Countdown to Jetport

Written by Scott Joseph on .

There are still some tickets available to the huge Jetport Food & Wine Festival Friday night at the Kissimmee Airport. Besides the food and wine that are part of the name, the fest also features a showcase of private jets and luxury cars. And the venue is a hangar transformed for the evening into a lavish nightclub.

The food will be prepared by chefs from some of your favorite local restaurants, including Bice, Luma on Park, Emeril's Tchoup Chop, Chefs de France, Seito Sushi, The Palm, Circa, Urban Flats and others. Cooking alongside them is a Who's Who of the culinary world. Just who is who? Here's a list:

Fish On Fire Burns

Written by Scott Joseph on .

Here's one of life's little ironies. The Florida fishhouse known as Fish On Fire was destroyed by a fire on Tuesday evening. The restaurant was closed at the time and no one was injured in the blaze. According to an article on, a fire alarm was set off when flames activated a motion sensor inside the restaurant on Daetwyler Drive near Orlando International Airport.

Fish On Fire opened in 2004.

Disney Cruise Line's New Ship Will Have Dream Team of Chefs Designing Menu For New Restaurant Remy

Written by Scott Joseph on .

The_Disney_Dream61110061Updated to include artist rendering of Remy main dining room.

When Disney Cruise Line’s newest ship, the Disney Dream, sets sail in January, it will boast a fine-dining restaurant with a menu designed by a dream-team of chefs: Scott Hunnel of Disney’s estimable Victoria & Albert’s and Arnaud Lallement of l’Assiette Champenoise in Reims, France. The announcement of the new restaurant, Remy, was made during a dinner prepared by the two chefs Wednesday at New York’s Le Bernadin.

The onboard restaurant will feature a continental -- or maybe that’s bi-continental -- menu developed by the two chefs. The menu will change with the seasons and will feature products sourced globally.

Hunnel is a multiple James Beard Award semi-finalist. His restaurant is considered one of the finest in the southeast and has been awarded the AAA Five Diamond award 10 years in a row and also holds the highest honors with the Mobile Guide. Lallement’s restaurant in Reims has two stars from the Michelin Guide.

The restaurant is named, apparently, for the rat in the Disney animated feature Ratatouille. The question of a rat in a restaurant has already been raised by others -- and indeed is the focus of the movie. Anyone who has witnessed the animatronic Remy that is revealed from underneath a silver cloche on cart wheeled throughout the dining room at Epcot's Chefs de France can attest to the uneasiness one feels upon seeing it.

True, its a short trip from the mouse that leads the company to another rodent in a restaurant. But rats have a storied infamy aboard ships. You’d think that would have raised some eyebrows in the planning room.

Still, the Disney Dream is expected to be a state-of-the-art, luxurious ship, and the talents of the two chefs charged with designing its premium restaurant’s menu should keep it well afloat.


Remy main dining room (Disney Cruise Line)

What's Hip in Orlando? These Guys Say Norman's

Written by Scott Joseph on .

So when you think of Orlando and hip in the same sentence what comes to mind. (Don't say "unlikely," play along.)

As part of a unique marketing program for the Ford Fiesta, the Ford Motor Company contacted some folks around the country and asked them to team up to help them reimagine how to advertise the car, which is coming to the U.S. soon. (No, it's too late to try to stop them.)

The Orlando team is Mark Baratelli and Dan Ginader. As part of their mission, they painted a mural on the wall of Pho 88 on Mills Avenue. And we're just going to assume for now that they had permission from Pho 88. The team was tasked with depicting their top 10 hippest/favoritest things about Orlando. The painting depicts The Vegan Hot Dog Cart, Stardust Coffee and Video, Four Rivers Smokehouse. And Norman's at the Ritz-Carlton. Hmmm, elegant, first-class, fine dining, wonderful dinner -- all those descriptions come to mind about Norman's. But hip? I guess I just don't understand the young folk.

Here's a look at the fun mural Baratelli and Ginader painted: