Hawkers exterior

Hawkers Asian Street Fare, one of the area’s success stories, has been slowly expanding since it opened its first location in Mills 50 in 2011. Besides the original, which continues to be popular with diners, there are Hawkers in Jacksonville, St. Petersburg and Neptune Beach. Now, Orlando is getting a second location.

It will be located in a new phase of The Grove at Isleworth currently being developed by the Tavistock Group at the southwest corner of Apopka Vineland Road and Conroy-Windermere Road. The new restaurant will employ a staff of 110 initially and have 4500 square feet with seating for 150 guests. In comparison, the original Hawkers seats 78 people inside and another 30 on the patio, well under that magic number that would allow it to serve full liquor. What’s the magic number? That would be 150. “Culinarily, we can get a lot more adventurous with cocktails,” said co-owner Kaleb Harrell.

Hawkers was a local pioneer in the “street food” concept and presents a menu of small plates of dishes one might find being sold — or hawked — in cities throughout Asia.

Waterfront stage

If you were worried that the sale of Julie’s Waterfront and the excision of her name from the business would mean that the South Orange Avenue venue would lose some of its grunge, you can rest easy. The Waterfront, under new owners, still has its delightfully divey demeanor.

If you were hoping that new ownership might usher in better food and service, well, that might be a little more hit and miss.

Bad Ass soup and sandwich

Had I been asked, I might have counseled for a different name.

Not that I’m a prude; anything but. However, there’s something slightly intimidating about walking up to someone at a food counter and saying, “I’ll have the Bad As’s sandwich.” Besides using a word that many people find slightly offensive, the spelling, which includes that odd apostrophe, makes one wonder just how it should be pronounced.

Then there’s the issue of the logo with a demonic looking figure about to bite into a sandwich with a disturbing set of teeth.

With all that going against it, a restaurant had damn well better have a good product.