TAMPA — The Tampa Bay Lightning has tapped Cigar City Brewing to bring its Jai Alai, Guayabera and Florida Cracker beers to Amalie Arena as the team’s official craft beer partner.
“An iconic Tampa brand," Lightning chief executive officer Steve Griggs said in an announcement of the multi-year partnership.
Also, Cigar City’s annual Hunahpu’s Beer Festival is moving to Amalie Arena on March 13, 2020. The festival will mark the 11th anniversary of the event, which revolves around the once-a-year-release of Hunapu Imperial Stout, ranked as the 10th-best beer of all time by ratebeer.com.
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The partnership clears the way for the brewery to open The Cigar City Brewing Taproom just off the arena’s plaza and create what Griggs said should be “a signature downtown destination for Tampa residents and visitors alike.”
The taproom is scheduled to open during the upcoming hockey season in a space at the bottom of the Pam Iorio Parking Garage next to the plaza, though the taproom will extend onto the plaza. It is expected to be open for games, concerts and other events, as well as on some other non-event days.
“We will work together to contribute to the Tampa Bay community and elevate the fan experience at Amalie Arena," Cigar City Brewing chief operating officer Justin Clark said in a statement released through the team.
In an announcement unrelated to the Cigar City partnership, the Lightning said Tuesday the arena and Delaware North, the team’s food and beverage provider, have redesigned Amalie’s concession stands to offer grab-and-go foods at the counter, digital menu boards and better views out the windows.
Also, the team said Portillo’s was opening a new concession stand — selling Chicago-style hot dogs, chili and cheese hot dogs, fries (with or without chili and cheese), and Italian beef — outside section 310 at Tuesday night’s preseason home game against the Carolina Hurricanes.
Contact Richard Danielson at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 226-3403. Follow @Danielson_Times