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

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

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
(321) 972-1822

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

First Watch will open their newest location in Waterford Lakes, next to Chuy’s, on Memorial Day, May 28.  This location is different than the rest of their Central Florida locations because it is about 1,000 square feet larger and includes its own bar.

Fun facts:
– First Watch is a Florida-based company. They opened their first restaurant in Maitland in 1993.
– They now have 300 locations nationwide.
– They don’t use microwave ovens, heat lamps, or fryers.

The dining area is modern and spacious.

The Waterford Lakes location is the second location with a bar, the first is Jacksonville.

Million Dollar Bloody Mary, Cinnamon Toast Coconut Milk

Pomegranate Sunrise, Morning Glory, Vodka Kale Tonic

Lemon Ricotta Pancake with Scrambled Eggs, Bacon. Side of Seasoned Potatoes and Biscuit.

 Smoked Salmon & Roasted Vegetable Frittata with Salad and Ciabatta Toast.

Roast Beef & Havarti Sandwich

Housemade Granola

Kale Tonic (Non-Alcoholic).  I need more of this fresh juice in my life!

Be sure to check out the new First Watch – Waterford Lakes soon for delicious breakfast or brunch and amazing service!  Shout out to our wonderful server, Myles.  He is the best!

(Source credit: First Watch)

First Watch
1448 N. Alafaya Trail Suite 150. Orlando, FL 32828
(941) 907-9800

Today, I was humbled…inspired…by coffee. Axum Coffee in Winter Garden, to be exact. It’s hard to believe, but it’s true, one-hundred-percent of Axum’s profits are donated “to make a better world” (as clearly defined on their coffee menu above the counter).

Insert on Coffee Menu

Being the sometime skeptic I am, I needed further proof. I spoke to the charming and intelligent, young girl behind the counter who spilled the beans (get it…coffee beans…moving on). No lie, it’s a true statement. Profits go to the city of Axum, Ethiopia (hence the name of the coffee), a city void of clean water, adequate medical care, and streets over-crowded with orphans and beggars, most of which are physically-impaired in some way. For over ten years, since the coffee shop opened, Axum has been supplying the means necessary to help this community. However, their charity extends to other non-profit organizations as well (locally, nationally, and internationally). Organizations that fight human trafficking, aid women and children in need, place children in need of homes with loving families, and so on. Axum wants their coffee shop to be a place of openness in which people come together, to share ideas, in order to help those in need and our world as a whole, “We had been envisioning a gathering place for the community to do life together.  Not just a place about the coffee, tea, smoothies, pastries, panini and desserts, but rather a place about people in the community coming together around a cause.  A place about helping those in need: locally, nationally and internationally.  A place about giving instead of taking.  A place where guests are not just numbers, but people with stories to tell.  We wanted to find a way to tangibly touch the lives of people in need: orphans, human trafficking victims, the poverty-stricken, those without potable water, etc while creating a place that unites the local community.” (

Humbled by the giving attitude of Axum as I am, fantastic tasting coffee and food can’t hurt, right? First, I love the feeling of Axum in Winter Garden (Axum coffee can also be found in other locations in Clermont and Dr. Phillips), the industrial feel of the piping that covers the high ceilings, over-sized windows that gladly welcome in the Florida sun, plenty of comfy seating inside and out, with painted walls in tranquil hues of blue and mahogany.

Front Corner Seating in Axum

With so many specialty coffee combinations to choose from (plus the usual favorites), thankfully, I had a good friend with me who suggested I order the Creme Brûlée. So glad I did! Made with espresso, caramel sauce, vanilla syrup, your choice of milk, and topped with foam and sugar in the raw…this is my new favorite! I felt like I had dessert before lunch. Axum coffee is beyond smooth-tasting to begin with, but this drink takes it to a-whole-nother level. Not to mention, it’s pretty. Expertly decorated topping like a piece of art.

Creme Brûlée Espresso

Of course there are many other drink options to pick from: black, green, and herbal teas, smoothies, cold drinks like Italian soda, hot chocolate, and several types of coffee/espresso drinks (cold brew, french press, manual brew, Americano, Cappuccino, etc.) You can also take some delicious Axum coffee home with you (perfect for those days when you can’t make it out of the house because of some menial task like laundry, or your daughter is sick, you know…life…or, is that my life?).

Coffee To Go

As if my Creme Brûlée espresso wasn’t treat enough, of course, my hungry eyes had to try more. Not just pastries, muffins, and other sweet favorites, but Axum also offers savory bites (panini, quiche, bagels, etc). Now, you tell me your will-power is strong enough to resist these goodies:

After much back-and-forth with my friend (what do you want? – well, what do you want? – you pick – no, you pick…you know how that story goes, got to be polite and all), we settled on the Caprese Panini and Bacon Quiche to share. They were hard to share, but, we kept our cool. The Caprese Panini was perfectly toasted, buttery, with soft mozzarella, sweet tomatoes, and zesty pesto. Not heavy or dense, the Bacon Quiche tasted light and airy, but also had a perfect combination of savory and salty from the cheese and bacon.

Caprese Panini
Bacon Quiche

Cozy spot, heart-warming talk with an amazing friend, and delicious food, what could be better? How about something sweet to only confirm how much I love Axum?! Thankfully, my friend and I didn’t do the “what do you want” dance, and we quickly decided on what to order. We are smart women…we know our desserts. Next up – the Coconut Creme Bomb and Peanut Butter Pie. No lie, at first bite of the Coconut Creme Bomb, I rudely interrupted my friend’s story and said, “What is this? Why does it taste so good?” Simply fantastic! Imagine, if you can, your best Pina Colada flavor and favorite yellow cake, got together, and well, you get it. A perfect amount of white icing with flakes of coconut adorn the outside, and sweet, coconut cream nestled between two layers of soft, yellow cake on the inside. Heavenly. However, the Peanut Butter Pie is no slouch, and also deserves a bow. If you love the combination of peanut butter and chocolate (as I do), this pie is perfect for you. The chocolate pie crust is rich and the peanut butter is velvety.

Coconut Creme Bomb
Peanut Butter Pie

Axum also offers vegan sweets from CayCakes Bakery. If you read my last blog (of course you did), you will remember my husband is now on a vegan kick (no joke, we had vegan burgers last night for dinner), and after a brief phone conversation while I was enjoying my lunch at Axum, in which he told me he ate avocado with salt and olive oil for his lunch, I figured, I better bring something home for him. My husband was very happy with his vegan cinnamon bun and vegan cinnamon, brown sugar pop tart.

CayCakes Bakery Items Sold at Axum

I would say, after our two desserts, our lunch date was complete. It was exactly what I needed – a good cup of coffee, terrific food, and conversation with a loving friend. Also, in a comfortable and inviting spot – Axum Coffee in Winter Garden – doing “good” for the community here and far.


Axum Coffee

CayCakes Bakery



Eggs In Purgatory – farm eggs, arrabiata, polenta, and pecorino

We attended a media preview at Pizza Bruno this past Sunday to check out their revamped brunch menu, available every Saturday & Sunday from 11am-3pm and we enjoyed our brunch and experience.  The restaurant gets slammed every evening so your best bet is to get there early for lunch during the week or brunch on the weekends when there is no wait time.

Garlic Knots – Too much garlic, pecorino, chili flake, oregano.  These are a classic appetizer at Pizza Bruno, I highly recommend them!

Kale Salad – Golden raisins, candied pecans, pizza crumb, Emperors Dressing, pecorino.  Most addicting kale sale ever!

Cinnabon Bun,  they were so good and a must for every brunch.

Frittata – Roasted tomato, white cheddar, Arugula salad, Ricotta toast with honey and pine nuts

Shrimp & Grits – Rock shrimp, aribiatta, fried egg, Calabrian oil.  This dish has a little kick to it.

Dutch Baby in two variations.  Wood Fired pancake with amish butter, sea salt, maple syrup.  The taste and texture was like a pancake flan.

Foxtail Coffee Co. Cold Brew

Guaincale & Blueberry in two variations.  It was sweet and savory.  This pizza was popular among our group.

Pizza Amatricana – tomato, chili, red onion, guanciale, and pecorino

The Dude – fresh mozzarella, pecorino, tallegio, lots of black pepper.  This is a classic pizza at Pizza Bruno it was popular among our group as well.  The Dude was my favorite pizza out of the three.

My togo box of all the pizza variations offered

The talented and down-to-earth owner of Pizza Bruno, Bruno Zacchini III working expo.  Thank you for hosting us, you and your staff were amazing!

Be sure to check out brunch at Pizza Bruno soon for their delicious brunch menu and the BEST pizza in Orlando!

Pizza Bruno
3990 Curry Ford Rd, Orlando, FL 32806
(They do not have a phone)


We were invited to Holler & Dash’s one year anniversary event at their only Florida restaurant located in Celebration and we loved it.  The food came out impressively fast and it was tasty but the staff, service and ambiance were the biggest highlight.  They treat you SO GOOD over at Holler & Dash with their Southern hospitality and they really have a passion for creating great food and memorable experiences.

Their biscuit-inspired menu pays tribute to the South in a fresh new way with chef-driven recipes, fresh ingredients, and layers of flavors like you’ve never tasted before (plus a few you know and love).  Now would be a great time to check out Holler & Dash if you are ever in the Celebration area since they have recently added new items to their menu such as: sandwiches, egg plates, salads and toast.

Blueberry & whipped ricotta, mint toast (NEW!)

Avocado Smash, watermelon radish, lemon toast (NEW!)

Pig In The Garden – Smoked bacon, sweet gem lettuce, fried green tomatoes, pimento cheese, green goddess (NEW!)

Kickback Chicken – Fried chicken, goat cheese, green onion, sweet pepper jelly with a kick with fruit

Chicken. Set. Go. – Fried chicken, pimento cheese, jalapeno, sorghum with tots

Be sure to check out Holler & Dash soon for breakfast or lunch (or breakfast for lunch!)

(Source credit: Holler & Dash)

Holler & Dash
6268 W Irlo Bronson Memorial Hwy, Kissimmee FL
(321) 204-1445

We were invited to the media preview of the Sunday Brunch Buffet at Mesa21 and it was an amazing “brunch with a view” experience consisting of delicious food, beautiful authentic interior and exterior design, extraordinary service, and a breathtaking view of Lake Ivanhoe with the occasional bird sightings.  I cannot wait to come back and introduce my friends to this new Sunday brunch experience.

Sunday Brunch from 11am to 3pm
$25 Adults
$20 bottomless mimosas & Bloody Maria’s
or $40 for both
$10 for 6 – 12 years old
Children under 6 years old eat FREE

Salad bar

Carvery Station: Roast beef

Fresh mixed vegetables

Mexican rice

Tortilla strips, shredded mozzarella cheese, and Mexican soup.

Fresh house made crispy corn tortilla chips

Salsa verde

Chips & Pico de Gallo – Corn tortillas served with fresh pico de Gallo, salsa verde, and salsa rancheros.

Mexican Pancakes – Fluffy pancakes & French Toast – Thick sliced brioche bread topped with powdered sugar.

Eggs a la carte – scrambled over medium, over hard, poached.

Egg Burrito – Egg & cheese.  Egg, Pico & Guacamole.  Egg & Chorizo.

Quesadilla – Crispy corn, cheese filled quesadilla with choice of salsa verde or salsa roja.  Topped with crema & quest fresco.

Taco Station – house made corn or flour tortillas with your choice of protein.

Mexican Bolillo (a traditional Mexican bread) with your choice of protein and garnishes.

Dessert Bar

Fruit Platter

Assorted Cheesecakes & Yogurt Parfait

Citrus cake

Chocolate cake

Patio bar

1414 N Orange Ave Orlando, FL 32804
(407) 930-8000
For the complete Sunday brunch menu, go to

Pharmacy is now opening their doors to guests on Saturdays and Sundays from 11am-2pm to introduce their new brunch menu. Diners have their choice of any entrée and cocktail for $25.

Read further below for the Press Release info:

The owners are putting their unique spin on well-known brunch favorites. Guests are greeted with a complimentary assortment of freshly fried chocolate and spiced glazed donuts for the table to enjoy.

The menu offers a range of fresh entrées, cocktails, and sides.

Diners have their choice of any entrée and cocktail for $25.

Entrées range from buttermilk and chive waffles made with farm fresh eggs and salmon cured in-house to mushroom cream mac and cheese alongside smoked brown sugar cured bacon.

IMG_0821-2 copy

A variety of cocktails are also available such as the Bloody Michelada garnished with cheese, olive and prosciutto, or their spin on a traditional mimosa known as the Buck’s Fizz featuring Marcel Martin Cremate Brut, Orange Juice and their in-house grenadine.

Pharmacy isn’t just known for its trendy speakeasy environment, but for their menu filled with local and organic foods.

The restaurant’s chef, who was featured in Food & Wine Magazine’s Top 10 Chefs in the Country along with the owners all bring their talents to the table to create unconventional dishes and cocktails.

While guests can always expect delicious and unique dishes, the menu selection changes seasonally.

Here are 6 Delightful Dishes from Pharmacy’s New Weekend Brunch Menu

1. Buttermilk & Chive Waffles

2. Pulled Pork Hash Eggs Benedict

3. Cinnamon Buns

4. Chocolate and Spice Glazed Donuts

5. Pharmacy Mac & Cheese with Double Corn Grits and Brown Sugar Cured Bacon

6. Rose Champagne

Photos via care of The Pharmacy

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I love Barnie’s CoffeeKitchen’s Sunday brunch menu created by Chef Camilo Velasco.

Known mostly for their coffee, the flavors here pop and the menu items are refreshing yet familiar.


The brunch menu, which is available only at their Winter Park flagship location, features dishes like the Israeli inspired Shakshuka, made with saucy tomato ragout topped with poached eggs, thyme, feta, served with buttered toast.

My favorite item from the menu? The simply named – Burrito, with not so simple flavors. This lovely dish is filled with fluffy eggs, spiced chorizo, sweet peppers,  herb roasted potatoes, and cilantro all wrapped up together – Delish.


Burrito. Eggs, chorizo, sweet peppers,
herb roasted potatoes, cilantro. 10


Breakfast Panino. Fried eggs, bacon,
spinach, 2-year cheddar, tomato jam. 9.5


Fried. v Two eggs, heirloom tomato,
buttered toast, herb roasted potatoes. 9.5


Avocado Toast. v Cilantro, lime, lemon
oil, sprouts. 7


Baker’s Basket v Pastry assortment,
Amish butter, house preserves. Featuring
Blue Bird Bake Shop™ and Olde Hearth
baked goods. 7.5



Barnie’s CoffeeKitchen
118 S. Park Ave, Winter Park, FL 407.629.0042

Store Hours
Monday – Thursday
7:00am – 5:00pm

Friday – Saturday
7:00am – 6:00pm

7:30am – 6:00pm

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Swine & Sons Provisions, from the owners of the The Ravenous Pig and Cask & Larder, will expand offerings to include breakfast beginning Monday, July 27, at its 595 West Fairbanks Avenue shop in Winter Park.

The morning menu will feature hot egg sandwiches, quiches, pastries, house cold brewed coffee, espresso drinks and rotating seasonal specials.

Chefs Rhys and Alexia Gawlak of Swine and Sons
Chefs Rhys and Alexia Gawlak of Swine and Sons

Breakfast hours will be Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. Swine & Sons will continue to serve lunch weekdays between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., and will offer a limited menu consisting of grab-and-go options, charcuterie, beer and wine between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.

The breakfast menu will not be available on weekends, for now, but the full lunch menu will be served from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Saturday, and from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Sunday.

To celebrate the launch of the new breakfast menu, Swine & Sons will offer hot breakfast sandwiches all day (7 a.m. until 5 p.m.) on Monday, July 27.


Here are a few of the new items:

Breakfast @ Swine & Sons



Biscuit Sandwich – Egg, House-Made Canadian Bacon, Tomato Jam

Fried Chicken and Waffle-wich – Smoked Honey, Pickled Gypsy Peppers, Cornbread Waffle

Breakfast Focaccia Panini – Egg whites, tomato-basil goat cheese spread, marinated sweet peppers



Baked Egg – Grits, Smoked Tomato, Potatoes, Onion, Sausage, Kale

Baked Egg en Croute – Caramelized Onion, house-cured Bacon

Baked Egg en Croute – Spinach, Fontina



Cinnamon Bun

Chai Spiced Coffee Cake

Bento Boxes


Smoked Salmon Spread with Bagel Chips

Salumi and Cheese

Swine & Sons’ breakfast is a collaboration by James Beard-nominated chefs/co-owners James and Julie Petrakis and their Swine & Sons partners, Rhys and Alexia Gawlak.

“Neither The Ravenous Pig nor Cask & Larder are open during breakfast time, so this was the perfect chance to add an option for people to enjoy Swine Family restaurants at all hours,” said James Petrakis.

“Swine & Sons breakfast offers quick takeout for people on the run, as well as a neighborhood hub where guests can read the newspaper while enjoying a cup of coffee.”

Swine & Sons will also offer breakfast catering services for local businesses and private gatherings.

For more information on Swine & Sons, visit or follow on social media at:
Facebook –
Twitter – @SwineandSons
Instagram – @SwineandSons


Click to add a blog post for Swine & Sons on Zomato

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This cash-only bakery has been in operation on Michigan Street for over 20 years. It may look a little run down and need of some upkeeping, but the donuts, bagels,& breakfast sandwiches are well worth the visit.

Many folks like the croissant bacon egg and cheese or bagel sandwiches, but on this visit I went straight for the donuts – moist, sweet, delicious. The flavors ranged from glazed to blueberry, apple, frosted, sprinkles, and many more. Try to get there early because by early afternoon, the selection is far less and many of the donuts raided by the locals.

Prices are very affordable, which explains the cash only policy, with half a dozen donuts for $4.25.

The owners seem to be friends with the folks at Sip ‘N Dip Donuts in St. Cloud, too.



Stacks of donuts glowing under the flourescent lights



Apple cinnamon donuts, sour cream, glazed, sprinkles


Bakery Plus on Urbanspoon

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Brought to life by charismatic owner Rocco Mangel, Rocco’s Tacos & Tequila Bar has become one of the most popular restaurants on Sand Lake Road, Orlando’s Restaurant Row, with open air seating, beautiful wood themed decor, a fabulous lake side view, along with great Mexican food.

Here the guacamole is prepared tableside and guests can sample from 225 varieties of tequila.

Now they’re getting into the brunch game with new Mexican style breakfast/brunch dishes like Wet Burrito Con Huevos, Pan Dulce y Compota Manzana, and Huevos Ahoghada con Shortribs.

On Saturday and Sunday afternoons, Rocco’s Tacos Orlando guests can spicy up traditional brunch with the popular Wet Burrito con Huevos, scrambles eggs, rajas, bacon, potatoes, cheese guacamole, pico de gallo and chipotle crema and salsa rojo to pack in the heat or the chilequiles, a delicious sunny side up egg topped with tostada chips fried in salsa verde, Chihuahua and cotija cheese, sour cream, guacamole, and pico de gallo.

Guacamole prepared tableside
Guacamole prepared tableside
Guacamole prepared tableside
Guacamole prepared tableside


· Fruit & Nut Granola ($9.50) – Strawberries, bananas, apple compote, Greek yogurt
· Wet Burrito con Huevos ($12) – Scrambled eggs, rajas, bacon, potatoes, cheese, guacamole, pico de gallo, chipotle crema, salsa rojo
· Benedict Azteca ($13) – Poached eggs in masa sopes, pork cochinitas, salsa orjo, spinach, chipotle crema, Mexican potatos
· Huevos en Cazuela (Bistec: $14, Bacon and Chorizo: $12) – Sunny side up eggs on black beans and cheese with a choice of meat in a skillet
· Huevos Rancheros Divociados ($13) – Sunny side up eggs on tostadas, refried bean, salsas rojo and verde, lettuce, Chihuahua cheese, pico de gallo, sour cream, guacamole
· Huevos Ahoghada con Shortribs ($13) – Poached eggs on shortribs and poblano hash, salsa verde, corn, spinach, manchego
· Chilequiles ($13) – Sunny side up eggs, tostada chips fried with salsa verde, topped with Chihuahua and cotija cheese, sour cream, guacamole, pico de galllo
· Pan dulce y Compota Manzana ($13) – Mexican style French toast with bacon, agave, and maple syrup, apple compote, sweet sour cream.

Huevos Ahoghada con Shortribs ($13) - Poached eggs on shortribs and poblano hash, salsa verde, corn, spinach, manchego
Huevos Ahoghada con Shortribs ($13) – Poached eggs on shortribs and poblano hash, salsa verde, corn, spinach, manchego
Pan dulce y Compota Manzana ($13) – Mexican style French toast with bacon, agave, and maple syrup, apple compote, sweet sour cream.
Pan dulce y Compota Manzana ($13) – Mexican style French toast with bacon, agave, and maple syrup, apple compote, sweet sour cream.

Saturdays and Sundays
11am – 3 pm

7468 W. Sand Lake Road
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 226-0550

Premium margaritas at Rocco's Tacos
Premium margaritas at Rocco’s Tacos
"Ceviche Del Dia" is made Fresh daily with Marinated seafood with lime, onion, tomato, cilantro, avocado and pepper
“Ceviche Del Dia” is made Fresh daily with Marinated seafood with lime, onion, tomato, cilantro, avocado and pepper




Rocco's Tacos and Tequila Bar on Urbanspoon

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We found out recently that there is a donut shop near by our house that makes all their donuts in house. With the recent opening of Donut King in Winter Park, it seems Orlando is ripe for a donut renaissance that would make even Homer J. Simpson proud.

Sip and Dip is located off of the main stretch of US-192 in sleepy St. Cloud. The place is run by a happy Thai couple and has been open for almost 20 years since opening here in 1996. The clientele is local and loyal, and I can see why.

The display case prominently placed in the center calls attention to your eyes immediately. The bright fluorescent lighting illuminates yellow trays of rainbow sprinkled glazed donuts, plump glazed bear claws, red velvet chocolate donuts, apple fritters, and many, many others. The display reminds me of Donut King for some reason, and even the smell and taste are similar – sweet and fluffy and altogether a delight to eat. One donut is $0.98, while buying in bulk at a dozen brings in an even better deal at $7.49 for a design. With quality and tastes like this, there is no reason ever to go back to the run of the mill Dunkin’ Donuts.

In addition to their heavenly donuts, Sip and Dip also offers a nice list of bagel and croissant sandwiches and kolaches, which are stuffed hot dog wrapped in bread with cheese and jalapeno peppers, fresh and hot.

The Thai owners even bring a taste of their home here with an assortment of Thai tea and flavored boba teas available for order.

I can’t wait to go back!




Display case of wondrous donuts at Sip and Dip
Display case of wondrous donuts at Sip and Dip
Rainbow sprinkled vanilla frosting donuts
Rainbow sprinkled vanilla frosting donuts
Coconut and nuts donut
Coconut and nuts donut
Red velvet and more
Red velvet and more


Assorted toys and gifts for the little ones
Assorted toys and gifts for the little ones
A beautiful mural of space and donuts - note, the big "dipper"
A beautiful mural of space and donuts – note, the big “dipper”
Bacon, egg, and cheese croissant - very good
Bacon, egg, and cheese croissant – very good
Jalapeno and cheese kolache hot dog in a bun
Jalapeno and cheese kolache hot dog in a bun
You know what's up
You know what’s up



Sip and Dip Donuts – St. Cloud
Mon – Sat: 5:00 am – 11:00 pm
Sun: 5:00 am – 5:00 pm

Sip & Dip Donuts on Urbanspoon

Like any other Sunday morning, I was faced with the tedious task of figuring out what to eat for breakfast. After all, no weekend is complete without a memorable Sunday brunch.

I decided to head toward Park Ave with great hope of finding a delicious brunch spot. Unfortunately, the parking situation was not in my favor, so I decided to drive away. A minute later, my eyes glanced over to Ethos Vegan Kitchen. For those of you who have never been here, they serve vegan/vegetarian cuisine – I’ve had their pizza and calzones in the past, which didn’t disappoint at all. However, I was completely unfamiliar with the brunch/breakfast scene at Ethos. The thought of vegan sausage and bacon confused me.

I walked into Ethos and was greeted by a friendly staff. They pointed me to the bar since all the booths were filled. The menu was easy to follow; they were serving up the usual breakfast assortment in a vegan fashion: eggs, french toast, cinnamon buns, bacon, etc

My brunch started with  freshly brewed iced tea, or at least that’s what I was told it was. Unfortunately, the tea was bitter – probably due to over-steeping or poor tea quality. I should have trusted my instincts and ordered a mimosa.


Bitter Iced Tea 

Before ordering, I asked the server what the vegan sausage was made of. She said, “It’s a mixture of wheat and soy.”

As a struggling vegetarian, I decided to give it a try and ordered the vegan sausage as a side to my french toast, which was served with fresh strawberries, walnuts ($0.99 extra), and agave syrup. When I received my french toast, I was slightly disappointed at first. The portion size was tiny and didn’t seem like it was worth $10. However, I started feeling full after a few bites in. I’m not sure how vegan french toast is made, but Ethos’ take is rich and filling. The powdered sugar and cinnamon accentuated the caramel flavors found in the edges and the sweetness of the strawberries. Unfortunately, I wasn’t a huge fan of the vegan sausage – it was dull in flavor and slightly chalky in texture.


French Toast topped with fresh strawberries, agave syrup, walnuts, and served with vegan sausage. 

Overall, I’d give the French Toast an eight out of ten. The french toast itself was absolutely delicious but I’ll have to try a different side next time.

Ethos Vegan Kitchen on Urbanspoon

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BRIO Tuscan Grille at Winter Park Village in Winter Park is celebrating springtime with its fun-filled Bunny Brunch.

BRIO’s Bunny Brunch offers plenty of delicious items for both adults and children. Dishes on the adult menu include Eggs, Home Fries & Bacon, Sicilian Omelette, Berries & Cream French Toast, and Ham & Biscuit Benedict. Children’s entrees are scrambled eggs, bacon and fresh fruit; and French toast with bacon and fresh fruit. In addition to the Bunny Brunch menu, my guest and I were able to get a taste of the Calamari and Spicy Shrimp & Eggplant appetizers recommended by our friendly server, Sterling.

The new menu options appeal to many different tastes and Executive Chef Eric Carter did a beautiful job with the dishes. BRIO offers flexible options to cater dietary preferences and can substitute entrées with egg whites or turkey sausage. There is also a light gluten free menu with entrées under 550 calories.

To add festivity to the brunch, the Easter Bunny walked around greeting guests at every table for photo opportunities and there was also a face painting station for children.

The restaurant decor is classically polished with white linens and dark marble details. There is a large indoor dining room and outdoor terrace to accommodate any party size, and I opted for outdoor seating to relax in the perfect morning light and weather.


Sicilian Omelette: Cherrywood smoked ham bacon, Fontanini sausage tomato compote, Mozzarella Provolone and Parmesan cheeses. Served with brunch potatoes.
Ham & Biscuit Benedict: Two poached cage free eggs, Cherrywood smoked ham, house made biscuit, hollandaise. Served with brunch potatoes.
Eggs, Home Fries & Bacon: Scrambled eggs, bacon, brunch potatoes, toast. (Turkey sausage available upon request)
Berries & Cream French Toast: Mascarpone cream cheese stuffed French toast, honey, cinnamon, fresh berry compote. With Applewood smoked bacon.
Berries & Cream French Toast – my favorite dish!
Calamari Fritto Misto
Spicy Shrimp & Eggplant: Pan seared shrimp in a black pepper cream sauce over Romano crusted eggplant. Recommended by our server and it was delicious!
Executive Chef Eric Carter and Tiffany Nguyen posing with the Easter Bunny


BRIO at Winter Park Village
480 N. Orlando Ave., Winter Park, FL 32789

BRIO offers Call Ahead Seating and Reservations. (407) 622-5611

BRUNCH AT BRIO ~ Available Saturday & Sunday until 3:30pm.

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BRAVO! Cucina Italiana is a “polished casual,” affordable restaurant offering classic Italian food amongst the shadows of Roman ruins. The subtitle “Cucina Italiana” means Italian kitchen, in which all cooking is done in full view of the guest, creating the energy of a live theater.

BRAVO’s popular entrees include grilled steaks, chops, and made-to-order pizzas, pastas and house specialties, similar to an authentic ‘ristorante’ in Italy. BRAVO! is part of Columbus-based BRAVO I BRIO Restaurant Group. Founded in 1992, BRAVO I BRIO Restaurant Group currently operates more than 100 restaurants in 33 states including BRAVO! Cucina Italiana, BRIO Tuscan Grille and Bon Vie Bistro.


On April 12, 2014, BRAVO! hosted a fun-filled Bunny Brunch to celebrate springtime. This brunch will be available also during Easter Sunday. I was invited to try it out recently here in town.


Sit down with the Easter Bunny to enjoy dishes on the menu for adults and children.

Children’s entrées are scrambled eggs, bacon and fresh fruit; and French toast with bacon and fresh fruit.

Adults could chose from Sicilian Omelette (Cherrywood smoked ham, bacon, Fontanini sausage, tomato compote, Mozzarella, Provolone and Parmesan cheeses, served with brunch potatoes) to Berries & Cream French Toast (Mascarpone cream cheese stuffed French toast, honey, cinnamon, and berry compote with Applewood smoked bacon). Two other options will be mentioned below.


Once drinks are ordered, house baked muffins are brought out. At our table, we were given poppy seed and blueberry muffins. Both were delicious, but were a tad dry in my opinion.


With the Bunny Brunch, the meal also includes a yogurt & fruit parfait. Each cup was cute and had fresh fruit over yogurt taken right out of the fridge.



The Eggs, Home Fries & Bacon consisted of scrambled eggs, bacon, brunch potatoes, and brioche toast – turkey sausage available upon request. The scrambled eggs were requested to be of only egg whites and accommodated; they were delicious with a shake of salt and pepper. The bacon was crispy without being burnt. And the home fries were to die for with its delicious seasoning.


The Ham & Biscuit Benedict had two poached eggs, Cherrywood smoked ham, house made biscuit, and hollandaise, served with brunch potatoes. This was made to please every tastebud as each ingredient added to the dish in general. The poached eggs had a little sweetness to the palate; the ham was smoked and a little spicy, but bearable to those who can’t handle spicy dishes; and the biscuits themselves were fluffy as can be!

BRAVO! Cucina Italiana Orlando – Dellagio is located at 7924 Via Dellagio Way, Orlando, FL 32819, in the Dellagio development adjacent to The Marketplace at Dr. Phillips. The 7,482-square-foot BRAVO! restaurant includes indoor seating for 233, two private dining rooms that can each accommodate up to 30, and an outdoor terrace that seats 122.

BRAVO! offers lunch and dinner, as well as an award-winning children’s menu.

The restaurant is open Sunday–Thursday 11 a.m.–10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 11 a.m.–11 p.m. For reservations, please call (407) 351-5880.

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Easter is Sunday April 20th this year, and with Easter, of course, comes Sunday brunch with the family. Make sure you make your reservations early!

Easter Brunch at the Hyatt Regency Orlando 

 Fiorenzo Italian Steakhouse is offering a special Easter Brunch menu this year – complete with a visit from the Easter Bunny.

For $64 per adult and $32 for children ages 5 to 12, the menu will include hand carved leg of lamb; fluffy omelets made to order; hot and cold smoked salmon; tapas and antipasto display; sparking wine; juice; coffee and tea; and much more.

You can call 407-345-4570 or email for reservations.


Enjoy Easter Brunch at Emeril’s Orlando or Emeril’s Tchoup Chop

Restaurants offering special menus, extended hours

Emeril’s Orlando and Emeril’s Tchoup Chop restaurants at Universal Orlando will both be serving unique menu items and cocktail specials onApril 20, Easter Sunday. Emeril’s Orlando will be serving the special menus for brunch only, 11:30 a.m.–3 p.m. Emeril’s Tchoup Chop will serve the special menu alongside its regular dinner menu from 12–9 p.m. Reservations are recommended.

Easter brunch at Emeril’s Orlando:

Emeril’s Orlando is offering specials including a duck confit and mushroom gumbo;baked oyster Rockefeller; a brûlée goat cheese salad with strawberries and beets;Gulf shrimp and corn grits with bacon, mushrooms, herbs and Creole tomato glaze;crab cakes served with poached eggs and a red bean-sweet corn relish and cayenne hollandaise; a boudin-stuffed quail with collard greens and mustard-pear jus; and panéed veal with truffle fettuccini. The special menu will be served from 11:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. on April 20. Call (407) 224-2424 for reservations. View the full menu.

 Andouille crusted fish of the day with shoestring potatoes, zucchini, squash and Creole meuniere sauce at Emeril’s.

Andouille crusted fish of the day with shoestring potatoes, zucchini, squash and Creole meuniere sauce at Emeril’s.

Easter at Emeril’s Tchoup Chop:

Emeril’s Tchoup Chop Easter specials include a Robata Tako with chick peas, sundried tomatoes, cannellini beans, charred ramps, yuzu dill vinaigrette; crab cake benedict with furikake biscuits, Asian guacamole kim chee hollandaise; chicken under a brick with spring peas, new potatoes, pipikaula, artichoke, cipollini onions charred ramp morel vinaigrette; a grilled Australian lamb T-bone with apple habanero “Waldorf” potato salad, mint lemongrass tamari drizzle huckleberry jam; a Lilikoi key lime meringue with huckleberry jam and huckleberry sorbet; and carrot cake trifle in a jar with macadamia nut brittle ice cream. The special menu will be served in addition to the regular dinner menu from 12–9 p.m. Call (407) 503-2467 for reservations. View the full Easter menu.


Emeril’s Orlando
(407) 224-2424
FacebookTwitterInstagram (@EmerilsOrlando)

Emeril’s Tchoup Chop
(407) 503-2467
FacebookTwitterInstagram (@TchoupChop)

BRIO Tuscan Grille at Winter Park Village Hops Into Easter
with April 12 Bunny Brunch, Featuring the Easter Bunny & Fun Activities

BRIO Tuscan Grille (BRIO) at Winter Park Village in Winter Park is celebrating springtime with its fun-filled Bunny Brunch for the entire family. Kids will spring into exciting Easter activities and a photo opportunity with the Easter Bunny himself (don’t forget your camera!)

BRIO’s breakfast will be plentiful with delicious items for both adults and children. Dishes on the adult menu, all priced at $11.95, include Eggs, Home Fries & Bacon (scrambled eggs, bacon, brunch potatoes, and brioche toast – turkey sausage available upon request); Sicilian Omelette (Cherrywood smoked ham, bacon, Fontanini sausage, tomato compote, Mozzarella, Provolone and Parmesan cheeses, served with brunch potatoes); Berries & Cream French Toast (Mascarpone cream cheese stuffed French toast, honey, cinnamon, and berry compote with Applewood smoked bacon); and Ham & Biscuit Benedict (two poached eggs, Cherrywood smoked ham, housemade biscuit, and hollandaise, served with brunch potatoes).

Children’s entrees, both priced at $5.95, are scrambled eggs, bacon and fresh fruit; and French toast with bacon and fresh fruit.

All meals come with choice of coffee, tea, soda or juice; plus a yogurt & fruit parfait and house baked muffins.

Reservations are requested for the Bunny Brunch at (407) 622-5611.

Saturday, April 12, 9–11 a.m.

BRIO at Winter Park Village
480 N. Orlando Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789
(407) 622-5611

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It’s Brunch with the Easter Bunny! BRAVO! Cucina Italiana Orlando – Dellagio Hops into its April 12 Bunny Brunch, Featuring the Bunny Himself & Fun Activities

BRAVO! Cucina Italiana Orlando – Dellagio in Orlando is celebrating springtime with its fun-filled Bunny Brunch for the entire family. Kids will spring into exciting Easter activities and a photo opportunity with the Easter Bunny himself (don’t forget your camera!)

BRAVO!’s breakfast will be plentiful with delicious items for both adults and children. Dishes on the adult menu, all priced at $11.95, include Eggs, Home Fries & Bacon (scrambled eggs, bacon, brunch potatoes, and brioche toast – turkey sausage available upon request); Sicilian Omelette (Cherrywood smoked ham, bacon, Fontanini sausage, tomato compote, Mozzarella, Provolone and Parmesan cheeses, served with brunch potatoes); Berries & Cream French Toast (Mascarpone cream cheese stuffed French toast, honey, cinnamon, and berry compote with Applewood smoked bacon); and Ham & Biscuit Benedict (two poached eggs, Cherrywood smoked ham, housemade biscuit, and hollandaise, served with brunch potatoes).

Children’s entrees, both priced at $5.95, are scrambled eggs, bacon and fresh fruit; and French toast with bacon and fresh fruit.

All meals come with choice of coffee, tea, soda or juice; plus a yogurt & fruit parfait and house baked muffins.

Reservations are requested for the Bunny Brunch at (407) 351-5880.

Saturday, April 12, 9–10:30 a.m.

BRAVO! Cucina Italiana Orlando – Dellagio
7924 Via Dellagio Way
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 351-5880.

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Easter at Ocean Prime

Celebrate Easter with family and friends at Orlando’s modern American supper club. Ocean Prime will open early at 11 a.m. on Easter Sunday, serving executive chef Jeremy Mattson’s special brunch menu in addition to the dinner menu all day. Brunch options include blood orange mimosaquichewith spinach, swiss, provolone, parmesan, arugula salad and fresh fruit,blueberry French toast with cream cheese, powdered sugar, warm maple syrup and smoked bacon, braised short rib with marble potatoes, caramelized onions, roasted peppers, poached eggs and cabernet jus, crab and eggs with toasted English muffin, jumbo lump crab cakes, poached eggs, hollandaise, fingerling potatoes and fresh fruit and blackened salmon salad with strawberries, grapes, cantaloupe, goat cheese, field greens, basil poppyseed dressing and candied walnuts. Reservations can be made online at

Ocean Prime Crab and Eggs

Easter Day Buffet with Unlimited Champagne Café Osceola

Date: Sunday, April 20, 2014
Time: 11:30 a.m.-7:00 p.m.

Whether you love traditional favorites, unlimited champagne or dazzling desserts, Rosen Shingle Creek’s Café Osceola is serving more than 44 mouthwatering edibles for everyone to savor. Menu offerings include soups, salad, seafood stations, delicious entrees, carving and pasta stations, desserts and much more!

The buffet is priced at $64.95 for adults; $29.95 for children ages 4-12; free for children 3 and under. Florida residents and hotel guests take 25% off. Price does include tax and gratuity.

Reservations are strongly recommended by calling (407) 996-6338. For more information contact Emily Grether at, or visit

Easter Day Buffet with Unlimited Champagne at Café Gauguin

Date: Sunday, April 20, 2014
Time: 11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

The Easter Bunny is bringing more than just candy this year. Enjoy Café Gauguin’s special Easter Brunch including waffles and omelets made to order, carving stations, fresh seafood, sushi and desserts ranging from chocolate fondue to an assortment of pies, plus unlimited champagne and mimosas.

Our buffet is $41.95 for adults; $16.95 for children ages 4-12; free for children 3 and under. Price does not include tax and gratuity. Valet parking is complimentary.

Reservations are strongly recommended by calling (407) 996-9840. For more information contact Adrienne Lee at, or visit

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Easter Day Brunch Buffet at Rosen Plaza’s Grand Ballroom

Date: Sunday, April 20, 2014
Time: 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Fill your Easter basket with our spring brunch selections. Choose from more than 39 delectable dishes of soups, salads, fresh seafood, traditional favorites and decadent desserts. Includes a complimentary glass of wine.

The buffet is priced at $36.95 plus tax and gratuity, children under 12 $16.95 plus tax and gratuity; children under 4 free with each paying adult. Valet parking is complimentary.

Reservations are strongly recommended by calling (407) 996-0256. For more information contact Connie McCoy at, or visit

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Celebrate Easter Brazilian-Style
Texas de Brazil to Open at 11:00 a.m. with Additional Menu Items!

WHAT: Texas de Brazil will open at 11:00 a.m. on Easter Sunday, April 20 and is the perfect choice for an Easter feast, Brazilian-style! Families can enjoy Texas de Brazil’s signature cuts of beef, pork, lamb, chicken and Brazilian sausage carved tableside in true Brazilian Churrascaria fashion.

ADDITIONS: For Easter only, Texas de Brazil is offering scrambled eggs, fried potatoes, fruit salad, assorted pastries, bacon and sausage, in addition to their regular dinner menu. For the special price of $8/each, diners can also choose between mango, strawberry or passion fruit flavored Spring Mimosas, a delicious cocktail made with their house Champagne, blended with choice of fruit puree and a touch of orange juice.

WHEN: Sunday, April 20, open at 11:00 a.m.

COST: Regular Dinner: $46.99/Light Dinner: $24.99. Texas de Brazil will be serving the regular dinner menu and price all day. Drinks, dessert, alcoholic beverages, tax and gratuity are additional.

WHERE: Orlando, FL: 5259 International Drive, 407.355.0355


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Hash House A Go Go, an all-day dining spot, opened at 5350 International Drive; Orlando, FL – just a half mile North of Universal Boulevard, serving “twisted farm food” for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner at the restaurant group’s first Southeast location.

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The restaurant seats 260 guests, including 60 seats at the bar.

Hash House A Go Go has received national recognition from the likes of The Steve Harvey Show, Martha Stewart, Al Roker, and Adam Richman of the Travel Channel’s “Man Vs. Food.”

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I recently visited for a media dinner, and all I can say is that I wish them the best of luck.

The location has previously been a series of different restaurants without many lasting more than a few years.

As one of the few if only places for “breakfast” on International Drive, it is a unique restaurant with uniquely huge portions of food. I would imagine it would be a good place for groups to get together for something “fun” or different to try or maybe have a nice laugh about when the food arrives.

The decor is a bit dark inside when I would have imagined something brighter to signal the morning day or something.

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The food…though admired by Adam Richman and Martha Stewart…was not particularly memorable besides the huge portions. It was gluttony defined…huge portions for a good price.

I suppose it is true what they say as quantities increase, quality often is compromised. The items I tasted were in need of some flavor and taste, and I hope the chef remedies this before it is too late.

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Johnny’s Famous BLT Mary trimmed with a fresh tomato wheel, smoked bacon slice, a rib of romaine lettuce, and toast.

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Honey biscuits – huge, and a bit dry

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Chorizo House Hash tossed with crispy potatoes & topped w/ 2 eggs, served with fruit and biscuit


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Crispy Hand-Hammered Pork Tenderloin Benedict
with market tomato, spinach, and barbecue cream, topped with scrambled eggs


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Sage Fried Chicken and Waffles
two sage fried chicken breasts with a hardwood smoked bacon waffle tower, hot maple reduction and fried leaks

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Hash House A Go Go on Urbanspoon

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Pork Tenderloin Benedict
Mayor Buddy Dyer and Commissioner Samuel B. Ings with the staff at Hash House A Go Go
Mayor Buddy Dyer and Commissioner Samuel B. Ings with the staff at Hash House A Go Go

Located in Orange County, south-west of Orlando at 5350 International Drive, Hash House A Go Go will feature “twisted farm food, blending traditional dishes with bold flavors” known for their brunch and breakfast food. This location once housed Nelore Churrascaria and Mateo’s Italian, among other incarnations.


Chicken Pot Pie - Roasted chicken, pan gravy, farm fresh veggies in an upside down cracker crust shell
Chicken Pot Pie – Roasted chicken, pan gravy, farm fresh veggies in an upside down cracker crust shell

Hash House a Go Go is probably best known for its appearance on the notorious Travel Channel TV show Man Vs. Food, when Adam Richman visited the Las Vegas location and tried out their monstrous “Sage Fried Chicken Eggs Benedict”. I see what they mean by “twisted.”

Adam Richman of the Travel Channel's Man Vs. Food with the Fried Chicken Eggs Benedict
Adam Richman of the Travel Channel’s Man Vs. Food with the Fried Chicken Eggs Benedict

The benedict is an amalgam of fresh spinach, hardwood smoked bacon, market tomato, griddled mozzarella, chipotle cream and scrambled eggs served on a fresh split biscuit with griddled mashed potatoes.

The restaurant will open to the public on Tuesday, April 16th at 9 a.m.

The restaurant will be open daily, with breakfast served all day through lunch and selected signature breakfast items available at dinner.

Breakfast service will start at 7 a.m., continuing into lunch from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m., and dinner will be served from 5:00 p.m. to 11 p.m. with late night dining on Friday and Saturday till 1a.m.

Brunch service will be offered on Saturdays and Sundays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, please visit “Like” Hash House A Go Go on Facebook for flash updates, special offers, and more.

With outposts already in Las Vegas, Reno, and Chicago to name a few, Hash House A Go Go celebrated its latest addition with a ribbon cutting ceremony at the new Orlando restaurant on 5350 International Drive.

On Wednesday, April 10th at 6:30 p.m., join Mayor Buddy Dyer and Commissioner Samuel B. Ings in welcoming the award-winning dining spot to its new home.

Mayor Buddy Dyer and Commissioner Samuel B. Ings at the ribbon cutting
Mayor Buddy Dyer and Commissioner Samuel B. Ings at the ribbon cutting
Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer says they think his tractor is sexy at Hash House a Go Go
Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer says they think his tractor is sexy at Hash House a Go Go
Chicken and Bacon Waffle Tower - Drizzled with hot maple reduction & fried leeks
Chicken and Bacon Waffle Tower – Drizzled with hot maple reduction & fried leeks

5350 International Drive, Orlando, FL 32819 –

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This recipe is inspired by the nutella fruit waffle sandwiches found at Sleepy Hollow in Liberty Square at Disney’s Magic Kingdom.

Truly a hidden gem, these waffles, as well as their chicken and waffle variety, were some of the most delicious theme park food I’ve had in a while and I still remember it fondly.

My sister Christina recently received a Black and Decker flip waffle maker for Christmas and so we thought we’d try it out today. They turned out perfectly, slightly crispy yet still fluffy and a little sweet.


Preheat waffle iron. Separate egg whites and beat whites until fluffy in a small bowl. Beat egg yolks in large bowl with hand beater until fluffy. Beat in flour, milk, vegetable oil, baking powder, salt, vanilla, and cinnamon, just until smooth. Beat in egg whites and sugar.

Spray preheated waffle iron with non-stick cooking spray. Pour mix onto hot waffle iron. Cook until golden brown. Serve hot.

Spread nutella over the waffle and add blueberries, sliced bananas, strawberries, and confectionary sugar as desired.

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peach valley cafe orlando photo peach-valley-_zps283f4093.jpg

I previously visited Peach Valley Café in the Dr. Phillips area a few years ago and had a lovely breakfast of Belgian waffles and sausage. The restaurant, based out of New Smyrna Beach and part of the Stonewood Restaurant Group, recently expanded to the SoDo District (South of Downtown Orlando), the third in the Orlando area after the aforementioned Dr. Philips and Heathrow locations.

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I was recently invited by the folks at Peach Valley to a media brunch event to sample some of their menu items. The restaurant is located in a plaza, tucked away from Orange Avenue near a Publix. Large open windows along the building give the space a lot of Florida sunshine and light, providing a bright, airy feeling inside. Surprisingly, I was told that they are busiest during rainy days compared to sunny days, maybe because there are so many things to do in Central Florida when the sun is out and there is more of a need for comfort food in those down weather days.

Peach Valley Cafe specializes in brunch and breakfast items, all prepared in house with fresh ingredients, with many healthy and light options for those new year’s resolution conscious diners. However, I am not one of those diners.

The first thing we had were the apple fritters, a popular mainstay at Peach Valley, served tableside with a shake of brown sugar and cinnamon and a side of strawberry or pumpkin yogurt dip. The fritters were good, fresh and fluffy, lightly sweet and fun to dip. I can see why so many people rave about these little apple cinnamon bits of joy.

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Peach Valley Cafe’s Apple Fritters – served tableside

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Peach Valley Cafe’s Apple Fritters – with their dipping sauces.

One of our favorite items was the Chicken and Waffles, prepared with fried chicken, pillowy Belgian waffles, and blueberry butter and cajun syrup. Though the fried chicken may have needed some more seasoning, the waffle, chicken, and cajun syrup made for a winning combination of texture and tastes.

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Chicken and Waffles, prepared with fried chicken, pillowy Belgian waffles, and blueberry butter and cajun syrup

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Stuffed French Toast was another highlight here, made with a creamy peach and strawberry filling, and housemade blueberry syrup.


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For those veggie lovers, try the vegetable and egg croissant benedict, made with flaky croissants, beefsteak tomatos, asparagus, spicy red onions, and poached egg with hollandaise sauce and breakfast potatos.

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Peach Valley uses a state of the art Kindle Fire based ordering system that allows the waiters to quickly send the orders over to the kitchen.

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Our waiter, a young gentlemen studying to become a doctor at UF, suggested to us the delicious Santa Fe Chicken Salad Wrap, a wrap stuffed with corn and black bean salsa, pico de gallo, fresh mixed greens, and a creamy ranch dressing. It was refreshing and tasty, and maybe one of my favorite wraps ever.

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Santa Fe Chicken Salad Wrap

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Peach Valley’s Shrimp and Grits, New Orleans inspired

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Home made peach cobbler a la mode!

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Monday –Friday 7am-2:30pm, and Saturday and Sunday 7am-3:30pm

Peach Valley Café on Urbanspoon

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Located inside one of the many “hidden garden” courtyards along Park Avenue in downtown Winter Park, The Bistro on Park Avenue is a beautiful gem waiting to be discovered. A few friends and I decided to visit one morning for a Sunday brunch and enjoy some omelettes and eggs benedicts. The Bistro on Park Avenue has an outside patio dining area, as well as a sun room, covered inside area, and an oyster bar.



For an appetizer, I ordered half a dozen fried oysters, which came out quite tasty and crunchy with a nice remoulade sauce accompaniment.


I ordered the Smoked Salmon Benedict with a side of breakfast potatoes. I enjoyed the smoked salmon part, but found the eggs to have been overdone (no longer runny) and the English muffin was a bit dry. Overall, the food was enjoyable though a bit overpriced it seemed. I would probably have to return to try some more of their offerings before making a final verdict.


Smoked Salmon Benedict
English muffin with tender smoked salmon topped with
poached eggs and home made hollandaise


California Benedict
Roasted portobello mushroom, tomatoes, avocado with two
poached eggs, topped with home made hollandaise.


Andouille Sausage Omelet
Three egg omelet with andouille sausage and
cheddar-Jack cheese. $12


The Bistro on Park Avenue on Urbanspoon


After our brunch, we decided to walk down along Park Avenue to explore some of the shops and bakeries for a little something sweet after our meal. Sweet Traditions French Bakery and Cafe was, luckily, a few short steps away and we picked up a little almond croissant from the place to share. The croissant was scrumptious and sweet with the yellow almond paste slathered in the center, dusted with some confectionary sugar.






Sweet Traditions French Bakery & Café on Urbanspoon

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Cask & Larder is premiering their Sunday brunch on this September 16 with downhome classics featuring a C&L twist— griddle cakes, biscuits and gravy, steak and eggs, chicken and waffles, along with plenty of good ol’ grits.

Sous Chef Jared Thate will orchestrate the Southern-inspired sitdown, along with Chef de Cuisine Dennis Bernard and Chef/Owner James Petrakis.  Local farms like Palmetto Creek (pork) and Lake Meadow Naturals (eggs) will provide many of our ingredients, with other regional items coming from farmers and sources well south of the Mason-Dixon Line.

“I grew up eating food like this in Tennessee,” says Thate, who thrives on discovering new food sources from around the South. “I’m really excited to bring these kind of meals to Winter Park and Orlando.”

Pastry Chef de Cuisine Koralyss Henderson will bake up beignets, profiteroles, muffins, and brioche cinnamon twist.

Cask and Larder is also churning their very own house-made butter. And you can expect classic cocktails with a C&L spin, along with house-brewed craft beers from C&L brewmaster Ron Raike.

“I’m brewing beers just for brunch to enhance the flavors of the food, like a brown ale with vanilla, orange and ginger,” says Raike. “It will be cool to see how they complement the menu.”

Sunday Brunch: 10:30am-3pm
Reservations are suggested but not required. Open seating
available in the bar and seating available for walk-ins at the oyster
bar and communal table

565 W. Fairbanks Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789



See photos below, courtesy of Erin from Cask and Larder!

Baked Grits

Pickled Shrimp & Fried Oysters

Profiteroles stuffed with Peanut Butter Mousse & Blackberry Jelly

Beignets w/ bourbon caramel

Ham Steak & Eggs

Pepper Biscuits & Gravy w/ collards & fried pickled okra

Chicken & Waffles

Country Omelet

Griddle cakes & PORK belly

Open 24 hours a day 7 days a week, Donut King is a treat for those who love hand made, fresh daily donuts. Located out in Minneola, north of SR 50 and way out west of Orlando, this unassuming little bake shop packs a big punch in terms of sweet flavors. Strangely enough, there are several menus featured here at Donut King: the donuts menu, a breakfast menu, a burger menu, and a New Orleans style cajun menu (including an impressive list of po boy sandwiches).

When you first step into Donut King, it feels like it used to be a old 50’s fast food joint, despite being open only since 2007. A few scattered chairs and tables, and a bar area on a side are all the seating available. Most patrons come in, salivating over the display of donuts on donuts on donuts, ordering their boxes and go.

Donuts ($0.79 each or $7.79 for a dozen) reign supreme here at donut king, soft, fluffy, and delicious. The glazed donut is heavenly, a sweet donut soft and fluffy like something you’d find on cloud 9 with a touch of vanilla flavor. The red velvet chocolate cake donut and the sour dough cake donut are also great, though they tasted more like cakes in donut form than a traditional donut. The sour dough cake donut reminded me particularly of a delightful apple fritter with out the apples. Custard filled donut holes, chocolate oreo crusted donuts, strawberry glazed donuts, and even a UF Gator themed sprinkled, chocolate glazed donut are some of the many flavors available.

As mentioned earlier, there is a burger menu, consisting of their signature “castle burgers“, which are much like the White Castle/Krystal’s slider variety. The bun was soft and the burger itself was agreeable, though nothing out of the ordinary. I wished there was more toppings in the burger, like more onions and pickles.

The New Orleans style cajun menu here was surprisingly good. The catfish had a spicy, flavorful batter and was fried to a golden crisp. The accompanying grits were standard fare. A whopping platter of gumbo with okra, sausage, cajun spices, and sauce over rice and french bread had a home-cooked, yet very mild taste to it, though I would have expected it to be more soup-like as I am accustomed to. One of my favorite things on the menu here were the chicken wings, fresh, crispy little wings dipped in a mild hot sauce. Simple but good.

Just the sheer amount of variety here will have you liking something on the menu. The donuts indeed were the main attraction

Let the Donut King continue his reign.

Scenes from The Donut King

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Unassuming storefront belies what lay inside

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The Castle Burger

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What wonders behold

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Dozen donuts please

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Catfish and grits

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Glazed Donuts on a stick – i call it the HoneyCatTails

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Gumbo – Large $7.99

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Donut King on Urbanspoon

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