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NEWS: Michelle Faedo’s 2nd location opening January 8th in Downtown Tampa

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Michelle’s Faedo is opening her second location of Michelle Faedo’s Tampeño Cuisine on Wednesday, January 8th, 2020 in Downtown Tampa at 601 East Kennedy Boulevard, Tampa, FL, 33602 inside the Hillsborough County Building.

The restaurants are an off-shot of Michelle Faedo’s On The Go food truck which has been in operation for years. The first location is located at the ENCORE! building not too far away from Downtown close to Ybor City.

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Deviled crab
Michelle Faedo's Famous Cuban featured with her food truck Faedo's on the Go
Michelle Faedo’s Famous Cuban featured with her food truck Faedo’s on the Go

Popular items on the menu include the Famous Traditional Cuban and deviled crabs that pay homage to Tampa’s rich food history. Like the Cuban Sandwich, deviled crabs were created by the immigrant communities in Tampa that existed during the cigar boom.

Faedo is an award-winner from the annual Cuban Sandwich Festival and is well-recognized for her Cuban sandwiches around the Tampa Bay area.

The opening hours for the location will be Monday through Friday from 7AM to 4PM.

City of Tampa Mayor, Jane Castor, is expected to be there at around 1PM to celebrate the occasion.

The County Building

Carlos Eats

January 10, 2020 |

NEWS: Armature Works hosting free viewing party for Downtown Tampa Lighted Boat Parade

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Armature Works continues to celebrate the holidays by offering a free viewing party for the Downtown Tampa Lighted Boat Parade on Saturday, December 21st, 2019 from 6:30PM to 9:30PM.

The free event will take place on the Riverfront Lawn just south of Armature Works along the Hillsborough River.

The annual parade has become one of Tampa’s signature holiday events featuring hundreds of festive aquatic vessels as the make their way down the Hillsborough River.

Guests are welcome to bring lawn chairs and blankets. The event is also pet-friendly.

Note: outside food, drinks, and coolers are not permitted at Armature Works.

Parking: Parking at Armature Works is free Monday through Thursday and Friday before 4PM, Saturday and Sunday mornings before 11AM. Parking at all other times is $ 5. In addition, there are over 400 street-side parking spots available. Valet is also available most event nights and weekends. For more information please visit armatureworks.com/parking.

Carlos Eats

December 18, 2019 |

Anise Global Gastrobar in Downtown Tampa permanently closing September 14th

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Anise Global Gastrobar announced via Facebook today that the Downtown Tampa cocktail bar will permanently close its doors on Saturday, September 14th, 2019.

The bar was one of the first craft cocktail bars to enter the Downtown Tampa corridor and a success story showing that a food truck can expand into a brick and mortar business.

Many of the minds behind the business have gone to other projects across the bay such as Station House, Renzo’s, and other spots. Anise has been a great spot to enjoy craft cocktails with a focus on supporting the local bartenders in town over the years.

It’s certainly a loss for the Downtown Tampa area, especially when Downtown Tampa is about to explode with growth.

You can continue to enjoy the food from Anise at The Hall on Franklin in Tampa Heights. Thank you to Anise for all the great evenings in Downtown Tampa.

Anise Global Gastrobar closing down Facebook post

Carlos Eats

September 1, 2019 |

NAAAP hosting one year anniversary rooftop party July 18th in Downtown Tampa

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The National Association of Asian American Professionals Tampa Bay (NAAAP) is celebrating their first anniversary on Thursday, July 18th, 2019 at Hampton + Home2 by Hilton Downtown Tampa from 6:30PM to 8:30PM. The event is being coined Rooftop Celebr*asian and is free to attend. Food will be provided by event sponsors including Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa, Rice N Roll, Bento Asian Kitchen + Sushi, On-A-Roll Sushi, and Tsunami Sarasota.

Participants are encouraged to bring their networking cards and enjoy food, drinks, and raffle prizes.

The mission NAAAP is “to collaborate with its communities to promote career advancement, engage in community service, assist in employment opportunities, enhance public awareness of our voice, and support businesses as it gives back to NAAAP members”.

Event name: Rooftop Celebr*asian

Venue: Hampton + Home2 by Hilton Downtown Tampa

Address: 1155 E. Kennedy Blvd. Tampa, FL 33602

Date & Time: Thursday, July 18th, 2019, 6:30PM-8:30PM

Facebook RSVP: http://www.facebook.com/events/387080268822366/

Get tickets: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/rooftop-celebrasian-tickets-63526009003

Carlos Eats

July 6, 2019 |

NEWS: Recess Pizza grand opening set for June 22nd in Downtown Orlando

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The culinary team behind Orlando Meats is having their grand opening for their latest concept, Recess Pizza, on Saturday, June 22nd, 2019.

The team took over the culinary kitchen at Orange County Brewers back in May just two blocks south of the Orange County Courthouse on the corner of Orange Avenue and Jefferson Street in Downtown Orlando.

Culinary Director Eliot Hillis and Head Chef Seth Parker have developed an alkaline dough for their pizza crust that is being paired with their high-quality cuts from Orlando Meats and cooked in a wood-fire oven.

Some pizzas menu options include:

  • Kya: pork belly, halloumi, chimichurri, crema
  • Tammi: pulled pork, slaw, cheddar, spicy white stuff
  • Beverly: spicy pork, broccolini, ricotta, mozzarella, pomodoro
  • Steph: ham and cheddar, blue cheese, garlic puree
  • & more

The menu will offer more than pizza with hot sandwiches and salads available. Brunch will be available on the menu and launch during the opening. Online ordering will be available on Slice and delivery on Uber Eats and Grubhub.

Limited-edition pizzas will be available for the opening as well as beer specials at the brewery. A raffle will be held at the opening with an array of local partners. The event will be held during regular business hours from 11:30AM to 11PM.

Find out more at recesspizza.com.

Recess Pizza. 131 N Orange Ave, Orlando, FL 32801. (321) 204-9616.

Carlos Eats

June 19, 2019 |

NEWS: Hidden Star Tiki Bar opening June 28th in Downtown Tampa

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Hidden Star Tiki Bar is opening June 28th in Downtown Tampa inside Anise Global Gastrobar. Anise has been serving high-quality cocktails as well as gastronomical food fare with an Asian twist in Tampa for years and is the creation of Xuan Pham Hurt.

This is her fourth creation in Tampa following her North Star Eatery at Hall on Franklin and her Stinky Bunz food truck that started it all.

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When asked what inspired this tiki bar to be created, Hurt told me, “It never fails that whenever I travel to different cities, I always seek out their best tiki bars. We felt that the residents and visitors of Downtown Tampa would appreciate their very own tiny oasis in the middle of the city. Tasty tropical beverages with whimsical garnishes can make any day feel like a vacation. We are fortunate to have the space to provide an intimate setting for the creation of innovative and playful cocktails made with our highest standards”.

Hurt will work with Sean O’Connor, who she describes as a local tiki trademan, Christina Gilson, Anise Beverage Director, Justin Gray, United States Bartenders Guild Veteran, and the rest of the Anise bar team to develop the cocktail menu. They want to provide modern rifts on classic favorites that Hurt feels will exceed everyone’s expectations.

Hidden Star will only be open Friday and Saturday nights from 7PM to 2AM. Guests will check-in at the Anise host stand and will be escorted to the hidden entrance once seats become available.

Due to the limited space, reservations will not be taken nor will estimated wait times given. Random chances for expedited entry will be announced via email newsletters and social media pages.

Hidden Star guests can expect an original menu of 7 to 8 elevated tiki cocktails and a few bar snack that they can enjoy in an intimate setting while surrounded by other enthusiasts. Beer, wine, mixed drinks, and a full dining menu will continue to only be offered in the main dining room at Anise.

Service is expected to start on the weekend of June 28th.

Find more information and sign-up for updates at aniseglobal.com.

Carlos Eats

June 17, 2019 |

New Years Eve Tiki Fest 2019 at The Birchwood (Downtown St. Pete)

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The Birchwood located at 340 Beach Drive Northeast in Downtown St. Pete is having a two-level New Year’s Eve Tiki Fest to celebrate 2019. The party will run from 8PM to Midnight.

Guests will enjoy a gourmet buffet and open bar throughout the party. The Grand Ballroom will have a live band with a DJ on the Birchwood rooftop bar. During the event the bar will be private and only open to party guests.

Tickets cost $ 135 per person (plus taxes and fees) and are very limited, so act quickly if you’re interested. All guests will enjoy a complimentary champagne toast at midnight. Guests must be ages 21 or older.

Buy tickets: http://bit.ly/2SqsDGv

Dress code: Tiki fun.

Carlos Eats

January 1, 2019 |

Restaurant News: Sparkman Wharf opening November 30th in Downtown Tampa

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The highly anticipated Sparkman Wharf is opening on Friday, November 30th, 2018 where Channelside once stood.

This is part of the Water Street Tampa project that aims to rebuild and rethink Downtown Tampa, adding much needed green space and a focus on Tampa’s waterfront views.

Several restaurateurs have signed on to the project including Ichicoro owner Noel Cruz, Chef BT Nguyen of Restaurant BT, Chef Ferrell Alvarez of Rooster & the Till, and more.

One might even think of it as an outdoor food hall complete with an upcoming outdoor beer garden called Fermented Reality Beer Garden.

Carlos Eats

October 24, 2018 |

Ichicoro ANE in Downtown St. Pete impresses

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I crossed the bridge last weekend for the Distant World’s Final Fantasy concert at The Mahaffey Theater and needed a bite to eat after. Geniabeme raved about Ichicoro ANE when I last saw her at Keel & Curley for U-Pick Strawberries the day before so I had to check it out for myself.

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Ichicoro ANE is located downstairs from Station House in Downtown St. Petersburg. The inside is beautifully done and has plenty of seating both in the bar and in the restaurant which is a huge difference between this location and the original in Seminole Heights.

I can best describe it as an Izakaya or Japanese pub. The best way to think of most of the menu items is similar to the concept of Spanish tapas. Ramen is also on the menu but there are a number of Japanese appetizers and dishes that we decided to try during our visit.

The dim lighting and ambiance is masterful and takes the best parts of the original location’s foundation.

You’ll find wooden decor throughout and an open kitchen that is unlike most restaurants in Tampa Bay. The music sets the mood for a perfect and intimate night out with friends or for a chill date. I was in love with the atmosphere.

The food was also a winner. The meal began with a gyu bao bun. Spicy and flavorful with a gochujang mustard inside. The price was the standard for Japanese and Asian bistros in Tampa Bay these days ($ 7). I appreciated the complexity of this dish compared to average pork belly bao.

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After that I decided I needed something a little filling since I skipped lunch and went for the Tonkatsu ($ 10). This dish was cooked practically to perfect. There was a slight chew in the middle, but it was minor enough that is didn’t cause the dish to falter. The ends were perfectly crispy. They used bulldog sauce which I also use at home (the only proper way to serve this dish as approved by Japanese cooking tv shows and documentaries). It was beautifully presented and the cabbage underneath was a nice bit of greens.

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The Smokey Yucca Korroke was also enjoyable a nice starch to be enjoyed during the visit. Many of the dishes on the menu are traditional Japanese pub food and there are also some hard to find items such as Okonomiyaki which I certainly want to try in the future.

Our waitress was chill and friendly and I am happy with all the seating choices at Ichicoro ANE. She didn’t rush us to make decisions and also was quick to put in orders. It’s completely different from the rushed environment at the Seminole Heights location and I like it much more for that. I dine more for experience than because of necessity or because I’m in a rush. I like to savor every moment.

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For drinks it was hard to make a decision and I finally went with The Chocobo Lure (in honor of Final Fantasy). Imagine my surprise when the drink was inside a ramune glass which shook me with excitement. The drink features umeshu, yuzu cordial, Cappelletti, Aperol, Velvet Falernum, Agnostura and plum bitters. I normally don’t like plum wine but this one was enjoyable.

In the future I would like to certainly try more of the Japanese whiskey selections. The matrix charts for spirts seem to be the rage lately in restaurants.

I didn’t even dent the fish or meat menu and I hear the wagyu is delicious, but I’ll have to do that another day. Ichicoro ANE leaves plenty of things to try and an incredible environment to enjoy it in.

I’m impressed and I’ll be back soon and I recommend you also make a trip if you find yourself in St. Petersburg.

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P.S. Make sure to check the photobooth in the entrance. It’s pretty neat!

Restaurant Name: Ichicoro ANE

Cuisine: Japanese, Asian

Neighborhood: Downtown St. Petersburg

Address: 260 1st Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701

Phone Number: (727) 300-0281

Website: http://www.ichicoroane.com/

Menu: http://www.ichicoroane.com/menu/

Carlos Eats

January 31, 2018 |

Bento Cafe opening in Downtown St. Petersburg

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Popular Asian eatery, Bento Cafe, is planning to open their first Tampa Bay location in Downtown St. Petersburg in the Spring of 2018. According to St. Pete Rising the location will feature 80 seats along with outdoor sidewalk tables.

It makes sense considering how much Downtown St. Petersburg has grown over the years, but it is definitely a little disappointing to all the USF – Tampa students that have waited years for a location after frequenting locations at the University of Florida, University of Central Florida, and even University of North Florida. Apparently Bento is also looking for 2 locations in Tampa.

Bento Cafe has been hinting at a Tampa Bay location for over 2 years on Facebook and seems to be expanding rapidly across the state over the next year or so. Hopefully in the future Bento will look at the USF area as a potential future investment area.

Bento is known for their fast-casual Asian environment with inspirations from Japanese, Thai, Korean, and other Asian cuisines. 

Their sushi rolls are quite popular and their sashimi rice bowls are a personal favorite as well as their Spicy Cream Chicken. In addition, Bento also sells bubble tea and other popular Asian drinks.

Visit Bento online at http://www.bentocafesushi.com/


Carlos Eats

July 31, 2017 |

Hotel Bar now serving Downtown Tampa

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Downtown Tampa has a new spot now open called Hotel Bar. The bar is a classy establishment that serves libations created by famous hotels around the world and also gourmet food.

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During my visit I tried the Hotel Nacional made with cana brava, giffard peche, pineapple, and lime. The cocktail comes from Hotel Nacional de Cuba in Havana, Cuba. You’ll find other cocktails on the menu from countries including England, Japan, France and a nice selection from New Orleans.

The food menu includes lamb tartare, wagyu ragu, roasted lemon chicken, and prime rib as well as finger food such as deviled eggs and pita chips with various dips. Late night diners can enjoy a late night fare menu.

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The bar and restaurants fits in perfectly with the growing community around Downtown and offers a new spot to go out for a group outing or drinks after work. The ownership comes from Fly Bar & Restaurant who has been serving Downtown Tampa for years.

I am looking forward to big things to come from Hotel Bar and all of Downtown Tampa as our city keeps growing.

Click to view slideshow.

Photos via Hotel Bar instagram

Name: Hotel Bar

Address: 200 N. TAMPA STREET, TAMPA FL 33602

Phone: (813) 533-2650

Hours: Open daily / 4PM-3AM

Website: http://hotelbartampa.com/


Carlos Eats

December 6, 2016 |

Downtown Lakeland Food Truck Rally tonight!

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Full disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Tampa Bay Food Truck Rally. I have been compensated for my time and writing. Tampa Bay Food Truck Rally works with more than 100 food trucks and books them for events, corporate and private catering, among other services.

Tonight (October 13th) is the monthly Downtown Lakeland Food Truck Rally from 6PM-9PM located at Munn Park – 201 East Main Street Lakeland, Florida 33801. The event is sponsored by Grow Financial Federal Credit Union, Downtown Lakeland, Auto-Owners Insurance, Fairchild, Addison and McKone Insurance Inc., and BioLife Plasma Services- Lakeland Florida Avenue.

Facebook RSVP: http://www.facebook.com/events/982383938539184/

Click to view slideshow.

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Participating food trucks:


Carlos Eats

October 13, 2016 |

Downtown St. Petersburg sees uptick in complaints about homeless

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Some downtown business owners in St. Petersburg are asking, ‘Where did all the homeless people come from?’

  • Business owners say they’ve seen more panhandling, public urination
  • St. Pete officials believe it’s the result of new ownership downtown
  • The infamous ‘cheese grater’ building was purchased a few weeks back  

Lately, many owners have been complaining about a noticeable increase in panhandling, public urination and overall harassment from more homeless people.

"Seems like they walk around the block," said barbershop owner Schott Mitchel. "Maybe the police will pull up into the park, and then they scatter.

"And then you’ll see them walk around the block a few times," he said. "They don’t know what to do, and then maybe they’ll sit down in front of your business, which isn’t good for business.”

City officials say the recent closing of the’Cheese Grater’ building and its accompanying parking garage may have something to do with it.

Cliff Smith, St. Petersburg Veterans Social and Homeless Services Director, says, "It’s been sold and fenced off, and so a lot of people we believe were living in the garage there (are) out on the street panhandling, just causing all kinds of issues, hurting our businesses."

Within hours of the complaints, city officials moved on the concerns by making police more visible in the area and reaching out to homeless advocates to encourage those displaced to take advantage of the shelters and other services provided to the homeless.

Smith emphasized that being homeless is not a crime in St. Petersburg, but panhandling, public defecation and drug use are, and won’t be tolerated.

Bay News 9 – news

July 29, 2016 |

Special Forces demonstrations today in downtown Tampa

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If you are in the downtown Tampa area Wednesday, don’t be alarmed if you seeing armed soldiers storming the area.

  • Special Forces Operations exercises today in downtown Tampa
  • Public invited to view the exercises throughout the day at Harbor Island
  • Part of the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference

A Special Forces Operations team is conducting exercises around Harbor Island in downtown Tampa this afternoon.

The soldiers will be in helicopters, scaling building, bridges and boats. Forces from about 15 countries are taking part in the exercises.

Troops will be taking on mock enemies and rescuing ‘hostages’ next to the Convention Center. Soldiers also will be in ATVs and Humvees.  

The annual demonstarion focuses on fighting terrorism in an urban environment. Teams from the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines are participating.

The demonstrations, taking place throughout the day, are open to the public. Officials are advising the public that the best viewing spot is on the northern tip of Harbor Island and the Harbor Island bridge.

The display is a part of the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference, which is taking place this week at the Tampa Convention Center.

Bay News 9 – local-news

May 25, 2016 |
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