In news that will surprise no one, Mingos in downtown Orlando is closed. The restaurant, in the former Graze and Prickly Pear space in the Sanctuary condominium building, was largely financed by Nik Patel, who is under indictment for fraud. A second Mingos, in the Doubletree by Hilton near UCF that opened a few months ago, is under new management. A woman who answered the phone there Friday evening said she didn't know if it would continue to be known as Mingos or would be called something else. 

I'm guessing something else.

On its Facebook page, Mingos in downtown Orlando said it was closing because of "an inability to reach an agreement in lease negotiations within a timely manner..." 

The restaurant was not poorly reviewed, but having a partner embroiled in a messy legal issue that has seen him selling off homes and cars doesn't bode well.

H/T Joe Sarrubbo.

kevin-dundon2Kevin Dundon, master chef and co-owner of Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant at Downtown Disney, has been nominated for a Taste Award from the Lifestyle Entertainment Industry for his PBS and Create TV series, "Kevin Dundon's Modern Irish Food." Dundon is nominated in two categories: Best Food travel Series and Best Chef in a Series.

The awards recognize and acknowledge excellence in video, film, mobile and interactive content focused on food, drink, fashion, design, travel and lifestyle.

The winners will be announced in December and they will be feted at a red-carpet celebration in Hollywood (the one in California) on January 15. 

Dundon also owns Dunbrody Country House Hotel and Cookery School in Wexford  on Ireland's south coast, where much of the series is filmed. He was also the charming host for the first international Scott Joseph's Supper Club in Dublin in August. We congratulate him on the nomination and wish him good luck.

 

WOB interior

Why did they have to call it World of Beer?

Yes, I know, that's the name of the franchise, so when it opens a new location, it tends to use that name.

But if ever there was a name that screamed Joe Six-Pack, it's World of Beer. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but for an establishment that has taken over what was for decades the jewel of the downtown dining scene, you'd expect something a little more extraordinary.

The location in question is the former Lee's Lakeside, which overlooks Lake Eola and its multicolored fountain and Orlando's downtown skyline beyond. Long one of the city's favorite special occasion restaurants, it closed a couple of years after owner Lethia "Lee" Rose, the restaurant's heart and soul, died in 2003. In 2009, Manny Tato, who had taken over Rose's other restaurant, Lake Eola Yacht Club (now Spice Modern), opened Pesca in the moderately remodeled space. But that restaurant never found a following and closed after a brief period.

Rick BaylessJust yesterday I told you about Art Smith perhaps opening a restaurant at the still-under-construction Disney Springs at Downtown Disney. Now I'm hearing that Rick Bayless, another Chicago area chef, is also in the negotiations phase. Bayless's restaurants include Mexican flavored Frontera Grill and Topolobampo, but according to my sources, he would bring a new brand to Central Florida. The arrangement would be made under a licensing agreement, but, I'm told, Bayless would be hands on with the development and ongoing operations of the restaurant.

Other restaurants that are slated to open include Morimoto Asia and Boathouse.

More details as I learn them.