PASSPORT to downtown St. Pete: Yelp’s Black & White Ball

November 13, 2013 at 11:53 am

Sunday was my 6th event as part of Yelp Tampa Bay’s PASSPORT to downtown St. Pete. It was Yelp’s Black & White Ball at the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Gold Club.

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The previous five days and five events that I attended thanks to Yelp Tampa Bay:

Tuesday 11/5: Yelp’s the Mac Daddy event at MacDinton’s.
Wednesday 11/6: The Gallery of Yelp event at the Florida Craftsmen Gallery.
Thursday 11/7: Yelp’s 50 Shades of Plaid event at The Birchwood.
Friday 11/8: Yelp Plays with Fire event at Painting with Fire Studio.
Saturday 11/9: Yelp’s Secret Cash Mob at Sweet Divas.

My friend Amy agreed to be my date for the ball.

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We navigated the busy downtown waterfront scene (thanks partially to Ribfest in Vinoy Park), parked in the Vinoy parking deck, then made our way to the veranda next to the entrance to the hotel. There we found our Yelp people.

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We checked in with Shanna at the Yelp table…

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and then got in line. I was a little worried because there was a large line forming behind some picked over and empty tables.

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Before I let myself get annoyed Amy and I decided to abandon the line and go sit at a table with some friends. That was a good decision because soon a plank full of sliders arrived at the table.

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Left to Right:

Chicken: chicken, melted jack cheese, Red Sofrito (tomato, bell pepper, cubanella, onion, garlic, white wine, cilantro, cilantro) garlic aioli, Cuban bread
Salmon: Ground salmon patty, preserved lemon aioli,  smoked bacon, avocado, heirloom tomato, on a toasted brioche bun
Lamb: lamb patty, Greek salad, and tzatziki, on a toasted brioche bun
Veranda Burger: Kobe beef patty & Confit pork belly, melted Swiss cheese, tomato jam

I tried one of the salmon sliders first.

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I only ate what was between the bun, but the salmon patty may have had some sort of bread crumbs in it although the description just says “ground salmon patty”. It was delicious!

Trays of the Russian Standard blackberry infused vodka sodas were also being passed and I tried one of those. A vodka soda is an NSNG approved cocktail, but the fruit infusion does increase the carbs a bit. I was putting life into living here. It was was fairly warm, in the 80’s, Sunday afternoon and this drink was very refreshing.

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That’s Kate in the background.

I also tried one of the lamb sliders, and this one was my favorite of the two that I tried. Again, I didn’t eat the bun.

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The wait staff at the Vinoy were awesome!

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The venue was spacious and felt luxurious. There was plenty of room for 100+ Yelpers.

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My friend Ali snapped some photos of the appetizers on the table once they restocked it.

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Thanks Ali! There were beer selections available from MillerCoors as well as red and white wine, but I stuck with my one cocktail and water. This was Ali’s picture:

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They had live music which was very nice.

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I had fun hanging out with my friends, including Grace from Grace Dishes and her boyfriend Jason (below left):

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Kate is one of my NSNG buddies, so we both dutifully ate around the bread.

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One of my new Yelp friends, Jessica, stole the show by wearing her wedding dress to the ball!My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-21

The nice folks from TapSnap (who I first met at the Yelp NOVA 535 event) were there taking fun photo booth photos for everyone.

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It was yet another lovely event thanks to The Vinoy and Yelp Tampa Bay. Thanks Brett!

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One more post to go to finish out my Yelp’s PASSPORT to downtown St. Pete adventures.

Cya.