There’s a new Tamiami in town — this time, in downtown St. Pete. On Dec. 14, a bar called The Tamiami took over 269 Central Ave., where Irish pub Crowley’s operated for years, with spirits, wine and a bunch of beers on tap.
The Tamiami carries a throwback vibe, thanks to its pinball machines and decor, including a mural of a bikini-clad brunette who might’ve found her photograph on one of those ever-so-Florida postcards back in the day. This laid-back blast from the past has a tribute to Christopher Walken that CL’s not mad at, either.
Darts, a jukebox, TVs and regular live music round out the entertainment elements of the bar, though the plush red barstools should help patrons overstay their welcome just fine. Either those, or the drink specials.
• In New Port Richey, Frenchy’s Pizzeria & Tavern has started to breathe fresh life into the former home of Lonzalo’s Pizzeria & Ristorante. A revamped menu is set to launch with the newbie’s grand opening from 7 to 10 p.m. Feb. 2, but a soft-opening celebration — doubling as a collection drive for the Humane Society of Pasco County — is also planned for Feb. 1.
The family-friendly Frenchy’s promises something for everyone at 3100 Town Ave.
• The Bay area’s latest Taco Bus is taking shape in South Tampa. Neighbors with the Outback & Carrabba’s Express that premiered earlier this month, the coming-soon location for the homegrown Mexican restaurant brand has signage up at 4308 W. Gandy Blvd.
• Much different than what the late Engine Rose showcased, loose-leaf teas and kratom are now the Airstream's specialties at 2901 Central Ave. Part of St. Pete’s Grand Central District, Steep Station serves kava and “mixes” — or combo drinks like the signature Carlo’s Blend with matcha, lemonade, mango and more — in addition to kratom and tea from around the world.
St. Pete is the second outpost for Steep Station, which debuted its first location in Tampa.
• And, sadly, as this food editor discovered on her way to pick up an early-morning coffee, World of Coffees & Tea closed last month. The crowd-pleasing Ybor City hangout served caffeinated beverages and all-day breakfast, plus beer and wine, to name a few menu items, at 1811 N. 15th St.
“Unfortunately, we feel the building is untenantable, and we can no longer operate under current conditions,” wrote World of Coffees & Tea in a Dec. 6 update to its Facebook page. “So it is with great regret that we must take this action so quickly. We hope to see everyone again soon and we thank [our] very valued customers for all their years of patronage.”
Here’s to hoping a another cafe is in the works.