Black Restaurant Week, which started last week and runs through Dec. 6, highlights Black-owned businesses, and for the first time, a Florida edition (Florida Black Restaurant week, FBRW) is focusing on venues across the Sunshine State—including nearly a dozen in Tampa Bay (see a list below).
But in addition to shining a light on Florida’s Black-owned kitchens—including restaurants in Orlando, Miami and Jacksonville—FBRW co-founder Derek Robinson told Creative Loafing Tampa Bay that the event also features virtual events and conferences to help Black entrepreneurs expand their businesses.
“No one else is doing it and that’s exactly what we’re doing. There hasn’t really been a voice for the Black culinary space from bartenders to caterers,” Robinson explains.
On Thursday, Dec. 3, FBRW hosts “The Dish”, a panel conversation moderated by Jasmine Styles (pictured), an award-winning journalist and anchor/reporter for Tampa Bay’s WFTS affiliate.
Joining Styles at Ybor City’s 7th+Grove will be CL contributor Alexandria Jones (who also created the documentary, “A Soulful Taste: Exploring Tampa Bay’s Black-Owned Food Scene”), plus restaurateurs from Mr. B’s Café (Calvin Jefferson), Ava’s Lowcountry Cuisine (Ava Evans) and 7th+Grove (Khalilaa McDuffie, plus doctors Jamaris Glenn and Vondalyn Wright).
A press release says the panel will feature “a conversation on what it takes to own and operate a Black-owned business in the Bay area, corporate responsibility during times of civil unrest/racial injustice and their respective business journeys.” Because of COVID-19, a limited number of free registration spots are available to see the panel in person (a live stream will be available via @7thandgrove on Instagram).
Black Restaurant Weeks follow federal, state, and local COVID-19 rules and regulations. Delivery and/or pickup are highly recommended. You can find the complete list of Florida Black Restaurant Week via blackrestaurantweeks.com. Local restaurants participating in Tampa Bay and Orlando include:
- 7th and Grove 1930 E 7th Ave., Ybor City. 813-649-8422
- Ava’s Lowcountry Cuisine 112 Flagship Dr. , Lutz. 813-702-3813
- COPA 1047 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. 727-623-9199
- Eggs Up Grill 3920 U.S. Hwy-301 N, Riverview, 813-800-3447
- Island Flavors and Tings 1411 49th St. S., Gulfport. 727-804-1849
- Kay’s Kitchen 11124 N. 30th St., Tampa, 813-368-5196
- Loaded 1901 Drew St., Clearwater. 727-271-2200
- M&R Cafe Southern Cuisine 3322 E Osborne Ave., Tampa. 813-234-2233
- Mr. B’s Southern Cuisine 3401 N Nebraska Ave., Tampa. 813-221-8111
- Shnookum’s BBQ 1575 S. Fort Harrison Ave., Clearwater. 727-754-8786
- The Cookie Monster 5226 S Dale Mabry Hwy. Tampa, FL 33611
- 1000 Degrees Pizza 13599 W Colonial Dr., Winter Garden. 407-554-3206
- Chef Shonari Services (Personal Chef) 321-460-2752
- Justin’s Caribbean Fusion Restaurant 6700 Conroy Rd. Unit 120, Orlando. 407-866-0270
- Kalalou Caribbean Bar & Grill 5160 S John Young Pkwy., Orlando. 407-286-5539
- Loyd Have Mercy 3434 S Washington Ave., Titusville. 321-269-1008
- Nessas Food Co. BBQ Restaurant 14 W McKey St., Ocoee 321-370-8172
- Plates on Deck 9640 Boggy Creek Rd., Orlando. 321-245-9277
- Seana’s Caribbean Soul Food 719 Good Homes Rd., Orlando. 321-800-6846
- The Conch Queen 3780 Ocoee-Apopka Rd., Apopka. 321-297-3519
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