Longtime, beloved South Tampa BBQ restaurant Kojak’s to close this summer

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – It’s the end of an era for a South Tampa staple.

Kojak’s House of Ribs is closing up shop after more than 40 years of serving up barbecue and coleslaw.

The iconic spot stands out in the city as it operates out of a converted 1920s home and sits under large oak trees.

Although it’s not clear yet when the “South Tampa Institution” will close down, it’s likely to happen this summer.

Kojak’s owner Chris Forney spoke with 8 On Your Side’s Keith Cate. Forney said while this may be the end of one chapter in his life, a new, smaller location of the joint could be in his future.

The restaurant owner said he is considering other options, which could include a smaller version of his beloved restaurant nearby that is more focused on take-out.

Kojak’s name comes from a nickname Forney’s grandfather was given during his time as a chief of detectives in Oklahoma.

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