Cider Press Gastropub soft opens in St. Pete, free brunch at 7th + Grove this weekend and more Tampa Bay foodie news

And the celebration of all-things vegan, Tampa Bay Vegfest, returns this weekend.

click to enlarge Cider Press Gastropub soft opens in St. Pete, free brunch at 7th + Grove this weekend and more Tampa Bay foodie news
7th and Grove/Instagram
Openings

Buzzed Bull Creamery What better way is there to keep cool than alcoholic ice cream? Buzzed Bull Creamery, a boozy ice-cream shop, is opening up its first Florida location on Nov.1 at 5220 Bridge St., which is at Tampa's Westshore Marina District. Buzzed Bull's website says there are over 30 nitrogen-infused flavors to play with that can be infused with alcohol that start at 5% ABV. Some menu highlights include "Death By Chocolate," made with chocolate, brownies, chocolate chips and chocolate sauce, which the company suggests you top with chocolate vodka, or the signature "Buzzed Bull," made with caramel, espresso, peanuts, whipped cream and paired with bourbon. The Cincinnati-based ice cream franchise has been expanding after it partnered with a sushi company back in 2019. As of now, Buzzed Bull has locations mostly across the South and Southwest, with one more Florida spot planned for Destin. 5220 Bridge St., Tampa. buzzedbullcreamery.com —Min Craig

Cider Press Gastropub A new vegan eatery with old school St. Pete roots is ready to make its debut in the Historic Kenwood district. The newly-renovated, 2,275-square-foot Cider Press at 3118 3rd Ave. N is nestled in a plaza next to Gateway Subs, Creative Grape and Back Alley Nails. With a brand-new menu and contemporary interior to match, the new-and-improved Cider Press is ready to be the go-to neighborhood bar and restaurant for all. It hosts its soft opening on Wednesday, Nov. 9 from 5 p.m.-9 p.m. After its debut, the new restaurant will be open from 5 p.m.- 9 p.m. on Wednesday-Thursday, 5 p.m.-10 p.m. on Friday, noon-10 p.m. on Saturday and noon-4 p.m. on Sunday for the foreseeable future. A long way from its raw vegan origins, Cider Press' new menu is full of hearty, pub-inspired dishes with a Southern-Cajun twist. Appetizers on its soft opening menu include fried jambalaya balls with a spicy Cajun sauce, bang bang "shrimp," pickle fries and soft pretzels, while sandwich options includes a Beyond burger, a buffalo chicken sandwich and its take on a shrimp po'boy—complete with bread shipped straight from New Orleans. 3118 3rd Ave. N, St. Petersburg. ciderpresspub.com

Closings

New Leaf Cafe A plant-based staple of North Tampa is getting ready to close, but its popular vegan sammies will see the light of day again soon. New Leaf Cafe at 11813 N Armenia Ave. will close its doors this weekend. After dishing out plant-based eats to the greater Carrollwood area for the past seven years, New Leaf Cafe's last day open is this Sunday, Nov. 6. “As the owner of New Leaf, I have agreed to join forces with Voodu Vegan Bistro at their new location, to help expand their menu and to promote their brand going forward,” the cafe posed on its Facebook yesterday. "I want to thank my loyal customers for their support over the years." Although the vegan cafe is closing its doors, it will still offer popular breakfast items at the soon-to-open Voodu Vegan Bistro, a fellow North Tampa plant-based restaurant. Voodu Vegan Bistro used to share a space with New Leaf Cafe, but is getting ready to open its own storefront elsewhere in Tampa, although a grand opening date isn't yet set in stone. New Leaf Cafe is known for its tofu scramble platters, breakfast burritos, chickpea salad sandwiches and Impossible burgers in addition to a wide variety of organic teas, coffees and smoothies—but only time will tell which dishes make their way onto Voodu's menu. 11813 N Armenia Ave., Tampa. newleafelementals.com

Coming Soon

Lunch Lady Sparkman Wharf's newest shipping container restaurant Lunch Lady opens at the end of this month, offering "creative alternatives to the boring ham and turkey sandwiches." Future customers can expect pressed sandwiches (on locally-sourced bread) alongside salads, juices, teas and more when Lunch Lady celebrates its grand opening in a few weeks. A press release says Lunch Lady's prices will range from $8-$14, and offer both vegan and vegetarian options as well. The new fast casual restaurant's logo was created by Tampa-based design studio Pep Rally Inc. and depicts a cartoon sandwich dressed up as a typical lunch lady with a ladle and hairnet—although Chef Ferrell Alvarez says not to be fooled by its silly name. "The menu at Lunch Lady translates well to any time of day and will offer delicious food with the same love and uniqueness that you can find at all of our concepts,” Alvarez explains in a press release. For the latest updates on downtown Tampa's newest sandwich spot—like its highly-anticipated grand opening date—follow its new Instagram at @lunch_lady_tpa. 615 Channelside Dr., Tampa. properhousegroup.com

Events

Tampa Bay Vegfest Tampa's Perry Harvey Sr. Park will be transformed into a plant-based wonderland for 2022's installment of Tampa Bay Vegfest—a celebration of all-things vegan. Taking place at 900 E Scott St. on Saturday, Nov. 5, Tampa Bay Vegfest features plant-based cooking demonstrations, a spread of vegan eats, local eco-friendly vendors and an interactive kids zone. This festival is about environmental, nutritional and ethical education just as much as it is about vegan eats. Several Tampa Bay-based organizations will be spreading their plant-based beliefs, as vegan cooking demonstrations will take place throughout the event. Saturday's event is free to attend, but registering for a free tickets via aftontickets.com is strongly encouraged, as it helps organizers get a better idea of what attendance will be. VIP packages are also available for $25 each and come with a goody bag full of eco-friendly goods, vegan snacks and entry into the festival's raffle. A few of the dozens of Tampa Bay-based vendors dishing out food and drinks at Saturday's festival include House of Vegano, Brazilian Fun Foods, Nah Dogs, Beech Kombucha, Cafe Hey, Southern Fried Vegan, Curious Cat Bakery and Oopsy Daisy Sweets. 1000 E Harrison St., Tampa. tampabayvegfest.com
7th + Grove’s free brunch this Saturday Most of us probably remember 7th + Grove's cameo during Pepsi's Super Bowl commercial last year, but the Ybor City restaurant is ramping up its partnership with the global brand. The Southern restaurant and lounge is teaming up with Pepsi for its annual "Dig In Day" event, a nationwide celebration of Black-owned businesses that brings free brunch to Ybor City on Saturday, Nov. 5. 7th + Grove's free brunch starts at 11 a.m. this Saturday and will feature a live DJ and a ton of Instagrammable photo opportunities. A press release says that this weekend's event will feature custom dishes, but folks can only hope a few favorites from 7th + Grove's daily offerings make their way onto the exclusive menu— which includes delicacies like Cuban egg rolls, catfish nuggets, deviled egg flights and over-the-top chicken and french toast complete with cream cheese icing and seasonal berries. Pepsi Dig In will cover 7th + Grove's tab between $2,000-$5,000, so you might want to get to get to Ybor City on the early side. 1930 E 7th Ave, Ybor City. 7thandgrove.com

ICYMI


TBBC co-owner will 'walk away' after employee walkout at Ybor brewery An Ybor City brewery is short-staffed and without one of its co-owners after alleged offensive comments led to several front of house employees quitting. News of the walkout at TBBC (fka Tampa Bay Brewing Co.) broke over the weekend on Reddit. The incident took place at TBBC's Ybor City location at 1600 E 8th Ave.—staffing at the company's sibling brewery in Westchase remains unaffected by recent events. Casey Rhymestine, a now former bartender at TBBC Ybor City told WTSP that up to five employees of the Ybor City brewery walked out on Saturday night after John Doble, now former co-owner of TBBC, allegedly told the manager "that if we hired more attractive bartenders the place would be making more money." David Doble, son of John Doble and TBBC's managing partner, addressed the situation via Facebook live on Monday, calling his dad's comments an "egregious event." In the 34 minute-long video, David apologized for his father's comments and commended the multiple employees that quit on Sunday, inviting them back to work if they'd like to return. Although David says that both of his parents are “walking away” from the family business, it's still unclear when they plan to financially cut ties with TBBC. David told Creative Loafing Tampa Bay that he is still unsure of when the process would take place. tbbc.beer/home

About The Author

Kyla Fields

Kyla Fields is the Managing Editor of Creative Loafing Tampa Bay who started their journey at CL as summer 2019 intern. They are the proud owner of a charming, sausage-shaped, four-year-old rescue mutt named Piña.
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