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Restaurants & Bars 3

Orlando trip report

MsAC | Mar 6, 2009 09:47 AM

I scoured the boards before spending a week in Orlando for work, and got some good recs - so I wanted to report back for others ...

Raglan Road @ Downtown Disney - So, I'm not normally a Disney restaurant lover, but the fish & chips here were some of the best I've had on this side of the pond. We went back twice to eat them - once with a coworker who failed to order them the first time, and once with my husband who heard me rave about them. I also appreciated the correct (read, not icy) temp Guiness and the fact that you can get food here until 1am.

Tchoup Chop - OK, so I know the reviews here weren't amazing, but I was fascinated and my coworker is an Emeril fan. The space was gorgous, and the food was surprisingly good. I had lomi lomi salmon to start and it was correct, with an extra hit of wasabi that I liked. My main was a snapper done in leaves, and they were more than happy to make it actually spicy (it listed thai peppers, but when I asked if it was hot the waitress sort of hemmed and hawed, so I asked her to make it hot, and they did). Service was rushed as they were understaffed for a busy Monday night, but they handled it well. The bar service was appaling, the bartender was the only one there and yelled at me (literally) over my drink choice. It didn't set the tone well for the rest of the meal.

Ocean Prime - I loved the vibe of the room, sort of deco meets ocean liner meets sexy set. The service was professional and spot on, the oysters were great, and my fish, in a champagne truffle sauce, was so perfectly cooked. My coworker ate a meltingly soft filet, we shared truffled mac & cheese which was luxurious but not too rich and the corn side was fought over. Drinks here were great, with a bartender who obviously knows what's what - freshly made sweet and sour, real juice, muddled cucumber, the works. Classic stuff well done. I would totally drop another $100 here without hesitation.

Seasons 52 - Clearly a board favorite, and I can see why - not fancy, the food was pretty simple, but good clear flavors, and HI, all under 450 calories? No wonder people love it. We had a flatbread to start which was really good and intense in flavor. My main was venison, cooked perfectly and flavorful, my coworkers pork was tender enough that she didn't need a knife. The waitress really wanted to pair our wines so we let her - and she did quite well. The little small desserts are clever and just the right amount, and fun. Overall, I'd go back - often if it was a local place for me. I think the mains need a bit more flavor intensity built in - maybe more seasoning rub, or concentrated sauce in small quantities, but overall, I was really impressed.

The Ravenous Pig - Given the buzz on the board I was pleased to get a table, albeit a late one. The food here is quite good, and I wish it was closer to me. Clever without being precious and really well executed. We shared a few starters and a great pasta and a pork dish that was out of this world with moroccan flavors. The server really knew the food which we appreciated, the drinks were good and it was a good space. Lucky Orlando to have this place!

Overall, I was really pleased with the food I got in the Orlando area... and the hints I got on the board. So thanks :-)

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