Spring Food and Wine Classic

The Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin will offer a springtime version of its fall Food & Wine Classic, Sat., April 17, from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

The event will feature 12 food booths and more than 50 beverage options. Among the themed stations will be the Beer Garden; Chinatown; Frida’s Kitchen; and the Pig & Poke, a luau experience. And there will be a dessert station with the resort’s executive pastry chef, Laurent Branlard, a world pastry champion.

And of course there will be samples from the many Swan and Dolphin restaurants, including Shula’s Steak House, Todd English’s bluezoo, Kimonos and Il Mulino.

In addition, attendees will get a taste of a signature dish from the soon-to-open Swan Reserve, a boutique hotel expansion to the complex.

This is an outdoor event and distancing protocols will be observed. To wit, only a limited number of tickets will be available. (Fifty remain as of this writing.)

General admission is $125 and unlike last fall’s Classic, the spring festival does not require that you book a room. However, room packages are available starting at $400, which includes two tickets, so I’d jump on that. For just $150 more you can have an extra cocktail or glass of wine and know that you only have to operate the elevator to get to your room.

Click here to book Food & Wine Classic tickets, and for room reservations, call 800-227-1500.


Outpostk ext

Outpost Neighborhood Kitchen opened in the neighborhood of College Park in early 2015 – hardly seems that long ago.

It closed in June, earlier than it wanted to prior to a planned move to another location. The dining restrictions imposed because of the pandemic were cited at the time as the reason for the premature closing while the new location was in the early stages of construction. I’m sure the fingers of its fans were crossed in hopes that it would indeed reopen.

It has.


Beet and burrata still

In culinary terms, a Napoleon is a layered dessert. But at Russell’s on Lake Ivanhoe, the new restaurant in the Ivanhoe district north of downtown Orlando, chef/partner Emmanuel Clement serves a savory Napoleon with layers of roasted red and golden beets and creamy burrata cheese.

It’s an impressive presentation, and it tastes as good as it looks.

It’s also easy to do, even with making the vinaigrette from scratch.

In this episode of Scott’s Kitchen, Clement shows Scott how it’s done. Watch the video, grab yourself some beets, burrata and pine nuts and give it a go.

Careful when you’re toasting the pine nuts – mind got a little too dark, but it all tasted great anyway.



Ramen Revolution logo

Recycling is good, right? A number of local restaurant spaces vacated by previous tenants will be recycled to house new concepts.

Not long ago, Orlando Meats moved out of its original space on Virginia Drive and took up residency at Ravaudage in Winter Park. (No, it’s still called Orlando Meats, and it’s a lot closer to O’do than Orlando Sanford Airport.) The former space, which is next door to Santiago’s Bodega, will become the home of Ramen Revolution. The new restaurant is being developed by Jason Dugan, who also owns Santiago's Bodega. I’m not sure what a ramen revolution is but it sounds like it could be messy. A barebones web page for the new concept says only that it will open in 2021, so they’ve given themselves some wiggle room.


Aurora Celeste

A new hotel, The Celeste, opened last fall on the edge of the UCF campus. And as is often the case, with the new hotel came a new restaurant, Aurora at the Celeste.

If you were just passing through Aurora, perhaps on your way to a function on the tailored event space lawn just off the restaurant’s patio, you might dismiss it as little more than a perfunctory coffee shop, there only to serve basic fare to weary guests; the decor does little to dissuade that notion.