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Maithai interior

Downtown Orlando's central business district now has three Thai restaurants, and two are within a block of each other.

Mai Thai recently took over the space at 22 E. Pine St. vacated when Artisan’s Table moved to Church Street. That puts it just a hop, skip and a tom kha gai away from Napasorn, at 56 E. Pine and close to Thai Cafe on Magnolia Avenue.

Mai Thai wants to be known as an Asian fusion restaurant, though like everything else in life wanting it doesn’t make it so. About the only thing fusionesque on the menu is the Duck Tacos, but I’ll come back to those in a moment.

MT apparently also wants to be both a restaurant and a nightclub. Apparently, after dinner service the tables and chairs are moved out of the dining room to clear way for a dance floor. That might make one wonder how serious a restaurant it wants to be, fusion or otherwise.

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Whiskey series room

The team down at the Whiskey, the Restaurant Row tavern and restaurant, hosted a Master Series Chef’s Table recently and proved why it’s known for so much more than burgers.

Whiskey series salad line

Executive chef Chastity Harvey started the multi-course dinner with a Ratatouille Napoleon, stylishly served in a rolled cucumber with fresh greens plumage. Bacon jam and elderflower dressing were also part of the cool package.

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Delaneys table view

Tasting Table is a partnership project between Scott Joseph's Orlando Restaurant Guide and WFTV-Channel 9's Inside Central Florida presented by Wild Florida. You can see all of the Tasting Table episodes and other icFlorida videos by downloading the WFTV Now app, available on Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire devices. Just search WFTV.

For this episode of Tasting Table, Scott visits the new Delaney's Tavern in Orlando's Sodo district and gets a rundown on the restaurant and its menu from owner Greg Allowe and executive chef Anthony Albino. Plus, there's a cameo from a professional barstool sitter. Watch the video below, then read the full review here.

 

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TURKEY

Here they come. Nothing you can do to stop it. It would be like a snowball rolling down a hill if Florida had snowballs. Or hills.

It’s the holidays, and that means it’s time for holiday dining.

Once again Scott Joseph’s Orlando Restaurant Guide is compiling lists of restaurants that will be serving special holiday meals. First up: Thanksgiving.

Check out the Thanksgiving listing page and look through the various offerings. Once you’ve found a restaurant you like, make your reservations right away. Because of the limited number of restaurants open on that day – Nov. 28 – they fill up pretty quickly. To ensure you get a space at a decent time, book now.

Also, if your plans change – say that invitation to a friend’s house comes through – be sure to call the restaurant and cancel so that someone else can fill your spot.

And if you do dine out on Thanksgiving, be patient. Even if you have a reservation time, be aware that you may have to wait. People who dine out on holidays tend to linger longer at their tables.

Oh, and here’s another tip: Maybe don’t linger so long after your meal because other people may be waiting for your table.

And please, above all, be extra kind to the servers who are working on the holidays to provide you with a pleasant dining experience.

Check the list often as it will be updated as new information comes in.

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Soco bar

Soco, the Southern contemporary restaurant in the heart of Thornton Park, is turning five years old. And to commemorate the occasion, executive chef/partner Greg Richie has invited some other talented chefs to join him in cooking a special dinner.

Soco’s 5-year Anniversary Dinner will be Wed., Nov. 13, and will feature a welcome cocktail followed by four courses prepared by four chefs with “libation pairings” from a visiting mixologist. Wood is the fifth anniversary gift, so I’m thinking anything aged in wood barrels would be appropriate.

Joining Richie will be Venoy Rogers III of the B Resort & Spa and American Kitchen; Patrick Tramontana of Antonio’s Maitland; and Stuart Whitfield of The Glass Knife. PJ Smerechansky of The Edison at Disney Springs will head the cocktail creations.

Tickets are $120 plus tax and gratuity and can be secured by calling 407-849-1800 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Reservations are essential and can be made for any time between 6 and 9 p.m. Seating is limited and the event is expected to sell out. Soco is at 629 E. Central Blvd., Orlando.

Happy anniversary to Soco, and here’s to many more. Knock wood.

Soco Anniversary menu