Friday, December 15, 2017
Business

Wild game, Asian tacos capture Palma Ceia; FITNiche fits gait, Portofino Jewelers relocates

PALMA CEIA — Lion tacos. Kangaroo tacos. Ostrich tacos. Gazelle tacos.

Rattler, gator, bison and snapper turtle, too.

The exotic twist on fresh-Mex cuisine will surely capture attention when Taco Fusion opens Dec. 17 on Bay to Bay Boulevard near MacDill Avenue.

The "safari tacos" are made of game meat purchased from approved suppliers, said owner Ryan Gougeon.

"We buy from animal farms where they are raised just for food consumption," he said. No rare or endangered animals will be served. Prices will be determined by market factors.

Gougeon launches his creative concept, featuring 24-hour weekend service, in a former fast-food Indian spot. He also owns the popular James Joyce Irish Pub in Ybor City.

A fusion of Asian flavors jump off the menu: duck tacos, General Tsao's burrito and pad thai chimichanga. Lobster can be ordered on nachos, tacos and fruit salad.

Tamer choices abound: steak, chicken, filet mignon, pork and shrimp are served in salads, tacos, burritos and enchiladas .

But a taco made with ghost pepper, said to be the "second hottest chili pepper in the world," requires a waiver. Restaurant manager Brad Barnett grows the peppers in his garden.

A Point Break burrito probably should require one, too. Billed as "five pounds of epicness" for $24.99, Gougeon says "it's massive. Probably will take four grown men to eat it."

There are plenty of American offerings for the less adventurous, including wings, Angus beef burgers and paninis.

Family deals — a whole suckling pig or a couple of whole chickens — feed three to five people. Dine in, take out or call for nearby home delivery.

Breakfast — bagel sandwiches, omelet burritos and such — will be served from 5 a.m. to 11 a.m. to attract the neighboring Starbucks clientele.

Taco Fusion, 3409 Bay to Bay Blvd., will be open 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday; open 24 hours Friday and Saturday; and 9 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday. Visit Taco-fusion.com or call (813) 902-TACO (8226).

Gait analysis for runners' fit

FITNiche's sales crew begins each customer's visit with a gait analysis to "see every nuance of the foot's natural rolling motion," says Richard Wills, who plans a Dec. 10 opening in Hyde Park Village.

Information from that biomechanical assessment takes the guesswork out of shoe shopping, says Wills, owner of FITNiche stores in Lakeland and Wesley Chapel. The inventory and much of the staff from a previous Clearwater store have been relocated to Hyde Park.

Individual analysis, using slow-motion video of a customer walking or running on a treadmill, helps match "unique needs to shoes that should be both more protective and comfortable."

"A lot of people don't realize running shoes are engineered for different gaits," said Wills, who has run the Hawaii Ironman triathlon. "We carry 150 styles, all the major brands."

FITNiche, 722 S Village Circle, will be open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Visit FITniche.com or call (813) 304-2162.

Portofino Jewelers relocates

Full-service Portofino Jewelers now sparkles on Henderson Boulevard, near Lois Avenue.

"This neighborhood has better access, less competition and shows off the new merchandise better," said owner Giuseppe Maniscalco, who relocated after nine years on S. Dale Mabry Highway. He is offering more affordable sterling silver jewelry, he said, in addition to a collection of 14- and 18-karat yellow and white gold jewels, some imported from Italy.

Custom design work is a specialty, adds Maniscalco, a Tampa jeweler for 30 years. Other services include jewelry and watch repair as well engraving, pearl restringing, ring-sizing and gold purchasing.

An accountant in Alessandria della Rocca, Sicily, prior to immigrating in 1981, Maniscalco shares his love for his roots by writing a weekly column about the Italian community for La Gaceta trilingual newspaper.

Portofino Jewelers, 4135 Henderson Blvd., is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Visit PortofinoJewelers.com or call (813) 253-3058.

Send new business tips to Amy Scherzer at [email protected] or (813) 226-3332.

Comments
Pack your bags: 107.3M Americans to set holiday traveling record

Pack your bags: 107.3M Americans to set holiday traveling record

A record-breaking number of Americans are expected to travel this holiday season.The American Automobile Association projects that 107.3 million Americans will pack their bags and travel more than 50 miles by planes, trains, automobiles and other mod...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Local widowers say baby powder caused their wives’ cancer

Local widowers say baby powder caused their wives’ cancer

Two Tampa area widowers whose wives died of ovarian cancer are suing Johnson & Johnson, joining nearly 5,000 other plaintiffs across the country who blame their illness on the daily use of the pharmaceutical company’s talcum powder.Bryan Isa’s wife, ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Jabil’s fiscal results top Wall Street expectations

Jabil’s fiscal results top Wall Street expectations

ST. PETERSBURG — Jabil Circuit Inc. beat Wall Street expectations for both profits and revenue Thursday.The St. Petersburg-based contract electronics manufacturer — one of Tampa Bay’s biggest public companies — posted fiscal first-quarter earnings of...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Soccer store opens on Gunn Highway, just in time for the World Cup

Soccer store opens on Gunn Highway, just in time for the World Cup

Even though the United States Men’s soccer team didn’t qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, that hasn’t diminished local fans’ excitement about the upcoming international event.Ariel Martinez, owner of Best Buy Soccer and Lacrosse, has already receiv...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Tampa chamber names first companies for minority business accelerator

Tampa chamber names first companies for minority business accelerator

TAMPA — Four firms in marketing, construction and secure cash logistics will be the first to go to through a new Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce program designed to help black- and Hispanic-owned companies grow their businesses through two years of...
Updated: 9 hours ago
FCC votes down Obama-era ‘net neutrality’ rules

FCC votes down Obama-era ‘net neutrality’ rules

NEW YORK — The Federal Communications Commission has voted on party lines to undo sweeping Obama-era "net neutrality" rules that guaranteed equal access to internet.The agency’s Democratic commissioners dissented in the 3-2 vote Thursday.The FCC’s ne...
Updated: 11 hours ago
From Crystal River to Brooksville, branch out to shop on these unexpected main streets

From Crystal River to Brooksville, branch out to shop on these unexpected main streets

You don’t have to stare at a greeting card to picture a bustling old main street lined with decorated shops and lampposts. Historic small-town shopping districts are easy to find, and more charming than Walmart. Beyond the downtowns of St. Pet...
Updated: 11 hours ago
American Social booming on Harbour Island

American Social booming on Harbour Island

HARBOUR ISLAND — Downtowners, conventioneers, hockey fans, concert-goers and anyone hungry for waterfront dining are discovering American Social Bar & Kitchen on Harbour Island. Panoramic views, accessible boat slips and walkability to Amalie Arena a...
Published: 12/14/17
A healthy dining option opens in Downtown Tampa

A healthy dining option opens in Downtown Tampa

SOUTH TAMPA— Vale Food Co., a health food restaurant, hopes to make its mark on the bay area foodie scene with the opening of its first location in Tampa.In 2014, Sunny Ilyas was a Florida State student trying to find an affordable, healthy meal for ...
Published: 12/14/17

Tampa Bay is above average in minority homeownership

Tampa Bay ranks 22nd among the nation’s 45 largest metro areas in the percentage of minority homeowners. According to Abodo, an online apartment marketplace, 46.2 percent of minorities in the bay area own their homes, which have an average value of $...
Published: 12/14/17