Restaurant Listings
Le House
Address595 W. Church St.
CityOrlando
Phone407-530-7024
Price$$
Scott's Review
The owners of a new Vietnamese restaurant in downtown Orlando named it Le House because they wanted customers to feel as if they were dining at their home. I can’t attest to that authenticity, but I can say that I certainly felt welcomed and accommodated on my visit, even if I wasn’t offered the guest room. The menu here is more succinct than at other Vietnamese restaurants. Pho is available, as it must be at all local Vietnamese restaurants, apparently by law. But Le House’s menu has a manageable 10 entries instead of the three or four dozen you might be asked to negotiate elsewhere.... Read more
Leaky Cauldron
Address1000 Universal Studios Plaza
CityOrlando
Phone407-363-8000
Price$$
Scott's Review
I don't expect to be back in Universal's good graces with this review of the Leaky Cauldron, the dining venue in Diagon Alley, which I finally got around to visiting recently. Most of the food is embarrassingly inadequate, and what they charge for it borders on gouging. Worst of the lot is the mini pies, which is a sampler of the cottage pie and fisherman's pie, which are both available separately. As samplers, the pies are served in small aluminum plates with crusted liners and mashed potatoes on top. The fisherman's pie had a bit of flavor if not much in the way of anything a fisherman might catch. The cottage pie was largely flavorless.... Read more
Lechonera Latina
Address3806 Curry Ford Road
CityOrlando
Phone
Price
Scott's Review
LL is a sort of buffet type of operation, but not exactly. All the food is in front of you in steam trays when you approach the counter, but you're separated from it by a wall of glass. A staff member does the dishing. You choose the type of rice you'd like (plain white, yellow, congris, etc.) and the meat you want to go with it, and a side dish. The staff member then scoops your choices in startlingly large amounts onto a plate or into a takeout container. Then you pay at the end of the counter and either take a seat at one of the tables in the large and unadorned dining room or take your food to a secluded spot where you can pig out in private. Here's the best part. The huge platter of food came to a grand total of $6.39. And there was enough to enjoy over two mealtimes. That makes this a real bargain. Who cares if the place has no atmosphere? See the website for two other locations.... Read more
Lee & Rick's Oyster Bar
Address5621 Old Winter Garden Road
CityOrlando
Phone407-293-3587
Price$

Ask any longtime Central Floridian to name a favorite dive restaurant and Lee & Rick’s is likely to be the reply. There are no pretenses, no airs. You come here for oysters and beer, ample amounts of both. Order anything else and you’re on your own.

... Read more
Les Chefs De France
AddressFrance Pavilion, Epcot
Walt Disney World
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone407-939-3463
Price$$$$

Most of the visitors to the signature restaurant in Epcot's France pavilion (Bistro de Paris, a smaller eatery, is upstairs) are oblivious to the fact that one of its owners is not only one of the most famous chefs in the world but is arguably its first celebrity chef.

Ironically, his name is not on the restaurant, Les Chefs de France. Even more ironic is that Paul Bocuse became famous because, in 1965, he was the first chef to put his name on his restaurant outside Lyons.

Before that, chefs were no more than hired kitchen help. Restaurants were owned by the maitre ‘d or the hotels where they were located.

So it could be said there would be no celebrity chefs, no show kitchens, no such thing as “Top Chef” and no one would give a flip what Gordon Ramsay had to say if Paul Bocuse hadn’t done what he did 44 years ago.

On a recent visit my guest and I started with two classics: cassoulette d’escargots de Bourgogne au beurre persille (translation: snails) and assiette campagnarde, an assortment of pates and charcuteries. The half-dozen snails were baked in a small casserole, each in its own impression, with garlic butter and parsely. They were firm but... 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

Liberty Tree Tavern
AddressMagic Kingdom
CityLake Buena Vista
Phone
Price$$$
Let's just ignore the irony of a place with Tavern in its name that does not serve alcohol (following the annoyingly out of date dictate of Walt Disney that the Magic Kingdom not serve even beer and wine). There are few choices inside the Magic Kingdom for full-service dining. This is one, but just like the others, the food is rather mundane and doesn't rise much above utilitarian. Here, the fare is served family-style on platters for you to dish out yourself.... Read more
Licking (The)
Address4706 Millenia Plaza Way
CityOrlando
Phone407-233-4794
Price$$
Scott's Review
The Licking, out of Miami, bills itself as “Soul Food to the Stars” and lists DJ Khaled as its brand ambassador and co-owner along with Elric "E-Class" Prince, the founder of Poe Boy Records. ... Read more