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Orlando Restaurants: Where the locals eat

Ethnic Dining
Visitors from around the globe are delighted at Orlando’s diversity of cuisine, from Middle Eastern specialties at Cedars on Sand Lake Road to Gain’s German Restaurant on the Orange Blossom Trail. For Japanese, Amura on Sand Lake Road gets high marks; for Thai, Thai Thani on International Drive, Siam Orchid on Universal Boulevard and Thai Passion on Sand Lake Road. For Chinese, Ming Court is a locally owned favorite. Cuban cuisine draws crowds to the Columbia in Celebration or Rolando’s on Semoran Blvd. in Casselberry. For authentic Indian, try Essence of India on Sand Lake Road, Passage to India on International Drive and Punjab Indian Restaurant on Vine Street in Kissimmee. For Vietnamese, visit the ViMi district in downtown Orlando. And, Texas de Brazil on International Drive is an authentic churrascaria-style dining experience. You can nibble your way around the world at Epcot World Showcase, with cuisine from 11 countries.

Hip Spots
Book a table at award-winning California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort for delectable cuisine and a bird’s-eye view of the Magic Kingdom fireworks. Or, head downtown to trendy HUE in Thornton Park or Lake Eola Yacht Club. Music fans of all persuasions can find a favorite, from House of Blues, Bongo’s Cuban Café (owned by Gloria and Emilio Estefan) and Planet Hollywood (owned by Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis and Sylvester Stallone) all at Downtown Disney, to Hard Rock Cafe and Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville at Universal CityWalk.

Where the Locals Eat
For a great steak, it’s Del Frisco’s or Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar in Winter Park, Ruth’s Chris Steak House and Vines Grill & Wine Bar on Sand Lake Road, or Charley’s Steak House, with two Orlando-area locations. Italian favorites are at Babbo Wine Bar & Café in College Park and Antonio’s La Fiamma in Maitland. For international flavors, it’s Cítricos at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa or Chef Justin’s Park Plaza Gardens in Winter Park. Le Coq Au Vin in Orlando and Chez Vincent and Café de France in Winter Park have loyal followings for traditional French cuisine. For casual, try little White Wolf Café on Orange Avenue or Eva’s Tiramisu Café in Winter Park.

Themed Eats
In the theme park capital of the world, guests can nosh with Mickey Mouse at Chef Mickey’s at Walt Disney World Resort, dine with denizens of the deep at Sharks Underwater Grill at SeaWorld Orlando or check almost any game score at the ESPN Club at Disney’s BoardWalk or Friday’s Front Row Sports Grill on International Drive. Basketball fans head to NBA City at Universal CityWalk, race fans to NASCAR Cafe at Universal CityWalk or Race Rock Supercharged Restaurant on International Drive. Kids are enchanted by gargantuan butterflies and thunderstorms at Rainforest Café at Downtown Disney. And, always popular are character dining experiences with Mickey, Minnie, Scooby Doo, Dora the Explorer and SpongeBob Square Pants.




Document Information
Source: Orlando CVB
Last modified: 20050620
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