Ybor City restaurant and nightclub 7th + Grove is expanding to bigger digs this month with an offshoot of their popular Southern-inspired spot opening at Tampa’s Sparkman Wharf.
7th + Grove South will join the Channelside Drive outdoor food court by the end of this month, possibly as early as mid-January, restaurant spokeswoman Tiffany Hubert said.
The restaurant opened in 2019 and was recently featured in a national ad during an NFL game as part of Pepsi’s “Dig In“ campaign, which seeks to highlight and encourage diners to support Black-owned restaurants. The new spot takes over the shipping container kiosk formerly home to BT in a Box, which closed in spring 2020 after the statewide shutdowns caused by the coronavirus.
Hubert said the hospitality group that runs 7th + Grove had been considering the expansion for several months and that the al fresco dining setup at Sparkman Wharf was an attractive business model, given the current state of dining. (The Ybor City location only has a couple of seats outside.)
The new spot will serve an abbreviated menu of the flagship restaurant’s comfort food dishes, including shrimp and grits, jerk chicken collard green egg rolls, deviled egg salad and “handhelds” like the Afro Cuban sandwich, served on La Segunda bread. Fresh-squeezed juices, champagne and wine in cans will also be served to-go, Hubert said.
The opening isn’t the only shakeup taking place at the sprawling outdoor food court and entertainment venue. Boat Run Oyster Company, a boutique oyster shop and one of the project’s original food kiosks, closed this week and will be replaced by Murph’s BBQ, a barbecue concept from the same owners, SaltBlock Hospitality.