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Restaurant News

  1. Local restaurants have fun with April Fools' pranks

    Food & Dining

    Z Grille closing? Datz going Chinese? A Burger King perfume?

    Not so fast.

    Courtesy of Datz
For April Fool's Day, Datz in Tampa will be transformed into a Chinese restaurant.
  2. Rowdies Den sports bar to debut in downtown St. Petersburg

    Food & Dining

    ST. PETERSBURG

    When Midtown Sundries closed abruptly in November, rumors began to swirl: It would become a steakhouse, a Tilted Kilt, Bill Edwards' next downtown project. This last rumor turned out to be true, and on Saturday the Rowdies Den debuts, just in time for his North American Soccer League team's first …

    The new Rowdies Den restaurant in St. Petersburg, formerly Midtown Sundries, is one block west of Al Lang Field, where the team plays. The entire space has been retooled and will feature craft brews and Rowdies-themed food.
  3. Review: PieTopia's pies please; prices and service don't

    Food & Dining

    ST. PETERSBURG

    The Fourth Street N corridor is splitting at the seams with new restaurants and there are more to come (Pericos, Casita Taqueria, Fresh Kitchen, Daily Eats). There's already a lot of pizza (Tour de Pizza, Flipper's, Westshore, Paisano's, Noble Crust, Goodfella's, Pizza Hut, Papa John's). Which is …

    Customers dine at the new PieTopia at 5226 Fourth St. N in St. Petersburg.
  4. Arson at Zorba's in Tarpon Springs brings back memories, good and bad

    Fire

    TARPON SPRINGS — More than 30 years ago, an arsonist broke into Zorba's nightclub on a Monday night, poured kerosene throughout the property, and ignited one of Tarpon Springs' gems of Greek nostalgia.

    The interior of Zorba’s was declared a total loss after the March 18 arson. The Tarpon Springs club was closed at the time and no one was hurt, police said.
  5. McDonald's tries menu makeover with 'Create Your Taste' (w/video)

    Retail

    WESLEY CHAPEL — Who's up for building a sexy new Quarter Pounder, the longtime blue-collar thug on the McDonald's menu? You know, pretty that sucker up a bit. Maybe some guac, garlic sauce, caramelized onions, all on a lettuce wrap and presented to you via perky tableside service.

    Keisha Durand, center, uses a touch screen kiosk Wednesday with her father, Dominique Durand, left, and mother, Catherine Durand, to order food at a McDonald’s in Wesley Chapel. Customers can use a giant iPad-like screen to order speciality menu items.
  6. New Tampa Riverwalk segment gets pop-up bar, family fun for weekend

    Events

    Five Tampa mayors, a pop-up bar and a family fun zone will welcome the ribbon cutting for the Kennedy segment of Tampa's Riverwalk this weekend.

     Runners make their way down the Tampa Riverwalk in 2014.
  7. Besito Mexican prepares for April 8 opening in West Shore

    Retail

    TAMPA

    The candle wall is already flickering with 150 electric votives, but banquettes still need to be placed and the cobblestone patio is yet to be laid. The hours are ticking by as WestShore Plaza anticipates the April 8 debut of Besito Mexican. The Palm steakhouse location closed quietly last year — too …

    Besito Mexican opens in April in WestShore Plaza in Tampa. “This is white tablecloth — but not high end,” Florida partner Stanley Goodman said Monday at the restaurant.
  8. Here's where to eat along the route of St. Petersburg's Grand Prix

    Food & Dining

    With a full day at the Grand Prix in St. Petersburg, you'll need to refuel. Here are some restaurants and bars within walking distance of the track.

    400 Beach Seafood and Tap House

    400 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg

    (727) 896-2400

    400 Beach Seafood and Tap House.
  9. New Besito Mexican restaurant comes to WestShore Plaza

    Business

    With its ingredients imported from Mexico, handmade artifacts from Oaxaca and a wall adorned with 150 candles, Besito Mexican in WestShore Plaza is a monument to the love and respect for ancestry and heritage.

    WestShore Plaza’s newest restaurant addition, Besito Mexican, intends to offers an authentic Mexican dining experience.
  10. Bern's is Florida's only finalist for 2015 James Beard awards

    Food & Dining

    On Tuesday, the James Beard Foundation announced this year's finalists for its annual culinary awards, commonly referred to as the Academy Awards of food. In the entire state of Florida, only one restaurant made the cut: Bern's Steak House.

    The only Florida finalist, Bern’s Steak House was named in Outstanding Wine Program category.
  11. St. Petersburg creates Sun Racer as official cocktail of Grand Prix weekend

    Bars & Spirits

    ST. PETERSBURG — It starts with Bacardi 8 Rum, then follows through with Bols Orange Curacao, fresh lime juice, almond syrup and a big Florida orange slice. Shaken, not stirred. Behold, the Sun Racer, official adult beverage of St. Petersburg's Grand Prix.

    St. Petersburg Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin picked the Sun Racer, official cocktail of this year’s Grand Prix. 
Courtesy of 
St. Petersburg
  12. Review: Food catching up to spectacular setting at Tarpon Turtle Grill & Marina

    Food & Dining

    TARPON SPRINGS

    The Turtle continues to evolve. For years it was Jack Willie's Tarpon Turtle, a shambling good-times place that went a little light on the culinary niceties. Then in 2013 it was bought by William Hotaling and wife Christine Macedonio and transformed into Billy's Tarpon Turtle, a step up but one that …

    Richie Brescia serves lunch at Tarpon Turtle Grill & Marina in Tarpon Springs on Thursday. Dining, from left, are Pat Hollen, Tom Dalton, Bee Meadows and Russ Meadows.
  13. Tampa's annual Cuban Sandwich Festival features Miami competitors, new category

    Events

    YBOR CITY — Ilya "Ben" Goldberg has always considered himself a bit of a rebel, but when it comes to his now locally famous Cuban sandwich, he's a traditional kind of guy.

    The Stone Soup Company’s winning Cuban sandwich features Tampa Cuban bread, ham, pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, mustard and, last but not least, Genoa salami.
  14. Spring Hill's new Gator's Dockside offers a menu as big as its namesake

    Business

    SPRING HILL — Even before they leave home, diners might do well to peruse online the voluminous menu offered at Gator's Dockside, one of the newest and most spacious restaurants to tempt Spring Hill's palate.

    In front of a 7-foot-tall mounted alligator, Tom and Mary Trinosky of Spring Hill praise Gator’s Dockside for its fast service.
  15. Fire at Zorba's in Tarpon Springs investigated as arson (w/video)

    Fire

    TARPON SPRINGS — A fire that ripped through a popular club in the Sponge Docks district is being investigated as an arson, authorities said.

    Capt. Rick Kenny of Tarpon Springs Fire Rescue, center, and Tarpon Springs police Detective John Diebel collect evidence from the scene of Wednesday’s fire at Zorba’s.