Amura
Address950 Market Promenade Ave.
CityLake Mary
Phone407-936-6001
Price$$$

Amura continues to improve on a good thing with its latest location. Although it wants to be considered a chophouse, this is a sushi spot. If beef is what you want, the Kobe steak may be worth a really big splurge.

But for roughly the same price as the Kobe steak, my guests and I feasted on the Heathrow boat ($87.99), a small yacht decked out with sushi, sashimi and assorted hand rolls. Onboard were an Africa roll with yellowtail and tuna; crab Rangoon with real crab, smoked salmon and cream cheese; electric shock roll with tempura eel, avocado and cream cheese; rainbow roll with salmon and tuna; and nigirizushi nibbles of shrimp, salmon, snapper and tuna. All of the raw fish had a cool taste and a soft, buttery texture and every bit of it was delicious.

From among the kitchen foods, the Chilean sea bass with black bean sauce was a favorite. The fish was a large fillet with white flesh that broke off in big chunks. The sauce of tiny black beans provided subtle spiced notes.

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Bistro 1501
Address1501 International Parkway
CityLake Mary
Phone407-995-7053
Price
Scott's Review
Located in the Marriott hotel in Lake Mary (which for some reason is called the Orlando Marriott), this three-mealer is known to many locals for its brunch. My experience was not a good one, with quality taking a back seat to quantity. It's a bargain at $22.95 if all you want to do is stuff mediocre food in your face.... Read more
Dexter’s of Winter Park
Address558 W. New England Ave.
CityWinter Park
Phone407-629-1150
Price$$
Scott's Review

Two additional locations: 808 Washington St., Orlando; 407-648-2777. 950 Market Promenade Ave., Lake Mary; 407-805-3090. There are three distinct Dexter’s but all offer the same basic menu, which is unambitious but functional. Much more emphasis is placed on producing a lively atmosphere, which often includes live music. (Check Web site for details.)

For food, the pressed duck sandwich is a classic. And the chicken tortilla pie, a tall, layered affair, is one of those things you feel guilty for liking but keep ordering each time you go.

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Dexter's of Lake Mary
Address950 Market Promenade Ave.
CityLake Mary
Phone407-805-3090
Price$$

There are three distinct Dexter’s but all offer the same basic menu, which is unambitious but functional. Much more emphasis is placed on producing a lively atmosphere, which often includes live music. (Check Web site for details.)

For food, the pressed duck sandwich is a classic. And the chicken tortilla pie, a tall, layered affair, is one of those things you feel guilty for liking but keep ordering each time you go.

... Read more
F&D Kitchen and Bar
Address1541 International Parkway
CityLake Mary
Phone407-915-5687
Price$$$
Scott's Review
Crispy Pig Snacks is the defining dish at F&D Kitchen and Bar. It shows the creative promise that this Lake Mary restaurant could achieve, but it also demonstrates where it falls short. F&D occupies a space that has in fewer than eight years has been home to four restaurants I can name off the top of my head, and I’m pretty sure I might have missed one or two. Some of them, such as Jinja, Shan and Rikka, all had menus with an Asian influence. The menu of the current occupant is mostly anchored in North America, with a decided dedication to Central Florida, at least in terms of sourcing. The chef is Pete Morales, a graduate of Johnson and Wales University in South Florida, and an alumnus of the estimable Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink in Miami, as well as other popular restaurants, including Yardbird Southern Bar & Table and Swine Southern Bar & Table. (How did people come up with restaurant names before the ampersand was invented?) Most of the menu is straightforward, though nothing I would call boring. There were several interesting selections.... Read more
FishBones
Address7005 County Road 46A
CityLake Mary
Phone407-581-3474
Price$$$$
Scott's Review

The Lake Mary FishBones impresses first with its size and splashy décor. It is easy to believe the rumors that put the price tag for the new restaurant somewhere around $6.5 million. There are multiple dining rooms as well as a sushi bar, indoor lounge and outdoor bar with tables that feature personal gas fireplaces. There are numerous display aquariums with exotic marine life plus a live fish tank for your dinner selections. Among the upscale decorations and touches of classiness are numerous glass works by Tampa artist Duncan McClellan. Directly behind the host stand is an immense wood-fired grill, which is something of a trademark in various Talk of the Town restaurants.

The sushi selections are listed as bait, an unfortunate pandering to those who think of raw fish only in derogative terms.

This is a second location for a Sand Lake Road restaurant – sort of. The two really are quite different, and I don’t recommend the Sand Lake Road version. The Lake Mary restaurant is big and splashy, and steaks are treated with the same skillful deftness as seafood. Try any of the fresh fish and sample some of the sushi. One dessert will serve four people.

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Istanbul Turkish Cuisine
Address7025 C.R. 46A
CityLake Mary
Phone407-333-0733
Price$$
Scott's Review
I visited just once, for a quick bite review, but I’m not chomping at the bit to go back. The surroundings are pleasant -- not much seems to have changed from the previous owners -- and while the staff didn’t go out of their way to make one feel welcome they did their jobs well enough. But the food elicited merely a shrug -- neither poorly executed nor extraordinarily done. But when the price is taken into consideration, there isn’t much to recommend.... Read more
Liam Fitzpatrick's
Address951 Market Promenade Ave.
CityLake Mary
Phone407-936-3782
Price$$$
Scott's Review

The owners of Liam Fitzpatrick’s went to great lengths to create an authentic atmosphere. It’s a little larger than most of the pubs you’ll encounter in Hibernia but most of the details are there, from the bar to the fireplace nook to the raised dining area. The only authentic touch that is missing is the beer-sodden, well-worn carpeting that seems to be in every pub, and for that I thank the owners of Liam Fitzpatrick’s.

There is authenticity in the menu, as well, and I wish the proprietors had the confidence to stick with them. It sends a wrong message, I think, when the server immediately recommends the nachos and announces the kitchen does a really good quesadilla.

The kitchen does a very nice beer-battered fish, whether enjoyed as little bite-sized nuggets as an appetizer or as part of the iconic fish and chips. The batter was nicely done, a thick jacket on chunks of grouper. A simple tartar or malt vinegar would have been appropriate; I’m not sure why a Key West remoulade was offered as a dipping sauce.

I also liked the Scotch egg, which had a perfectly hard-boiled egg inside a thick coating of spicy sausage. If the sausage didn’t have enough heat, a ... Read more

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