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Merry Christmas from the team at Scott Joseph's Orlando Restaurant Guide. We hope you have plans to spend the day and share a meal with people you really like, or even family. If you're not cooking or haven't been invited to someone else's home, here are some restaurants that will be open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

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The Ramen ramen

 Why do I think of Edgar Allen Poe every time I hear that name?

Quoth The Ramen “Never pho.”

It wasn’t quite a midnight dreary that I walked downtown blocks so dreary. Though it definitely was in bleak December. And I had to walk past the even bleaker desolation of the deserted Orlando Sentinel parking lot. But The Ramen is anything but a dark and musty chamber. It’s actually quite bright and pristine.

The new restaurant sits on the corner of North Orange Avenue and Amelia Street. Something new in the wave of ramen restaurants that we’ve seen lately, The Ramen is quick-serve: Place your order and pay for it at the counter then take a number stand to a table of your choice. Someone will bring your food to you when it’s ready.

After considering the menu that one of the cheerful greeters gave me, I selected the Shoyu Ramen, which had Shoyu broth, chashu, aji tamago, naruto, menma, green onions and nori.

Translation:

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Winefest chefs.001

A new batch of chefs has been announced for the inaugural Orlando Wine Festival and Auction, and the lineup is starting to look pretty impressive.

The event will be March 15-17 and is sponsored the Orlando Magic to benefit the Orlando Magic Youth Foundation. Most of the events will take place at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando. The weekend will feature wine dinners in private homes; a grand tasting of wine and food prepared by local and nationally recognized chefs; an auction; and a dinner hosted by a celebrity chef. The weekend will culminate with the Magic's home game on Sunday evening.

Previously announced chefs include: Current Top Chef champion Joseph Flamm, Spiaggia, Chicago; Tony Mantuano, Spiaggia and Terralina at Disney Springs; Justin Plank, Terralina; Scott Hunnel, Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa; James and Julie Petrakis, Ravenous Pig; and Steven Richard, Paddlefish.

Newly announced chefs are:

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christmas table

We’re counting down the days to the New Year, and just in the span of about 10 days there will be three special dining opportunities: Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve.

As usual the elves at Scott Joseph’s Orlando Restaurant Guide have been compiling lists of restaurants that will be serving on each of those three days.

You’ll find listings for Christmas Eve specials here. We’re not listing all of the restaurants that are open Dec. 24, just those that are offering special dinners.

Christmas Day is a tougher ticket. If you plan on dining out on the 25th, you’d best head over to the Christmas Day Dining page and make your selection — and a reservation — right away.

As with Christmas Eve, the New Year’s Eve list is also for restaurants that are offering special dining on the 31st. There are lots of festive options on the New Year’s Eve Dining pages.

As always, keep in mind that the staffs of the restaurants are working on these days so that you’ll have a place to dine with your friends and families. Most of them are giving up the same to serve you, so be extra nice.