It's always a good idea to snag a ticket to the Downtown Food & Wine Fest, one of the more popular happenings taking place at Lake Eola Park, prior to event day. Advance tickets for the Feb. 23-24 fest went on sale Jan. 15 for a mere $10 per person, which is $5 cheaper than at the door. Fare from 40 of the area's finer restaurants (including Primo, K Restaurant, Maxine's, Marlow's Tavern, Taverna Opa, Del Frisco's and more) will be offered. Visit downtownfoodandwinefest.com for more info.
Beginning Jan. 20, Downtown Disney's Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant will dish out Sunday brunch from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Chef Kevin Dundon and crew will whip up everything from a proper, skillet-served fried Irish breakfast (sausage, black and white pudding, bacon, fried eggs with roasties) to gammon ham and smoked salmon. At high noon, the Raglan Road dancers take the stage. Go to raglanroad.com to learn more.
Gainesville beat us to it, but Orlando will get a Chuy's, the Austin-based Tex-Mex chain, this spring. OK, so technically it's Kissimmee that's getting the franchise, but they plan on expanding throughout Central Florida. Let's hope their rapid expansion doesn't come at the expense of their "made-from-scratch Mexican menu."
Our friends over at TheDailyCity.com are reporting that Bob Snow (the original developer of Church Street Station) has visions of creating "The Great American Food Truck and Music Festival" at Festival Bay Mall. The "food truck bazaar" (hmm) will feature 20 "hand-picked" comestible conveyances, and is part of a larger effort by Snow's company to completely renovate the aging mall.
Burger 21 No. 2 is slated to open in Waterford Lakes later this winter, possibly February … Shawarma alert: Tony's Deli, the Mills 50 stalwart, has opened its second location in the former Café Rouge space in Sanford … Construction on Italio Modern Italian Kitchen (in the old China Plaza Buffet lot in Winter Park) is coming along, with plans for a spring opening. Their specialty? The piadina – a wrapped version of the same specialty item offered by Lake Mary's Piada & Piada.
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