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- 2014 - February - 13th -

Patel Brothers plans Baymeadows grocery

By Karen Brune Mathis, Managing Editor

The Chicago area-based Patel Brothers “Celebrating Our Food … Our Culture” grocery chain plans to open a Jacksonville store this spring at 9551 Baymeadows Road.

Director Rakesh Patel, a member of the family that owns the business, said once the permit is approved, construction would take three months to complete.

Patel estimates the store will be a $1 million investment, including construction, equipment and inventory. It would be the fourth Patel Brothers store in the state.

“The Indian population has grown. We are already in Tampa and we are in Orlando, so we said let’s take a look at the population (growth) and move on,” he said.

“We need a bigger population, and that is why we chose Jacksonville,” he said.

Patel expects to open the state’s third store in Sunrise, near Fort Lauderdale, before the Jacksonville store opens.

Patel, who handles the new stores and construction, said Jacksonville’s location was chosen because of its accessibility from Southside Boulevard and Baymeadows Road.

Patel Brothers, which started 40 years ago, has more than 50 stores in 19 states and Canada, according to the patelbros.com site.

No contractor is shown on a permit application for the $200,000 interior build-out of the 11,000-square-foot space in Baymeadows. Architectonics of St. Petersburg is the architect.

Plans show produce areas, display cases, rows of shelving, a stock room, a cooler and freezer, checkout stations and a cooking demo counter to offer daily samples.

The website says the mission of Patel Brothers “is to bring the best ingredients from around the world, right to your doorstep. With a wide variety of authentic regional ingredients, we strive to reconnect people with the familiar flavor of India.”

The family-owned business is the largest Indian grocery chain in the United States, it says.

Its history began in Chicago, when Mafat Patel, an engineer who worked for years in Chicago factories, met Ramesh Trivedi, who was interested in selling his Indian grocery business.

Patel’s brother and sister-in-law, Tulsi and Aruna Patel, invested in the venture.

“Even with Chicago’s growing Indian population, local grocery stores did not offer the ingredients to make a traditional Indian meal,” says the website.

In September 1974, Tulsi and Aruna Patel opened the first Patel Brothers store and the company has been operating since.

When the flagship store was renovated in 2007, it offered new features such as a takeout area with prepared entrees and breads, a wider variety of frozen and ready-to-eat items and a pickle bar. The Jacksonville store is designed with a pickle bar as well.

Patel Brothers created limited liability companies for its four Florida stores, starting with Patel Brothers of Tampa LLC in November 2008 and Patel Brothers of Orlando LLC in March 2012.

Patel Brothers of Sunrise Florida LLC was registered Dec. 9 and Patel Brothers of Jacksonville LLC on Dec. 30.

Rakesh Patel said the Jacksonville store would operate 11 a.m.-8 p.m. daily and the hours would adjust according to customer needs.

He also said the shopping center will be renovated for Patel Brothers, which will lease several units that will be combined, and that the grocery stores typically attract more businesses.

“It becomes a ‘Little India,’” he said. “I told the landlord, once I am here, you will have more people coming in.”

Krispy Kreme moves forward on 2 shops

Krispy Kreme, which has a building permit in review for its Merrill Road location, filed site plans with the city for its next two shops – at 6250 103rd St. and 3814 University Blvd. W.

Each is shown as a 40-seat, 2,671-square-foot store with a drive-thru.

The 103rd Street site, a former Shoney’s, is about 0.9 acre and the University Boulevard property, a former Barnhill Buffet, is 1.3 acres.

The vacant buildings would be removed and a Krispy Kreme Doughnuts developed. Taylor & White Inc. is the civil engineer.

All are expected to be the new prototype Krispy Kreme stores.

Dunkin’ Donuts applies for 2 more, too

The city is reviewing permit applications for two more Dunkin’ Donuts shops, as well – new construction at 12709 Bartram Park Blvd. and a renovation at 7171 Philips Highway.

The Philips Highway project is a $150,000 interior remodeling of a 2,636-square-foot shop with 31 seats for Dunkin’ Donuts Coffee & More and its sister brand, Baskin-Robbins ice cream.

The Bartram Park project is a 3,500-square-foot building for a 2,100-square-foot, 35-seat Dunkin’ Donuts Coffee & More and a 1,400-square-foot unidentified retail tenant. It’s a $600,000 construction project.

Xtreme Kettle Corn plans Downtown store

The city approved tenant build-out at 42 W. Monroe St. for Xtreme Kettle Corn & Treat Factory. Morgan Services is the contractor for the 600-square-foot project at a cost of $4,000.

For more information, visit the Xtreme Kettle Corn & Pretzel Factory Facebook page.

Brooks Rehab partners with Unidine

Brooks Rehab announced that it has partnered with Unidine Corp., a national health care food and dining management company, to provide food service to its 43 rehabilitation centers statewide.

Brooks said it chose Unidine because of its “fresh-food-only method and from-scratch cooking pledge.”

It said Unidine works with nutritionists and doctors to create healthy meals that improve overall patient experience and includes the “Puree with Purpose” program in which chefs recreate “the look of delicious meals with pureed food for patients suffering from dysphagia and related problems.”

Boston-based Unidine has operations in 170 facilities across 20 states.

Publix OK’d for Normandy work

The city approved the $550,000 renovation of the Publix Super Markets Inc. store at 7749 Normandy Blvd. by McIntyre Elwell & Strammer General Contractors Inc.

Publix will remodel the 45,170-square-foot store, one of at least nine Publix locations in Duval County being renovated.

Moe’s to reopen in Jacksonville Beach

Moe’s Southwest Grill plans to reopen its Jacksonville Beach location on Third Street at 11 a.m. Tuesday. Moe’s renovated the restaurant at 2400-107 Third St. S.

On reopening-day Tuesday, customers can take advantage of a “Pay What You Want Day” and make a donation of any amount in exchange for their meal. Proceeds will benefit Ponte Vedra High School and Fletcher High School.

The renovation includes a Coca-Cola Freestyle soda fountain that is touch-screen operated, allowing consumers to choose from more than 100 regular and low-calorie beverage brands.

Moe’s in Jacksonville Beach will be open from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. daily

Licensed to serve

Duval County Tax Collector Michael Corrigan issued a business license for:

• Bob’s Famous Bar-b-q Pit, to Brian Baker, 5013 Soutel Drive.

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