1921 by Norman Van Aken.

That's the official name of the restaurant planned by the celebrity chef for Mount Dora. The number is the address on the side of the buiding. "The sign was literally written on the wall," Van Aken said of his decision for the name.

The restaurant, at 1921 E. Fourth St., will open after the first of the year. Van Aken said that he had hoped to open before Christmas but that some things were taking a little more time than he had hoped, including the delivery of needed equipment.

The decor throughout the five or six dining areas will feature artwork from the Modernism Museum, including works by Chihuly and Nakashima. Even a couple of the tables will be museum art pieces, he said. The restaurant will seat 160 guests including patio tables.

As previsouly announced, Camilo Velasco will be chef de cuisine and Scott Geisler, most recently of the Ravenous Pig, is the general manager. Both are alums of Van Aken's restaurant in Orlando, Norman's at the Ritz-Carlton.


Butter Chicken interior

Butter chicken is a popular dish in Indian restaurants, though you might see it listed on menus as Murgh Makhani. Though I suppose if someone was going to name a restaurant after the dish, they’d go with Butter Chicken.

Which is what the owners of Butter Chicken Indian Cuisine in Winter Park did.

Butter Chicken is in a little clump of businesses on Howell Branch Road behind a 7-Eleven. It occupies a space we’ve been in before, including when it was Bravissimo (when Rosario Spagnolo, now of Terramia, was involved with it) and a forgettable restaurant called the Getaway Cafe. (And by forgettable I mean that I had forgotten about it until I did a search on the address — and I still don’t remember much about it.) It was also Chef Henry’s Tip-Top Bistro, an Argentine restaurant that closed before I could get to it, and a restaurant called Saigon, which inexplicably specialized in Chinese cuisine.

But Butter Chicken. It’s still new enough that the signage out front looks temporary. Or maybe they’re just waiting to see if it catches on better than the Argentine restaurant.


ChefEddie dining room

Considering it is little more than 10 years old, the restaurant space in the City View apartments building on West Church Street in downtown Orlando has certainly had a lot of tenants. First was Uncle Henry’s Country Kitchen, the popular Johnson’s Diner, which moved from a cramped free-standing hut on Washington in summer of 2006. When it closed, Fish ’n’ Loaves took over. Then McKnight’s.

Now say hello to Chef Eddie’s. Or good morning, as I did recently when looking for a downtown breakfast spot.

The downtown address is a relocation for Chef Eddie’s. We visited the original restaurant last year when it was on the corner of Orange Center Boulevard and Goldwyn Avenue in west Orlando. The City View location brings Chef Eddie’s good food closer to the center of commerce, so I was surprised that just a little after 8 o’clock on a weekday morning that I was the only diner in the restaurant and would remain alone during my entire breakfast.


PH Observatory rendering

There seems to be a lot of shock since the news “broke” yesterday that the Planet Hollywood at Disney Springs (once known as Pleasure Island) would undergo a massive renovation that will require the restaurant to shut down. The Orlando based company made the formal announcement about the redo in February. (I told you it was coming 10 months prior to that in this article from April 23, 2014.)

Maybe the real reason for the surprise is the number of employees who will be let go when PH closes in January: 468. As a spokesperson for the Planet told me, “It takes a village to run a restaurant this size.” Still, that’s a startlingly large number of people (none of whom, by the way, were caught off guard when they were told last weekend about the upcoming closing.) Some of the Planet Hollywood workers will be offered positions at other company-owned restaurants, such as Buca di Beppo or Earl of Sandwich, and some are expected to be offered positions at Disney properties.

But here’s something that hasn’t been reported.


GrandBo logoIt's becoming something of a tradition around here to have a Holdiay edition of the Supper Club. This year we'll convene at the Boheme in the elegant Grand Bohemian hotel in downtown Orlando. Dinner will be Friday, Dec. 4, at 7 p.m. The date and time are key. That's the same day as the official City of Orlando tree lighting, which is scheduled to be over by 6 p.m. So Supper Clubbers can attend the lighing festivities and then make their way over to the Grand Bohemian for a litte extra cheer.

Tickets are a very special $85 plus tax ($90.10) with gratuity included.

Our seating is limited so be sure to get your tickets early. You can see the details, including the menu, at the SJO Dining Deals page.