Peperoncino
Address7988 Via Dellagio Way
CityOrlando
Phone407-440-2856
Price$$
Scott's Review
f you walked through Peperoncino’s front door and took too many steps you’d find yourself back outside through the little restaurant’s back door. But what it lacks in size it more than makes up for in charm and, more important, the food. In the realm of Italian restaurants in Central Florida, few offer the sort of authentic experience that Peperoncino does. If you’re sitting in a spot that allows a view of the Dellagio’s central plaza, you might think you’re on a piazza looking at one of the fountains of Rome. And don’t expect the food to bring you back to reality. It is expertly crafted from recipes cooked in the kitchens of the chef/owner Barbara Alfano’s grandmothers and is lovingly replicated here. Every bite is a veritable travelogue.... Read more
Prato
Address124 Park Ave. N.
CityWinter Park
Phone407-262-0050
Price$$$
Scott's Review

From the folks at Luma on Park, Prato is an Italian concept that features a wood-burning pizza oven and pizzaiola station in the dining room. Pizzas are good, though the thin crusts tend to char easily if not watched closely. Pasta is made fresh in-house, and most pasta dishes are available in half portions, a dandy idea.

Prato's decor is rustic and casual. This is currently the hottest restaurant in town, and can be quite crowded. Expect waits, even for bar seating.

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Ravenous Pig
Address565 W. Fairbanks Ave.
CityWinter Park
Phone407-628-2333
Price$$$
Scott's Review

The Ravenous Pig calls itself “an American gastropub,” gastropub being a British term for a pub that serves more than a basic bar menu. This wonderful restaurant goes way beyond that. Chef/owners James and Julie Petrakis met while attending the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, and they obviously learned a lot while there. The menu changes regularly, but everything is worth trying. The Pig’s burger was the winner of Scott Joseph’s Orlando Restaurant Guide’s first Burger War!

Beyond burgers, try the pork belly if it's available, and the steak frites is one of my favorites. As with those served with the award-winning burger, these fries have a spritz of truffle oil. From the pub menu during a lunch visit, I chose lobster tacos, lamb mezze and pork ribs. The tacos were wonderful, three crispy shells with lightly fried chunks of lobster and crunchy hot peppers. The mezze had lamb ribs, tender and aromatic, and lamb meatballs. The pork ribs were one of the few disappointments. They had precious little meat, and what was there was soggy and mealy.

Roasted cod was another good entrée. A beautifully white fillet, flaky and cooked just so, was served with a pure... Read more

Reel Fish Coastal Kitchen
Address1234 N. Orange Ave.
CityWinter Park
Phone407-543-3474
Price$$
It wants to be thought of as an inland contemporary fish camp, but there isn't anything campy about it. But the seafood is good, so there's that. ... Read more
Reyes Mezcalaria
Address821 N. Orange Ave.
CityOrlando
Phone407-868-9007
Price$$$
Scott's Review
From the owners of Osprey Tavern and Seito Sushi in Baldwin Park, this Citrus replacement makes ample use of the patio space, but the inside is just as nice. Stick with the basic Mexican offerings.... Read more
Rocco’s Italian Grille
Address400 S. Orlando Ave.
CityWinter Park
Phone407-644-7770
Price$$$
Scott's Review
Ever since I first reviewed Rocco’s Italian Grille & Bar, in October of 2006, I’ve considered it to be one of the finest Italian restaurants in the area.... Read more
Saffron Indian Cuisine
Address7724 W. Sand Lake Road
CityOrlando
Phone407-674-8899
Price$$
Scott's Review
A winner of the Best Indian Foodster Award for Independent Restaurants, Saffron is part of the group that includes Madras Cafe, the all vegetarian and vegan restaurant, and the estimable Mynt in Winter Park’s Hannibal Square neighborhood.... Read more
Shula's 347 Grill
AddressWestin Lake Mary
2947 International Parkway
CityLake Mary
Phone407-531-3567
Price$$$
Scott's Review

This is a new concept from the folks at Shula's Steak House, the high end eatery that bears the name of the legendary Miami Dolphins coach. He's legendary for the number of wins he led his team to. That number is 347. so that explains two-thirds of the restaurant's name.

The Grill part is meant to set it apart from the upper crust steakhouse, although a few steaks are available on the menu here, as well.

But there are other items, too, including crab cakes (before the Dolphins Shula coached the Baltimore Colts, so he's particular about his crab cakes), seared ahi tuna, sandwiches and other fare. Honestly, the least of the things I sampled during my visit was the steak, which was a bit overcooked.

The atmosphere is an upscale sports bar, with requisite televisions and casual seating arrangements.

... Read more