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Recent Takeout Reviews and Other Restaurant News

Written By Scott Joseph On April 9, 2020

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News from the Flog  

Recent Takeout Reviews

Takeout Review: Soco

Socoto sack

Here’s the thing about restaurant delivery services, those third-party gig operations that allow you to order from various restaurants and have the food brought to your doorstep. They add convenience in the best of times and a valuable service in the worst of times, i.e. now. And that goes both ways: there are benefits to the customers, to be sure, but restaurants also gain by expanding their offerings beyond the dining room.

But it comes at a cost, especially to the restaurants. Many of the delivery services have waived the delivery fee they charge to the customers. The money is made by taking a rather hefty portion of the cost of the order, usually 30 percent. And with most of the restaurants that are still open and offering takeout and delivery, that 30 percent eats into an already meager, nearly nonexistent profit.

So I found it a positive development when the Florida Insurance Commissioner encouraged auto insurance providers to allow restaurants to use their staff members to deliver food and be covered on their regular policies.

One of the restaurants that got approval for its staffers is Soco of Thornton Park, so I was anxious to see how the process worked (and to order some of my favorites from the menu).

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Takeout Review: Saffron Indian Cuisine

Saffronto ext

How about Indian food today?

Sorry, we won’t be able to visit a local Indian restaurant for one of the requisite all-you-can-eat buffets. To be realistic, I’m not sure we’ll see self-serve buffets like we used to have B.C. (before covid-19).

But let’s be honest, to really experience what an Indian restaurant can do, it’s better to order from the menu. So that’s what we’ll do at Saffron, the Indian restaurant on Sand Lake Road.

I phoned in my order and negotiated the total, including the gratuity, while still on the phone. When I arrived at the restaurant 20 minutes later, I had only a short wait before someone called to say the order was ready. A man approached the car and place it in the trunk.

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Takeout Review: First Watch

FWtakeout ext

Here’s a good takeout option for you weekend brunchers, although it doesn’t have to be confined to Saturday or Sunday because for a lot of us right now everyday is like a weekend.

First Watch has always been a popular choice for morning and midday meals, and now you can make all your selections using its new online ordering system, one of the user-friendliest I’ve ever seen.

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Chef’s Table, Graffiti Junktions Close Indefinitely

Chef's Table

Kevin and Laurie Tarter, owners of the popular Chef’s Table at the Edgewater in Winter Garden, announced over the weekend that they would close the restaurant indefinitely because of concerns over covid-19. They had been doing what appeared to be brisk takeout business in the past few weeks along with their other venues, Tasting Room and Attic Door, which also closed.

graffiti thorntonAlso this weekend, Greg Peters closed all six Graffiti Junktion restaurants. In a phone call Sunday evening, Peters said he was closing the restaurants out of concern for his staff members. “I couldn’t sleep at night worrying that one of my workers might get sick.” He said 350 workers would be laid off.


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Closings: Old Jailhouse

Old Jailhouse extrior

Add Old Jailhouse Sanford to the list of restaurants that are closed until further notice due to the covid-19 crisis.


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Other Stuff

Deadlines for Easter Preorders Approaching

Easter Takeout

I don’t know about you but the very thought of going to the grocery store to get food to put together for Easter dinner scares the hell out of me right now.

Much better to order from one of our local restaurants that are offering special Easter Sunday menus. No shopping, no cooking, very little cleanup, though this is a good time to remind you to wash your hands. And even better, by ordering Easter dinner from a restaurant, you’re helping to keep a small business open and some employees paid.

But here’s the thing: A lot of the restaurants are requiring preorders so they can better plan on how much they’ll need. Some of those deadlines are as early as today, though most will allow you to order through Friday. Also, some will require pickup on Saturday – those meals will obviously come with instructions for reheating.

Everybody has a different rule, so hop on over (see what I did there?) to the Easter Dining listings and look over your options; they are myriad. Give careful consideration to Flog favorites Delaney’s Tavern, Tap Room at Dubsdread, Soco, Stefano’s Trattoria and First Watch.

And you’ll even find some that will allow you to still order on Sunday and pick it up or have it delivered. But still, you should plan ahead.

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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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