Bullet (Exclamation) Point Buffet

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lighthouse series

  • Lighthouse Central Floria and Lighthouse Works will be partnering with local restaurants and beverage outlets to host the Lighthouse Sensory Series of blindfold tastings. The first is Wed., Aug. 14, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Digress Wine in College Park with a multi-flight wine tasting. Then on Aug. 21, Soco Thornton Park will offer a blindfold tasting of bourbons. The series is designed to offer a look, if you will, into Lighthouse’s mission to aid children and adults who are blind or visually impaired. A portion of the proceeds from the tastings will benefit Lighthouse. Click here for more details on the Sensory Series and to purchase tickets.
  • Chicken Guy!, the Disney Springs quick-serve collaboration between Guy Fieri and Robert Earl, was recognized at The Shop! Association Annual Store Design Awards at the GlobalShop Conference in Chicago. Acutally, it was the restaurant’s designer, Architecture Plus International, Inc., that won the Gold Fast Casual Restaurant + Graphics award for “the use of space and materials, and quality of concept execution.” Or maybe that should be execution!

Foodster Award Presentations

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We've had a flurry of Foodster Award presentations lately. Here are some of the people who accepted their plaques. They represent the best in their categories. And remember, Foodster Awards are for Independent Restaurants -- those with three or fewer locations -- so be sure to support your local restaurateurs.

Greek Corner Stylianos Xanthoudakis

Stylianos Xanthoudakis of Greek Corner accepted the Platinum Foodster for Best Greek

Bullet Point Buffet: Restaurant destructions and other news

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City Diner lot

  • City Diner, which probably owed much of its life to its proximity to the Orange County Courthouse and being a convenient lunch spot for lawyers and jury duty hostages, is gone. Like, really gone. It had been “closed for renovations,” as they say, but recently the entire building was bulldozed. I guess that qualifies as extreme renovating. The land will presumably be used for a planned hotel to replace the also-now-gone Travelodge that was next to it.
  • Mon Petit Cheri, the Park Avenue French cafe, has closed but the building it was in is still intact. MPC was formerly known as Palmano’s and was the winner of Orange County’s search for “Orlando’s Signature Dish” in a 2017 contest. Chef/owner Catherine Delrieu’s Honey Nougat Glacé was named the winner by a panel of judges, on which I served. (For the record, I voted for one of the other entries.) Nearly two years later, the Honey Nougat Glacé still has not caught on as THE dish to order in Orlando.

College Park adds lunch spots

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Ragazzi interior

College Parkers seem to be rediscovering lunch.

In recent weeks, we’ve learned of a couple of previously dinner only places that have started offering nooners, including K Restaurant and the Local Bar & Grill. K, of course, has gone through many changes in the past few years since Kevin Fonzo, the chef who leant his initial to the restaurant’s name, sold the business. Last year his replacement chef was fired. The restaurant’s website now lists new owner Chad Phelps as the executive chef and Barry Czekaj as the sous chef. Apparently things have settled down enough to start offering lunch hours again, albeit Tuesdays through Fridays. (The restaurant is open on Mondays but for dinner only.

The Local started out as more bar than grill but over the years had added some food elements. Perhaps it was inspired to start serving lunches by the success of our friends next door at Ragazzi’s Pizza & Restaurant.