H Cuisine
Address7512 Dr. Phillips Blvd.
CityOrlando
Phone407-930-3020
Price$$$$
Scott's Review
It truly is an elegant restaurant, a little bit of Manhattan chic on Restaurant Row. Especial attention has been paid to the lighting, which is moody and low. And banquettes, booths and chairs at freestanding tables are plush and comfortable.... Read more
Hamilton's Kitchen
Address300 E New England Ave
Alfond Inn
CityWinter Park
Phone407-998-8090
Price$$$
Scott's Review
Hamilton's Kitchen has a new chef, Marc Kusche, and a freshened menu. It's like the reset button has been pushed. And now the experience is more along the lines of what I was hoping for a year ago. Kusche comes to the Alfond Inn by way of the Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara in Carlsbad, California. His menu makes good use of the bounty from local growers and has a nice mix of seafood and meat, though it seems that the former is the forte. I can't say that anything in particular has been done with the dining room since it opened last year, but it seemed to be different. It didn't have that college dorm dining hall feel — maybe it was that it wasn't as crowded this time, or maybe there have been enough subtle changes in lighting to make a difference. Whatever, it was more comfortable now, even with open kitchen. (It is called Hamilton's Kitchen, after all.) I was happy to make the return visit to HK and I'm even happier to now put it on my list of recommended restaurants.... Read more
Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Café
Address205 E. 1st St.
CitySanford
Phone407-321-2204
Price$$

Voted the second best German restaurant in the U.S. but readers of GermanDeli.com for 2009. (Bavarian Grill of Plano, Texas, was number one; go figure.) I don't know if I'd go that far, but I'm prepared to call it the best German restaurant in Central Florida.

Although the surroundings leave something to be desired, there’s good German food to be had here. Have a schnitzel, or the sausage platter, but beware: it’s a lot of food.

The place is especially festive Thursdays through Sundays when there is entertainment. Oom-pah-pah!

... Read more
House of Blues
Address1490 Buena Vista Drive
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone407-934-2583
Price$$$
Scott's Review

Its the House of Blues, a boisterous boite that celebrates the diversity and brotherhood of world culture and promotes racial and spiritual harmony through love, peace, truth, righteousness and non-violence. But despite a mission statement that makes it sound like the lunchroom at the United Nations, this is actually a themed restaurant that serves up rhythm, blues and soul and not so incidentally surprisingly good food, most of it rooted in a New Orleans style.

What's surprising about it is that everything is of good quality, prepared and presented with the sort of gourmet flair you'd expect from a fine dining establishment, not a place that is made to look like a juke joint.

Menu highlights include a smoked double-cut pork chop, etouffe and Cajun meat loaf. For appetizers, the Mississippi catfish bites are pretty tasty.

The bread pudding is a must. The Sunday gospel brunch, which features an all-you-can-eat buffet,  is an inspirational treat.

 

... Read more
Hunger Street Tacos
Address2103 W. Fairbanks Ave.
CityWinter Park
Phone321-444-6270
Price$
Scott's Review
Another player in the gourmet taco game, Hunger Street does a good job with meaty fillings in appropriate tortillas.... Read more
Itar Bistro Market
Address7065 Westpointe Blvd
CityOrlando
Phone407-757-0553
Price$$
Scott's Review
The name sounds exotic but it's a portmanteau of Italy and Argentina, the two cuisines represented on the menu. Both countries are well served, but the Grilled Octopus from Spain is the best.... Read more
Izziban Sushi and BBQ
Address5310 E Colonial Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-270-8811
Price$$
Scott's Review
This is undoubtedly the largest sushi restaurant I’ve ever seen. Izziban Sushi & BBQ occupies a warehouse sized building on the shore of Lake Barton, which lies between Semoran Boulevard and Orlando Executive Airport. There have been a few failed businesses here, including a gay bar. There is an immense indoor dining area and a couple of very large sushi bars, including one that is shaped like the bow of a big boat. There is also a large covered patio, screened in but with nice views of the lake and planes taking off from the airport. Its rusticity is more suitable for the type of fried foods you’d find at fish camps, but it isn’t inappropriate for sushi to be associated with a waterfront locale. And sushi isn’t all that is done here. The kitchen food menu is also rather sizable, and if you so choose, your table can be the kitchen, as most of them have built-in griddles and devices that can be used for grilling meats or hot-pot cooking. The cuisines range from Japanese to Korean.... Read more
Jade Sushi & New Asian
Address2425 Edgewater Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-422-7968
Price$$
Scott's Review
I wanted Jade Sushi & New Asian to be better than it was. I expected it, in fact. Unfortunately, it was a complete disappointment.... Read more