Category: Urban Lifestyle
Tags: Legendary Spirit Food and Spirits, SpearIt! Legendary Food and Spirits
REVIEW: For this review we are zipping over to the university district to try out one of Tallahassee’s newest restaurants that recently opened on West Tennessee Street in front of the campus of Florida State University.
Some know this location as the former Tomahawk Sports Bar and before that the former “Loop” restaurant. I grew up here in Tallahassee but it took an elder historian to tell me that this structure was originally built as a Hardee’s restaurant in the mid 80s. Here at UrbanTallahassee we focus on the built environment so we like to provide a little more background on the recently improved facility. As noted above, the previous building was originally constructed in 1985 and officially contained 3,624 SF. Despite the fact that this is a pre-existing building extensive renovations went into producing what we see today. The structure was essentially stripped to the bones and rebuilt, so although what we see today is in the footprint of what has been there since 1985, the facility is truly a product of 2016.
And what a lovely facility it is!
Construction work was handled locally by Tallahassee-based Oliver Sperry Construction and Renovation at an unspecified budget. UrbanTallahassee has yet to discover the name of the firm that provided architectural services for the lovely modern brick, stucco and glass building that stands on the site today. Among the prominent features on the site is a massive “Spear” planted into the center of the parking lot. A direct replica of the famous spear planted at the center of Bobby Bowden Field at Doak Campbell Stadium by Chief Osceola on FSU gameday. They’ve even gone so far as to illuminate the tip of the spear to resemble the burning flame. Joining the spear on in the parking lot is a massive flag pole with an American flag blowing in the wind!
Parking on site is a bit of a premium and will prove to be even more precious once this review goes viral and people start to catch on to how nice of a venue this is.
View of Spear It! Legendary Food and Spirits restaurant dining room looking towards the main entry and bar area.
Spear It! Legendary Food and Spirits is a concept created by many of the partners who established the PDQ (People Dedicated to Quality) restaurant. As a matter of fact, UrbanTallahassee began tracking this project as a PDQ restaurant and later changed the name after we were contacted by the owners who made us aware of the new concept. So what is this new concept? Comfort food for nearly every mood. Here you can order the famous PDQ-style chicken tenders, or some tender fall-off-the-bone-ribs. If you’re in the mood for seafood, salad, pizza or steak they’ve got that too!
Unlike a PDQ, the concept at Spear It! lends itself more to a dine-in experience and less to fast casual. The dining room has a traditional bar with televisions arranged throughout. And to no surprise the interior decor is FSU themed as is appropriate given the restaurant’s presence at the front door to the University’s main campus. There are a variety of seating types throughout the restaurant, booth, tables and bars with each option offering ample space and privacy. This is a comfortable restaurant interior.
Upon entry you are greeted by a host and taken to a seat. Once seated menus are provided and shortly thereafter a waiter comes over to take your drink order. Sounds normal so far. The wait staff is generally younger, perhaps they hire college students… again a move to applaud as College students definitely need jobs and there are very few restaurant services jobs of this type in the areas around the universities (a student would have to travel to Monroe, Apalachee Parkway, Capital Circle or Thomasville Road for this type of work).
Spear It! offers Coca-Cola products on tap but this is a full-service “spirit” bar as well. So if you’re able to have a “special drink” during the day, that’s certainly an option. True to my tradition, I ordered the sweet tea.
For my meal, I ordered the Chicken Tenders and the pizza to sample — I had a guest so I did not eat this alone. The wait time for the food was about 10-15 minutes. Long enough for us to quench our respective thirsts (my sweet tea was finely prepared btw) and begin a decent conversation. Just as the conversation began to heat up, the food arrived and our words would grind to a screeching halt as the kind waiter arranged the pizza and tenders at the center of the table.
Spear It! Legendary Food & Spirits “Triple Meat Pizza” featuring Bradley’s Sausage
The “Triple Meat” Pizza was the restaurant equal to a meat lovers, but Tallahasseeans will appreciate this: In addition to the pepperoni and bacon on the pizza, Spear It! uses BRADLEYS SAUSAGE!!! Honestly, I was sold on ordering the pizza the instant I saw this. The thickness of the pizza is somewhere between thin and thick crust, all of the toppings are premium, there’s plenty of cheese and it was “foldable”. It was served a nice golden brown with no burn marks suggesting the restaurant is using a traditional oven in the back.
Spear It! Legendary Food & Spirits Chicken Tender Plate w/Fries and Sauces
The chicken tenders are, in my opinion, the signature meat offered at this restaurant (whether served solo on sandwich or above a salad). As one who has had the pleasure of dining at a PDQ restaurant out of town I can attest to the fact that these tenders are on par. Premium white breast meat that pulls apart easily. 100% chicken perfectly fried and lightly seasoned. Here you’re getting perfect texture but all of your flavor will come from the sauce you choose. For our table we requested Honey Mustard, Sweet Sriracha, Ranch and Buffalo Bleu (I’d visited a few days prior and tried the Chipotle BBQ on my ribs and I was not a fan of that sauce). Of all sauces tried, my personal favorite was the Sweet Sriracha… By FAR!
The french fries at Spear It! also deserve some love. They were thinly sliced like those from fast food restaurants so I quickly assumed they would be low quality and bland, however, quite the opposite. These fries, although thin, had the texture and taste of those freshly cut in house directly from the potato. I may be wrong to claim this, but I believe Spear It! serves fresh-cut fries and they’re delicious.
The total ticket at Spear It! came to about $20-$25. Not bad at all for two people (arguably more people could have eaten and gotten full as the portion sizes were large).
Spear It! Restaurant interior dining room view
The founders of this restaurant truly did their homework on this community before planting “the Spear”. They understood local taste for quality food (Bradleys sausage), they apparently know our preference for the Coca-Cola brand and appreciate the heritage of the Florida State Seminoles. This level of attention to detail should not be downplayed and for that reason and because of the quality of the food and friendly service rendered here, Urban Tallahassee wishes Spear It! – Legendary Food and Spirits many years of success at its new location! This place is a keeper!