Artist Point
AddressDisney’s Wilderness Lodge
Walt Disney World
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone407-939-3463
Price$$$
Scott's Review

Artist Point is a large dining room with a ceiling that soars three or four floors. The decor matches the timber lodge feel of the hotel and features a two-story painting of the American Northwest. Huge cast-iron chandeliers comprising smaller lanterns cast a milky glow. Large windows offer a view of the hotel's courtyard, where water falls over big boulders on its way to the lake (apparently through the swimming pool). And every hour on the hour a geyser faithfully erupts in the distance.

As fancy as lodge dining gets. Start with the Northwest salmon sampler or the smoked tomato and basil soup. The trout is terrific and so is the pork chop. For dessert, choose the apple tart or the bread pudding -- it's a toss-up.

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Bahama Breeze, International Drive
Address8849 International Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-248-2499
Price$$$

It will be interesting to see if Darden keeps backing this Islands concept, which for some reason has never quite caught on with the dining public. For the most part, the food is good  and the restaurants are attractive and lively, often with entertainment. And they’re a favorite outdoor dining destination for locals.

As for the food, my companion out-ordered me with tortilla soup and a ropa Joe sandwich. The soup had layer upon layer of textures and tastes, with pliant avocado cubes, chicken and strips of tortillas.

The sandwich was, as the name might suggest, a version of the classic ropa vieja specialty of shredded beef served on a Cuban roll. Lots of well-seasoned meat, some cheese, peppers and onions livened it up.

For my starter course, I chose a special of ahi tuna ceviche, which featured tiny cubes of tuna dressed with citrus juices served atop a platform supported by watercress. The watercress was more annoying than helpful. It was wadded onto the plate in long stems, and every time I tried to fork a little watercress with some tuna, a long vine would trail behind.

For my entree, I had another special of... Read more

Boathouse
Address1620 Buena Vista Dr.
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone407-939-DINE
Price$$$$
Scott's Review
I finally had a chance to try out the food recently at the Boathouse, the first major Disney Springs restaurant that opened in April. What took me so long? Well, I wasn’t looking forward to shelling out 21 bucks for fish tacos or 29 clams for for a lobster roll. Even a “classic burger” demands $18. So when I was invited to attend a wine luncheon hosted by Breakthru Beverage Group, I said yes. And I was most anxious to try that Lobster Roll. A lobroll, of course, is a sandwich, a fairly simple one at that, with a lobster salad — steamed lobster meat chopped and tossed with mayonnaise and celery — on a toasted and buttered bun, most usually a mere hot dog bun but sometimes even just a piece of toasted white bread. The kitchen, perhaps as a means of justifying the just-under-30-dollars price tag, turned the lobster roll here into an over-produced concoction that had to be eaten with knife and fork. The salad, which featured big, meaty chunks of deliciously sweet lobster, sat atop a mini loaf of a buttered roll. There was a slit in the top of the roll, but there was no way to elegantly cram the salad into it, and even if one could, decorum would prevent one from picking it up to ... Read more
California Grill
Address4600 N. World Drive
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone407-939-3463
Price$$$$
Scott's Review

After more than a dozen years at the top, literally and figuratively, California Grill is still one the Central Florida’s best restaurants. Much of the concept of California Grill has not changed over the years, and the menu still features, as it has for much of the time, flatbreads and sushi as well as more traditional appetizers. The menu supposedly changes daily, though with three weeks separating my two most recent visits, I noticed most of the changes were in the wording and ranking of ingredients rather than completely different entries.

Service is impeccable and exemplary of the best that Disney can offer. The wine list focuses, as it should, on California and other American cuvees.

The pork tenderloin remains a favorite, but the filet mignon is a contender for best entrée. Sushi from master chef Yoshi is a treat.

Of course the best feature remains the view through the floor-to-ceiling windows of the Seven Seas Lagoon and the Magic Kingdom. And at the appropriate hour the lights dim slightly and the music that accompanies the Magic Kingdom's fireworks display plays in the restaurant. It’s one of the best shows in town.

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Capa at the Four Seasons
Address10100 Dream Tree Blvd.
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone407-313-7777
Price$$$$
Scott's Review
Despite the Four Seasons Resort location, this signature restaurant is not white-glove elegant, another indication that type of fine dining is fading. But the food here is excellent, and the surroundings are stylishly artistic. Out on the balcony you you watch fireworks every night.... Read more
Citricos
Address4401 Floridian Way
CityOrlando
Phone407-939-3463
Price$$$$
Scott's Review
Now under the direction of Dominique Filoni, this Grand Floridian upscaler has better food than ever. Erich Herbitshek’s desserts alone are worth the drive. ... Read more
Deep Blu Seafood Grille
Address14651 Chelonia Parkway
CityOrlando
Phone407-390-2300
Price$$$
Scott's Review
Located at the new Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek, deep blu (no typo, they lowercase the name) features a mainly seafood menu (duh). It's hit or miss on quality, however. A simple grilled swordfish entree was first rate, as was the crab cake appetizer. The large open kitchen is a main decor element of the dining room and prevents it from feeling too upscale.... Read more
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
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