foodWelcome to Scott Joseph's Foodster Awards for Independent Restaurants.

The Foodsters are an ongoing program to recognize and celebrate culinary excellence in Central Florida. The Foodsters are open to any business with three or fewer locations -- no chains.

Winners are chosen by you, with your vote. Make your selection in each category carefully -- only one vote is allowed per person.

You may nominate a restaurant for an appropriate category, but make sure it isn't already in the list of nominees. And remember: independent restaurants only.

2022 Best New Restaurant Foodster Award

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2022 Best New Flamingos

Four Flamingos: A Richard Blais Florida Kitchen has been voted Best New Restaurant of 2022 in our Foodster Awards for Independent Restaurants.

The Monroe, the Creative Village newcomer from Good Salt Restaurant Group, was second and The Pinery in Ivanhoe Village was third.

Only two votes separated first place from third.

Four Flamingos opened early in the year at Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Resort in the space that for decades was home to Hemingway’s. It’s fronted by Blais, a popular celebrity chef from Bravo’s Top Chef All-Stars who visited the restaurant often during the year, including for our unprecedented two-night Supper Club there in July. The full-time executive chef is Shelby Farrell, who shared the recipe for the restaurant’s popular swordfish dish with us.

The Monroe, which opened in 2021 (the Best New Restaurant category has an 18-month qualification window) was one of the most ambitious restaurants to come on the scene following the onset of the pandemic. The name is an homage to Dr. William “Monroe” Wells, a Civil Rights leader.

The Pinery, also from 2021 and owned by Carol Sizer Holladay,, has a beautiful spot on Lake Ivanhoe and serves a varied menu with a slight Southern accent.

Congratulations to the winners, and thanks to all who voted.

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