Jul 152016

Husband and wife chefs James and Julie Petrakis, who have won wide acclaim for their Winter Park, Florida restaurants Cask & Larder and The Ravenous Pig, will expand their Swine Family Restaurant Group to Disney Springs with a new concept, The Polite Pig. Partnering with the James Beard Foundation-nominated chefs will be Brian Petrakis, who owns and operates popular Orlando eatery Greens & Grille. The partnership unites the Petrakis brothers on a restaurant venture for the first time.

Scheduled to open in spring 2017, The Polite Pig will feature a variety of wood-fired smoked and grilled items. The restaurant will also introduce an innovative beverage program that serves all drinks on tap, including Cask & Larder beer, wine, and cocktails.

“As a locally-based restaurant group, it’s great to bring our new concept to Disney Springs where we’ll have the opportunity to showcase genuine Florida cuisine for guests from around the world,” James Petrakis said. “With so many talented chefs opening new restaurants at Disney Springs, we’re really excited to be part of a group helping Orlando distinguish itself as a world-class culinary destination.”

The Polite Pig will be located in the Town Center neighborhood. The 5,000-square-foot venue will be open daily, with seating for about 200 guests. Construction will be led by Gomez Construction, and HHCP Architects will oversee the restaurant’s overall design. Anna Schmidt Interior Design will handle interior design and Lure Design will spearhead branding efforts. All four firms are based in Florida.


Jul 072016

National Lasagna Day is upon us! For something nontraditional try Rusty Spoon’s Remodeled Lasagna. This unconventional lasagna is something that’s easy to make at home and also showcases locally grown spinach. It’s full of local & wild mushrooms with wilted spinach and roasted butternut squash.

So dig in, National Lasagna Day only happens once a year, July 29. :)



Photo Credit: The Rusty Spoon

Jul 072016

There are restaurants named after a celebrity chef, and then there are restaurants where big name chefs are actually involved in the menu and operations. Morimoto Asia at Disney Springs falls into the latter category where the Iron Chef himself is actively involved in the menu creation and known to quiz servers when he’s in town. It’s a refreshing approach to the often disappointing world of celebrity chef restaurants.


We recently had the opportunity to meet this culinary genius and check out their new late menu in the Forbidden Lounge on the second floor. A departure from the main dining room, the upstairs offers an alternative dining experience. Besides sampling a myriad of offerings, the highlight of the evening was meeting Morimoto and snapping a picture with the master! Here’s what we sampled and sipped in the Forbidden Lounge:

Shichimi Spice Edamame ($6) – These soybeans come with a kick, a nice deviation from your standard sea salt covered pods.

Ahi Poke ($15) – My favorite small plate which features a nod to Chef Yuhi’s Hawaiian roots.


Portobello Mushroom Fries ($8) – Lightly battered and served with a side of mentaiko mayo, it’s an original take on your traditional late night fries.

Kurobuta Sausage Bao ($10, two pieces) – With Berkshire pork sausage, lettuce, cucumber and whole grain mustard. Reminiscent of a hot dog, but one that’s been upgraded with some Asian influence.


Menchi Katsu Sliders ($14, two pieces) – Prepare yourself for……wait for it…..a fried hamburger. The winner of the 2016 SOBE Burger Bash, and an item that is finely suited for a late night menu.


Chicken Wings ($12) – Coated in a spicy garlic soy sauce, our table devoured these pieces of poultry. A must order for your after-hours ventures.


Ramen ($16) – End your evening with a bowl of noodles and broth that takes 36 hours to create. This flavorful bowl is layered with flavor and handcrafted with care.


Aaand be sure to sip on some of these cocktails to quench your summertime thirst – Korean Ginger Heat, Summer Melon Patch, Beijing Bourbon Tea, Morimoto Soba Ale, cheers!



Morimoto Asia Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Jul 072016

Nightclub vibes meet steakhouse fare in one of Disney Springs’ newest dining additions. This upscale, high-energy spot is not your average restaurant – it’s full of glitzy guests and buzz-worth menu items. Local fare along with STK classics fill the menu blending both already famous items with soon-to-become favorites. Led by Executive Chef James O’Donnell, he plans to devote twenty-percent of the menu to local taste and sourcing from Florida-based farms when possible. Featuring rooftop dining with scenic views, the restaurant boasts both indoor and outdoor seating on two levels, multiple bars, private dining rooms and a fire pit (for all those cold Florida nights). This 14,000 square foot space has ample room to accommodate drinkers and diners alike.

After attending their ruckus opening party, full of free-flowing champagne, we were thrilled to return to STK for a full dining experience. After sampling a good portion of the menu, we’d confidently recommend STK for a fancy night out, here’s what we tasted and enjoyed during our evening.

First Course

Seared Scallops – With short rib marmalade, charred scallions and cornbread puree. These fork-tender creations were smooth and melted on your palate.


Grilled Octopus – While I’m not a fan of tentacles and ingesting part of an eight-legged creature, my husband is, and he proclaimed this dish as the best octopus he’s ever tasted.


LIL BRGs – An STK classic, these baby Wagyu burgers are topped with a “special sauce” and a sesame seed bun. Served medium-rare, it’s easy to see why these sliders make the menu across all of their locations.



Second Course:

Heirloom Tomato & Watermelon Salad: Perfectly ripe, these tomatoes take center-stage in all their summer glory. Coated in a red chili-honey dressing, this salad is refreshing, crisp and just what the season ordered.


Shaved Brussel Sprouts: The best way to eat this veggie – fried, shaved and covered with apples, cranberries and aged goat cheese.

Third Course:

Seared Tuna: Sliced thin and prepared to perfection – this steakhouse got their seafood right.


16 oz. Sirloin: Sprinkled with sea salt and layered with depths of flavor.

Mac & Cheese: Loaded with five types of cheese and fabulous in all its gooey grandeur.


Bag O’ Donuts: Stuffed with a caramel filling and doused in sugar, these airy bites of bliss were the perfect ending to bountiful meal.


Cheers to you STK, welcome to the Disney Springs neighborhood.

Jul 072016

From Sunday brunch to Cuban sandwiches for lunch, we’ve always enjoyed our dining experiences at Plancha at Four Seasons. Whether you’re taking a break from teeing off on the course or seeking a restaurant retreat, Plancha offers a picturesque lakeside retreat with Cuban-American cuisine.

In celebration of the cuisine and culture, Plancha recently hosted a Miami takeover dinner which featured chefs from Miami alongside cocktails and wine. Big thanks to Four Seasons for the invite, here’s some highlights from the evening!


Chef Aaron Brooks of EDGE Steak & Bar, Four Seasons Miami: A bountiful charcuterie platter full of truffle stuffed trotters and foie gras and chicken liver pate. Luxury meat and cheese at its finest all paired with Moet & Chandon bubbly. What more could your palate want to start off an evening?


Chef Samuel Faggetti of Four Seasons Orlando: Tuna with pickled corn and cherry served with a spicy jalapeño margarita.



Chef Dena Marino of MC Kitchen in Miami: Handcrafted pasta with housemade spicy Italian sausage, broccoli rabe and an array of Italian cheeses. Paired with a fantastic red wine that I totally forgot to write down the name of….oops.

Chef Jose Mendin of Pubbelly Restaurant Group in Miami: The main event of short rib with green curry, grilled cabbage and duck fat potatoes. Paired with a lovely Spanish wine.


Chef Rabii Saber, Executive Pastry Chef of Four Seasons Orlando: Roasted peaches with thyme whipped crème fraiche and blueberry compote.


An overall fun evening filled with a variety of flavors, and here’s to hoping for more special Plancha events in the future!

Jul 052016

In between managing a busy work schedule, being a lady boss and trying to resuscitate your New Year’s resolution of working out every day, it’s important to make time for friends and good food. This time of fellowship truly is good for the soul.

Let’s kick off this short list of some of my favorite places to dine around town with your girlfriends this summer. Please comment with your favorite spot and tag us @SporkOrlando and @MajorCreates! Lauren and I might just see you there.

1. The Osprey Tavern | Brunch, Please! Waffle

Brunch at Osprey is a necessity. From almost anywhere in the dining room, you can watch Pastry Chef Kristy Carlucci, as she makes magic with flour, sugar and eggs in the restaurant’s open kitchen. Who wouldn’t be interested in their Waffles served with peach preserves, cherry sauce, bourbon chantilly and pecans? Right now, there are Apple Cider Donut Muffins and Strawberry-Rhurbarb Hand Pies on the seasonal menu. I suggest we all go before they’re gone.

2.Taverna Opa Orlando | Summer in Greece

Taverna Opa Spread
Truth Moment: Opa Orlando is one of my favorite restaurants. Greek Salad, Hummus and house-made Greek Yogurt are all musts. Dress cute and comfy, and be ready to dance the night away. This summer, Chef-Owners Katerina and Vassilis Coumbaros are in Greece exploring their homeland’s newest food trends. Check out their Instagram to watch their journey.

3.Dragonfly Robata Grill & Sushi | Sashimi Rollin’?

Photography by Jeffrey A McDonald

Sashmi rollin’ is definitely an old office joke inspired by “Ridin'” — the 2005 hit by Chamillionaire.

Hope you get it.

I’ll start by saying that Dragonfly is totally worth the drive. Dim lights and good music always set the mood for a night of meaningful conversation. The sushi is amazing, but the robata grill is not to be missed. Specialty white coals, imported from Japan, heat up to 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit and beyond to slow-cook your choice of skewered vegetables and proteins. When you go, please order the Brussels Sprouts served with balsamic, parmesan and bonito flakes.

4.Soco | Down-South Food Downtown 

Bourbon Banana Pudding

Have you ever wanted to go downtown, but not really downtown? Well, this is the remedy. At Soco, celebrated Chef Greg Richie is serving up Southern dishes sprinkled with Asian influences. When I go, I’m ordering the Boiled Peanut Hummus to start my meal.

Check out the menu for weekly specials, such as Southern-Style Taco Tuesdays and TV Dinner Thursdays.

5.P is For Pie | Slice of Heaven


Oatmeal Cream Pie for the win. Until visiting this Audubon shop owned by an amazing husband-and-wife duo, I swore that there couldn’t be pie in the land that even remotely compared to my mom’s. Be sure to get P is for Pies’s Caramel Crack Pecan Hand Pie and a cup of Stumptown Coffee. Give Stacey the biggest hug for me!

6.Black Rooster Taqueria | Taco ‘Bout It


Owned and operated by Chef John Calloway and his wife, Juliana Calloway, Black Rooster Taqueria opened in 2016 and gave the Mills 50 District just what it needed: a taste of Mexico. In what used to be Tony’s Deli, Black Rooster is offering an authentic experience with freshly-made corn tortillas, and the best guacamole I’ve had in a really long time.

Order a few dishes with friends for a Saturday lunch, and snap some photos for Instagram — the lighting during the day is perfecto.

Snack on,

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


Jun 252016

A few weeks ago my husband rang in a new year atop the 17th floor at Capa. This was no ordinary night or turn of the calendar, this evening at the Four Seasons marked something special – a farewell to his 20s. As his birthday grew near I could tell he was dreading turning the big 3-0, so I decided to make sure his last day as a 20-something was memorable. I love that my husband appreciates the finer things in a meal – good wine, steaks prepared with precision and curated ingredients  – so I knew he’d enjoy a night at Capa celebrating his impending decade changeover.

Inspired by the Basque culture, an area of northwest Spain and southwest France, Capa’s cuisine is inspired by authentic Spanish offerings with a modern twist. Their diverse offerings range from fresh Florida seafood to small plates and expertly grilled cuts. An open kitchen and wood-burning grill allow you to get close to the action, while outdoor patio diners enjoy views of the nightly fireworks at both Epcot and Magic Kingdom.

Critics alike from Wine Enthusiast to Orlando Magazine are taking note of Capa’s culinary and wine expertise, so we were thrilled to try for ourselves. And now, we invite to relax, pull up a chair, as Spork Orlando proudly presents… our dinner. {Bonus points if you can name that movie quote}

Imbibing: Kudos to you Capa for starting off our night with some bubbly, which we followed up with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc from Cakebread Cellars. And yes – they serve Cakebread BY.THE.GLASS. A rare sighting on a wine list, but one that I welcomed with an open wine glass. My husband opted for the In Spanish Fashion complete with a torched orange and frozen Vermouth ice cube, which meant his glass was never watered down and increased in flavor complexity as the cube melted.

capa four seasons

Next up, we made our way through the Para Picar and Appetizer sections of the menu. From the finest salt to manchego cheese, we feasted on a variety of authentic tastes before our entrees. Here are some small plates and bites you must experience before the main event.

Dátiles: Proof that bacon makes everything taste magnifique. These bacon wrapped Medjool dates are a luxurious sweet and salty combination drizzled with a dash of maple.

capa four seasons

Cerdo: Or in other words, pork belly. A decadent take on an often poorly prepared dish. Tender and rich, this plate will make your taste buds question everything they think they know about pork belly. Capa brings home the bacon with this take on pork belly.

capa four seasons

Cocas: Perhaps the most unexpected dish of the night, but one I’d go back and order again without question. This flatbread is topped with smoked goat cheese, red onion and bacon, sprinkled with a side of the finest salt I’ve ever tasted, this para picar made quite the impression.

capa four seasons

Carne: Beef carpaccio sliced thinner than paper, then topped with truffle and brown butter. A melt on your tongue type dish that you wish came with seconds.

capa four seasons


Aceitunas: There are two types of olives in this world, bad ones….and good ones. And Capa, even your olives were memorable! A super simple, no frills dish that proves Capa knows how to pick the finest ingredients for all of their dishes.

capa four seasons

You could have rolled me out of Disney World at this point, but we still had more food coming. Next up….steak!

Filet: Instead of “Filet Mignon” or “NY Strip”, the steak menu names are categorized by the farms where the steaks are sourced. Their 8 oz. Prime filet was juicy and tender in all the right places and served with a parade of salsas.

Bone-In Ribeye: Aged for 40 days and packed with flavor in all it’s 16 oz. glory. A steak filled with gluttony goodness.

capa four seasons

And since we were clearly starving at this point, (insert sarcasm here), we ordered dessert. Calories don’t count at Disney, right? We were treated to an instant sugar high between the churros, olive oil cake and creamy ice cream. Not overly sweet, these desserts were the perfect ending to a memorable night.

capa four seasons

So if we haven’t convinced you already, now’s the time to visit the brilliant team that is Capa. It’s truly magical.





Capa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato