Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Restaurants

Dining news: More poke coming, Frogman Feast raises money for SEALs and Gold Star families

FUNDRAISER: FROGMAN FEAST

Last year, the first celebrity chef charity event called Frogman Feast raised more than $12,000 for Navy SEALs and their Gold Star families. Ken Bowen is spearheading the effort again this year from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday at 3 Daughters Brewing in St. Petersburg. This year’s chef lineup includes Tyson Grant of Parkshore Grill; Jeffrey Hileman of Locale Market/FarmTable Cucina; Chad Johnson of Elevage/Epicurean Hotel/Haven; Jason Cline of Poke Rose; Chris Fernandez of Red Mesa; Ray "Dr. BBQ" Lampe; Joshua Breen of Annata Wine Bar; Justin Sells, an Emeril Lagasse alumnus currently of America Neat; Antonio Casamento of Beccofino; and Swah-rey Dessert Bar.

This is a casual, family-oriented event where each chef has a station, offering unlimited food, with beer from 3 Daughters, wine from Chateau Ste. Michelle, spirits provided by Kozuba & Sons and American Freedom Distilling, and Tidal Boar Ginger Beer and fresh, cold-pressed juice from Swami Juice. The event is rounded out with live music, silent auction and raffle. All proceeds go to the cause, and the $75 tickets are transferable. There will be a few Gold Star Families in attendance, as well as some navy SEALs, Green Berets and other Special Operations warriors and their families. Tickets can be purchased at brownpapertickets.com/event/2699104 or via the Frogman Feast Facebook page.

COMING SOON: Poke Fish Tide to Table

You wild about poke? If not, check out Instagram to see what you’re missing. It’s everywhere. In cities like New York and L.A., poke concepts have popped up on nearly every corner over the last two years. The Hawaiian staple of chopped, seasoned raw fish is an easy way to eat healthy on the go. Poke Fish Tide to Table will be the first stand-alone fast-casual poke bowl concept in Tampa, opening in December at 4424 W Kennedy Blvd. near Lois Avenue. Right now in the Tampa Bay area, Poke Rose is a vendor at the Hall on Franklin, and there is Poke Café in Dunedin, but it’s a category that has been otherwise underrepresented in this area.

This will be counter line style, where you pick you base, fish, sauce and toppings. Owner Brad Matherne, who has owned several Smoothie Kings in the Tampa Bay area, first saw poke spots in his hometown of New Orleans and realized there was a void in the Tampa Bay market for a fast-casual poke concept. He spent time in New York researching the idea and decided that "build your own" was the way to go, so that the customer can see the colors and the freshness of ingredients.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: CUPCAKE SPOT

The cupcake craze has cooled somewhat, but the Cupcake Spot has persevered. This was the original cupcake-only confectionery specializing in gourmet cupcakes in the Tampa Bay area, opening a first location in South Tampa in 2007 and the following year opening its current location at 405 Central Ave. in downtown St. Petersburg. The St. Pete location plans to celebrate its 10th anniversary on Dec. 18. As an appreciation to the community for support over the last decade, the Cupcake Spot will be giving away 1,000 free chocolate and vanilla cupcakes, no purchase necessary.

"After purchasing this business three years ago, I have so much gratitude to all of our customers for helping us reach this milestone, said owner Daniel Delgado. "We want to share our success and appreciation with everyone."

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