Tarpon Bend flagship location closing after helping revitalize a hip urban block

Bartender Tia Azzara at Tarpon Bend (200 SW 2nd Street) in Fort Lauderdale.
Bartender Tia Azzara at Tarpon Bend (200 SW 2nd Street) in Fort Lauderdale. Photo by Joshua Prezant

Tarpon Bend, the popular fish, burgers and brew destination has announced it will close its flagship restaurant at 200 SW Second St. in Fort Lauderdale’s thriving Himmarshee district on Saturday.

The Coral Gables branch on newly-renovated Miracle Mile will remain open as the sole Tarpon Bend.

South Florida.Com reports that the Broward location, opened since 1999, is closing because its parent company, the Restaurant People, sold the space to a real-estate development group, which has as-yet undisclosed plans for the spot.

The restaurant, with its loft-like decor, live music performances and hip urban clientele, drew hearty lunch-time crowds of hungry workers to the area. At nights, the eatery would often serve as a pre-theater attraction for crowds attending touring Broadway shows or concerts at Broward Center for the Performing Arts a few blocks away.

In June, the Restaurant People plans to open Township, a beer garden/restaurant, on Andrews Avenue and many of the same elements, including members of its staff, will define the new joint.

As for Saturday, Tarpon Bend isn’t throwing a goodbye bash — “it’s kind of sad,” after all — but expects a lot of regulars to turn out for one last Sizzling Seafood Kettle, Dolphin Reuben or Orange Dreamsicle drink.