Flying Fish
Address2101 Epcot Resorts Blvd
CityOrlando
Phone407-939-3463
Price$$$$
Scott's Review
And just like that, Flying Fish, formerly known as Flying Fish Cafe, has become arguably the second most elegant restaurant at Walt Disney World. In my estimation, only Victoria & Albert’s offers a more upscale decor. There is still an on-stage kitchen, and instead of the tiled chef’s counter, gathering-height tables may be abutted next to the kitchen counter to affect chef tables of various sizes. Speaking of the chef, there’s a new one in charge to go with the updated decor. And Tim Majoras, pictured at top, figured he might as well go and redesign the menu. No, the potato-wrapped snapper first introduced by the restaurant’s original chef, John State, and retained by his successors is gone. I don’t think anyone will really miss it.... Read more
H Cuisine
Address7512 Dr. Phillips Blvd.
CityOrlando
Phone407-930-3020
Price$$$$
Scott's Review
It truly is an elegant restaurant, a little bit of Manhattan chic on Restaurant Row. Especial attention has been paid to the lighting, which is moody and low. And banquettes, booths and chairs at freestanding tables are plush and comfortable.... Read more
Hemingway's
Address1 Grand Cypress Blvd.
Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Resort
CityOrlando
Phone407-239-1234
Price$$$$

Though overpriced, the food is creative and sumptuous, presented in a professional manner in a relaxing atmosphere reminiscent of Key West. The restaurant, which stands apart from the main hotel, sits on top of the boulders that form the grotto for the resort's pool. The structure has the appearance of a fine Florida home, with wooden floors and ceiling fans. There are more windows than walls and some of them open out onto old-fashioned screened-in porches. The menu is dominated by seafood selections, including whole Florida yellow tail snapper and herb basted diver scallops. The high quality seafood and classy surroundings would make Papa proud.

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Morton’s The Steakhouse
Address7600 Dr. Phillips Blvd.
CityOrlando
Phone407-248-3485
Price$$$$

Morton's recently renovated its Restaurant Row Orlando location. The decor is imbued with a modern and tony flair, less the stodgy boardroom ambience at some of the other high-end steakhouses. Maybe that's why women seem to feel so comfortable here.

Steaks are cooked under a super-hot broiler, and when the kitchen is on the mark, they're among the best.

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Ocean Prime
Address7339 W. Sand Lake Road
CityOrlando
Phone407-781-4880
Price$$$$
Scott's Review

An upscale seafood (Ocean) and steak (Prime) supper club (live music) in the vein of The Oceanaire Seafood Room. The main dining room features warm wood walls with huge five-foot portholes that look through to the lounge area. (The dining room has its own bar for more intimate imbibing, a nice touch.) Touches of blue neon and a soft glow from drumlike light fixtures offer romantic notes, and white tablecloths and candles with frosted shades add a touch of elegance.

A “surf n turf” appetizer had lovely sea scallops and boneless short ribs plopped together in a smallish bowl with way too mashed potatoes. Good scallops, good ribs, bad presentation.

Onion soup was distinguished by a near lack of broth under heavy cheese; she-crab soup had a slight astringency and was not nearly as rich as it should have been.

Service was professional and thorough, and once the kitchen makes the right improvements, Ocean Prime will be a good choice.


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Primo
AddressJW Marriott
4040 Central Florida Parkway
CityOrlando
Phone407-393-4444
Price$$$$

A second restaurant for celebrity chef and James Beard Award winner Melissa Kelly. The food is only ostensibly Italian with more creative touches menuwide.

Kelly was one of the first to promote the use of local ingredients. Most of the herbs used in the restaurant are grown outside the kitchen door.

The well-rested lamb is good and so is the pork saltimbocca. Have the banana Napoleon for dessert.

The decor is upscale, and while jackets are not requested, you wouldn't feel out of place wearing one.

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Roy’s
Address7760 W. Sand Lake Road
(at Dr. Phillips Boulevard)
CityOrlando
Phone407-352-4844
Price$$$$
Scott's Review

Roy’s was one of the first to take up residence on Restaurant Row. In fact, I hadn’t dubbed Sand Lake Road Restaurant Row yet! This is a chain, albeit an upscale one, founded by Hawaiian chef Roy Yamaguchi (but now owned by OSI, the Outback Steakhouse people). It features Yamaguchi’s signature style of Hawaiian fusion cuisine.

The chef/managing partners are given a certain leeway to make changes to the menu, although some items are kept constant and can be found at any of the 33 Roy’s restaurants. These dishes, “Roy’s classics,” were among the best things I sampled on my recent visits.

One was the surfah combo, which combined a macadamia nut-crusted mahi mahi with a serving of seared golden sea bass. The mahi mahi was the better of the two, a beautiful fillet, thick and moist, served with a rich lobster butter sauce. The seabass, a little hard-crusted, was paired with a truffled herb pistou, which, my server volunteered without being asked, means pesto.

I also liked the chive seared U-10 sea scallops, sufficiently large, as the U-10 designation would suggest, but soft and buttery with a velvety texture. The scallops were well complemented with a Thai chil... Read more

Shula's Steak House
Address1500 Epcot Resorts Blvd.
Walt Disney World Dolphin
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone407-934-1362
Price$$$$

Shula's is consistently one of the best steakhouses in Central Florida. The decor is high-toned and classy, with a wood-trimmed corporate boardroom mien. Large black and white photos of football action that adorn the walls are tasteful and appropriate. The only real bit of kitsch is the menu, which is printed on the side of an official NFL football (don't even think of trying to walk out with it -- you'll be tackled so fast you won't even see the hostess coming up behind you.)

The steaks here are first-rate and expertly cooked. It ain't cheap, but quality this good is worth the price.

... Read more