HYDE PARK — Manhattan SoHo style has arrived in Tampa's own SoHo with the opening of menswear boutique London Philips on Howard Avenue just north of Bayshore Boulevard.
Married co-owners Sasha Fruitticher and Tampa native John Yodzis display shirts, slacks, shorts, T-shirts, swimwear, sunglasses and other accessories, featuring such labels as Gant Rugger, Jack Spade, Billy Reid and Shipley & Halmos.
"Classic but contemporary, business and date wear, but not passing fads," said Fruitticher. "Ties but no suits. In the fall, we will have blazers. That's about as dressy as we'll be."
Fruitticher previously worked in marketing for the Tampa Bay Bucs; Yodzis is executive vice president of Dow Electronics "and loves clothes," adds his wife.
The store aims to replicate a traditional men's club decor, with dark leather seating and a ready bar of complimentary craft beer, bourbon and wine. The name combines the city whose haberdashery inspires the couple and John's middle name. "And I added an 's' … for style," she said.
London Philips, at 1413 S Howard Ave., is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Visit londonphilips.com or call (813) 699-4423.
West Shore cafe has a sharing mission
A second Inside the Box cafe expands Metropolitan Ministries' tasty social enterprise to the West Shore district with this month's opening in the Westshore Center near Boy Scout Boulevard.
"The landlord did the buildout and purchased the equipment for us," said Cliff Barsi, who started the original Tampa Street location in January 2012. Graduates of the homeless shelter's culinary arts program or Uplift U staff both restaurants, working toward self-sufficiency in food-prep and chef jobs.
"With a $1 million renovation of the building," Barsi said, "they wanted something special. They believe in the mission, and they like the food quality."
That mission — using the proceeds from each meal sold to pay for a meal for a person in need — has provided more than 140,000 meals to date.
Baristas will serve Kahwa coffee starting with the breakfast menu at 7 a.m., switching to lunchtime soups, sandwiches, pastas, pizza and desserts. "Our chicken and waffle sandwich is very popular," Barsi said.
Catering is another revenue producer for the faith-based organization. Sandwich platters and salads can be delivered anywhere in the Tampa Bay area. "It's a big portion of the business," Barsi said.
The South Tampa Chamber of Commerce invites the public to attend a ribbon cutting at 10:45 a.m. July 17.
Inside the Box Cafe & Catering is at 1715 N West Shore Blvd. It's open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit ITBcafe.org or call (813) 227-9248.
SoHo Juice Co. squeezes organically
Justin Basil turned his personal taste for cold-pressed juice into SoHo Juice Co., retrofitting the Howard Avenue storefront where he formerly consigned upscale fashions.
"We opened here after moving Mosh Posh to Kennedy Boulevard," said Basil, who with operating partner Ben Turek has concocted a menu of 14 cold-pressed juices. Seasonal specialties rotate as fresh organic produce is sourced.
What sets their juicery apart from the others sprouting up around town? Basil has a ready reply.
"Atmosphere, location and product," he said. "Our juices are fresh and taste amazing." His favorite, Chiaide, starts with a cold-pressed lemonade base, then adds chia seeds for protein and texture.
"My 4-year-old calls it crunchy juice," Basil said. "It's a good low-calorie meal replacement."
SoHo Juice Co., at 500 S Howard Ave., is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Visit sohojuicecompany.com or call (813) 253-2653.
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