Openings and closings: Barring any inspection snags, Pig Floyd’s Urban Barbakoa on Mills Avenue should open by this weekend, according to owner Thomas Ward … A-Aki Sushi & Steakhouse has opened on Sand Lake Road near the Florida Mall … After suffering a heart attack, chef Henry Brestowski will close Chef Henry’s restaurant in Longwood on Aug. 28 … Horsepower Bar & Grill has run its course at the Chase Plaza, though the owners may relocate it elsewhere.
Updates: Christo’s Café has reopened after undergoing some interior renovations; the menu remains unchanged. And panicked reports of Sizzling Grill’s death have been greatly exaggerated – the Longwood Indian joint is open for business.
There’ll be 25 food trucks on hand at the inaugural VetFest taking place downtown on Labor Day weekend – find them on Bob Snow Lane under the I-4 overpass. The event runs from noon to midnight both days, with 13 percent of food-truck proceeds being donated to charities supporting veterans. VetFest admission is $15; more at vetfestorlando.com.
Chef Cat Cora hosts Pantry to Plate: A Chef’s Challenge Sept. 18 at B.B. King’s in Pointe Orlando. The event, benefiting Jewish Family Services, pits Kathleen Blake, Hari Pulapaka and John Rivers against one another in an Iron Chef-style face-off – the goal being to whip up four courses using ingredients from the JFS Emergency Food Pantry. Tickets are $125.
Smashburger, yet another better-burger joint, will open on East Colonial Drive across from Fashion Square Mall … Artegon Orlando has pushed back its opening date to Nov. 20 … Look for Two Chefs Seafood Bar to open in the former Uptown Grounds space on North Magnolia Avenue … New outposts of Duffy’s Sports Grill will open at Mall at Millenia in September and in Colonial Town Park in Lake Mary sometime in October … Another Indian restaurant, American Gymkhana, is taking over the RAGA space on Sand Lake Road … Mynt, also an Indian restaurant, will move into the old Fresh Café space in Hannibal Square. No word yet on where Fresh will relocate, but they’re still offering full-service catering “during the transition.”
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