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Unique presentation from Liam Fitzpatrick’s

And the winners of the 2018 Orlando Burger Battle are:

1st Place:
People’s and Judges’ pick:  Orlando Meats’ Mini Mid Rare burger – Grass-fed beef, provolone, bacon xo sauce, garlic aioli, French roll.

2nd Place:
Judge’s pick: Shula’s 347 Grill

People’s pick: Yak & Yeti – Disney’s Animal Kingdom

3rd Place:
Judge’s pick:  Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers

People’s pick: Luke’s Kitchen and Bar

More photos below from the 2018 Orlando Burger Battle:

Taking the shuttle to Orlando Burger Battle

I called shotgun

Live concert by The Supervillains

T-Rex Café at Disney Springs

Metro Diner

The Edison at Disney Springs


Liam Fitzpatrick’s

Drive Shack

Rainforest Café

Rainforest Café

4 Rebels Kitchen & Bar


White Wolf Cafe

Drafts Westgate Resorts

B Resort’s American Kitchen & Bar

“I’m going on an ice cream diet.”

Those are the words I remember most from my recent chat with Nathan Clark of Wondermade.

You see, Nathan is a very special man. Blessed with creativity, he is always positioned to proposer. He also happens to be a business role model of mine.

Back in 2013, Nathan had the bright idea to make hand-crafted marshamallows for his wife,  Jenn, for Christmas. It turns out that the Central Florida local made a really good marshmallow. Once friends got a hold of them, he and his wife found themselves with a marshmallow company. Today, Wondermade runs with the best of them. Inclusion on and a partnership with Martha Stewart are just two of the many great accomplishments under the brand’s belt.

And the beauty in it all is that it’s done in a storefront and kitchen in Sanford, Florida.

Next up is ice cream. Creamy goodness is what I like to call it. It’s currently available at the shop, and can be found in 12 flavors with one new flavor of the week called the Taste Adventure Flavor. To accompany the ice cream, a marshmallow of the same flavor rolls out simultaneously for the week.

On a side note, did you know that there’s a Museum of Ice Cream in New York? OK, back to writing.

Last week, I sat down with Nathan, whom I’ve had the pleasure of knowing for years, to talk about his next big move. Blueberry Cobbler was the flavor of the week. And man, it was good. What I like most about Wondermade’s handmade, no-churn ice cream is that it has a whipped-cream base, which makes it creamier and allows the scoops to melt evenly.

Nathan Clark

I found out that Nathan has a true affinity for ice cream. Turns out, he’s eaten a bowl a day since the age of 13. “I can’t think of the day that hasn’t included ice cream,” Nathan shared. “The decision to start making ice cream is phase two of the Wondermade brand.”

The Clark’s traveled up and down the East Coast, and tasted more than 100 different flavors. “We found that a lot of ice cream shops only have one good flavor. We aim to have a lot of them,” Nathan shared. Nathan went on to compare his ice cream flavor strategy to art using the word “tryptych.” defines the word as a set of three panels or compartments side by side, bearing pictures, carvings, or the like.

“We have tryptych flavors like Avocado, Lavender and Maple Bacon. We also have less adventurous flavors like Triple Chocolate, Honey Cinnamon and Salted Caramel,” said Nathan. “They’re awesome together and their awesome by themselves.”

 The Cream + Crunch

Handmade Flavors: Lavender // Peanut Butter Cup // Mint Chocolate Chip // Cake Batter Confetti // S’mores // Cookies & Cream // Maple Bacon // Coffee Chocolate // Avocado // Honey Cinnamon // Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough // Salted Caramel

Handmade Cones: Brownie // Graham Cracker // Confetti

Back to this ice cream diet.

Chocolate Ice Cream

It only took a car ride with their kids for Nathan and Jenn to decide to launch a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to ship packaged pints all over America. That was a Thursday. The video was taped on a Friday. It was live on Saturday.

To show his commitment, from July 14-21, Nathan is eating Wondermade’s ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner. That’s serious business. (If anyone is down to join, we can do it together.)

For locals, we’re in for a treat. You can order online and pick up order in Sanford. Nathan shared that locals will be spoiled with other goodies including marshmallows, coffee and swag.

So what’s next?

Celebrate National Ice Cream Month with me and visit the Kickstarter to get the details about the campaign, and to learn how you can help. I’m over the moon about the Cornbread ice cream that’s coming this summer!

Apple Pie Ice Cream

Store Must-Haves
  • Smoresicle: The bottom half is a pudding pop rolled in crushed graham cracker. The top half is toasted marshmallow.
  • Avocado Ice Cream: It’s smooth. It’s creamy. It’s perfection.

Address: 214 E 1st Street, Sanford, FL |

Snack on,

Chauniqua Major, but we’re friends so call me Major!

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I can’t tell you how much I really love the Magnolia Square Market, a German market and deli run by the Hollerbach family in Sanford, Florida.

You may be familiar with Hollerbach’s Willow Tree in historic downtown Sanford, but right around the corner is this hidden gem of a German market, featuring authentic German deli meats, bratwursts, cheeses, beers, German chocolates, and even gluten-free baked goods. Now, you can take all the German sausage and sauerkraut fun from Willow Tree home with you after the night is over.

Theo Hollerbach has always dreamed of having his own German Deli. When he grew up in Kyllburg, Germany, he lived with his mother and grandparents, who owned a small butcher shop in his little town. His mother was also one of the first women to become a certified butcher in their area. Ever since his journey to America, he has always longed for the smells and tastes of the little town he was a child in. Now, he finally has the opportunity to bring his memories to life with the Hollerbach’s Magnolia Square Market.

I especially love all the different imported chocolates and house made cakes and pastries here.

The staff here were all very kind and gracious with suggestions as well, helping us find just the right deli meats and allowing us to sample different cuts to find out their taste. On a recent visit, we got quite a few sandwiches and meat cuts to go, and they even stored it for us at the restaurant to keep cold until we were done with dinner at the Willow Tree.

Definitely check out this market the next time you are in Sanford, especially while waiting for a table at the Willow Tree.











Hollerbach's Magnolia Square Market on Urbanspoon

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Around the corner from Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe in historic downtown Sanford is this hidden gem of a German market: Magnolia Square Market. They feature authentic German deli meats, bratwursts, cheeses, beers, German chocolates, and even have gluten-free baked goods.

Everything is very clean and new here, I think it was recently built. On one side there is an entire section with home-brewing materials and grains so that you can bring home the joys of the Willow Tree Cafe with you and make it yourself. They even have classes that you can sign up for to learn more about home-brewing. You can even buy a “boot” and other beer mugs as soon at the Willow Tree.

One of my favorite items from this shop was the chocolate rum balls, decadent, rich chocolate cake balls that were just amazing. I picked up a few other chocolates and some gelbwurst and leberkase deli meats that were recommended to me by a very friendly fellow patron at the market. The staff here were all very kind and gracious with suggestions as well.

Check out the posts also from Leon of LakeMaryFoodCritic and Magnolia Square Market’s own blog by an American Girl in a German Deli.


Photos around the shop

Hollerbach’s Magnolia Square Market on Urbanspoon

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In historic downtown Sanford north of Orlando, near the banks of Lake Monroe, Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe welcomes patrons in with German music, authentic German food, and German beers. It’s an ode to the great German beer halls, a place where it is always Oktoberfest on Thursday – Sunday evenings. Through the Willow Tree Cafe, owners Theo, Linda, and daughter Christina Hollerbach do their best to bring the experience of authentic German Gemuetlichkeit, a sense of well-being and happiness that comes from enjoying the company of friends and family while savoring good food and drink.

I recently travelled up to Sanford with my fiance, and friends Pearleen and Al Buchala of to try the Willow Tree Cafe out for the first time and also support the local businesses of Sanford.

When they first opened in 2001, owner Theo Hollerbach told me that the cafe took up about 1000 square feet and now they are up to 14,000 square feet with over 75 employees with an impressive outdoor dining area. The place gets very busy here, with reservations often booked out weeks ahead, often for special occasions and family celebrations. On certain evenings, you can see the jovial, bearded Chef Theo walking from table to table, welcoming guests, and sharing the festive air and drinks with restaurant patrons as he makes his rounds. We also got to share a wonderful 2-liter boot of German beer with Chef Hollerbach on this evening. Our friend Kendra Lott of Edible Orlando Magazine also got a chance to join in on the beer party.

Chef Theo Hollerbach explains: Watch for the Swirl at the bottom of the boot

The Willow Tree serves over 50 different German Beers and wines and live entertainment in the form of the popular oom-pah band complete with tuba and accordians. The beer is always flowing freely here, where every few minutes you can hear cheers of the German drinking toast “Zicke, Zacke, Zicke, Zacke, Hoi, Hoi, Hoi!”. Bring a group of friends and family and enjoy some beer in a “boot” which comes in 1, 2, and 3 liter sizes.

The Hollerbach family comes from the small town of Kyllburg in Germany where Theo’s grandfather was a master butcher and the family was famous for their sausages. Their recipes include many of the old world traditional, and family specialties and they serve up dishes like bratwurst sausages, numbergers, veal, pork, and chicken schnitzels. Start off with some nice freshly baked Wiesn Brezn (giant pretzel) with a sweet mustard sauce.

My favorites include the potato cakes sides and the Eisbein, the very flavorful, tender, and lightly smoked pork shank, served with sauerkraut and Heaven and Earth mashed potatoes. End the meal with some German Apfel Strudel made in house with fresh apples, rum-soaked white raisins, cinnamon and sugar. The Willow Tree Cafe is a place that is festive and fun and definitely a place to enjoy yourself with family and friends. Prosit!

Eisbein, the very flavorful, tender, and lightly smoked pork shank, served with sauerkraut and Heaven and Earth mashed potatoes

Sausage platter with bratwurst

Pork Schnitzel with potato cakes and red cabbage

Apple Strudel

Hollerbach's Willow Tree Café on Urbanspoon

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