Gypster Bakery, Grassroots Kava, The Galley Coming Soon to St. Pete

2016 has been an inspired year for small business in the Burg. New concepts have added exceptional flavor and flare to our ever growing downtown area. Three new spots are set to enter the food/drink scene soon, and look to make a major impact in the coming year. All three should begin serving the Burg before the end of December. Keep these businesses on your radar:


Gypster Tea and Bakery

When you’re in the Burg, there are a variety of spots for you to meet the needs of your sweet tooth; however, we’re more than happy to see savory concepts continue to pop up in the area. Gypster Bakeries macaroons, cookies and pastries already have us salivating.


These homemade bits of “awesomeness” are set to enter the Tampa Bay Market scene this December. For owner Sharlei Wilson, starting this business and sharing her gifts with the local community is a dream come true. You can follow Gypsters progress on Facebook and Instagram. Stay tuned for updates on which market you can their baked goods at first.



Grassroots Kava House

The always exciting EDGE District will soon add kava to its menu. Grassroots Kava house will offer kava, locally roasted coffee and tea at 957 Central Avenue.  Their kava is made by hand daily using only water and fresh kava root.

So what is kava? From Grassroots:

Kava is a drink made from the roots of a native South Pacific pepper plant. The drink, known to produce relaxing effects, has been a ceremonial and social centerpiece to many south Pacific people in places such as Hawaii, Tonga, Fiji and Vanuatu.

This concept was two years in the making, but CEO and Co-founder Kenn Hoyumpa has been in the business for nearly 20 years. He helped manage the first kava bar in North America, Nakava, in Boca Raton before taking a trip to Vanuatu in 2006 to study the complex supply chain for kava.

Hoyumpa also served as the managing partner for Bula Kafe. Stay updated on Grassroot’s progress by liking them on Facebook.



The Galley

A new full liquor tavern will soon open just a short distance from Williams Park downtown. The Galley replaces Reno’s Downtown Joint at 27 4th Street North. The concept was created by Burg natives Pete Boland and Ian Taylor. The exterior of the building, which faces St. Pete’s historic open air post office, features an eye-catching mural by Sea Cat Murals.

The 2,000 sq. ft. space will house a restaurant offering Tampa Bay-inspired dishes. Diners can expect Cuban sandwiches, stone crab and grouper to be main features on the menu. The space will feature tons of TVs to catch the big game and a projector for major events.

As the small business renaissance continues to take over the Burg, we’re happy to see more concepts open near our gorgeous downtown park. The Galley should be open before the end of the month. Follow them on Facebook for updates on their progress.

Written by Brian Bailey

Brian Bailey is the founder and editor of I Love the Burg and That's So Tampa. In addition to regular contributions to each blog, he's been featured as a commentator to Bay New 9, The Tampa Tribune, The Tampa Bay Times, The Tampa Bay Business Journal and The Business Observer as well as national outlets including The Huffington Post and The Wall Street Journal. Bailey also serves as the CEO of, a Tampa Bay-based digital agency.