Vanbarry’s Public House, on a hill above Orange Avenue overlooking Lake Jennie Jewel, has always been a pleasant place to sit, especially with its beachy atmosphere. And it might be a good choice for those looking to transition to onsite dining – it has lots of outside seating and the indoor dining area feels like it’s outside, thanks to open walls that give good circulation.
But if you’re like me and still hesitant about venturing out, the food is takeout worthy; you just have to provide your own beachside mien.
On a recent visit, I ordered the Here, Fishy Fishy tacos, which featured blackened mahi with melted cheddar cheese and cilantro cream sauce in two soft flour tortillas, accompanied with tublets of pico de gallo and sour cream. Happy to say there was nothing fishy about the flavor.
I also ordered the chicken and beef combo fajitas, which thankfully wasn’t delivered to my car on a sizzling platter. Instead, the meats and grilled onions and bell peppers were packaged in one container and the warm tortillas, guacamole, cheese and shredded lettuce kept separate. More pico de gallo and sour cream were provided for me and my companion to assemble with the tender meats.
A first choice from the menu section labeled Bowls, boneless braised short rib, was not available, so in a crunch I settled for the Alfredo pasta bowl. Not sure what constitutes it as a bowl other than that’s what it was served in. Historically, if that’s the proper term, if something is labeled a bowl it means that its foundational and layered. I suppose the argument could be made that the fettuccine is the foundation, but it was already tossed with the creamy sauce, sun-dried tomatoes, parmesan cheese and the shrimp I had requested. Not a bowl bowl but a good bowl of pasta. (And quite rich, as Alfredos go.)
The takeout process went well. Ordering was by phone, and when I got to the restaurant, I called and within moments a properly masked staffer brought the sack out to my trunk.
It was a good midweek meal of unfussy food.
Vanbarry’s Public House is at 4120 S. Orange Ave., Orlando. It is currently open Tuesday through Sunday, with Mondays dedicated to deep cleaning. The phone number is 407-704-8881.