Seminole Heights beloved Tampa restaurant Ichicoro, is expanding. No doubt a soon to be favorite restaurant in St. Petersburg new concept Ichicoro Ane's partners Karen Koca and Chef Noel Cruz will open in The Station House restaurant space, formerly Cafe Alma, at 260 First Avenue South giving St. Pete residents the opportunity to join the #RamenArmy.

Much larger than it's "sister or ane" restaurant in Tampa, plans for the red brick beauty include an entrance off First Ave., a centrally located bar, Ramen spot, private dining and a lounge area including a second bar.

Also growing is the menu, replete with visionary Craft Ramen using local ingredients, and fun discoveries like the 'CuBaoNo' (Chef Noel's take on the classic Cuban), you can expect delicious rice bowls, soba, specialty cocktails and more.

CuBaoNo ~ signature roast pork, pickles, ham, cheese, and yuzu mayo mustard @ Ichicoro Tampa 

Cruz told the Times recently he and co-chef Branden Lenz will focus their creativity on a few new raw fish dishes and not so much on ramen as in Tampa, but no worries St. Pete, you certainly will be able to take the bowl to the dome. 

We expect these talented chefs to forge new frontiers in izakaya dining,  Izakaya meaning an informal, Japanese-inspired place for dining and drinking much like an Irish Pub, Tapas Bar or Saloon.

Reisner, Master Chef Junior contestant, taking it to the dome!

As St. Petersburg's dining scene explodes with recent openings like The Wheelhouse, Frabotta's Italian Kitchen, Copper Shaker, and Lolita's Wine Market there is more on the way with, Doc Fords Rum Bar, Ray Lampe's Dr. BBQ, Maple Street Biscuit, and Second and 2nd to name a few.

Recently voted by USA Today as one of the East Coast's most underrated foodie cities, restaurants like Ichicoro Ane will certainly place St. Petersburg squarely on the map.

Photo Ichicoro Facebook Page

Another Ichicoro concept, Imoto (little sister) debuting this past February in Birmingham AL, will appear in the Heights Public Market, scheduled to open this fall in the Armature Works space in Tampa Heights. Talented purveyors of izakaya dining, Chef Noel, and his crew have a lot on their plate, and all we can think is how exciting and lucky for us!  Follow Ichicoro's Facebook page, and register on 727area and 813area to connect and stay abreast of new restaurants in Tampa Bay.  (Cover photo Ichicoro Facebook)