Fortu arrives in St. Pete, Beerbusters is on the verge of bankruptcy, and more in Tampa Bay food news | Openings & Closings | Tampa


Buster beer If anyone in the Tampa Bay area still has their frayed Blockbuster card, there’s a Pinellas Park business created with you in mind. Adorned with those familiar yellow walls and blue rugs, multiple shelves of DVDs and movie posters on every corner, Beerbusters is a nostalgia-focused space that attracts movie buffs, craft beer lovers and nerds alike. . Beerbusters offers hundreds of movies, a craft beer bar, a kitchen that will serve movie snacks, and plenty of space for movie nights and game nights. There’s even a “haunted hallway” to the bathroom that features old horror movie posters and a handmade coffin shelf that holds scary movies available to rent. It will cost $1 a day to rent any movie in the store, but it also plans to offer a movie pass, where people can rent an unlimited number of movies for $10 a month. If Beerbusters passes an inspection finale this week, owner (and sole employee) William Dieli tells Creative Loafing Tampa Bay that his niche business can open smoothly this week. 6836 N Park Blvd. N, Pinellas Park. @beerbustersmoviebar on Facebook

USF’s Buddy Brew Buddy Brew, the Tampa-based coffee roaster and chain, will soon be available to sleep-deprived students on the USF campus in Tampa. The chain’s newest location is set to open in the new Judy Genshaft Honors College, an 85,000 square foot facility dedicated to the university’s longest-serving president, Judy Genshaft, slated to open in the spring of 2023. According to the Tampa Bay Business Journal, the cafe will be located on the first floor of the five-story building. Buddy Brew, an ode to owners Dave and Susan Ward’s dog, Buddy started out as an online coffee retailer until opening its first store in Tampa. Today, the chain has 10 operational outposts, including locations in Sarasota, Tampa International Airport and the well-known food hall, Armature Works, with more set to open. 4202 E Fowler Ave., Tampa. —Molly Ryan

Coming soon

hello After endless months of building and developing the brand, a new concept opens in two familiar spaces. Allelo, an upscale Mediterranean restaurant, will open in the former Annata and Alto Mare locations at 300 Beach Dr. NE in downtown St. Petersburg. The concept is a joint effort of Pinellas-based philanthropists Sean and Jeanna Damkoehler and Volet Hospitality Group, which also operates Allelo’s future neighbors 400 Beach Seafood & Tap House, as reported by the Tampa Bay Time. Together they bought both Annata and its neighbor Alto Mare from Kurt and Mary Cuccaro, the owners of the famous Italian market Mazzarro’s, in late 2020, and have been working on the common space ever since. If all goes well, the new restaurant on Beach Drive will be open from Saturday, September 17, although this grand opening date is not set in stone. Annata was known for its extensive selection of wines and charcuterie boards, while Alto Mare made waves with its seafood towers and raw bar – aspects to which Allelo will pay homage with its Mediterranean-themed cuisine. Customers can expect dishes like grilled octopus, East Coast oysters, smoked fish spread and build-your-own charcuterie when Allelo debuts soon. 300 Beach Dr. NE, St. Petersburg. @allelostpete on Facebook

Fortunate Just when you think St. Pete has enough Asian fusion restaurants, comes news of a new steakhouse opening in one of the most desirable downtown locations. Fortu, a new concept from local restaurateur Shan Bakrac, will debut at 95 Central Ave. this winter. The space adjacent to Beach Drive once housed the famous Tapas Bar and Ceviche Restaurant, which is now just a few blocks away at 332 Beach Dr. NE. St. Pete sorely misses the Latin dance nights at Ceviche’s former basement in the historic Ponce de Leon Hotel, so maybe Fortu’s extensive Asian fusion menu will appeal to them. St. Pete Rising detailed Fortu’s eclectic menu of various cuts of steak, including coveted and expensive Japanese wagyu, Korean fried chicken, local seafood dishes, dumplings and top-shelf sushi platters. range, etc Its upscale fusion menu will be accompanied by a long list of signature cocktails (with a focus on aged Japanese whiskey), in addition to the expected beer, sake and wines. 95 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg. @forturestaurant on Instagram


Bon Appétit restaurant on Dunedin’s waterfront will soon have new owners A beloved Dunedin restaurant is experiencing a change in ownership. The Tampa Bay Times recently reported that Bon Appétit is being sold to owners of Crabby Bill’s, the casual seafood chain with locations throughout the Bay Area. Crabby Bill CEO Matt Loder Sr. told The Times that the sale will most likely be completed by the end of 2022. Although Loder and his company are taking over operations at Bon Appétit, he says the menu, the staff and the general atmosphere of the restaurant will remain the same. While Crabby Bill’s is a simple, casual restaurant and Bon Appétit is a self-proclaimed fine dining establishment, both restaurants offer seafood-focused menus and waterfront locations. Peter Kreuziger and Chef Karl Riedl opened the restaurant in 1976 and has garnered several awards and accolades since. Along with tasty views of St. Joseph’s Sound, Bon Appétit is known for its upscale menu of surf n’ turf, black grouper, New Zealand lamb, baked snails and prawn fettuccine. , as well as exclusive drinks and an extensive wine list. 148 Marina Plaza, Dunedin.

Feinstein Group implements new commission-based compensation model, but not without criticism In the sleepy seaside town of Dunedin, a new compensation model for restaurant workers is rocking the boat. The changes are now being implemented at The Black Pearl, Living Room and Sonder Social Club, all owned and operated by The Feinstein Group. In the simplest terms, the change shifted their restaurant employees to a commission-based model. The pivot is an attempt by the Feinsteins to preempt the $15 minimum wage increase and provide a living wage not only for servers and bartenders, but also for cooks, expos, dishwashers and other staff. from the back of the house, as well as the front of the house. the staff like the busses and bar backs. The change hasn’t been easy either, as some employees say they were fired after they objected to the new model.

Big Ray’s Fish Camp will be featured on Food Network
Tampa Bay restaurants are no strangers to TV, and a classic South Tampa institution is about to get some much-needed screen time. Big Ray’s Fish Camp has a second, slightly newer location at Sail Plaza in downtown Tampa, but the original location, located at 6116 Interbay Blvd. will star in an upcoming episode of comedian John Catucci’s “Big Food Bucket List” on the Food Network Canada. The fish shack posted a post about the upcoming episode on their Instagram yesterday, saying the show will premiere in Canada on September 3 at 8 p.m. EST, in the US on October 8 at 8 p.m. EST , then streaming on Hulu. Owned by Nick Cruz, brother of Mayor Jane Castor’s partner, Ana Cruz, the South Joint has been a staple in the area since 2015, serving unique versions of everything from grouper sandos to lobster corn dogs. 6116 Interbay Boulevard, Tampa. —Colin Wolf

Kahwa Coffee Announces Intent to Franchise After opening 15 company-owned locations over the past 16 years, the St. Pete-based company has announced plans to offer franchise opportunities first in Florida and later in other territories.


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