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Noble Rice and new restaurant from C House team to open at Sparkman Wharf

Three new restaurants have signed leases at the Water Street Tampa development.
Three new restaurants have signed leases at Sparkman Wharf, the sprawling outdoor food and entertainment complex that's part of the Water Street Tampa development.
Three new restaurants have signed leases at Sparkman Wharf, the sprawling outdoor food and entertainment complex that's part of the Water Street Tampa development. [ JONES, OCTAVIO | Tampa Bay Times ]
Published Jan. 27
Updated Jan. 28

Three new restaurants will open at Tampa’s Sparkman Wharf, developers for the sprawling outdoor food court and entertainment complex announced Wednesday.

Noble Rice, the Battery and BurgerFi have all signed commercial leases at the downtown property, according to a news release from Strategic Property Partners, the team behind the multibillion-dollar Water Street Tampa development.

“Sparkman Wharf has become a thriving destination in Tampa, complemented by a growing business hub,” said Susan Martin, the vice president of retail and place management for Strategic Property Partners. “Chefs and restaurateurs seek out this vibrant waterfront park to showcase their new creations and people throughout the city know to come here for Tampa’s most innovative dining concepts.”

Unlike many other food concepts at the outdoor plaza, the new restaurants will occupy sit-down restaurant spaces, not shipping containers.

Noble Rice, from owners Eric and Adriana Fralick, will serve as an expansion of their popular Hyde Park restaurant of the same name, which closed at the onset of the pandemic. (The owners remodeled that space and opened Koya, a high-end omakase spot, in its place last year.) The new 100-seat restaurant will feature a modern Japanese menu with sushi, ramen, yakitori and omakase options as well as an outdoor seating area and a full bar focused on Japanese whiskey and sake.

The Battery, from the founders of Seminole Heights restaurant the C House, will occupy a 4,000-square-foot space, described as a “refined-yet-comfortable” restaurant, bar, lounge and boutique event space. According to the release, the restaurant is planned as a sister concept to the C House and will feature a menu heavy on “fine bourbon, exquisite wine and classic bites.” It will include private dining room spaces, a full-service bar, outdoor seating and a takeout window for those looking to get their food to-go.

Wednesday’s news follows several recent additions to the waterside attraction, including the barbecue restaurant Murph’s BBQ, which opened earlier this month, and a second location for Ybor City Southern-inspired spot 7th + Grove, which is making its debut this weekend as 7th + Grove South. Chef and restaurateur Noel Cruz recently said he will be opening an offshoot of the Sparkman Wharf pizza spot the Corners at the bottom of the Heron, the luxury apartment building that’s also a part of the Water Street Tampa development.

Related: What does 2021 look like for Ichicoro's Noel Cruz? Busy, and different.

Of the three new additions, BurgerFi is the only national chain, although the “better burger” concept’s owners are based in Florida. The Sparkman Wharf opening will mark the company’s first downtown Tampa location. (There are BurgerFi franchises on S Howard Avenue in Tampa as well as St. Petersburg, Seminole and Trinity.)

Along with news of the restaurant plans, Coldwell Banker Realty, the national residential real estate brokerage firm, signed a lease for a 3,214-square-foot office space at the mixed-use development.