Newsy Nuggets: A downtown food hall and other stuff

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South Orange Provisions render

The capacious atrium of what was formerly SunTrust Tower in downtown Orlando will be the home of South Orange Provisions, a nine-vendor food hall set to open later this year. SunTrust has moved a block away to Garland Avenue in the newly constructed tower with a hotel on its upper floors. (I wonder: Did SunTrust even bother to rent a U-Haul or did they just push everything over to the new building on their rolling desk chairs?)

As first reported by Mark Baratelli of The Daily City, the food hall will have 10,000 square feet with dining inside and outside in a shaded park. A brochure for the project touts its “Main and Main” location, which is to say it is at Orange Avenue and Church Street. (The brochure also says the project will open in third quarter of 2020, but we’re not going to hold them to that.)

This is a big space to fill, not just horizontally but vertically, too – the atrium soars eight stories. And it held one of my favorite pieces of public art in Orlando: A sculpture by George Segal of two flying trapeze artists in Segal’s signature white plaster style. It was stunning – one figure hanging on the trapeze by his knees about to catch another in midair – and it was so high up that most people probably didn’t even know it was there. I’ve asked the real estate firm overseeing the project what has become of the art but haven’t heard back.

  • Sam Meiner, the founder of Bubbalou’s Bodacious Bar-b-que died of heart failure last week at 70.
  • Chicago-based Portillo’s, which announced it would be coming to the Orlando area in October 2019, has finally set March 2 for its big opening. The fast fooder, known for its hot dogs and beef sandwiches, is at 7715 Palm Parkway.
  • Perla Pizza, a new concept from Michael Collantes and Christian Ziegler of Taglish Collective, is set to open late February/early March inside the Thirsty Topher bar on Virginia Drive.
  • And if it wasn’t already clear to you that being observant and being able to “read” a table were the qualities of a good server, consider this. According to an article by Hannah Phillips in the Orlando Sentinel, Flaviane Carvalho, a manager and server at Mrs. Potato on South Kirkman Road, with a young boy sitting with his family at one of her tables. She noticed bruises on the boy, who also appeared underweight. Heroically, she stood behind the parents and showed a sign for the boy to read. It said “DO YOU NEED HELP?”. The boy nodded, Carvalho called the police, and the boy’s mother and stepfather were arrested.

Carvalho undoubtedly saved the child’s life.

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