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Recent Reviews and Restaurant News

Written By Scott Joseph On March 10, 2022

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News from the Flog  

Dharma Southern Kitchen launches investment initiative to fund expansion


Dharma logo

Dharma Southern Kitchen, the plant-based restaurant that arose from a vegan hot dog cart, launched as a mobile food trailer and then opened as a brick and mortar anchor of the South Street Market, has big plans for expansion, and it’s looking for investors in a serious, grownup and governmentally regulated way.

Dharma has established a page on StartEngine, a website that provides a platform and resources for companies seeking investors through a process known as equity crowdfunding. But Shaun Noonan, Dharma’s founder and CEO, is quick to point out that this isn’t the type of fundraising site that most people are familiar with.

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Recent Reviews

The Wellborn

Wellborn courtyard below

Whenever I’m asked for a recommendation for a place to get something to eat before a show at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts – or consider a place for myself, as I did recently before attending a concert at the incredible new Steinmetz Hall – I do a mental stroll north along Orange Avenue, maybe turning west on Church Street to consider some of the restaurants along there. I consider walkability a key factor

This time I strolled, for real, south instead, under the 408 overpass to Lucerne Circle to the Wellborn, a hotel, bar and restaurant in the former I.W. Phillips house (so there’s synergy with DPAC right there). Remarkably, it’s a shorter walk than to most of the restaurants in the other direction.

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Jam Hot Chicken

Jamhot fountain

There are five levels of spiciness for the sandwiches at Jam Hot Chicken, a walkup window eatery in Winter Park’s Hannibal Square. The middle one is hot, which is what I ordered. I cannot imagine the fiery hell of the next level up, which is labeled hotter, let alone the spiciest one, jam. “You’ve been warned” is written next to that one on the menu. Woe to the person who mistakenly thinks jam means sweet jellied preserves.

Hot was plenty hot for me. I had ordered the Sando, which like the other two sandwiches was made with a thick slab of breast meat, breaded and deep fried. This one was dressed with claw and house-made pickles with a proprietary sauce called comeback (probably not a good name for a food item) and served on a buttered bun.

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Hangry Bison WG ext

After numerous delays due to the pandemically hobbled supply chain, the Winter Garden outpost of the Hangry Bison will finally open Tues., Mar. 8. The restaurant is at 250 W. Plant St. You can expect the same crafted cocktails and award-winning burgers you know from the original HB in Winter Park. I wonder if there are other locations in the works and, if so, will they only be in cities with Winter in the name?

Bao’s Castle, the SoDo baotisserie, has also opened a second location…sort of. It has joined the ghostly Collab Kitchens confab in Conway Plaza. I’m not sure if the Curry Ford West district extends that far. If so, it would be Curry Ford West East.

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Other Stuff

Tornatore’s owners Eat the World one podcast at a time

Denny and Maria

Denny Tornatore, the owner and operator of Tornatore’s Ristorante and Italian Market in College Park, and his partner, Maria Mancia, have started a weekly podcast called Denny and Maria Eat the World, because running one of the city’s most popular Italian restaurants apparently isn’t time consuming enough.

Tornatore told me recently that they started the project as a hobby. “We came up with the idea because we’re obviously both foodies,” he said. “It’s us traveling, eating, doing restaurant reviews, including some in Orlando, and there’s usually a recipe.”

But the hobby has grown and the podcast is gaining a following, with listeners now in the thousands. According to one source, Tornatore said, Denny and Maria Eat the World is the sixtieth most popular food podcast in the nation – and believe me, there is no dearth of food podcasts.

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



We hope you find our reviews and news articles useful and entertaining. It has always been our goal to assist you in making informed decisions when spending your dining dollars. If we’ve helped you in any way, please consider making a contribution to help us continue our journalism. Thank you.

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