Recent Restaurant Reviews and News

Written By Scott Joseph On October 26, 2017

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Recent Restaurant Reviews

Jax Thornton Park

Jax Interior

Jax Fifth Avenue has returned to downtown Orlando. Except that it’s no longer called Jax Fifth Avenue, which is fine because it isn’t on Fifth Avenue. But then, it never was on Fifth Avenue, it was on South Court Avenue. But who would name a restaurant Jax South Court Avenue?

The same person who would name the new restaurant Jax Thornton Park, I suppose. That would be Jack Thompson. The original name was meant to be a tongue in cheek play on Saks Fifth Avenue’s name. And no, I don’t know why the original wasn’t Jaks. Ask Thompson.

Those who are old enough to remember the first Jax and who are still able to consume solid food will find that a lot is the same at the new place, which is in the former Baoery/City Fish space on Central Boulevard.

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Progressive Dinner at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

 Wilderness exterior

I think I’ve found the most pleasant place in all of Walt Disney World Resorts.

Well, I didn’t find it, I was invited here, to Geyser Point Bar & Grill, a new venue at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. It’s a covered but open-air pavilion next to the lake, and when I visited earlier this month it was on a warm evening, at sundown, with a gentle breeze coming off of the water. I could have spent all evening sitting there.


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Circo Orlando Scrapped

Rendering Circo

Circo, the Italian trattoria from the Le Cirque restaurant group in New York, will not be opening in Orlando as previously announced.

The restaurant concept had been intended for the top of the currently-under-construction parking garage next to Mango’s on International Drive. The franchise had been optioned by Andrew Gross of Sunshine Ventures.


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Victoria & Albert’s Earns Honor from TripAdvisor

victoria albert dome

Victoria & Albert’s must be getting tired of all the winning.

Just a couple of weeks after being named Best Fine Dining in our Foodster Awards for Independent Restaurants, the uber chic restaurant at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa was voted second-best fine dining restaurant in the country in TripAdvisor’s 2017 poll.


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Other Stuff

Let’s Go to France

 Chez Denise interior

If you’ve been reading me for any length of time, you probably know that I am a frequent visitor to France, especially to Paris. No matter how many times I go, I always find something new and exciting. I enjoy trying new restaurants each time, but there are some that I always make a point to revisit. I’d love to show them to you.

So I’m pleased to announce that I’m partnering with Art in Voyage to co-host, along with chef Kevin Fonzo, a tour of Paris and Lyon in April of 2018.

I’m arranging visits to some of my favorite restaurants, from Michelin-starred fine dining venues to casual cafes, bistros and brasseries.

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Swan & Dolphin Food & Wine Classic This Weekend


The eighth annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic is Friday and Saturday, Oct. 27 and 28. However, if you haven’t already bought your tickets, it’s only on Friday — the Saturday event has already sold out.

The resort’s food and beverage director, Tony Porcellini, said he’s expecting about four thousand attendees over the two days, tasting samples of food from the various on-site restaurants, sipping wines, and attending seminars.

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 Here Come the Holidays! 

 With temperatures dipping into the upper 60s, I’m guessing that’s frost on the pumpkin.

Which means it’s time to start talking turkey.

I’ve started compiling the list of restaurants serving Thanksgiving Dinner this year. (I can’t remember the actual date, but I think it falls on a Thursday.)

You can see the list at this link.

And restaurateurs, if you’d like to be included, send me an email with all the particulars. The list will be updated regularly.

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Scott Joseph’s Orlando Restaurant Guide | P.O. Box 568344 | Orlando | FL | 32856

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