Monday, February 19, 2018
Business

Taco Bus opens a stop in Brandon

Rene Valenzuela has seen the long lines four times before Monday. He was prepared for a similar reaction when he opened his fifth Taco Bus location this week, expanding to Brandon at 301 S Falkenburg Road, just north of Adamo Drive.

"It was crazy," Valenzuela said. "It was like, 'Wow.' You never get used to it. I feel incredibly lucky and happy and humbled by Brandon's response."

East Hillsborough patrons lining up expecting to taste something similar to Valenzuela's Plant City restaurant, Taqueria Monterrey, received something unlike the ultra-authentic bistro food. The latest Taco Bus, with an outside patio on the site of a former concrete plant, holds true to what people have come to expect from the bus fare.

"(Taqueria Monterrey) is a totally different concept," Valenzuela said. "It's a tiny restaurant with more ethnic items. Everything is different. Even the service is different."

The Taco Bus experience, which had its original Seminole Heights location featured on the Food Network's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, the Travel Channel's Man v. Food Nation and the Cooking Channel's Eat Street, is one where diners can expect a full meal and a drink for about $10, Valenzuela said. He also points to the vegetarian options on the bus: tofu, vegan steak, beans made without lard and rice made without meat stock.

The Brandon location took more than a year to scout and six months to complete. It features a large parking lot to accommodate the area's commuters 24 hours a day Thursday through Sunday, a new alternative to late-night dining in the community. It is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday.

The popular tacos start at $2.99 and Valenzuela is thankful for what he called a "tremendous response" to the opening.

Comments
Sting nets arrests of more than 20 ‘brazen’ unlicensed contractors in Pinellas

Sting nets arrests of more than 20 ‘brazen’ unlicensed contractors in Pinellas

DUNEDIN –– The unlicensed contractors answered calls to perform electrical, plumbing and other types of work at a home since Saturday. But the workers had no idea that Pinellas County Sheriff’s deputies posed as homeowners.Since Saturday, deputies ar...
Updated: 18 minutes ago
Report: Winn-Dixie parent company could close 200 stores

Report: Winn-Dixie parent company could close 200 stores

Bi-Lo LLC, a subsidiary of the same Jacksonville company that owns Winn-Dixie, could file for bankruptcy as soon as next month, according to a Bloomberg report.Parent company Southeastern Grocer is planning to shut down nearly 200 stores either befor...
Updated: 1 hour ago
New bus routes, times to start on Sunday in Hillsborough

New bus routes, times to start on Sunday in Hillsborough

TAMPA — More than a dozen bus routes in Hillsborough County will have new times, paths and stops starting Sunday. The changes come almost four months after the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority rolled out an entirely new bus network, scrap...
Updated: 1 hour ago
The small gun shop that sold the weapon to the alleged high school shooter ‘closes indefinitely.’

The small gun shop that sold the weapon to the alleged high school shooter ‘closes indefinitely.’

The aftermath of the horrific mass shooting at Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School has led to the closure of one small business.According to the Miami Herald, the owners of Sunrise Tactical Supply, the Coral Springs, Florida shop that auth...
Updated: 3 hours ago
St. Petersburg set to rename main library after President Obama

St. Petersburg set to rename main library after President Obama

ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor Rick Kriseman is set to announce that the city’s main library will be renamed after former President Barack Obama.The announcement that the facility will be renamed after the nation’s first African-American president has been t...
Updated: 3 hours ago
On deck in Rays ballpark quest: Tampa Bay’s business community

On deck in Rays ballpark quest: Tampa Bay’s business community

TAMPA — Columbia Restaurant owner Richard Gonzmart says he’s ready to put his checkbook where his heart is when it comes to supporting a Tampa Bay Rays move to Ybor City.So is the investment fund for the founding family of Ashley Furniture. So, it ap...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Next phase for the Tampa Armature Works: co-working office space

Next phase for the Tampa Armature Works: co-working office space

TAMPA — The mixed-use rebirth of the old Tampa Armature Works warehouse is proceeding in stages. First up: last month’s debut of the new ballroom, followed closely by the opening of more than a dozen vendors in the Heights Public Market food hall.YEA...
Published: 02/19/18

Open-mic night at Pilars is a hot spot for Disney talent

WINTER GARDEN — At the end of the day, when the tourists are gone, Disney performers head out to their favorite spot to keep on singing after their shifts are over. Every Thursday, they perform at open-mic night at Pilars, a Winter Garden martini bar...
Published: 02/18/18
Here’s how to separate the fund raisers from frauds among gofundme pages

Here’s how to separate the fund raisers from frauds among gofundme pages

Gofundme.com pages proliferated almost as soon as cops took Nikolas Cruz into custody after Wednesday’s 17-death massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. Donors must parse the funding pages from the fraudulent.Read More: 17 dead,...
Published: 02/18/18
Suffolk tops off Manor Riverwalk project

Suffolk tops off Manor Riverwalk project

Building contractor Suffolk topped off the north tower of its Manor Riverwalk project on Friday.The luxury rental community will replace the old Tampa Tribune building at 202 S Parker Street. Once complete, the project will include an eight-story wat...
Published: 02/16/18
Updated: 02/18/18