Business

After a brief run, this taco shop in Bradenton has closed its doors

Fuzzy’s Tacos closed its location on 14th Street West in Bradenton without notice after just 19 months in business.
Fuzzy’s Tacos closed its location on 14th Street West in Bradenton without notice after just 19 months in business. myoung@bradenton.com

About 19 months after opening its doors in Bradenton, the franchisee of Fuzzy’s Tacos has closed the doors at 4808 14th St. W.

The business celebrated a grand opening in June 2017 but had officially opened a month earlier.

There isn’t a lot of information about why the restaurant closed and owner David Hunt hung up the phone when contacted by the Bradenton Herald. The only sign on the door indicating there was an issue was a Nov. 6 notice advising a trivia contest had been canceled.

Spyros Marinos, an authentic Greek food consultant for All Greek Street Food, which opened in February two spaces down in the Fountain Plaza, said Fuzzy’s closed about two weeks ago.

“There were rumors that a new franchisee owner from Tampa came down to check out the place,but when he saw it, he said no way, from what I’ve heard,” Marinos said. “I see someone almost every day come and take something out of there but never see anything going in.”

Spyros Marinos, who comes from Ioannina, Greece, guarantees that the food you’ll find at the new All Greek restaurant in Bradenton will be authentic.

Marinos couldn’t speculate on why Fuzzy’s closed, but he acknowledged it’s taken every bit of 2018 to build a clientele at his restaurant.

“It can be slow,” he said. “But we are just now starting to grow.”

If reviews are any indication as to what happened at Fuzzy’s, Yelp reviewers gave the restaurant three out of five stars, but some four-star reviewers had issues with the food.

Fuzzy’s closes MY photo 2.jpg
Fuzzy’s Tacos closes its 14th Street West location in Bradenton and the local franchisee owner is offering no explanations. Mark Young myoung@bradenton.com

One reviewer praised the franchise but had issues with its location and the quality of food and service.

Foodies who are members of the Bradenton Herald's Manatee Eats Facebook group had similar thoughts. Kiki Allen wrote, “We had issues there a few times so stopped going.” It only took one visit for Steve Morrison, who said his experience was “sub par” and didn’t go back.

Reviewers and Manatee Eats members all seem to agree the chain’s University Parkway location is superior. It was the success of that restaurant that led Fuzzy’s Tacos corporate offices to offer a Bradenton franchise, which became the chain’s eighth Florida location. Fuzzy’s Tacos corporate headquarters did not return a call for comment.

The Fountains Plaza came under new ownership in October when the Evan Berlin revocable trust purchased the the plaza for more than $7.3 million.

Berlin did not immediately return a call for comment on the future of the location.

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