Five Courses: Sunny, Sweet Peas & more

A fresh bill of food and drink news to tantalize your taste buds on both sides of the bay.

click to enlarge NEW KID ON THE BLOCK: The Blind Goat’s soon-to-open home on Henderson. - Chip Weiner
Chip Weiner
NEW KID ON THE BLOCK: The Blind Goat’s soon-to-open home on Henderson.

Last week, CL’s Chip Weiner talked with Perry Dube about The Blind Goat Food and Drink Co. , his new restaurant-bar (with business partner George Tsambis) slated to launch Friday, March 6, in South Tampa’s former Wine Bistro space at 4106 Henderson Blvd.

According to Dube, who honed his restaurant management skills in San Francisco, the spot’s name is a throwback to the time of speakeasies. Pizzas, overstuffed sandwiches and a full liquor bar with craft brews and cocktails inspired by American classics will be showcased.

Besito , a Long Island-based Mexican chain that's making its Florida debut in Tampa, will hold a grand opening from 6-9 p.m. Monday, March 23.

The upscale eatery — appetizers will run from $8-$15, and mains will be in the $9-$28 range — took over the old Palm Restaurant building at 205 WestShore Plaza. Items such as skirt steak tacos, chile rellenos and Swiss-style enchiladas are featured at Besito locations in Massachusetts, Connecticut and New York.

A ticket to the opening costs $50; proceeds benefit the Pediatric Cancer Foundation.

• After a long hiatus, downtown Dunedin’s Sweet Peas Cafe , popular among the parents-with-young-kids crowd due to its spacious, fenced-in outdoor dining area, reopened near the end of January.

The cafe at 434 Virginia Lane, which cooks up breakfast all day, serves a down-home lineup of flatbreads, sandwiches like grilled house-made raisin bread with brie, salads and more.

Pouring hot and iced beverages, the coffee bar is stocked with offerings for all ages, including Tahitian coffee, organic tea, beer, fruit smoothies and wine. Sweet Peas is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

Red Star Rock Bar, the Seminole Heights brainchild of Brian Bosco and Paul Medrano, premiered last month at 5210 N. Florida Ave. It’s nestled next to Mauricio Faedo’s Bakery, across the street from The Refinery.

The dive bar-style venture has been a long time coming for the neighborhood. Bosco was planning for it even before his beloved Domani Bistro & Lounge was devastated by a fire last year.

Paintings of rock icons adorn the interior’s walls, complementing artist Matt Callahan’s hard-to-miss rock ‘n’ roll legends mural outside. Additional features of the modestly sized bar, which carries craft beer, wine and liquor, include a large patio around back, darts and a multi-game arcade table.

Sunny Pizza has opened in the USF Tampa area, operating next door to Boba House at 2770 University Square Drive. The shop offers Chicago pizzas, buttery-crusted “Florida-style” pies, and specialties such as the Western, with sausage, onion, bacon and barbecue sauce.

The pies incorporate fresh ingredients and are topped with crafted-in-house tomato sauce. Calzones, baked cheese fries, pepperoni rolls and Pokie Sticks (cheese bread finished with garlic butter) are also featured on the menu. 
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