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TJ's Seafood Shack

TJs Gumbo

Here's what you need to know about TJ's Seafood Shack: gumbo.

TJ's is a fast-casual restaurant (order at the counter, take a seat) on the east side of town, with locations in Oviedo and on East Colonial Drive, which is the one I visited. It's in a Publix-anchored strip mall and occupies a corner space, with shacked-out decor.

The Brass Tap

brass tap taps

I'm trying really hard to come up with a reason that people would choose to go to the Brass Tap, the beer-centric chain that recently opened at Mills Park with others planned to open soon.

It has 60 taps of craft beers, but other places in town have beer lists just as impressive. So what else would make someone want to come here more than once?

Saigon Noodle

Saigon Noodle interior

February 19 marks Lunar New Year, often mistakenly, or at least incompletely referred to as Chinese New Year. It's the New year for the Chinese, but other Asian countries observe it, as well.

As you probably know, each year is represented by a revolving stable of animals. This year is the year of the goat. Or the year of the sheep. It's a little unclear, actually. It sort of alternates, which may explain why some restaurants that serve mutton, which most of us know as lamb, is really goat, which most of us know as goat. Either way, happy goat or sheep year.

I know many of you, including non-Asians, will head out to a favorite Chinese restaurant, but as I said, the Lunar New Year is observed by other Asians. The Vietnamese, for example. So if you want to join in the celebration to ring in the new year you have many more options.

Consider Saigon Noodle, a Vietnamese restaurant on the Eastern side of town.

Cindy's Cafe

Cindys exterior

If you're in the vicinity of Florida Hospital Health Village, the medical complex on North Orange Avenue, you have another dining option besides the Panera Bread outlet inside the medical center or the Wendy's across the street. (And how a "Health Village" would allow a fast food joint to reside nearby is a question worth asking at its next town meeting.)

Cindy's Cafe, which used to reside on Virginia Drive moved into the space that had been a diner called Everybody's Mom. I always liked that name, but ultimately it seemed like Mom just wasn't up to pleasing everyone.

Remy, Lallement, Michelin and Dom Perignon: An Evening of Stars

bernadin table

NEW YORK — I spent the night drinking stars.

Disney Cruise Lines hosted a small, intimate dinner Thursday in the private salon of famed Le Bernadin. The dinner was a celebration of chef Arnaud Lallement, whose restaurant in Reims, France, L'Assiette Champenoise, recently received the coveted third Michelin star for the second time. Lallement, along with Victoria & Albert's Scott Hunnel, consults on the menu for the Remy restaurants on the Disney Fantasy and Dream ships. Disney Cruise Lines brought Lallement to New York to cook the dinner, which was attended by a dozen food, wine and travel writers.

Remy is the luxurious fine dining restaurant on the two big ships. Only a handful of guests are able to experience the intimate dining room, but no one under 18 years of age is allowed. It's a serious dining occasion.

The dinner highlighted some of the new dishes that will be offered at Remy as well as some of Lallement's favorites from his restaurant in France. Reims, of course, is in Champagne country — the restaurant's name means the Champagne base —and all of the courses at the dinner were paired with Champagne. But not just any Champagne — it was an exclusively Dom Perignon dinner, all vintaged and extraordinary. And everything about it was exquisite.

Sunday, 1st March 2015

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A flog is a food blog with news and reviews of restaurants. Here you'll find all things edible, lots of things to drink, including expert wine advice, and lots of other stuff.


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