IKEA or Logan’s Run?

IKEA Tampa
http://www.ikea.com/us/en/store/tampa
1103 North 22nd Street
Tampa, FL 33605
(800) 434-4532

Dan and I made our very first trip to the monolith of Swedish consumerism called IKEA.  We were both looking for new beds.  Dan was recently in the market for a bed because you can’t really fit a queen sized bed into a Suzuki Esteem; especially when the car is already laden with instruments and clothing.  I was looking for a bed that would keep me from waking up with a sore back every morning.  We had both looked around in traditional furniture stores and found a lot of mediocre crap for exorbitant prices.

Yeah, you're not getting a queen sized bed in this thing.

Yeah, you’re not getting a queen sized bed into that bad boy.

As part of our virginal IKEA experience, we decided that we should go all out and eat whatever ‘Swedish’ food they were serving there.  A former coworker used to wax poetic on the quality of IKEA’s Swedish meatballs. I was a bit reluctant to believe this line of thought as said coworker’s tastes were heavily in question.  Either way, we were ravenous from wandering around a warehouse filled with boyfriends/husbands being led in tow by their signifigant others searching for things that would soon need to be assembled with Pictionary-esque instructions.

Yes, we sat down to eat mediocre food in Logan’s Run.  I don’t know that these chairs are particularly flattering for that Lady’s ass.

This blood-orange, plastic chair just cries Preschool aesthetics for adults. Clearly, I chose to sit at this table.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture of the cafeteria line where you pick up the IKEA mass-produced food.  There were some fairly ambitious fish dishes on the menu, but I decided to go for something I thought would be fairly difficult to screw the pooch on.  Dan and I both ordered a Buffalo Chicken Wrap. We also ordered the Meatballs to get the full IKEA effect.  The wrap was inundated with cheddar cheese, and the ‘Buffalo’ sauce was mainly just orange food coloring without any kick. Either way, for around $3 it wasn’t too bad.  We also hedged our beverage bets by getting a water and a Pear drink. The water tasted like water, amazing right?  The Pear drink tasted like it was slightly fermented.  It had an odd edge to it that left me unsure of whether I liked the drink or hated it.  IKEA Pear-drink was interesting either way.

Lingonberries? More like Dingleberries. ZING!

Ahh, and now onto the IKEA meatball goop.  The meatballs were passable Swedish-style meatballs; nothing to phone home about. As you can see, they weren’t exactly the most impressive looking meatball specimens. The potatoes were a bit of a let down as they tasted like out of the box Potato-Buds.  Despite the stellar performance of the meatballs and the potatoes, the real standout of the dish were the overly sweet, jelly-like Lingonberries.  Really, the Lingonberries are like some kind of awful tie-in to a desert. They reminded me of those pathetic attempts at desert that you find in Microwaveable meals (oh yeah, give me some of that ‘peach cobbler’… who doesn’t want a desert that tastes like rotten bananas?).  Why include it?  Is there some unspoken rule that desert needs to be represented, however poorly, in a meal? Is IKEA like a public school, where they’ll lose Federal funding if all food groups aren’t properly represnted? In all cases, I would rather have another piece of meat or some more potatoes.

Either way, IKEA’s food gets a rating of Rating: ★★☆☆☆ for their passable Buffalo Chicken Wrap and their low prices.

On the plus side, Dan and I both found beds which didn’t break the bank.

Cheers,

-Matt

I’ll leave you with this confused shot of an IKEA light:

Author: Matt

I now live in Clearwater, FL and from here the food shall be reviewed.

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