New Tampa Nibbles & Biz Bytes
Fushia To Become KTV Asian Café
Those of us who appreciate New York-style Chinese food will be happy to learn that the activity you may have seen in the same Shoppes of Amberly plaza on Amberly Dr. in Tampa Palms where our office is located is merely an expansion and impending name change for the existing Fushia Asian Bistro (903-6705). My friends Sharon and Charlie Wang, the owners of Fushia, have taken over the adjacent former “Kidz Club” location and have transformed it into KTV (as in “Karaoke TV”) Asian Café, an even more impressive-looking restaurant with six private karaoke “salons” for 5-30 people.
Sharon and Charlie have brought in a new chef with plenty of experience in New York City for KTV Café, and have added authentic rotating dim sum (appetizer) trays where you can sample dozens of New York-style dim sum specials and then hang out after dinner in one of the karaoke salons. We were getting ready to participate in a special preview event at KTV Café as this issue went to press, so look for a more complete update soon.
Peabody’s Goes Smokeless!
No, that’s not a misprint! After years of requests from yours truly and many of its other regular customers, Peabody’s Billiards (972-1725), which also is located next to our offices in the Shoppes of Amberly plaza, is now a smoke-free environment! Yes, smokers are still welcome on the covered outdoor patio, but smoking has been banned inside Peabody’s for several days now, as the popular pool hall and entertainment venue concentrates more on its food — including the unveiling of an all-new, expanded menu (like outstanding new hand-cut fries!) to go with the best wings in New Tampa (in my opinion), great NY-style pizza and even a quality sirloin steak special on Friday nights. The eye candy and TVs are still everywhere, so please visit the new, smoke-free Peabody’s soon and please tell them we sent you!
More Restaurant Comings & Goings
Three of the eateries we told you about last issue — Baja Fresh Mexican Grill (388-6898), the adjacent iCream Café (both located next to The Hungry Greek on BBD) and PDQ Fresh Tenders, Salads & Sandwiches on S.R. 56 (directly in front of Sam’s Club) have all opened and are already attracting interested customers.
I have to admit that PDQ’s crispy chicken tenders and hand-cut fries, zesty dipping sauces and amazing shakes are new guilty pleasures of mine, while Baja Fresh’s wahoo (not a misprint) tacos are a little less guilt-inducing. And, iCream’s space-age approach to providing the coldest ice cream, frozen yogurt and shakes, plus hot pudding desserts, all with all sorts of mixins and toppings, has to be tasted to really be believed.
Hopefully, the third time will be the charm for the location that previously was home to Santo’s Pizza & Pasta and, more recently, Drake’s Place in the Pinebrook at The Grove plaza (on S.R. 54 west of I-75 in Wesley Chapel). The new restaurant is still, for now, also being called Drake’s Place, but is under new ownership with a new chef, karaoke and bike nights and a whole new, friendlier attitude.
And, in the bad news (at least for me) department, both the delicious Boardwalk Frozen Custard on S.R. 56 and the Aja Wiregrass restaurant and night club in the Shops at Wiregrass mall, which attracted a nicely dressed mix of everyone from 20s to 60s, had closed before our press time. We had not yet heard anything about possible replacements for either eatery.
Ribbon Cuttings & Mixers
It seems that there are fewer of these free events in the summer, but we still got to attend a few before our press time.
Among the most recent was a Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting at the new A&A Boutique (528-8765), located at 2653 BBD Blvd., Suite 108, in the same plaza as Baja Fresh & iCream Café. Twin 16-year-old sisters and boutique owners Allie and Amber Malott and their mom Lori call A & A Boutique, a “high-end couture consignment shop for men and women.”
A & A features designer items by Versace, Burberry, Salvatore Ferragamo and Louis Vuitton and the sisters, who hope to be fashion designers themselves one day, say customers can expect to pay 50-75 percent less than what’s being sold on retail shelves, and consigners can look forward to a 50-80 percent return on items consigned and sold — and promise to have items you won’t be able to find at the Shops at Wiregrass or International Plaza.
We also recently attended a free after-hours mixer at Kelly Mothershead’s A Focus on Fitness (344- 3325) studio, which was celebrating two years in the same location, where Kelly is part of Star Ryan’s Star’s Organic Spa Group (2136 Ashley Oaks Cir., in the Seven Oaks Professional Park; 973-8787). Around 100 people attended and enjoyed great wrap sandwiches, fresh fruit and other healthy snacks, free raffle prizes...and maybe a glass of wine.
A few days before that mixer, the Insurance New Tampa (33845 S.R. 54, Suite 103; 435-6350) office of independent agents Bob Black and Susan Casey in the new Brookfield Professional Plaza on S.R. 54 (just a couple of miles west of Zephyrhills) hosted a Wesley Chapel Chamber ribbon cutting also attended by at least 60 or 70 people.The office provides home, auto, motorcycle, boat, RV, life, business & health insurance & financial services.
New Tampa Rotary Installation Banquet
Congratulations to the 2012-13 officers and directors of the New Tampa Rotary Club, which meets Fridays at 7 a.m. for breakfast at Tampa Palms Golf & Country Club (TPGCC). The new officers were introduced during the club’s Installation Banquet, where outgoing president Matt Palmer swore in new President Dennis Loomis, President-Elect Peter Gambacorta, VP Robert Garofano, Secretary Brice Wolford, Treasurer Joe Rutherford and Sgt.-At-Arms Bob Thompson.
Also sworn in at the banquet at TPGCC on June 15 (by 2011-12 District Gov. Alan Feldman) was new Rotary District 6890 Governor and charter New Tampa Rotary member Tom Wade and Gary and Joyce Gunter, who were sworn in as the 2012-13 Asst. Governor-at-Large and District Secretary, respectively.
Anista Adds Aesthetics Expert
Anista New Tampa, the urgent care center located in the Anista Plaza (across from Muvico) at 18101 Highwoods Preserve Pkwy., is proud to announce the addition of medical aesthetic procedures, including injectable neurotoxins such as Dysport and Botox, as well as all dermal fillers, performed by Nurse Practitioner and National Injectable Trainer Jenny Molloy, ARNP.
Ms. Molloy graduated with top honors from USF’s nationally ranked College of Nursing, where she earned the Clinical Excellence Award and was inducted into the National Nursing Honor Society. She’s also a member of the Amer. Academy of Medical Esthetic Professionals. For more information or appointments with Jenny Molloy, call Anista at 972-2900.