Authors Posts by Tiffany Nguyen

Tiffany Nguyen

122 POSTS 0 COMMENTS
"So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." - 1 Corinthians 10:31 - Tiffany is a native of Orlando, Florida. Born and raised in "The City Beautiful" she has witnessed many vast changes to the city since she was a toddler and she is excited for what's to come for her hometown. Tiffany graduated from the University of Central Florida with a B.S. in General Business. One of her long-time dreams came true when her family's restaurant, Saigon Noodle & Grill - Bumby got invited by the Food Network to film an episode of "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives" with Guy Fieri and special guest Food Network Star winner Justin Warner. You can follow her on IG at @bytiffanynguyen.

We were invited to attend the grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony of the new The H Cuisine, located in the Marketplace at Dr. Phillips.  The interior was stunning, the food was really good and the service was perfection!

“The H Cuisine offers a diverse Mediterranean menu prepared by chefs with international experience, gained from working at some of the finest restaurants around the world. Combined, they have traveled to more than 70 countries to learn about different tastes, foods and ingredients, and bring what they have learned from these culinary adventures to Orlando.

The open kitchen counter allows guest to enjoy different styles of fire cooking methods and feel the warmth of the live fire as they watch the chefs preparing exclusive menu items.  Guests can also enjoy table-side experiences with the chefs when they order select items from the menu.

The bar at The H Cuisine serves a wide range of domestic and imported beverages, including beer, wine, raki and cocktails with premium liquor options available.   Coffee enthusiasts will love another signature menu item at The H – Turkish coffee.

The H Cuisine is the perfect new spot for local and visiting foodies, business, convention and group meetings, and life celebrations.” -The H Cuisine


The H Cuisine offers indoor and outdoor seating.


The H Cuisine is owned by local entrepreneurs, Ahmet Ozhamurkar (left) and Fuat Hasaglu (right).




Co-owner Fuat Hasaglu with his son.


Chef Duran with the amazing wait staff.


Chef Duran with the talented kitchen staff.






Rack of lamb

Tenderloin

Burrata with cherry tomato and micro greens

Steak tartare with bone marrow, so delicious.

Sweet bread with veal brains – incredibly healthy and good for you.

Amazing presentation from Chef Duran.

Lamb.

Steak spaghetti, so delicious and melts in your mouth.

Chateau filet – amazing!

We were invited back to The H Cuisine for a more intimate meal with Chef Duran.

Chateau filet


The complimentary house appetizer is Turkish yogurt with whipped fried mint, topped with olive oil and “gypsy bread”.

Strozzapreti – “The Priest Strangler” pasta recipe from Emilia – Romagna.  Served with “Flaming Parmesan Wheel” sauce.

I’m very excited to have this new food experience to the Central Florida area.  You must check them out soon!

The H Cuisine 
7512 Dr. Phillips Blvd, Suite #80, Orlando, FL
(407) 930-3020
thehcuisine.com

Get ready to roll!  Free Sushi Day at P.F. Chang’s is this Thursday, September 20 and you’re invited!


On Free Sushi Day, guests get a FREE California Roll or Spicy Tuna Roll, no purchase required, 1 per person; dine-in only.  This offer is valid nationwide excluding Gainesville, Atlantic City, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and airport locations.

583684

Dine-in only. One redemption per person. For more information, please visit freesushiday.com

Pictured: Ahi poke bowl, California roll, crab wontons, spicy tuna roll

P.F. Chang’s – Winter Park
436 Orlando Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789
(407) 622-0188

P.F. Chang’s – Millenia Mall
4200 Conroy Rd, Orlando, FL 32839
(407) 345-2888

Plant Street Food Tour Owners & Experience Guides, Matt Kent & Alyssa Hostetler are all smiles at The Whole Enchilada’s one-of-a-kind rooftop bar.

Launched in August, Plant Street Food Tour is a new walking food tour owned by Matt Kent & Alyssa Hostetler, a Winter Garden couple who are passionate about showing off the culinary scene on Plant Street in Historic Winter Garden.  They have hired their friends as Experience Guides, all of whom are foodies and entertainment professionals from the theme park and theater market in Orlando!  The food tour lasts from 90 mins to 2 hours and consists of taking a brisk walk down historic Plant Street with many tasty stops along the way, sampling delicious food and drinks from a variety of restaurants while learning some surprising history about downtown Winter Garden and their many small businesses.

Plant Street Food Tour offers 5 different food tours: Mornin’ Sunshine Brunch Tour, The Flavorhood Tour (the tour that I got to experience), Booze & Brews, A Sweet Treat, Date Night, or you can customize your food tour to your specific tastes and group size, making it perfect for any special occasion.

Prices start at $30 per person, but you can save $5 on any tour by using promo code CHOMP5 at checkout on plantstreetfoodtours.com

We began our tour by meeting at the Citrus Fountain on the intersection of South Boyd St and Plant Street.  Fun fact:  The spot where the Citrus Fountain is located was once a railroad track used to ship oranges.

First stop: Chef’s Table at the historic Edgewater Hotel

Duck fat fries with aioli from Chef’s Table was the first dish on our food tour.  I could not stop eating them, they were seriously addicting!  I wanted to eat all of it in one sitting but Matt let know me to save room for the other culinary delights that were remaining on our food tour so I took a few bites and packed the rest of the fries in a to-go box.  I am glad that Matt warned me because I was full by the end of our 2 hour food tour.

Everything is made from scratch at Chef’s Table.  Pictured: Mini beef wellington.

After dinner, we got to meet the manager at Chef’s Table, Matt Womick.

The cuban sandwich from Savoree were sooo good!  It was the best cuban sandwich that I’ve ever had!

The pastry selection at Axum Coffee.

Snickers iced coffee from Axum Coffee, it was good.  This coffee shop gives away all of their profits to a variety of charities.

Hasselhoff tacos and skrimp tacos (yum!) from The Whole Enchilada.  I loved the ambiance of their rooftop bar, I would have not known about this rooftop bar had it not been for the food tour.  I am so grateful and I am excited to share this restaurant with my friends.

Pastries at Rosallie Le French Cafe

Pistachio gelato

Plant Street Food Tour makes exploring Winter Garden’s historic downtown area cool, fun, and tasty!  For more information, visit plantstreetfoodtours.com

Miso ramen, roti canai, Korean twice fried wings

Want to win FREE Hawkers takeout for a whole year?  Of course you do!  Here’s how to play: order some delicious Hawkers takeout and they’ll slip in an exclusive Hawkers magnet in the bag.  Snap a creative photo of your magnet, post it social media and tag @eathawkers with the hashtag #yearofthehawker, and you’ll be entered to win!  Contest ends on October 7, 2018 or while supplies last.

My mom & I and our delicious Hawkers takeout with Hawkers co-owner, Allen Lo!

RESTRICTIONS APPLY
1. (1) magnet per order
2. September 10 through October 7
3. For carryout customers only
4. Does not apply to any 3rd party delivery service orders
5. Contestants must use the event hashtag to be entered to win
6. One Winner will be chosen and notified via social media
7. While supplies last
8. Promotion applies to food and non-alcoholic beverages only
9. (1) $100 gift card per month for 12 consecutive months

For more information and official rules, visit eathawkers.com/contests/

Hawkers Asian Street Fare – Orlando
1103 N Mills Ave Orlando, FL 32803
(407) 237-0606

Hawkers Asian Street Fare – Windemere
9100 Conroy Windermere Road Suite 110 Windermere, FL 34786
(407) 583-6334

Bull & Bear’s Petite Filet of Beef and Stuffed Lobster Tail – chasseur sauce, potato pave, fresh arugula salad

We were invited to Waldorf Astoria Orlando for a media preview of their 8th Annual Food & Wine Weekends happening every weekend starting September 14, 2018 through November 11, 2018 at Waldorf Astoria Orlando and Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek.

The sister hotels are hosting Food & Wine Weekends, a complement to Epcot Food & Wine Festival, to celebrate fine wine & culinary arts designed for those who truly savor the artistry of fine culinary preparations.

Food & Wine Weekends features innovative dishes from their renowned restaurants, unique food and wine pairings, intimate chef talks, and interactive demonstrations.

The Taste of Zeta Asia

Mount Fuji Signature Roll – Crab salad, cucumber, tuna, yellowtail salmon, wasabi mayo, tobiko, micro cilantro

Kanji Signature Roll – Spicy salmon, cucumber, avocado, tobiko, sriracha, micro cilantro

Short Rib Bibimbap – Short rib, fried egg, blanched spinach, namul, Japanese rice, gochujang sauce

The Taste of La Luce

Lasagna Napolinata – Mozzarella di Bufala, tomato, basil

Risotto Duo Di Mare – Shrimp, scallops, saffron, English peas, oven roasted tomato, reggiano gremolata

The Taste of Bull & Bear

Petite Filet of Beef and Stuffed Lobster Tail – chasseur sauce, potato pave, fresh arugula salad

Raspberry mint mocktail

Bar du Chocolat at Peacock Alley, Saturdays 6:30pm-10:30pm – A decadent selection of à la carte chocolate treats hand-crafted by Waldorf Astoria Orlando’s world-class pastry team.  Highlights include chocolate truffles, exotic chocolate cakes and bowls of beautiful bon-bons.

La Pâtisserie: Master Pastry Class at Sir Harry’s, Fridays 4:30-5:30pm – Learn the secrets of the Waldorf Astoria Orlando world-class pastry team as they host a complimentary gourmet baking demonstration. From delicate pastries to the perfect cookie, you’ll learn tips on how to make, bake and decorate the perfect dessert.

Pop Culture at MYTH Bar, Saturdays 8pm-10pm

Home-made, fresh fruit popsicles, creamy organic ice pops and adult poptails!  Choose from a variety of gourmet toppings, including hand-dipped chocolate, caramelized almonds, sweet coconut and chocolate vermicelli.

For more information, please visit WaldorfAstoriaOrlando.com/food-wine and HiltonBonnetCreek.com/food-wine.

(Source: Waldorf Astoria Orlando)

Waldorf Astoria Orlando
14200 Bonnet Creek Resort Ln, Orlando, FL 32821
(407) 597-5500

Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek
14100 Bonnet Creek Resort Ln, Orlando, FL 32821
(407) 597-3600

In honor of National Guacamole Day coming up this Sunday, September 16, I wanted to celebrate this very important food holiday by sharing with you all a DELICIOUS guacamole recipe from Cocina 214, an award-winning Mexican and Tex-Mex restaurant located in Winter Park and now Daytona Beach.

The name Cocina 214 is a combo of the Spanish word for kitchen, “cocina” and the Dallas area code, “214”.  The idea for opening the restaurant developed when two of the owners from Texas missed the Tex-Mex & Mexican food that they had grown up with.  They wanted the same authentic, freshly made quality food in Winter Park so they partnered together to create bold flavors dishes – all served in a vibrant, elegant setting.

Keep scrolling to see how Carmen from Cocina 214 – Winter Park prepares their famous guacamole using simple and fresh ingredients.  Detailed recipe to follow.

Pick 6 ripe avocados

Wash and dry cilantro 

Cut avocado in half and remove the pit

Separate the avocado from the skin using a spoon

Squeeze one fresh lime over the avocados

Add diced tomatos/red onions/jalapeños mixture

Chop then add cilantro

Add black pepper to taste

Add kosher salt to taste

Mash firmly

Fold then serve in a smaller bowl

Cocina 214’s Guacamole
(Serves 8 people)
Amazing, creamy, fresh guacamole, made with simple ingredients.  Gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, nut-free recipe.

Ingredients
6 avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1 lime juice
1/4 medium red onion, diced
1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 roma tomato, seeded and diced
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions
1.  Scoop the avocados in a large stainless steel mixing bowl.
2.  Add the squeezed lime juice and coat the avocados.
3.  Fold in the remaining ingredients and mash them all together.
4.  Garnish with fresh tortilla chips or skip all the hassle and head over to the closest Cocina 214 nearest you and order some delicious Cocina 214 guac! 🙂


Stop by Cocina 214’s happy hour from 4:00-6:30pm, Monday through Friday for guac, queso blanco, fire-roasted salsa and housemade tortilla chips all for only $5!

Cocina 214 – Winter Park
151 E Welbourne Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789
(407) 790-7997

Cocina 214 – Daytona Beach
451 S Atlantic Ave, Daytona Beach, FL 32118
(386) 456-3168

cocina214.com

(Source: Cocina 214)

0 220

Immerse yourself in a world of aroma, taste, sound and texture – all in total darkness!

Featured menu selections from Muddy Waters Orlando, B&A Catering, Oudom Thai & Sushi, Soco Thornton Park & Wildtree.  Guest servers from Orlando Police Department SWAT.

This unique culinary experience is meant to offer a glimpse into the world of vision loss and heighten a sense of empathy toward those who live with blindness or any degree of vision impairment.

Dining in the Dark is a Lighthouse Central Florida original that has grown in scale and popularity since it was first introduced in 2010.

Attendees are treated to a multi-course, gourmet meal prepared by celebrated, local chefs and are served by members of the Orlando police Department’s SWAT team — who navigate the pitch-black room outfitted in night-vision goggles. After dinner the lights slowly come up and diners are encouraged to offer telling, empathetic, testimonials about their experience.

For tickets, please visit the link below:

lighthousecfl.org/DITDtickets

 

(Source: Lighthouse Central Florida)

The official grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony with Guy Fieri, Chef Mickey, and Robert Earl (founder and CEO of Planet Hollywood) at the flagship location of Chicken Guy! yesterday morning at Disney Springs. 

Celebrity chef Guy Fieri and restaurateur Robert Earl’s newest concept, Chicken Guy! is now officially open at Disney Springs!  I was invited by their publicist Maria Wyatt-Uhl to attend their grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony yesterday morning to welcome both owners alongside Disney Executives and Mickey Mouse.  The event was open to the public and a big crowd of fans arrived to show their support.  Following the ceremony, Guy Fieri passed out samples of different menu items to the crowd so that they can get a taste of his newest and tastiest creations.

Chicken Guy! is located on the right side of Planet Hollywood in Disney Springs.  They are a fast-casual chain dedicated to serving delicious, succulent chicken tenders paired with a wide variety of flavorful sauces, 22 different dipping sauces to be exact, meant to please all palates and all for a great value.  Every single menu item is under $9.  The chicken tenders are all-natural, antibiotic free, never frozen, hand-pounded to maximize crunch and breaded fresh every day.  The chicken tenders are then soaked in lemon juice, pickle brine and buttermilk, and infused with a house blend of herbs and spices to deliver flavor and texture.

The innovative packaging at Chicken Guy! makes the food portable and easy to carry-out so you can trek around Disney Springs and explore all that it has to offer but you can also take advantage of their indoor/outdoor seating too if you’d like.  The interior of the restaurant is fun and spunky, just like Guy!

This is Guy Fieri and Robert Earl’s first Chicken Guy! location, their flagship location, as they plan on opening more Chicken Guy! restaurants across the country.  Their Las Vegas location is opening soon!

(Source: Chicken Guy)

There are 22 different sauces at Chicken Guy!

So many choices of sauces!

Southwestern Sandwich – Pepper jack, special sauce, avocado crema, cumin lime mojo, charred corn, roasted peppers, black beans, lettuce, tomatoes, & crispy tortilla strips

Big Bite B.L. A.T. – Crispy smoked bacon, lettuce, avocado crema, tomatoes & buttermilk ranch

Tasty sides include: Mac Daddy Mac n Cheese & Loaded Fries smothered in SMC (super melty cheese) and topped with chopped grilled chicken, bacon, and green onions.

Flavortown Frozen Treat: Triple Double Mint – Hand-spun mint chocolate soft serve, crushed Oreo© cookies, chocolate mints, chocolate syrup & fresh whipped cream

The Sauce Slinger!

Robert Earl, founder of Planet Hollywood and co-owner of Chicken Guy!

Be sure to check out Chicken Guy! the next time you are at Disney Springs!

Chicken Guy!
1506 E Buena Vista Dr suite a, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
(407) 560-8180
chickenguy.com

I was invited to hang out with John Rivers, Founder/CEO 4 R Restaurant Group, at an exclusive grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony for the newest 4 Rivers’ concept – 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck!  Following the ceremony I got to enjoy a taste of the 4R Cantina Barbacoa signature dishes.

The Mexican-inspired eatery offers a variety of new signature dishes, including Taco Cone, Tacos, Burrito Bowl and Nachos filled with choice of meats such as Brisket Barbacoa, Nana’s Pork Sofrito, Chicken Tinga or Grilled Tri-Tip Steak.

Each signature dish can be made vegetarian-friendly using Black Beans and Cilantro Rice as the filling.  The 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck also offers a Squash Blossom Quesadilla as a standout vegetarian option.  Decadent desserts such as Chocolate Hazelnut Spread Nachos are available as well.  Seasonal specials can also be found on the menu.  During September and October, food truck patrons can enjoy the limited-time-only Pumpkin Spice Churro Balls.

The 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck at Disney Springs is the only 4 Rivers location to offer service seven days a week – including Sundays.  Following in the philanthropic footprints of the 4R “Barbecue Ministry,” all net proceeds from sales every Sunday support The 4R Foundation, which in 2017 helped more than 950 local schools, churches and charitable organizations.

4 Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck is located in the Marketplace at Disney Springs, next to Ghirardelli Ice Cream & Chocolate Shop.

(Source credit: 4 Rivers Smokehouse)

I love a good nacho trio!

Dulce de Leche Churro Balls

Chocolate Hazelnut Spread Nachos.  Great dessert!

Squash Blossom Quesadilla – Fresh squash blossom, zucchini, tomato, onion, refried beans, chihuahua cheese, and queso fresco served with a side of pico de Gallo.  It was delicious!

Taco Cone – Choice of Brisket Barbacoa, Chicken Tinga, Nana’s Pork Sofrito, Grilled Tri-Tip Steak, Black Beans and Rice, plus shredded lettuce, guacamole, sour cream, pico de gallo, queso, cilantro, jalapeño, and a lime wedge.  I had so much fun eating this!

Chicken Tinga


John Rivers being interviewed by Christina Thomas, voted one of the best bloggers in Orlando!


Congratulations John Rivers and welcome to Disney Springs!!  Be sure to check out the 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck next time you are at Disney Springs!

4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck
Disney Springs, Buena Vista Dr, Orlando, FL 32830

Fresh and delicious piña colada

We were invited to The Ritz-Carlton for an end of the summer pool bash at Bleu Pool Bar showcasing their new Latin & Caribbean inspired menu.  The food was excellent and the service was phenomenal.  The frozen drinks are always prepared with the freshest ingredients.

BLEU Nachos – Green Chile / Queso Blanco / Jalapeños / Cilantro Crema Guacamole / Pico de Gallo Roasted Salsa



Signature Tacos – Grilled Flour Tortilla / Cilantro Slaw / Roasted Salsa / Crema / Queso Fresco / Pique Verde

Carne Asada – Papaya-Marinated Skirt Steak

Chicken Verde – Roasted Chicken

Crispy Avocado – Tempura-Fried Avocado


BLEU Salad – Mixed Greens / Spiced Tostone / Heirloom Tomatoes / Feta / Crispy Quinoa / Breakfast Radish / Pickled Sweet Onion / Passion Fruit Dressing


Florida Tropical – 
Spinach & Lolla Rossa / Avocado / Mango / Pomegranate / Almonds / Creamy Coconut-Lime Vinaigrette


Conch Fritters – Homemade Jamaican Jerk Aioli


Ceviche – 
Ahi Tuna / Avocado / Mango Salsa / Plantain Chips



Make Your Own Sweet Taco – Assorted Toppings

Tada!!!  What a beautiful ice sculpture!

Be sure to check out the new menu at Bleu the next time you are at The Ritz-Carlton Orlando!

Bleu at The Ritz-Carlton Orlando
4012 Central Florida Parkway Orlando, FL 32837
(407) 206-2400
ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/florida/orlando/dining/bleu

We were invited to the magical Ravello at Four Seasons Orlando for a sneak peek and taste of their Magical Dining Month menu this year.  Our dinner was held in their private demonstration kitchen located in the back of the restaurant and it came complete with our own private chefs and wait staff.  It was truly a wonderful experience to be able to witness and smell all of our meals being cooked right in front of us by their talented and passionate chefs.  The food was outstanding and the wait staff took care of us so well as always.

What is Magical Dining Month?

  • 3 courses – Appetizer, Entrèe, and Dessert
  • Price: $35 per person plus tax & gratuity
  • Over 100 + participating restaurants
  • Beginning August 24 through September 30
  • Through Visit Orlando, one dollar from each meal will benefit Best Buddies and Down Syndrome Association of Central Florida.
    Click here to view menu and make reservations

Fresh dough from Italy

The talented Executive Chef Fabrizio Schenardi welcoming us to Ravello.

Choice of Appetizer

Frisella | Pappa al Pomodoro | Mozzarella – warm pugliese bread, extra virgin olive oil, mozzarella, greens

Chef Riccardo Sala preparing a delicious course for us!

Calamari | Fregola – sauteed calamari, fregola, crunchy zucchini, grape

Choice of Entrèe

Brasato e Polenta – braised beef Piedmont style, Barbera wine sauce, soft polenta

Florida Red Fish | Rapini | Salsa Verde – red fish, bell pepper, broccoli rabe, garlic, salsa verde, potato

Reginette Pasta | Gamberi | Melanzane – shrimp, reginette pasta, eggplant, olives, marjoram, tomato sauce

Choice of Dessert


Torta Della Nonna
– honey, pine nuts, raspberry

Salted Caramel Budino – chocolate, coffee, vanilla cream

Add a Course


Veal -Parmesan-Breadcrumb Crust, Tomato Fonduta

Spaghetti – homemade spaghetti, San Marzano tomato, crunchy basil ($9)

Margherita Pizza – tomato, basil, mozzarella ($16)


Umbria Coffee Tiramisu ($5)

Big thank you and princess kisses to Four Seasons Orlando publicist Dana Berry for the invite & the chefs and wait staff at Ravello for the exceptional meal and service as always!!

Please contact Private Dining Coordinator Robbie Wilcox at (407) 313-6914 if you’d like to reserve the private demonstration kitchen for your next event.

Ravello at Four Seasons Resort Orlando
10100 Dream Tree Blvd Orlando, FL 32836
(407) 313-6161

30-year-old Orlando firefighter Lt. Emmanuel “Manny” Washington placed 3rd in this past season of the Food Network Star competition but he was #1 in our hearts this past weekend at his fun and entertaining cooking demonstration.

We were invited to check out Chef Manny FD’s “Build a Better Breakfast” live cooking demonstration this past weekend and we really enjoyed our time at his cooking class!  We learned how to prepare healthy and delicious breakfast meals and Chef Manny FD was genuinely funny.  He had us cracking up the entire time!  We were incredibly impressed with not only his cooking skills but also his teaching skills.  Chef Manny FD was able to teach a fun and interactive cooking class for all ages and skill levels.  You need to check out his upcoming family-friendly cooking demonstrations if you’re in the Central Florida area!

You can follow Chef Manny FD on facebook, twitter and instagram at “chefmannyfd” to stay up to date on his upcoming cooking demonstrations.

Chef Manny FD’s beautiful grandmother Georgia Bell welcoming the class.

Damian Priester, owner of Prestige Fitness, co-hosting the cooking demonstration.

Strawberry Pineapple Frozen Yogurt demo

Sweet Potato & Spinach Frittata demo

Vegetable Fritters with Chipotle Sour Cream demo

Hebni Nutrition Consultants, Inc.
2009 W Central Blvd, Orlando, FL 32805
(407) 872-1333

PIMENTO CRUNCH SANDWICH- crispy chicken, homemade pimento cheese, bibb lettuce, sea salt potato chips, bacon

PDQ, the abbreviation for “People Dedicated to Quality” opens today on the corner of Minnesota and Orlando Ave.  We got a first look of the restaurant yesterday during their media preview and we were very impressed with this new addition in the Winter Park area.  At PDQ you can expect great service and great-tasting food that is always fresh, never frozen.

This is their fourth location in Central Florida with two more locations coming soon in Waterford Lakes & Altamonte Springs.

Chef Mark’s son, Riley, working hard at the PDQ opening.

Riley’s mom told me that this was his 5th PDQ opening!

PDQ – Winter Park operator Cody Langford with his new crate!!  Every PDQ operator gets to design their own crate.

THAI PEANUT BOWL – crispy chicken, broccoli, mango salsa, peanuts, toasted coconut, rice, thai peanut sauce

YIA YIA’S GREEK SALAD – grilled chicken, mixed greens, red bell peppers, marinated cucumbers & tomatoes, kalamata olives, pepperoncini, feta, hummus, pickled onion, lemon-chile vinaigrette

CHILE-LIME CORN – sautéed corn with feta & scallions

ZUCCHINI FRIES – hand-breaded fresh zucchini with choice of homemade sauce

LOADED TOTS

HAND-BREADED TENDERS WITH FRIES

ALL THE SAUCES!

GENERAL TSO BOWL – available for a limited time only so it get it fast before it’s gone!

Be sure to check out PDQ – Winter Park the next time you are in the area!

PDQ – Winter Park
925 S Orlando Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789
(407) 605-2312
eatpdq.com

You must check out Big Fin Seafood Kitchen this year during Magical Dining Month if you want a delicious meal for a great value.  Big Fin Seafood Kitchen, voted “Best Seafood Restaurant in Orlando“,  offers global, fresh seafood, steaks and pasta, on Sand Lake Road.  This is their 9th year participating in Magical Dining Month.

What is Magical Dining Month?

  • 3 courses – Appetizer, Entrèe, and Dessert
  • Price: $35 per person plus tax & gratuity
  • Over 100 + participating restaurants
  • Beginning August 24 through September 30
  • Through Visit Orlando, one dollar from each meal will benefit Best Buddies and Down Syndrome Association of Central Florida.
    Click here to view menu and make reservations

Choice of Appetizer

½ Dozen Freshly Shucked Raw Oysters – can be served raw (1st pic) or steamed (2nd pic)


Caesar Salad – Romaine, Parmesan cheese, garlic croutons

Cup of the Soup of the Day – Manhattan Clam Chowder

Choice of Entrèe


Shrimp Orleans – blackened shrimp, spinach, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, crawfish Parmesan grits with a Cajun cream sauce

Broiled Main Lobster Tail – served with garlic mashed potatoes and French style green beans

Filet Mignon – served with garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus

Big Fin Trio – deep fried popcorn shrimp, bay scallops and catfish served with French fries and coleslaw

Upgrade: Add a 3 oz broiled lobster tail to any entree +$12

Choice of Dessert

“Apple Pie” Bread Pudding – braised cinnamon apples, salted caramel sauce, crumb topping, vanilla ice cream

Ooey Gooey – a gooey-layered pie cake topped with whipped cream, chocolate sauce and raspberry (ask your server for today’s flavor)

Key Lime Pie – a Florida favorite topped with whipped cream & a lime slice

Thank you Visit Orlando for hosting us and thank you Big Fin Seafood Kitchen for the amazing dinner and service!

Big Fin Seafood Kitchen
8046 Via Dellagio Way Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 615-8888

We were invited to The Alfond Inn for an exclusive press preview featuring a Hamilton’s Kitchen new menu tasting with Chef Stephen Doyle, a happy hour art tour of newly installed art as part of the Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art with new Cornell Fine Arts Museum Curator Gisela Carbonell, and a champagne toast finale in the Conservatory, in honor of The Alfond Inn’s 5th anniversary on Saturday, Aug.18.

In the last five years, The Alfond Inn has made it on:

  • Travel + Leisure Best 100 Hotels in the World
  • Travel + Leisure Top 15 Best City Hotels in the Continental U.S.
  • U.S. News & World Report Top Hotels in Orlando, Condé Nast Traveler
  • Readers’ Choice Awards Top 10 Hotels in the U.S.
  • Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards Gest Hotels in Florida
  • AAA Four Diamond Award
  • Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence

Walnut Crusted Halibut – orzo pasta, petite spinach, lemon-dill Amish butter

Lemon Sage Chicken Gnocchi – Lake Meadows Chicken, basil-ricotta gnocchi, summer vegetables, lemon-herb butter sauce

Seared Grouper Papparadelle – housemade pappardelle pasta, fresh peas, asparagus, pecan bacon, parmigian cheese broth

Colorado Lamb Lollipop Chops – local mushroom risotto, balsamic maple bliss glaze, caramelized Brussels sprouts

Thank you for the invite, Kathy Hernandez & thank you for hosting us, The Alfond Inn!

The Alfond Inn
300 E New England Avenue, Winter Park, FL 32789
thealfondinn.com
(407) 278-8159

El Cubano – roasted pork, black forrest ham, swiss cheese, mustard, house pickles with a side of tostones and a glass of virgin mojito

Dine in Plancha in Four Seasons Orlando from Monday, Aug. 20 through Saturday, Aug. 25 and enjoy a fabulous special of the El Cubano sandwich & choice of side for only $9 in honor of National Cuban Sandwich Day!  Regular price is $18 so that is an awesome deal.  Plancha is my favorite spot at Four Seasons Orlando for lunch.  The food and drinks there are really good!

Other special offers:

  • $5 mojitos (can be made virgin as well) on National Cuban Sandwich Day, Thursday, Aug. 23.
  • Happy Hour half off drinks from 3-6pm every Mon-Fri.

Plancha is a Cuban-American restaurant located in the stylish Tranquil Golf Clubhouse at Four Seasons Orlando, just a few minutes away from Disney Springs.  They are open daily from 11am-6pm.  You do not need a hotel reservation to dine there.  They have ample parking spots in their lot.

I highly recommend the following appetizers to go along with your El Cubano sandwich:

Tuna Tartare – avocado, ginger coconut vinaigrette, red onions, micro greens, jalapeño, tostones

Guacamole – Roasted corn relish, naan chips, Parmesan cheese

Chorizo Flatbread – smoked chorizo, crispy shallots, piquillo pepper sauce, manchego, cream cheese, arugula

Plancha Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World® Resort
10100 Dream Tree Boulevard Orlando, FL 32836
(407) 313-7777
fourseasons.com/content/dam/fourseasons/images/web/ORL/PDF/ORL-Plancha-Lunch-Menu.pdf

Pork Chop – sweet potato puree, collard greens, onion jam

Visit Orlando’s Magical Dining Month is fast approaching!  We were invited to James Beard Award nominee, The Ravenous Pig to preview their 3-course (appetizer, entrée and dessert) Magical Dining Month menu.  The menu is available to the public Friday, August 24 through Sunday, September 30 for $35 plus tax & gratuity. This year, through Visit Orlando, one dollar from each meal will benefit Best Buddies and Down Syndrome Association of Central Florida.

Choice of Appetizer

Steak Tartare – capers, egg, shallot, toast

Shrimp & Grits – Cape Canaveral shrimp, Anson Mills grits, green tomato chutney, chorizo oil

Gatherer Salad – baby greens, avocado, pickled beets, radish, goat cheese, pistachio granola, herb vinaigrette

Choice of Entrèe

Mushroom Risotto – summer mushrooms, parmesan broth, chili oil with black truffle supplement

Black Grouper – chana masala, cucumber raita

Pork Porterhouse upgrade

Choice of Dessert

Coffee Panna Cotta – persimmon sorbet, chocolate cardamom shortbread, compressed persimmons

Spiced Citrus Cake – elderflower chantilly, bay leaf crumble, poached pears

Thank you Sweet Rockaway PR for the invite and thank you Chef James Petrakis and The Ravenous Pig for the amazing service and dinner!  Be sure to check out The Ravenous Pig this year for Magical Dining Month!

For more information, please visit: visitorlando.com/magicaldining/restaurants/The-Ravenous-Pig/44356/

The Ravenous Pig
565 W Fairbanks Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789
(407) 628-2333

JINYA Ramen Bar officially opens today!  Experience Japanese offerings and ramen at the Thornton Park District like it was meant to be – with thick, rich broth in perfect balance with handmade noodles.  We got a sneak peek of JINYA Ramen Bar yesterday during their media event and we are very happy with this new addition in the downtown Orlando area.

Crispy Chicken – juicy fried chicken thigh with an original garlic pepper served with mixed baby greens and JINYA’s original ponzu sauce.  It was delicious!

Spicy Tuna Taco – spicy tuna in a crispy wonton taco shell.  This was so good!!  You gotta try this one!

JINYA Quinoa Salad – baby greens, green kale, broccoli and white quinoa, kidney beans, garbanzo beans tossed with goma seasame dressing, corn and cherry tomatoes

JINYA Bun – steamed bun stuffed with slow braised pork chashu, cucumber, and baby mixed greens served with JINYA’s original bun sauce and kewpie mayonnaise.  One of the better buns in Orlando!  The flavors were on point!

Chicken Chashu Bowl – slow-braised chicken breast “chashu”, ground chicken sober, spinach, green onion, rice, seasoned egg, sesame seeds

Sake

Spicy Chicken Ramen – chicken broth, chicken chashu, spinach, spicy bean sprouts, green onion, served with thin noodles

A sample of the JINYA Tonkotsu Black

JINYA Tonkotsu Black – pork broth, pork chashu, kikuragem green onion, nori dried seaweed, seasoned egg, garlic chips, garlic oil, fried onion, spicy sauce served with thin noodles.  This one was my favorite!

Panna Cotta – homemade panda cotta with caramel cream sauce, graham cracker, vanilla ice cream

Behind the scenes shot from yesterday’s media event!


A special appearance by the chef from Japan.  Thank you Chef and JINYA Ramen Bar owner Trang Liao for having us!  Be sure to check out JINYA Ramen Bar – Thornton Park soon for some delicious food!

JINYA Ramen Bar
8 N Summerlin Ave Orlando, Florida
(407) 704-1825
http://jinya-ramenbar.com

Tijuana Flats is bringing together the best of both tacos and burgers for one epic mashup of deliciousness – a tortilla filled with ground beef, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, ketchup and mustard.

For a limited time try two Cheeseburger Tacos with seasoned fries for just $7.89.

The Cheeseburger Taco will be available at all Tijuana Flats locations now through September 9.

Add Fries & Queso
Side – $2.99
Appetizer – $5.29

Or try the Cheeseburger Tacos with these popular menu items:

Tijuana Trio – A basket of warm chips, with a side of handmade salsa, queso or guacamole.

Cookie Dough Flautas – Chocolate chip cookie dough loaded into a flour tortilla, lightly fried & topped with powdered sugar. Served with a side of chocolate syrup.

(Source: Tijuana Flats)

Tijuana Flats
94693 Gardens Park Blvd., Orlando, FL 32839
(407) 965-5090
https://tijuanaflats.com

Did you know that Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida has catering?  We were invited to their amazing facility to check out their newest business, Catering For Good!

What is Catering For Good?  A full service caterer.  All menu items are prepared by an award winning culinary team lead by Chef Jill Holland using the highest quality and freshest ingredients purchased from national and local vendors.  The menu includes selections for breakfast, lunch, dinner and cocktail receptions including wine and beer or a full bar. Catering For Good was listed in Orlando Business Journal as “Top 20 Business Caters”.

Here’s the best part…

All proceeds benefit the Second Harvest Culinary Training Program, a 16-week program that provides qualified, at-risk and economically disadvantaged adults in Central Florida with the culinary and life skills training needed to pursue a sustainable career in food industry.  100% of the graduates of this program have been placed in higher paying jobs, helping them become self-sufficient and begin life long careers.

Catering For Good offers room rentals at their unique and beautiful venues that can accommodate 10 to 200 guests – the venues are perfect for business meetings, work shops, luncheons, networking events, get togethers, holiday parties, bar or bat mitzvah, birthdays, showers, and weddings for those who wants to give back to their community on their special day.

Thanks to you, Catering For Good is not just feeding the line… but shortening the line.

Raspberry Brie

Harvest Sparkler – Prosecco and cranberries.  Non-alcoholic version in the back row.

The amazing Chef Jill Holland

Key Lime, S’mores, and Raspberry Creme Brûlée dessert shooters

Loved hearing Chef Shaneka Jimerson’s (Culinary Training Program graduate) inspiring testimony!

Thank you to the talented Culinary Training Program students for preparing our delicious lunch!

For more information, or to make an appointment and take a tour, please contact Lanette Jarvis at (407) 514-1048, email ljarvis@feedhopenow.org, or visit their website: FeedHopeNow.org

Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida
411 Mercy Drive Orlando, FL

Atlantic Salmon – Quinoa, kale, preserved lemon, almond, black olive

We were invited to DoveCote Brasserie (voted Best Restaurant 2018 by Orlando Magazine) for an intimate evening with representatives from Sonoma County Winegrowers to talk current events in Sonoma County and predictions on the 2018 harvest season while enjoying a delicious meal.

Our wonderful host Amy Landolt, Director of Marketing & Public Relations, provided an annual update on Sonoma County’s progress in its initiative to become the first 100% U.S. sustainable wine region by 2019.  We also talked about how the huge wildfires breakouts in Sonoma County affected their vineyards.

We were relieved to hear that their vineyards did not burn because there is so much moisture in the vines.  The vineyards acted as a natural fire break, not only surviving, but helping to slow and stop the spread of wildfires – as seen below in the picture from the Sonoma County Winegrowers’ 4th Annual Sustainability Report.  We also learned that helicopters picked up water from the vineyards’ irrigation ponds (the blue image below) to put out wildfires.

Amy informed us that celebrity chef Guy Fieri is from Santa Rosa, CA in Sonoma County and he has stepped in to help feed first responders and victims of the tragic wildfires in the area.  He is seriously an amazing GUY!!!

More pictures from the Sonoma County Winegrowers wine-pairing dinner below:

Country Pate – Grilled ciabatta, house mustard, pickled cauliflower

Although I did not partake in any consumption of wine, I heard raving reviews about each and every one of them from the other guests at our table.  La Follette Chardonnay was the fan favorite of the evening.

DC Caramelized Onion Soup – Oxtail onion broth, ciabatta, comte cheese

Braised Short Ribs – Potato confit, trumpet mushrooms, red wine reduction

Rachel Thralls, Sonoma County Wine Education Consultant

Coffee mousse, bay leaf crumbs, whipped cream

For more information, please visit sonomawinegrape.org.

(Source: Sonoma County)

DoveCote Brasserie
Bank of America Center, 390 N Orange Ave #110, Orlando, FL 32801
(407) 930-1700
dovecoteorlando.com

Guy’s Award-Winning Burger!  Voted “Best Burger in Las Vegas“ by Seven Magazine & Won New York City Food and Wine Festival’s Burger Bash
Bacon Mac N’ Cheese Burger – Crispy smoked bacon, six-cheese mac ’n cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle, crispy onions, donkey sauce, garlic-buttered brioche bun

We were invited to Guy Fieri’s American Kitchen & Bar in The Villages to check out their revamped menu.  Some of the new menu items includes Baja Fish Tacos, Jack Daniels New York Strip Steak, Big Bite Burrito and the Old School Steak Sandwich.   Guy Fieri’s American Kitchen & Bar has also made several other improvements.  They have lowered everyday menu prices, introduced daily specials and rolled out a new Sunday brunch menu.

“On Sundays We Brunch” will be every Sunday from 10am-3pm with prices ranging from $5.95 to $12.95.   The new Sunday brunch menu includes Chicken Fried Bacon, Biscuits & Gravy, the All–American Breakfast Burger, as well as some of Guy Fieri’s signature dishes.  Guests also have the option to make their brunch bottomless with unlimited mimosas and bloody marys for only $15.  The bottomless option has a two-hour limit.

The restaurant’s owner Greg Pranzo is the same owner as the newly-opened Cinco Tacos & Tequila in Winter Park, FL which just celebrated their ribbon cutting ceremony on National Tequila Day this past Tuesday.

Pastrami Egg Rolls – House made pastrami, Swiss cheese, sweet & sour cabbage, Russian dressing

Trash Can Nachos – Warm corn tortilla chips, pulled pork, bourbon brown sugar, BBQ sauce, SMC (super melty cheese), cheddar, beans, jalapenos, crema, pickled red onion, cilantro, pico de gallo

Roasted Garlic Hummus – Scratch-made chickpea hummus, olive tapemade, fire roasted red peppers, herb grilled flatbread, fresh veggies

Guy’s Big Island Punch – Southern Comfort, Dragonberry Rum, Dark Rum, orange, pineapple, mango, lime, cherry

Tattooed Mojito – Coconut Rum, lime, blueberries, mint, ginger ale

*NEW* Baja Fish Tacos – Crunchy panko-crusted cod, cole slaw, chipotle ranch, pico de gallo on a warm tortilla

*NEW* Jack Daniel’s New York Strip Steak – 12 oz New York strip seared, mash potatoes, side of wonder fries, bacon, sour cream, cheddar, broccolini, mushrooms, scallions, Jack Daniel sauce  

Rockin’ the “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” shirt that I got from Guy Fieri himself last year during filming at Saigon Noodle & Grill!

(Source: Guy Fieri’s American Kitchen & Bar)

Guy Fieri’s American Kitchen & Bar at Lake Sumter Landing
1045 Old Camp Rd, The Villages, FL 32162
(352) 633-3018
guysvillages.com

We were invited to a media event at Nature’s Table – FIS (the tall building across the street from the RDV Sportsplex) to sample their delicious top-selling smoothies & açaí bowls.  As a fitness enthusiast who is currently enrolled in yoga teacher training, smoothies & açaí bowls have become my go-to fuel for something quick, healthy and easy in between yoga classes and lectures.  I highly recommend Nature’s Table anyone looking to go a healthier route for breakfast or lunch.  Nature’s Table has multiple locations throughout Central Florida so you are likely to be within a few miles away from one.

The Kale & Spinach Smoothie consists of fat free yogurt, 100% fruit juice, kale, spinach, mango and pineapple.

My favorite was the Rain Forest Rhumba Smoothie which consists of fat free yogurt, açaí, raspberries, blueberries.

Nature’s Table uses fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. Lots of their fresh fruits come from Plant City, FL.  They do not use any powders.

Mango Mama Smoothie – No sugar added 100% fruit juice, mango, pineapple (low calorie smoothie)

Benefits of a Samabazon Açaí Bowl:

  • Fiber – helps keep you full, your belly healthy & may aid in maintaining blood sugar. 
  • Protein – strength & sustained nutrition. 
  • Omegas 3,6,9 – good fats for your brain & body. 
  • Powerful antioxidants – immunity, heart health, & free radical fighters.

(Source: Samabazon)

Give your day a healthy boost by eating smart at Nature’s Table!

Nature’s Table – Maitland
2001 Summit Park Dr., Orlando, FL 32810
http://naturestable.com
(321) 972-1822

Guacamole – Roasted corn relish, naan chips, Parmesan cheese

Dine in Plancha today through Saturday, July 14 and enjoy a complimentary guacamole appetizer & mojito (can be made virgin as well) with a purchase of an entrée in honor of National Mojito Day!  What an awesome deal!  The food and drinks there are really good!

Plancha is a Cuban-American restaurant located in the stylish Tranquil Golf Clubhouse at Four Seasons Orlando, just a few minutes away from Disney Springs.  They are open daily from 11am-6pm.  You do not need a hotel reservation to dine there. They have ample parking spots in their lot.

Loco Coconut Mojito – Rumhaven, Brugal 1988, lime, mint

Plancha Mojito – Barcardi, Prosecco, lime, mint

Virgin Orange Blossom Mojito

Churrasco – Skirt steak, chimichurri, mixed greens, yucca fries

Tuna Tartare – Avocado, ginger coconut vinaigrette, tostones, jalapeño, red onions, micro greens

Plancha Burger – Chorizo & beef patty, maduros, white cheddar, tomato, lettuce, cumin aioli 

Espresso

Traditional Flan – Caña sugar caramel, strawberry, kiwi, blueberries, and mini chocolate disk

Be sure to stop by Plancha soon for FREE guacamole & mojito before the deal ends this Saturday, July 14!

Plancha Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World® Resort
10100 Dream Tree Boulevard Orlando, FL 32836
(407) 313-7777
fourseasons.com/content/dam/fourseasons/images/web/ORL/PDF/ORL-Plancha-Lunch-Menu.pdf

Fried Chicken & Doughnuts – two pieces of Chef Art’s famous fried chicken served with house-made sugar doughnuts.

Home is where Chef Art is.  No matter how far his travels have taken him – from being Oprah’s personal chef to opening four incredible restaurants across the country – Celebrity Chef Art Smith calls Florida home. Now, Chef Art has returned to share his farm fresh Florida dishes with you.

A two-time James Beard Foundation award winner, was Oprah Winfrey’s personal chef for 10 years and cooked for two Florida governors in Tallahassee.

The name Homecomin’ Florida Kitchen is a nod to Chef Art’s return to Walt Disney World after his first cast role in The Magic Kingdom College Program in 1981, now known as the Walt Disney World College Program.” -Homecomin’ Kitchen

“Welcome home!”  We were invited to Homecomin’ Kitchen in Disney Springs to check out their new brunch menu that runs every Sunday from 10am – 2pm.  The manager Allen and our server Jesus gave us their full attention despite the restaurant being crazy packed along with long line.  With 13 servers running on floor and 1 bartender: our fabulous Florida Southern cuisine food came out timely and fresh.

Walk-ins accepted.  Reservations are not required but highly recommended.

Momma’s Mac and Cheese

Potato Gratin Mash

Cheddar Cheese Drop Biscuits With a Side of Hot Honey & Sawmill Gravy

Fried Catfish (from the main menu) – Accompanied by Hushpuppies, Grits & a Side of Remoulade

Florida Grouper (from the main menu) – Fresh Grilled Grouper, Braised Kale, Collard Greens with French Fries


Hummingbird Cake – The famous pineapple-banana cake with cream cheese frosting from Chef Art’s bestselling cookbook “Back To The Table”.  Served with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream.

Beautifully painted wall.

The tree that was used for this table was struck by lightning so you can see lightning scars on it.

Chef Art Smith’s James Beard Foundation Awards

Be sure to check out Homecomin’ Kitchen soon for their new Sunday brunch!

Homecomin’ Kitchen
1602 East Buena Vista Drive, Orlando, FL 32830
(407) 560-0100
homecominkitchen.com

We were invited to a media preview at Terralina Crafted Italian a day before they officially opened to the public.  Terralina Crafted Italian is a waterfront Italian restaurant by James Beard Award winning chef, Tony Mantuano.  Chef Tony and Executive Chef Justin Plank worked together to create a menu that serves authentic Italian dishes in a dreamy setting to guests at Disney Springs.  Terralina Crafted Italian, formerly Portobello Country Italian Trattoria, is now officially opened to the public.  They are located next door to Paddlefish.


Swordfish peperonata


Grilled bell peppers and mushrooms

Grilled brick chicken gremolata

Citrus marinated porchetta with apple mostarda

Fresh hand-cut pasta

Meatballs & polenta with shaved pecorino

The indoor-outdoor bar

Fresh house-made pasta with just olive oil, grated parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.  The pasta was so delicious could not have tasted any fresher!

Terralina Crafted Italian
1650 E Buena Vista Dr, Orlando, FL 32830
(407) 934-8888
terralinacrafteditalian.com

Chef's Spotlight

0 1845
“The world of sweets is for everybody. No matter your taste, you can always find something on the dessert menu that will make you...

Featured Articles

0 42
Absolutely outstanding experience last night at Tapa Toro. Chef Frank Galeano, who is set to take on the executive chef position at Tapa Toro on...