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Chef Reimund Pitts BySTCChef Reimund Pitts of Le Coq au Vin with his Coquilles St. Jacques. (Photo by S.T. Cardinal of The Community Paper)

Le Coq Au Vin, at 46 Orlando’s oldest French restaurant, was already in operation for six years when Louis Perrotte and his wife, Magdalena, bought it. It is now owned and operated by Chef Reimund Pitz and his wife, Sandy, in partnership with the Perrottes. Housed in its unique A-frame — the original structure was a model for a company selling beach homes — Le Coq Au Vin is still a go-to special occasion restaurant for many Central Floridians.

In this edition of Local Flavor, a collaboration with The Community Paper, Pitz shares his recipe for coquille St. Jacques, a classic French dish of scallops in a creamy sauce. See the full recipe here.

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Eola Lounge ext

I’ve learned to be leery of the restaurant space that sits midblock in the building that houses the Sanctuary Condominiums. It’s been home to so many restaurants in the past 14 or so years – some with very brief stays and three that announced they would open but never did – that I no longer get my hopes up.

And the name of the latest occupant, Eola Lounge, doesn’t exactly exude culinary confidence or creativity. Such a name tells me the owners are more interested in a drinking clientele so any food served would be secondary. But when I found myself in the area looking for a place to eat after my destination restaurant was unexpectedly closed, I decided to give it a try.

I liked it very much.

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Taste of College ParkPhoto: Taste of College Park

We have a couple of Taste ofs coming up and one that’s ongoing into next month,

The first is Taste of College Park, Thursday, Oct. 13, from 6 to 9 p.m. in and around Historic Dubsdread.

The event is sponsored by the Rotary Club of College Park who claim it is the “oldest and most important social event in College Park.” TOCP is the club’s primary fundraising event, with net proceeds going to local and national charities. In addition to ticket sales, proceeds include bids from a silent auction.

Tickets are $75 plus a fee of $6.20 and can be purchased at the Eventbrite page. And while the Rotary Club’s site notes that the evening will feature “over a dozen local restaurants and distributors,” it doesn’t name any of them. (But I’m pretty sure we can count on Tap Room at Dubsdread being there.)

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Jollibee exterior

Jollibee, a popular Filipino chain, plans to open its first Orlando location by month’s end, taking over the former Chuan Lu Gardens on extreme East Colonial Drive. Jollibee, which unapologetically refers to itself as a fast food restaurant, is known for its “Chickenjoy,” a hand-breaded fried chicken that, according to the chain’s website, is crispylicious on the outside and juicylicious on the inside. Not to be pigeonholed, or even chickenholed, it also serves burgers and something called Jolly Spaghetti. One pictures smiling meatballs.

  • Another chain, Crisp & Green, whose menu is comprised of things both crispy, if not crispylicious, and green, will open this weekend in Winter Park Village. It had planned to open last weekend but, well, you know. This is also a first Central Florida location for the Minnesota company – third in Florida – which plans a to have 40 statewide in the next two years. Menu highlights include salads, such as the No Prob Cobb, grain bowls, like the Bold & the Buffalo, and smoothies, including the Green Glow, which has [shudder] banana, pineapple, mango, spinach, ginger and plain pea protein. I wonder if there’s an option to upgrade to fancy pea protein to make it more pealicious.
  • In other chain news, Orlando based Earl Enterprises (Planet Hollywood, Earl of Sandwich, Buca di Beppo, Chicken Guy!) announced that Michael Beacham has joined its leadership team. Beacham is a former president of Darden International and was also chief operating officer at both Hard Rock and Chuck E. Cheese, making him one of the highest-level executives in the country with a resumé that includes Chuck E. Cheese. Beacham will report directly to Earl Enterprises’ founder and CEO, Robert Earl, who said in a statement, “Michael’s experience and knowledge of the industry are top-notch, and, with his wide-ranging background, I know he will bring new, innovative tactics and ideas to our operation.”

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Lift StationThe lift station at South Street and Mills Avenue is one of the facilities affected by a water-main break caused by Hurricane Ian.

Update: A spokeswoman for the city said that there is no directive for any restaurant to stop using water in a way that would negatively impact their business. the city asks only that all residents and businesses be more mindful of their water use during this critical period.

Like many other Central Florida businesses, Scott Joseph’s Orlando Restaurant Guide was closed for a few days during and following Hurricane Ian. We fared fairly well – a leaky roof; two separate power outages – but decided to suspend publication on the site and newsletter out of deference to those who were more severely impacted. Restaurant news and reviews, we determined, could wait a few days while things got back to normal.

But we begin this week with a new unnormal.