I’m at Orlando International Airport, waiting for my flight to New York. Or, to be more accurate, to Newark, then Airtrain to New Jersey Transit to take the train to Penn Station. Then I’ll be in New York.
I’m going along with members of the Convention and Visitors Bureau to show off some of Orlando’s culinary talent to members of the press. It’s all a part of an effort to demonstrate that Orlando has much more than Golden Corrals and Olive Gardens, not that there’s anything wrong with that. In fact, read some of the United Kingdom forums that focus on travel to Orlando and Walt Disney World and you’ll find numerous people extolling the joys of their meals at Golden Corral. There’s something for everyone.
But the GCs and OGs don’t need us to promote them to New York media — our finer restaurants do. So Wednesday evening a group of invited guests will join us for dinner and a discussion of Orlando fine dining.
Coming along to cook are Kevin Fonzo of K Restaurant Wine Bar and Nonna Trattoria ed Enoteca; Mark Beaupre, executive chef J.W. Marriott Grande Lakes; Robert Ciborowski, executive chef Swan and Dolphin Resort; and John Mooney, executive chef Highland Manor, Apopka. (I told you yesterday that Mooney also will be cooking at the prestigious Beard House on the 21st. Here’s that story if you missed it.)
Each chef will prepare a course that demonstrates their talents and is indicative of the restaurants they oversee. The dinner will take place at the Institute of Culinary Education on West 23d Street. ICE was formerly known as Peter Kump Cooking School, which is where I attended classes in 1997 then used what I learned to cook for a gathering of chefs. I wrote an story about it for Florida magazine. Here’s a link to that original story.
I’ll give you details about how the dinner goes tomorrow night when I check in on Thursday. In the meantime, I’ll have a few notes about NYC and some of my favorite places.
Do you have some New York favorites? Leave a comment here and I’ll try to check them out.
And while writing this, I missed my flight. Hate when that happens.