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It's noted: Asian eats on the way?

Nothing's confirmed yet, but a note taped to a door raises the possibility of Chinese cuisine and sushi for Davis Islands.

By By MICHAEL CANNING
© St. Petersburg Times
published July 19, 2002


CHINESE AND SUSHI TAKEOUT coming to Davis Islands? That's what the note suggests. It's taped to the door on a vacated storefront, once a part of Realtors Smith and Associates, which recently downsized at 215 E Davis Blvd.

Building co-owner Vince Palori confirms that an Orlando-based restaurant business is looking into the location. But he said it's not a done deal, and declined to give further details.

COLD STORAGE "CLOSED DUE TO WEATHER"? We're as skeptical as you are. But that's what the note on the door says, adding, "'til further notice. Sorry!"

A message on the door we do agree with says, "A downtown Tampa tradition since 1985." That's when Cold Storage Cafe opened in a small Zack Street storefront. The ensuing years brought locations on Florida Avenue, Kennedy Boulevard, and the final one at Tampa and Whiting.

Last December Cold Storage founder Naida Delaparte sold the business to Robert and Jennifer Chamoun. The place has been locked up for a few weeks now. From the outside, it still looks fully equipped and furnished. "Monday's specials" are posted on a blackboard by the front door.

Attempts to reach the Chamouns were unsuccessful.

Michelle Capitano, attorney for Cold Storage's landlord, the Radiant Group, won't discuss the cafe's status.

FREID'S FAMOUS DELI has been closed for about a year and a half. Before that, the squat pair of buildings at 2602 W Azeele St. was one of South Tampa's most formidable sandwich makers, Focaccia Mia.

An upscale catering business is negotiating to move in before Christmas, according to Jane Levin of Founders Group Commercial Brokers. She says the deal would include extensive renovations that would make the place "very attractive architecturally."

SHOPS AT SAGO: The Sago Internet Business Center, which occupies the former Roberds at Gandy Boulevard and Manhattan Avenue, has room to spare.

About 25,000 square feet. So the Founders Group is trying to lease out the space to businesses under the Shops at Sago moniker, Levin says. They hope to enhance the retail mix at the Gandy Marketplace Shopping Center, anchored by Winn-Dixie.

Sago Networks, a Tampa-based wireless Internet services provider, bought the 82,000-square-foot former Roberds building in January 2001.

PHEW! PANE RUSTICA reopened Wednesday after closing for a week vacation. How we got along without their blackberry tarts or pork po' boy paninis, we'll never know.

For those of you who look svelte in black T-shirts: A sign on the door says they're hiring.

- Do you know something that should be everybody's business? Call 226-3382, or e-mail citytimes@sptimes.com.

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