Social's Johnny Ciani becomes partner at The Bricks in Ybor City

The former Social owner and manager joins Bricks as operating partner.

click to enlarge IN THE BRICKS: St. Petersburg's Johnny Ciani is the new operating partner for the Bricks of Ybor. - Arielle Stevenson
Arielle Stevenson
IN THE BRICKS: St. Petersburg's Johnny Ciani is the new operating partner for the Bricks of Ybor.

After the sudden closing of St. Petersburg's Best of the Bay-winning Social bar and restaurant, owner and manager Johnny Ciani had to regroup. Recently, he'd alluded to a possible project across the bay from his St. Petersburg home. Tuesday, Ciani announced that he'd be joining ranks with Skatepark of Tampa/Bricks owner Brian Schaefer as the new operating partner for Schaefer's Bricks of Ybor bar and cafe.

Ciani told CL Tuesday that he plans on revamping the menu with "very local, very organic, as much as possible." Look for locally-centric beers on tap, too.

"Especially in Ybor, there are too many good beers nearby not to have local on tap," he said. Menu changes won't come until after the Skatepark's 20th annual Tampa Pro contest. "Definitely don't want to ruffle any feathers by changing the menu too quickly."

The Bricks had been growing its own herbs in three rooftop Earthboxes.

"I am going to focus on restoring the rooftop garden and making it an actual full garden," Ciani said. "Everything we can grow in season, we will grow up there. Basil, mint, tomatoes, peppers, whatever. It'll be 10 times as big as it is now."

He plans on using vertical planters (like the ones found at Pelagia Trattoria).

"Brian is giving me a lot of support on this," Ciani said. "It's not a complete facelift, just want to brighten the area."


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