RIVERVIEW — The Cappy's Pizzeria owners have long wanted to expand into the Brandon-Riverview area.
They just couldn't find the right location.
Since its first location opened in South Tampa 15 years ago, Cappy's has developed a reputation for establishing itself in historic neighborhoods in buildings with a lot of character. Even though Cappy's founder Steve White grew up in Brandon and graduated from Brandon High School, he and his business partners couldn't find a place that had the right ambience.
Then they happened upon Winthrop Town Center, with its neotraditional design and living spaces above businesses, and knew they had found what they were looking for.
Now Cappy's Pizzeria is getting ready to open its fourth location, this one at Winthrop, within the next six weeks.
"If everything goes according to plan, we should be opening around the middle of January," said partner Ryan Hess. "Even if we run into some delays, we should open by the beginning of February."
Cappy's is known for a simple menu of quality pizza, calzones and salads. The new location won't stray from that successful formula, Hess said.
The original Cappy's Pizzeria opened in Hyde Park in 1995, then moved to its present location in Palma Ceia. The second Cappy's opened in Seminole Heights in 2005. The St. Petersburg Cappy's opened in St. Petersburg three years ago.
The new Cappy's will be near the Acropolis Restaurant and Green Iguana, two other Tampa chains that have found success at Winthrop. For more information, visit cappyspizzaonline.com.
Couple's specialty:gourmet cupcakes
BRANDON — Jan Heckinger and her fiance Tom Redus are using the holidays to get their new business off to a running start.
They both had long-held corporate jobs, but decided they wanted to open a cupcake business. They had planned to wait a few months, but when they found a perfect commercial kitchen at a perfect price they decided they had to take advantage of the opportunity.
So they opened Simply Cupcakes of Tampa a few weeks back with little fanfare.
They're both working retail jobs for the holidays and slowly building up their cupcake clientele. They plan to devote their full energy to Simply Cupcakes shortly after the first of the year.
Meanwhile, they're keeping a deliberately low profile, baking for selected events to let people get a taste of what makes Simply Cupcakes so special.
"Basically, we're a gourmet cupcake business," Heckinger said. "We use 100 percent natural ingredients, nothing processed."
One thing that sets Simply Cupcakes apart from its competition, she said, is that it offers mini cupcakes that most people can eat in two or three bites, along with standard-size and extra-large cupcakes that are about twice the normal size.
Heckinger and Redus hope to open a storefront before too long, but until then they're working out of that commercial kitchen on Falkenberg Road and serving customers with delivery and pickup by appointment only. Delivery is free within a 10-mile radius for orders of a dozen cupcakes or more.
For information, call (813) 404-8322, visit the Simply Cupcakes of Tampa page on Facebook or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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