JW Marriott Orlando Bonnet Creek adds kitchen garden for fresh ingredients

Written by Scott Joseph on .

JW Garden4 copy

The JW Marriott Orlando Bonnet Creek Resort & Spa has a new garden that not only serves as a tranquil spot for guests to relax but also provides ingredients for the resort’s chefs to use in its signature restaurant.

JW Garden sprang up in April, the creation of landscape designer Lily Kwong. It’s an elevated garden with a stone pathway and benches for seating, planted with herbs and citrus – oranges, kumquats, tangerines and Meyer lemons – as well as vegetables and edible flowers.

It’s very much a kitchen garden, and Melissa Sallman, executive chef at Sear + Sea, the hotel’s very good steak and seafood restaurant, and chef de cuisine Jose Escanio are incorporating the hyper-locally sourced ingredients into their dishes and cocktails. (More on that in a moment.)

To further the JW Garden mission, the resort has partnered with the Orlando City Foundation to donate gardens to two local schools – Rolling Hills Elementary School and Lockhart Elementary School – as part of the organization’s efforts to promote good nutrition and to bring fresh ingredients to the area’s food deserts. Which is a pretty nice thing to do. The produce from the gardens will be donated to the Orlando community and will educate kids about healthful eating habits and sustainability practices.

But back to how the garden’s bounty is being used at the JW Marriott Orlando Bonnet Creek. As you’re probably aware, the resort has a pretty dynamic craft cocktail program. Here are a couple of drinks that are making use of some of the ingredients outside the kitchen door.

2nd Winter Flavors of New York tour scheduled for December

Written by Scott Joseph on .

Winter Flavors

This time of year you see all sorts of references to Christmas in July. So it’s July, and I’m thinking about Christmastime.

Specifically, about the culinary tour of New York I’ll be hosting with Art In Voyage – Beyond Travel this December 7-11.

This will be the second year for the Winter Flavors of New York journey. If you missed my recap of last year’s trip you can read about it here. I’m still amazed at everything we packed into those days. And I can’t wait to do it again.

We’ll do have some of the same experiences but add some new adventures, too. I’d love to have you join me and let me show you my favorite city in the world. New York is special any time of the year, but it’s magical in December.

Check out the details here.

Newsy Nuggets: Unreserved, Uncommon, Nobu, Goff's and more

Written by Scott Joseph on .

UnreservedUnreserved Food Bazaar

JW Marriott Bonnet Creek has opened its Unreserved Food Bazaar, a food hall-style restaurant under the supervision of chef Peter Kunstek. It features pizza from a Josper oven; a sushi and raw bar; seasonal salads (currently featuring peaches and burrata); and fresh fish selections. Also new: the JW Garden, which grows herbs and produce used throughout the resort’s restaurants (more on that soon).

From Unreserved to Uncommon. Uncommon Catering & Eatery is dropping the & Eatery after July 23 and will focus on its catering business. It will remain in its Curry Ford West district space and will offer occasional wine dinners and popup events, according to a post on its Facebook page.

Nobu Hotels, a luxury brand whose partners include actor Robert DeNiro and chef Nobu Matsuhisa, will open a hotel in Orlando. It’s scheduled for 2024, which probably means late 2025 in Orlando-construction years. Yes, that probably means a Nobu sushi restaurant will come with it.

Second Night Added for Supper Club at Four Flamingos: A Richard Blais Florida Kitchen

Written by Scott Joseph on .

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Blais scheduled to attend

Our Supper Club at Four Flamingos: A Richard Blais Florida Kitchen for Thursday, July 14, sold out in less than 24 hours. So the folks at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Resort have added a second night, though since it’s for Wed., July 13, it’s technically the first night. And here’s some information we didn’t have before: Richard Blais is planning to attend.

Reservations are now open for the July 13 Supper Club, and per our policy, recipients of my newsletter have first dibs. If any seats remain at the end of the day (Tues., July 5), the dinner will be announced to the general public.

We’ll meet Wednesday, July 13, for a 6:30 reception and seated dinner at 7 p.m. at the beautiful Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Resort. (Four Flamingos is in the former Hemingway's building overlooking the resort's pool.) Cost is $150 per person including tax and gratuity. To reserve, call 407-239-3854 or click here for OpenTable. Note: The OpenTable page has four time slot selections by default. It doesn’t matter which one you select or, on the next page, which type of seating – that’s just a peccadillo of the OpenTable interface. All reservations made through that page will be part of the Scott Joseph Supper Club event.

We’ll have four courses but it will be a little different from Clubs Supper of the past in that each course will have options. Plus, you’ll be able to select whether you want red wine, white wine, or cocktails as your accompanying beverages. Check out the full menu selections: