Friday, September 21, 2018
Business

Muralist gives latest Tijuana Flats a Valrico touch

VALRICO ó Nate Baranowski has become a regular at Tijuana Flats.

Oh sure he may enjoy fast casual Tex-Mex fare like most people, but itís not the food that keeps him returning. Executives of the Florida-based chain keep inviting him back for his artistic skills.

The muralist has been hired to adorn the walls at many recent new store openings over the past couple years. His latest canvas is the walls at the recently-opened Tijuana Flats inside the Crest Pointe Towne Center at 2050 Bloomingdale Ave.

Brittany Bazemore, managing partner for the restaurant, said the artwork along with the music and the cheerful staff just add to the high-energy, yet laid-back atmosphere. Andrew Povec, area supervisor for all 23 local stores, said Baranowskiís masterpieces are just one example of how the restaurant strives to make its food stand out.

"We pride ourselves on the experience," Povec said. "Itís not just a taco or burrito."

As guests walk in, they are greeted with a smiling face and a menu, but they have to walk past an electrified bull, an ode to the neighboring Bloomingdale High School Bulls mascot and a larger wall featuring a lightning catching woman with the Tampa skyline outlined in bolts.

Bazemore said the flautas and hard beef tacos rank among the top sellers across all locations.

Povec noted that as of August, Tijuana Flats went back to its menu from more than 6 years ago, bringing back the likes of enchiladas, tostadas and Mexican pizzas "to make the brand loyalists happy."

After ordering, diners can visit the Tijuana Flatsí signature hot bar that features 15 hot sauces, ranging from "Sissy Sauce" to "Death Wish." When you grab your drink and look up, you might also notice the ceiling tiles painted in the Newsome High School and other local school mascots. Thereís a non-Baranowski contest going on to fill the remaining ceiling panels with more artwork.

Povec said this new location triangulates the existing Brandon and Riverview eateries and fills in the Flats gap. While itís a bit of a refreshed look and feel inside and on the menu, guests can expect a pair of signature specials: Tijuana Tuesdaze (two tacos, chips, and a drink for $5.99) and Throwback Thursdaze (burrito or bowl, chips and a drink for $5.99).

Tijuana Flats continues contributing to its Just in Queso Foundation, with proceeds from the opening weeks going toward A Kidís Place ó a local non-profit organization providing foster care and a loving home for abused, neglected or abandoned children.

The 10th location in Hillsborough County, spans 2,400 square feet and seats 104 guests (64 interior, 40 exterior). The new restaurant will employ 30 hourly employees. Visit tijuanaflats.com.

SHARE YOUR NEWS: If you have an item for Everybodyís Business, contact Eric Vician at [email protected]

Comments
Tampa General nurses record the last heartbeats of dying patients, making a family memory

Tampa General nurses record the last heartbeats of dying patients, making a family memory

TAMPA ó As John Reisinger waited with family at Tampa General Hospital, grief settled in like a fog. So some of the details are hazy.But he remembers the moment when three women in white lab coats approached him.The day before, his niece, Jessica Rau...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Retro Fitness sets first of several area locations in Citrus Park

Retro Fitness sets first of several area locations in Citrus Park

In early fall, Retro Fitness will open a 17,000 square foot fitness facility in Citrus Park, and it plans for more Tampa Bay area locations.Founded in 2005, Retro Fitness has 153 clubs throughout the United States and is the official fitness center o...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Joe and Son's Olive Oils, a legacy Ybor business, finds new roots in Carrollwood

Joe and Son's Olive Oils, a legacy Ybor business, finds new roots in Carrollwood

Andrea Gebbia grew up in Carrollwood, and now she is bringing the family business to the neighborhood of her youth.In late fall, Joe and Son’s Olive Oils is slated to open a second location."I feel so blessed having the ability to grow my...
Updated: 10 hours ago
The guys who brought you Tampaís Armature Works plan high-end offices next door, and theyíve already signed a lease with med-tech company AxoGen

The guys who brought you Tampaís Armature Works plan high-end offices next door, and theyíve already signed a lease with med-tech company AxoGen

TAMPA ó Coming soon from the developers who brought you the Armature Works: Heights Union, two high-end office buildings next door to the trendy food hall, event space and co-working complex overlooking the Hillsborough River.Developers said Friday t...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Chi Chop + Kung Fu Tea looks to succeed where others failed

Chi Chop + Kung Fu Tea looks to succeed where others failed

RIVEVIEW – Amy Lin knows that her newest Chi Chop + Kung Fu Tea store is in a location where previous businesses have not lasted.The short-lived Tap’s Brewhouse & Deli and even shorter-lived Top Shelf Sports Bar and Grill tried to r...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Walmart is teaming with a Seminole Heights chef to promote locally grown mushrooms

Walmart is teaming with a Seminole Heights chef to promote locally grown mushrooms

TAMPA ó It might seem like an unlikely match from the outside: A distinguished chef with a restaurant known for inventive plates using produce shoppers can find atÖ Walmart?Walmart, the countryís largest grocer, is known for having a core consumer wh...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Federal loans open to Pinellas businesses struggling against Red Tide

Federal loans open to Pinellas businesses struggling against Red Tide

The U.S. Small Business Administration has extended its disaster loan program to include Pinellas and Pasco county businesses affected by Red Tide.Already, the Pinellas County Economic Development Office was taking applications for bridge loans to he...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Watch: A southern white rhinoceros calf just a week after being born at ZooTampa

Watch: A southern white rhinoceros calf just a week after being born at ZooTampa

TAMPA†—†A southern white rhinoceros gave birth to a calf at ZooTampa on Sept. 12, marking the sixth successful birth of the species in the zoo's history. In a news release, ZooTampa said southern white rhinoceroses are a nearly threatened spec...
Updated: 12 hours ago
Baggers, cashiers soon can grow beards at Publix

Baggers, cashiers soon can grow beards at Publix

ORLANDO — The faces of baggers, cashiers and stockers at a Florida-based grocery chain may look slightly different in the near future.That's because Publix said Friday that it would start allowing workers to grow beards and other facial hair b...
Published: 09/21/18
They spent $15,000 adding a driveway to their St. Pete House. Now the city says they canít park on it

They spent $15,000 adding a driveway to their St. Pete House. Now the city says they canít park on it

ST. PETERSBURG ó One day in January, Dana Cremo was on her front porch hanging a vintage screen door when two city employees walked up. "You canít park on your driveway," they said. "Why?" she asked. "Because somebody filed a complaint," they said. F...
Published: 09/21/18