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Next "Taste of" is at Pointe Orlando


We seem to be in "Taste of..." season.

Taste of Winter Park was Wednesday, Taste of College Park was Thursday. There's another coming up on Sunday that I wanted you to be aware of. That's Taste of Pointe Orlando and it showcases many of the fine restaurants located there. Even better, proceeds from ticket sales go to support Florida Hospital's Esophageal Cancer Program, which is a very fine cause.

The event is Sunday, April 19, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Pointe, 9101 International Drive. Tickets are $30 in advance or $35 at the gate. You can get your tickets at the Pointe Orlando website.

Here's a list of restaurants that will be serving:

An App to Aid in Splitting the Check

Plates app

Have you ever gone out to dinner or lunch with a group of friends with everybody ordering different things, some plates to share, others, like that ridiculous salad whatshername always gets and keeps to herself (as if anyone else wanted any of it in the first place), some friends getting wines by the glass and others, like ol' Salad Sal, getting elaborate cocktails? And then at the end of the meal, someone, usually you-know-who, will suggest you split the check evenly? Of course you have. And then you spend the time after the check is delivered painstakingly trying to determine who ordered what, because there's no way your paying for that extra dressing and the top-shelf cocktail (she had three of them, of course). Then you cave and just split it evenly.

Well, next time it happens — and you know it will — whip out your smartphone and open the Plates app. It will help you figure out who ordered what, what was shared evenly and what each person owes, including his or her fair share of the tax and tip.

There is still some painstake involved in the process; it isn't all done with a quick flip of a switch, but the drag and drop process makes it somewhat easier. This article at Yahoo! shows the steps involved. And when you get down to who owes what make sure you also have your Square credit card swiper so when your tipsy friend says she doesn't have any cash you can say, "MasterCard or Visa?"

Planet Bollywood? Robert Earl Opens Newest PH Branded Resort in India

PH GoaA photo of one of the rooms at the Planet Hollywood Beach Resort, Goa, from the hotel's website.

Orlando based Planet Hollywood International has opened its newest resort, this time in India. Planet Hollywood Beach Resort, Goa follows the company's first big hotel, Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. PHBR, G is located in Uttorda Beach in South Goa, an area known for its white sandy shore. The new resort has "130 rooms, suites and luxury tents paying homage to various genres of cinema." I believe that is the first time I've typed the words luxury and tents in the same sentence. For comparison, the Vegas hotel has 2,567 rooms. But no white sand beaches.

"We are extremely excited to have opened the newest incarnation of Planet Hollywood in Goa," said Robert Earl, founder and chairman of Planet Hollywood International. "India has long been a center for cinematic creativity and innovation so it is only natural that we bring the iconic Planet Hollywood brand to the area with this exciting new property."

The hotel will have a grand opening celebration Wednesday. I'm not sure what Earl has planned for the event, but when he opened the Vegas property he hired Barbra Streisand for a private concert in the resort's grand theater. It was impressive.

You can expect more PH branded hotels as the company plans to expand.

JW Marriott Opens Farm-To-Table Restaurant with Tables Very Close to Farm

Whisper Kitchen

The JW Marriott at Grande Lakes Orlando quietly opened its lastest restaurant a few weeks ago. Whisper Creek Farm: The Kitchen was designed to showcase ingredients from the on-site 7000-square-foot garden. Located inside the front door of the hotel next to the lobby, WCF:TK is not meant to provide a full restaurant experience but rather will offer small plates, sandwiches, charcuterie and such. The Kitchen seats 100 indoors and 50 on the outdoor terrace.

In addition, The Kitchen will feature beers from the hotel's new nano brewery. Don't go looking for the brew tanks in the restaurant, however. They're located in a small room back in the hotel's vast kitchens. I got a sneak peek a few weeks ago (see some photos below).

I'll have more on Whisper Creek Farm: The Kitchen and Whisper Creek Farm: The Brewery next week.

The new restaurant is open for dinner daily.

wcf brewery 2

wcf brewery 1

wcf brewery 3


Saturday, 18th April 2015

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