The name of the restaurant that will occupy the former Cityfish space in downtown Orlando’s Thornton Park district is Baoery. No, not Bowery, like the neighborhood in south Manhattan, though it’s pronounced the same. Baoery, a play on bao, the the light but doughy bun found on various Asian menus and dim sum carts.
Baoery is the latest project from Thornton Park Restaurant Group, which opened nearby Soco last year and also owned Cityfish. TPRG partner and executive chef Greg Richie will also oversee the new restaurant.
“Soco was the first restaurant concept that I wanted to do,” said Richie. “The other one that I always wanted to do is Baoery.” He’s calling it an Asian Gastropub, “The kind of food I like to cook.”
The menu will draw on Richie’s background of cooking in Asian and Polynesian kitchens, including Roy’s (the original in Hawaii as well as the Roy’s on Restaurant Row, which he opened) and Emeril’s Tchoup Chop at the Royal Pacific hotel at Universal Orlando.
“It’s going to be fun, very accessible, very casual,” he said of the new restaurant. There will also be lower price points to encourage guests to dine more often.
There will be a variety of bao, including a roasted pork belly with Asian barbecue sauce. (If you want an idea of what that one will taste like, visit Soco and order the Slow-roasted Barbecue-glazed Pork Belly Biscuits.) There will also be a bao that features Richie’s KFC — Korean Fried Chicken — that is also a popular Soco item.
Beyond the bao, the menu will offer Asian inspired salads and a whole fish of the day prepared with ginger, scallions and a soy based sauce. There will also be wok-charred edamame, ramen, kimchi and a selection of vegetarian offerings.
The space is in the final stages of a total remodeling that included moving the restaurant’s bar from the side wall and into the center of the room. As with Cityfish, there will be ample patio seating, but expect to see the side deck opened up more.
Richie said the opening is on track for the middle of the month.