ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando’s Thornton Park neighborhood is about to get a new spot for tacos, burritos and more Mexican cuisine.
F&D Cantina is set to open its second location at 617 E. Central Blvd. later this year.
“With all the growth that’s going on down there (in Thornton Park) — in particular, the demographic — we thought it was a perfect fit, and it was just something that was missing,” said Charly Robinson, CEO of F&D Restaurant Concepts.
Although this will only be the second location for F&D Cantina, this is far from the first expansion for the F&D brand. The first location — a gastropub called F&D Kitchen — opened up in Lake Mary in 2015. F&D also has a pizza concept, F&D Woodfired, with three locations — Orlando, Longwood and Winter Park.
Robinson himself is no stranger to growing a brand.
“I was CEO of several big companies. I was part of the Rain Forest Cafe group,” he said. “I’ve been doing this for a long time and I’ve run a lot of big companies and a lot of growth.”
The first F&D Cantina is in Lake Mary, though it is currently closed for repairs after a car drove through the front door.
“It happened at nine in the morning. It was an older woman. Thank God, nobody was there and she didn’t get hurt,” Robinson said. “(She) drove into the handicapped spot, and we think she just didn’t stop.”
The crash caused extensive damage to the restaurant. Robinson said they hope to reopen the location in mid-July.
As for the new location, he is hoping to open up by mid-September.
“It’s a matter of making sure that we’re having employees and all of our supplies show up and that also construction gets finished. So it’s kind of a blend of all those, but I don’t anticipate that we’re going to have a major issue,” Robinson said.
Robinson said his team plans to start hiring staff for the new location sometime in August.
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