EXCLUSIVE — NewGate Capital Partners of Winter Park has announced a project that will fund the expansion of City Fire American Bar and Grill. NewGate DAVGAR Hospitality Fund LP will assist Central Florida restaurateur Manny Garcia to take the new concept national.
City Fire opened earlier this year in a former Urban Flats restaurant space on Sand Lake Road’s Restaurant Row. Garcia and his team, which consists of several members who have been with him for years, also recently rebranded their Urban Flats restaurant in the Villages into a City Fire. The restaurant’s menu takes advantage of the brick ovens that were previously used primarily for the pizza-like flatbreads that Urban Flats produces. Garcia’s longtime executive chef, Tony Pace, reconfigured old recipes from past restaurant concepts, including Pebbles and Harvey’s Bistro, to be cooked using the ovens. NewGate partner Michael Quatrini said that it is the economy of the kitchen that makes City Fire an attractive investment.
In a message, Quatrini said, “We all feel this concept in particular could be a home run for many reasons. Davgar has been in business since the 1960’s and has made money on hundreds of restaurant concepts and projects, but Manny and all of the folks at Davgar are reinvigorated about what is happening at the City Fire locations they’ve opened.”
In a phone conversation, Quatrini said the arrangement could create another significant restaurant group in Central Florida. Garcia said that he wants to take things at an easy pace — grow regionally before expanding nationally. “I want to make sure we’ve got successful restaurants and then build on that,” he said. “We have the talent to get it done.”
Besides Pace, Garcia’s team includes his daughter and son-in-law, Gina and Mike Buell, Benj Ray and Scott Vasatka. The design of the restaurants is by Raymond Schaefer of Maverick Architecture & Design of Orlando.
Garcia also said that the City Fire in the Villages is already showing such early success that he has been asked to do another one there. The arrangement with NewGate will also allow Garcia to grow other concepts.