The restaurant occupies an old house, built circa 1921, across the street from the Modernism Museum in the quaint downtown. In partnership with the museum and Main Street Leasing, which is listed as the “presenter” of the museum, 1921 becomes part of the artistic complex that also includes the museum’s shop (every museum has to have a shop), which shares an adjoining patio with the restaurant.
142 E. 4th Ave.
301 E. Pine St.
This is a second location for a restaurant called 310 Park South, which was named for its address on Park Avenue in Winter Park. But 310 Lakeside is not at 310 Lakeside, it’s at 301 Pine. Very confusing. The food here is mostly straightforward — steaks, pastas, salads. And most of it is done well enough. The lake on whose side the restaurant sits (actually, it’s across the street) is Eola.
310 Park Ave. S.
Now in its second decade in the address that is also its name, this Park Avenue casual restaurant recently expanded into the space next door (yes, they had permission). They also opened a second location on Central Boulevard across from Lake Eola in downtown Orlando. Oddly, that one is called 310 Lakeside, even though that is not its address. Oh, well, there’s only one Saks on Fifth Avenue, too.
The key to its longevity is something of a mystery to me, although I suspect that most of its fans like that its food, though nothing special, is reliable. I guess there’s something to be said for that. And to last more than 11 years in Central Florida, a restaurant has to be doing something right. Right?
1600 W. Fairbanks Ave.
It’s easy to spot Four Rivers when you’re driving down Fairbanks Avenue; just look for the place with the line outside. Folks are happy to queue up for this ‘cue, especially the brisket. But the pulled pork is pretty darned tasty, too. There is no indoor seating, just some picnic tables on a covered patio. But no one seems to mind.
1047 S. Dillard St.
A second location for the wildly popular Winter Park barbecuerie. This one has better parking and indoor (read: air-conditioned) seating. But the barbecue is the same — excellent. Lines are just about as long here, too, but with two cash registers it moves a bit faster. Try the brisket, a house speciality, or the ribs. The baked cheese grits are pretty tasty.
2417 Edgewater Drive
College Park and Adriatico are a perfect match. The Orlando neighborhood certainly has some good, or good enough, restaurants. But it’s been missing a quaint trattoria, the sort of Italian place with a mom-and-pop feel, one that’s comfortable, homey and immediately familiar. A welcoming spot where the food is good but beside the point.That’s Adriatico.The “mom and pop” owners are Marco and Rosetta Cudazzo. She runs the dining room, greeting guests with a matronly welcome, and he does the cooking, demonstrating the skills he most recently plied at the estimable Terramia, a multiple Foodie winner, and at Antonio’s La Fiamma in Maitland before that.Have the scallopine alla Sienese or the pollo al limone. The scallops are a perfect appetizer. I could have made a meal of the three huge scallops sauteed with shallots and brandy in a creamy sauce tinged with a touch of mustard, served over fresh spinach. One could want little more when the appetizer is this good.The classico antipasto misto was a thoughtful selection of salami, prosciutto, cubes of hard parmesan, roasted peppers, baby artichokes and a handful of some of the tastiest green olives you’re likely to find.
900 S. Orlando Ave.
A second location for this Mex (with a lot of Tex). The food is inventive and flavorful if not entirely authentic.
7335 W. Sand Lake Road
Boisterous sports bar out of South Florida with good food, especially the burger. Vibrant happy hour.
950 Market Promenade Ave.
Amura continues to improve on a good thing with its latest location. Although it wants to be considered a chophouse, this is a sushi spot. If beef is what you want, the Kobe steak may be worth a really big splurge.
But for roughly the same price as the Kobe steak, my guests and I feasted on the Heathrow boat ($87.99), a small yacht decked out with sushi, sashimi and assorted hand rolls. Onboard were an Africa roll with yellowtail and tuna; crab Rangoon with real crab, smoked salmon and cream cheese; electric shock roll with tempura eel, avocado and cream cheese; rainbow roll with salmon and tuna; and nigirizushi nibbles of shrimp, salmon, snapper and tuna. All of the raw fish had a cool taste and a soft, buttery texture and every bit of it was delicious.
From among the kitchen foods, the Chilean sea bass with black bean sauce was a favorite. The fish was a large fillet with white flesh that broke off in big chunks. The sauce of tiny black beans provided subtle spiced notes.
463 New England Ave.
A new offering from Armando Martorelli, owner of Trattoria Toscana on Park Avenue, Armando’s is a more casual Italian restaurant. Pizzas are a focus, but there are also full entrees, such as veal Milanese, and the price point is very good, with most entrees in the mid teens.
It’s a big bright space with doors and windows that open wide to the outdoors. There is plenty of seating outside, too.