Seasons 52 to join Tampa dining scene
Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster, the Capital Grille) has announced that it will open a Seasons 52 in Tampa's WestShore Plaza in 2010. Seasons 52 has been critically acclaimed for its commitment to featuring seasonal produce and health-conscious, low-calorie dishes. The Tampa restaurant will be the ninth in the chain. See seasons52.com.
Seafood vendor opens its doors to the public
The locally owned and operated Jensen Bros. has supplied seafood to many of the top restaurants in the Tampa Bay area for 25 years. Now you can get in on the action. Jensen Bros. has recently opened wholesale to the public three days a week at 911 Douglas St. in Dunedin (10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday). For more information, call (727) 735-0755.
Two establishments to move to new locations
Cupcake Spot and Raga Asian Indian Restaurant are relocating. The Cupcake Spot has found a new spot, moving this week from its tiny store on Dale Mabry Highway across from Plant High School in Tampa to 3225 S MacDill Ave., a 1,200-square-foot space formerly occupied by Mike's Pies. It is part of a retail plaza that offers easier access and plenty of parking.
The excellent Raga Asian Indian Restaurant has closed at 16080 U.S. 19 in Clearwater and will reopen soon in the 400 block of Cleveland in downtown Clearwater. In addition, owners Madhu and Naresh Sharma will launch a new upscale dinner concept next door to their Green Chili Indian Bistro in downtown St. Petersburg in August. Stay tuned.
Laura Reiley, Times food critic
restaurant dishes up top chowder
Contestants from all over the country competed at the 28th annual Great Chowder Cook-Off in Newport, R.I., on June 6. And — drum roll — the title went to Tony's Cedar Key Clam Chowder, from the downtown Cedar Key restaurant. Tony's chef Eric Jungklaus defeated some of the finest chowders in New England, saying, "We were told to be the best, you must beat the best, and that is what we did." Tony's is at 597 Second St. Call (352) 543-0022 or go online to tonyschowder.com.