Nov 242014
 

November and December are two of my favorite months, sure the Christmas lights are pretty and it finally cools off in Orlando, but what I really enjoy is all the feasting! Anyone that tries to start a diet between now and New Year’s is pretty much doomed. So, you might as well enjoy all the tasty treats around town while they last.

As part of my recent “indulgent diet” we ventured over to Bonefish Grill to taste their new Colossal Seafood menu. I’ve always been a fan of Bonefish, between the menu variety, savory seafood and atmosphere suitable for any occasion, Bonefish is a delightful place to satisfy your seafood craving without exploding your bank account.

Here’s some of our menu picks from this weekend’s visit:

  • Ahi Tuna Sashimi: Premium sushi grade, sesame-seared rare with wasabi, pickled ginger and served over a decadent mellow, yet flavorful sauce. I’m pretty sure I became a member of the “clean plate club” after inhaling this dish. Their ahi tuna is consistently fresh, flavorful and still my favorite version in town. Bonus points if you can use their chopsticks!
  • Filet + Colossal Shrimp Scampi - A tender 6 oz. USDA Choice sirloin topped with three colossal U-12 shrimp and a scampi butter sauce. For a restaurant known for seafood, their steak was pretty darn tasty as well. The filet was tender and seared with perfect diamond grill marks. The scampi butter sauce pulled all the flavors together between the steak, colossal shrimp and spaghetti squash side. The plate was bursting with color, flavor and the scrumptious spaghetti squash rounded out the plate nicely.
  • Kate’s Wild North Atlantic Haddock – A mild, sweet white fish, garlic crumb dusted, wood-grilled and topped with feta, artichokes, lemon basil butter sauce all served on a bed of mashed potatoes. The light breading added a unique texture to this mild fish and the feta was the perfect finishing touch. Between the artichokes, fresh fish and lemon basil, your taste buds will be on flavor lovin’ overload.

Click here to find a Bonefish Grill near you. Enjoy!

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Disclosure: Spork received a gift card from Bonefish Grill to taste their new menu. All opinions belong to Spork. All photos taken by Spork excluding Ahi Tuna Sashimi which was taken by Bonefish Grill.

 

Bonefish Grill on Urbanspoon

Nov 222014
 

Thanksgiving is a day devoted to gluttony, family bonding and thankfulness. But in the midst of turkey frying and pumpkin pie baking, cocktails are often overlooked. Whether you’re dining out or staying in this holiday, here are some savory cocktails and a few recipes to celebrate turkey day. Still looking for a place to dine next week? Click here for a complete list of Orlando locations serving up Thanksgiving feasts.

American Q, Holiday Toddy: An adult eggnog with cold pressed coffee, Zaya Gran Reserva Rum, smoked eggnog foam, shaved chocolate and fresh ground nutmeg. Otherwise known as holiday cheer served in liquid form.

Outriggers Tiki Bar & Grille, Bid Time Bloody Mary: A luxurious bloody mary served waterside with house infused Tito’s Vodka, candied black pepper bacon, cocktail shrimp and rimmed with a blend of blackening seasoning and merlot salt.

Make your own version at home:

  • 2 oz of house infused Tito’s Vodka
  • 1 strip of candied black pepper bacon
  • 1 cocktail shrimp
  • Blackening seasoning and merlot salt mixture
  • Bloody Mary mix ice cubes

Prep: Rim glass with blackening seasoning and merlot salt mixture. Add Tito’s Vodka and Bloody Mary mix ice cubes. Garnish drink with candied bacon, olives and cocktail shrimp.

Outriggers Bid Time Bloody Mary

Cocina 214, Caliente Casamigos Rocks Margarita: A spicy margarita with tastes of cranberry. Casamigos Blanco, serrano peppers, OJ, fresh lime juice and cranberry juice.

Ingredients for your own version:

  • 1.5 Oz Casamigos Blanco Tequila
  • 2 Slices Serrano Chili
  • 0.5 oz Orange juice
  • 0.75 oz Lime Juice
  • 0.5 oz Cranberry Juice
  • 0.75 oz Sweet & Sour Mix

Prep: Muddle serrano chilies and shake into a cocktail mixer. Add remaining ingredients. Strain into a glass and serve on the rocks.

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Photo Credits: American Q, Outriggers, Cocina 214

 

Nov 202014
 

Boasting over 100 televisions and Florida roots, Duffy’s Sports Grill serves up freshly prepared ingredients and a menu for everyone’s palate in your party.  Signature favorites include their Hangover Burger, All American Bloody Mary (served with a burger slider) and 15 dishes containing fewer than 580 calories.  Even better Duffy’s offers 2-for-1 drinks all day, every day, on everything from the bar, including top-shelf cocktails, premium wine and bottled beer. Yep, that even includes their Ultimate Patron Margarita.

Also impressive is the lively atmosphere. On a Wednesday night the restaurant was full and buzzing with sports enthusiasts. The space is well lit, clean and full of knowledgeable, friendly servers – a far cry from most sports bars in town.  We enjoyed a wide range of menu items last night, here’s some of our favorite dishes and drinks from Duffy’s Sports Grill.

  • Ultimate Patrón Margarita – Rimmed with the proper amount of salt and filled with Patrón Silver, Triple Sec, fresh lime juice and Patrón Citrónge. Yep, you get two for $14.00!
  • Cotton Candy Cosmopolitan – Served with real cotton candy, Pinnacle County Fair Cotton Vodka, cranberry juice and fresh lime juice. Two for $10.00
  • Pineapple Mojito – Exceptionally sweet and served with Cruzan Citrus, Fresh Golden Ripe Pineapple, Fresh Lime, Mint and uniquely garnished with rock candy Two for $8.00.
  • All-American Bloody Mary -Made with Tito’s vodka and dramatically garnished with a bacon cheeseburger slider. Have your cake and eat it too, $7.00.
  • Firecracker Shrimp – A clever presentation, these tender, crispy shrimp are tossed in a creamy yet spicy sauce, $9.99.
  • Korean Beef Tenderloin Mini Tacos – On the spicier side, but full of flavor and topped with cilantro-onion relish and a chile garlic sauce, $7.00.
  • Freshly Made Guacamole – Creamy and full of fresh avocado chunks, this guacamole is made fresh to order in-house and served with salted tortilla chips, $8.99.
  • Jumbo Wings – Choose between 10 sauces ranging from Honey Garlic to Atomic. The plump, juicy oversized wings come hand-breaded or “naked”, tossed in your choice of sauce with blue cheese and celery. Ten wings for $10.99.
  • The Hangover Burger – Farm fresh sunny side up egg, pepper crusted bacon and two slices of American cheese wedged between a fluffy bun with sesame seeds. All burgers are made with 100% Certified Angus Beef, a cut above USDA Choice. This burger is served with fries and you can even substitute your bun for a Pretzel Roll, $11.99.
  • Crunchy Fried Cheesecake – Our favorite dessert of the evening, a fried creamy cheesecake served with two scoops of vanilla ice cream, Ghirardelli caramel sauce and whipped cream. Between the Ghiradelli and fried goodness you’ll forever compare this dessert to “normal” cheesecakes, $5.99.

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Duffy’s is located near the Mall at Millenia and now open in Lake Mary! www.duffysmvp.com

Duffy's Sports Grill on Urbanspoon

Nov 182014
 

Grits, fried chicken and okra were once reserved solely for “the deep south”, but recently Southern foods and flavors have spread nationwide with Orlando as no exception. Southern food typically comes with a stigma of being unhealthy and greasy, but a recent surge of modern Southern dishes in Orlando might change your mind about these flavors. We’ve scoured citywide for the best Southern tastes, from Winter Park to Sand Lake, it’s hard to avoid this tasty trend!

Head to Orlando My Way for our top Southern picks!

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Photo Credit: Soco Thornton Park Restaurant 

Nov 172014
 

Jane’s Short & Sweet is a unique Orlando company crafting shortbread cookies with local Central Florida products. Aside from their tasty creations, what makes Jane’s unique is their commitment to give all of their profits to organizations serving at-risk women and children. Jane’s cookies are truly making a significant impact locally and worldwide.

The secret to Jane’s shortbread cookies? Real (quality) butter! An essential ingredient for that melty buttery shortbread taste. Flavors rotate seasonally but her staples for the most part include: Classic, Gluten Free Classic, Almond, Chai, Lemon, Lime, and Orange. Occasionally you may find flavors such as Peppermint Buttercreme, Toasted Cinnamon Roll and more! They can even customize a flavor and shape for any special occasion or gift.

In addition to her buttery shortbread cookies, Jane’s also creates the most luxurious sugar scrubs! We’re currently crushing on their grapefruit variety, the scrub smells amazing and will leave your skin feeling like butter. Also available in lavender, orange and peppermint, Jane’s scrubs are sure to transform your shower from ordinary to a mini-spa oasis.

All of Jane’s fabulous products are availble online at www.janeshortandsweet.com and locally in these shops:

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Photo Credits: Jane’s Short & Sweet

Nov 152014
 

It’s the weekend and that means fall football! As University of Georgia alumni our Saturdays revolve around kick-offs and game day plans. We’re constantly searching for the best sports bars filled with tasty bites, oversized televisions and a social atmosphere. Here’s our picks for Orlando’s best sports bars, happy game day!

  • Duffy’s Sports Grill:Boasting over 100 televisions and Florida roots, Duffy’s menu features freshly prepared ingredients and a menu for everyone’s palate in your party.  Signature favorites include BBQ Baby Back Ribs, ½ lb. Certified Angus Beef Burgers, and 15 dishes containing fewer than 580 calories.  Even better Duffy’s offers 2-for-1 drinks all day, every day, on everything from the bar, including top-shelf cocktails, premium wine andbottled beer. Located near the Mall at Millenia and now open in Lake Mary!
  • Gators Dockside: This family-friendly restaurants offers big screen telvisions, pool tables, video games (Pacman anyone?) and an expansive menu. Their signature grilled wings are flavored with your choice of 15 different sauces and their ribs are made from scratch. We’re fond of the Baldwin Park location and its lake view, plus your little ones can run around and play old school video games.
  • The Porch: In full disclosure we’ve yet to visit this budding Winter Park restaurant, but we’ve heard nothing but rave reviews from friends and colleagues! Rumor has it this place is loud, but serves up fabulous food like the Early Rise with cheddar cheese, house hash cake, bacon, fried egg, crispy onions and liquid gold BBQ wedged between a fresh glazed donut. That’s right a DONUT.
  • CaddyShanks: There’s a little bit of everything here, CaddyShanks is loaded with big screens, hundreds of beers, virtual golf and racing simulators PLUS ping pong and Wii. Their extensive menu is provided by surrounding restaurants so there’s something for whatever you’re craving.
  • Your Sofa: Well, if all else fails and sweatpants are calling your name, pick up a Mellow Mushroom pizza and settle into your sofa for an uber lazy afternoon.

Go Dawgs!

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Photo Credits: The Porch, Duffy’s Sports Grill

Nov 132014
 

“In Asia, the best food is on the streets,” says Hawkers Asian Street Fare founder Kaleb Harrell. “Groups will go to these hawker stalls. Everyone gets something from a different stall, and then you come back to a communal table to sit and share the food.”

Hawkers opened in the Mills 50 District in 2011, with the goal of recreating the street food experience using input from each of its four founders.

“We actually all grew up together eating foods similar to what we serve. Because of our diverse backgrounds, we have a large representation of different regions within Asia on our menu. I think we make for a great team since we each have very different skill sets,” Harrell said.

Read more of our interview and menu picks on Orlando My Way! What’s your favorite Hawkers dish?

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Photo Credits: Skewers by Hawkers, all other images by Spork.