Palm Restaurant
AddressHard Rock Hotel
5800 Universal Blvd.
CityOrlando
Phone407-503-7256
Price$$$$
Scott's Review

This New York-based chain has shown some improvement in recent years and can now hold its own among the area’s high-end steakhouses. The meat is masterfully prepared -- my New York strip was perfect. Whatever you have as your main course, be sure to get the au gratin potatoes for a side dish. These are so gooey and thick you may not notice there are potatoes included.

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Pub
Address9101 International Drive
Pointe Orlando
CityOrlando
Phone407-352-2305
Price$$
Scott's Review
It certainly looks like an authentic British pub, albeit one that is about five times the average size. The British fare is fine -- shepherd's pie had some nontraditional cheese on top, but otherwise pretty good. Guests can tap their own beers from a wall of select brews using a prepaid card that meters the flow. (Gimmick)... Read more
Senor Frog's
Address8747 International Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-351-2525
Price$$$
Scott's Review

Senor Frog’s is owned by Grupo Anderson, a restaurant group out of Mexico that also owns Carlos’n Charlies’, which made a brief appearance a couple of years ago in Lake Mary. Most of the company’s restaurants are in Mexico, but a few are scattered in the Caribbean and in the U.S. They tend to target tourist spots, hence the new location on International Drive.
 
Some question the appropriateness of an establishment known more as a watering hole than a restaurant, given that Orlando is known more as a family destination. But its proximity to the convention center and the surrounding hotels means that it will be on the radar of plenty of adults looking for out-of-town fun, so it should do well there.
 
Not that it should. At least not for the quality of its food. I won’t be surprising anyone by saying that food is not its forte. But I certainly recommend that you do order copious amounts of items from the menu if you visit on one of the rowdier evenings, if for no other reason than to fill your stomach with something that will help sop up any alcohol someone happens to squirt into your mouth.

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Spencer's
AddressHilton Orlando
6001 Destination Parkway
CityOrlando
Phone407-313-8625
Price$$$$
Scott's Review
The full name is Spencer's for Steaks & Chops, but that's a bit limiting. Spencer's is a terrific all-around restaurant. Be sure to try the crab cakes and fried poached egg appetizers. Steaks are first rate, but so is the double-cut lamb chop and king salmon (served under a glass dome filled with smoke). Although Spencer's is located inside a hotel next to the Convention Center, this is a restaurant worthy of local attention. The decor is upscale casual, and a meal here is a relaxing evening.... Read more
Tapa Toro
Address8441 International Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-226-2929
Price$$
Scott's Review
Amid the myriad chains and franchises that are populating the area around the Orlando Eye attraction, an independent restaurant is a welcome find. And that it offers very good food and a fun dining experience makes it all the better. Tapa Toro comes to us from Vassilis and Katerina Coumbaros, who also own Taverna Opa at nearby Pointe Orlando, one of my favorite Tourist World recommendations. Opa, of course, is the Greek restaurant where every evening is a raucous party of napkins tossed in the air to buoyant balalaika music and belly dancing atop the tables. At Tapa Toro the theme is Spanish and the music flamenco, and here the napkins stay in the lap and the clacking heels of the dancers punish only the floor.... Read more
Taverna Opa
AddressPointe Orlando
9101 International Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-351-8660
Price$$$
Scott's Review

This is not a place for a nice, quiet, romantic dinner, unless you consider a sound level louder than Hard Rock Café and dancing on top of a table with a scantily clad belly dancer to be romantic.However, the noise level heightens only after 7 pm when the entertainment begins.

But it’s not all ambience here. The food is surprisingly good. There are the usual items: domades, moussaka, pastitsio and the like. But you’ll also find more unusual things, such as lamb ribs, Greek country sausages, taramosalata, and a house-made yogurt that is crazy good. Don’t come here if you’re in a bad mood. On second thought, do, it’ll cheer you up, and you’ll have good food besides.

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Texas De Brazil
AddressBelz Designer Centre
5259 International Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-355-0355
Price$$$

Churrascaria means meat. Well, not literally. Churrascaria (tchoo-huh-scah-REE-uh) actually means house of barbecue, but to fans of this type of Brazilian steakhouse, it means meat, meat and more meat. Texas de Brazil is a small chain out of, no surprise here, Texas that is riding the wave of low-carb popularity with a new location on International Drive.

Here's the way it works: you first visit the salad bar, which is more than just lettuce and condiments. You'll find all manner of salad fixings plus such items as hearts of palm, tabbouleh, artichoke hearts, Brussels sprouts, roasted red peppers and, for some inexplicable reason, sushi.

When you've had enough of the salad bar -- and my advice is to go easy there -- the waiters, called gauchos and dressed accordingly -- will start bringing large skewers of meats, sausages, chicken and seafood to your table. And they'll keep bringing them until you tell them to stop. (You do that by turning a small disc on your table over so the red side is showing.)

The thing that keeps this from being just another glutfest is the quality of the meats, which is first-rate. Plus, the overall atmosphere is upscale and attra... Read more

Urban Tide
Address9801 International Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-345-4570
Price
Scott's Review
Inside the Hyatt Regency Orlando (formerly Peabody Orlando), Urban Tide showcases local seafood in a stylish and eco-friendly decor. ... Read more