Larry GarrettLarry Foor, left, and Garrett Ward will share brewing duties at Cask & Larder.

When I told you back in September that Cask & Larder had lost its longtime brewmaster, Ron Raike, I speculated that Larry Foor, veteran bar manager for Cask and The Ravenous Pig, might be named the new brewman. Turns out I was half right.

C&L has announced that Foor will be sharing the title with Garrett Ward, who has served as assistant brewmaster for the past year and was previously a bartender at the Pig, Cask & Larder's sister restaurant. Both Foor and Ward are certified cicerones, or beer experts, and Foor recently earned a degree in brewing technology from the Siebel Institute in Chicago.

Besides continuing the brewing program for Cask & Larder, which was recently named one of the top 11 new restaurants in America by Esquire magazine, the two will begin ramping up the restaurant's retail beer business. Beginning Thursday, the restaurant will be selling 32-ounce cans, called crowlers, of their specialty brews to go. The first beers available for takeaway imbibing will be Lone Palm Golden Ale, Olde Southern Wit and Flame Out Pale Ale.

Eventually, the beers will be available for purchase in the retail space planned in the building next door. Swine & Sons Provisions, which is scheduled to open in February, will sells charcuterie, sandwiches and other comestibles, as well as the crowlers.

For his part, former brewmaster Raike has joined on with Playalinda Brewing Co., a Titusville operation that is expected to open the taps this month.


Eddievsc dining

Eddie V's was the site of the October edition of our Supper Club, and the Sand Lake Road seafood and steak house showed the assembled clubbers why it has become a Restaurant Row favorite in such a short time.

In fact, our October 24 dinner coincided with the first anniversary for the Orlando location of Darden's premium brand, and the evening couldn't have been lovelier. We began by sipping our first wine on the patio overlooking the lake at sunset. All of the wines were provided by Rioja through an arrangement with Wine on the Way. We started with a Vina Herminia Rosado, which is not yet available commercially in the United States. Several people who tried it are waiting for the day it will arrive.

EddievSC taco

It went perfectly with the first course of Maine Lobster Taco, a signature appetizer on Eddie V's regular menu. It featured sweet lobster meat and grilled corn on a tortilla made in house.


TurkeyThe list of restaurants that will be open on Thanksgiving Day is big and still growing. There's something for every taste, with such restaurants as Bistro on Park, Tropicale at the Caribe Royale, Eddie V's, both Emeril's, and the traditional vegan option at Drunken Monkey.

Want to eat at home but don't want to cook? There are options for fully prepared meals from Cuisiniers Catering at East End Market, 310 Restaurants, and Maggiano's at Pointe Orlando.

This link takes you to the restaurants open in Orlando on Thanksgiving Day. I'll keep updating the list as I hear about more restaurants.


Wassabi Sushi

A lot of you young'uns won't remember that there was once a time when a Thai restaurant was a hard thing to find around these parts. One of the first was a restaurant called Bangkok, which occupied a pagodalike building in Altamonte Springs. It was a favorite of many people because they didn't have a larger survey of what Thai food should really be, so they didn't know that what Bangkok was serving was pretty mediocre. Once more Thai restaurants began to open in the area, people realized they didn't have to settle. Bangkok eventually closed.

The same thing happened with sushi bars and Japanese restaurants. Once hard to find, they are now quite common. And I mean common in more ways than one.

Now Wassabi Asian Fusion, featuring sushi and Japanese cuisine, has taken over the old Bangkok space, and unfortunately a bit of the mediocrity has apparently rubbed off on the new tenants.