New location, new hours, "same energy, same great food,'' said Ceviche owner Joey Orsino, 29, describing the restaurant's fifth location. Ceviche reopened Jan. 17 in the former Circles restaurant near the intersection of Azeele Street and Armenia Avenue in South Tampa. "We closed out the old place on South Howard Avenue on New Year's Eve, right on schedule,'' Orsino said. Extensive renovations opened the dining room to the bar area, added a stage for live entertainment six nights a week and turned an adjacent pottery studio into a private party room for up to 100 guests. Nightlife hovers around a fountain on the landscaped patio. The kitchen stays open late; happy hour specials are poured from midnight to 3 a.m. Previously only open for dinner, Ceviche adds a lunch service starting Monday. The dinner menu features 110 traditional Spanish tapas items, including Orsino's favorite, tuna ceviche. On Tapas Tuesday, sangria and 30 kinds of tapas are $4 each. Ceviche, at 2500 W Azeele St., will start serving weekend brunch beginning Sunday and will open daily at 11 a.m., closing at midnight Sundays and Mondays, and at 3 a.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Visit ceviche.com or call (813) 250-0203.
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New bar all the Ragin'
You can bet they'll be watching the Super Bowl at Ragin' Sports Grill, while eating grilled chicken, ribs and burgers. Jim Cheatham, the restaurant's founder, opened the grill Wednesday in Tampa's Channel District, the third location in the chain and the first with a full-service bar and sports theme. The first two Ragin' Grills opened last year, at 1719 W Kennedy Blvd. and 9100 Fourth St. N in St. Pete. A large circular bar, dubbed the ChrisCalloway Red Zone, centers the 200-seat restaurant, named for former NFL player Chris Calloway, a partner in the business. Memorabilia from his career is on display. More than 22 televisions line the walls, including a 120-inch projection screen. Ragin' Sports Grill, at 1120 E Kennedy Blvd., is open Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to midnight. Delivery is available within 3 miles. Call (813) 223-9000.
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Craving Detroit dogs?
A new restaurant at 8824 Fourth St. N in St. Pete pays homage to one of Detroit's trademarks. No, not cars or Motown music. Luke's Coney Island, a 75-seat spot, is all about the Coney dog. This hot dog in a natural casing topped with chili is a nod to the Coney Island birthplace of all hot dogs, but it's actually a Michigan thing. The chili is made with meat and peppers but no beans and no tomatoes. "We have people who come in here and they hug me and hug my wife and thank us for a real Coney dog," said Joe Lukason, who runs the 1,800-square-foot restaurant with his wife, Kathy. He hopes to open two more Luke's Coney Island eateries in Tampa Bay in the next 18 months. It serves nine other kinds of hot dogs and sides. The restaurant is full of automotive memorabilia, and booths are upholstered in red with black piping or black with red piping, same as a classic car. The walls are filled with pennants from Michigan schools.
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Salt Rock's plans: Cantina, beer room
Baystar Restaurant Group (Salt Rock Grill, Island Way Grill, Rumba Island Bar & Grill, etc.) is on the move again. A recent conversation with Frank Chivas revealed that Salt Rock Grill is gearing up for changes - its Salty Seas bar will undergo a conversion to a craft beer room by spring. Chivas is even looking into brewing Salt Rock's own beer. And a new project called Marina Cantina is slated to open late this year at the city marina in Clearwater Beach. Necessitating a full build-out, exact opening dates are not yet know for this new casual taqueria.
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BGR hits South Beach
Tampa Bay burger newcomer BGR the Burger Joint will be represented at the South Beach Wine and Food Festival's annual Burger Bash hosted by Rachael Ray on Feb. 24. The sandwich they are featuring is their Wellington Burger, an umami bomb of prime, dry-aged beef topped with roasted mushrooms, caramelized onions, garlic, mustard seed and blue cheese, served on toasted brioche a signature mojo sauce.