recently posted..Friday favourites

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11 Carrie @ The Cook's Palette November 12, 2012 at 11:48 am

Wow, looks fun! I love foodie events. I would have probably chosen the waffle cone OVER the chicken!
Carrie @ The Cook’s Palette recently posted..fall favorites

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12 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats November 12, 2012 at 12:12 pm

These yelp events look so fun, I really need to work a little harder and get elite status!
Katie @ Peace Love & Oats recently posted..BBC–Week 3

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13 Xiomara @ parkesdale November 12, 2012 at 1:04 pm

I was woken up this morning by my daughter and the Datz chocolates. How could I refuse! I made them promise they would save one for their dad. I hope they listened.
Xiomara @ parkesdale recently posted..Friends Don’t Let Friends Shop Chain Stores…

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14 Cara @ I Don't Believe in Diets November 12, 2012 at 1:27 pm

oh my gosh, why did no one else eat their waffle cones? oh man. I want!

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15 Jean November 12, 2012 at 1:53 pm

My motto is, always eat the waffle come!
Jean recently posted..Dog-less Dog Park Goers

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16 Megan November 12, 2012 at 2:25 pm

LOVE your dress, where is it from?

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17 Meghann November 12, 2012 at 2:35 pm

Old Navy!

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18 Allie November 12, 2012 at 2:29 pm

How fun! I just signed up for Yelp. I’ll have to keep my eyes open for events like that in Cincinnati! That flat bread looks good!
Allie recently posted..Smoky Mountains

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19 Julia H. @ Live Young & Prosper November 12, 2012 at 2:36 pm

Chicken & waffle cone. Haha. That’s adorable.
Julia H. @ Live Young & Prosper recently posted..Chobsessed Blueberry Banana Bread

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20 Carrie @ Fitness and Frozen Grapes November 12, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Looks like a great night! πŸ™‚
Carrie @ Fitness and Frozen Grapes recently posted..The Best Seat in the House

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21 Annette @FitnessPerks November 12, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Mmmmm some of that looks tasty! The chicken/waffle cone made me laugh. HAH!

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22 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More November 12, 2012 at 3:05 pm

Looks like an AWESOME and super fun event! πŸ™‚
Katie @ Talk Less, Say More recently posted..Music Monday // American Heart

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23 Natalie @ Free Range Human November 12, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Love that lightbox! That’s too funny. Peanut butter gelato sounds amazing!

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24 Running Betty November 12, 2012 at 4:40 pm

I too am a datz fan!
Running Betty recently posted..Currently, Nov. 2012

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25 Kat November 14, 2012 at 8:35 am

Haha, I love a) the photo lightbox and b) Chuck and Marcus’ photobomb. Classic πŸ˜‰ Great night for sure!
Kat recently posted..MySpace was just practice

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26 Yesle @ D is for Dentist November 14, 2012 at 9:10 am

I went to high school in South Tampa & right after I moved away, Datz opened up. They do a great job of sponsoring school teams too! My brother who played on the football team always got free sandwiches from them! πŸ™‚

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27 Nichole C November 14, 2012 at 1:15 pm

Oh mannnn, I wanted one of those mini ruebens but missed them every time. Stopping by via Yelp’s email! See you’re a TBLB, I haven’t been to any bloggy events but am friends with some of the gals :).

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28 Meghann November 14, 2012 at 2:07 pm

Yep, I am one of the founders of TBLB! You should come out to a meet-up it’s a great group of girls! πŸ™‚

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29 Meli Peli November 15, 2012 at 9:08 am

What a great review of the event. The lightbox was provided by the event photographer Gerardo Luna. Thanks to Yelp and Datz for inviting us to be involved with the event! You can catch up with Gerardo on FB or “like” his page http://www.facebook.com/tampadailyphoto

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