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Thursday, April 22, 2021

Portillo's plots second Orlando location on I-Drive

Posted By on Thu, Apr 22, 2021 at 12:40 PM

  • Photo via Facebook/Portillo's

Portillo's has yet to open its first Orlando location, but it might be eyeing another one. According to a report from Orlando Business Journal, the hot dog chain is looking to take over the former home of Ponderosa Steakhouse on I-Drive.

The sprawling steakatarium at 6362 International Drive is 16,199 square feet of restaurant sitting on two acres of land between Sand Lake and I-4. It's just up the road from Icon Park (home of Blake Shelton's eatery) and across the interstate from Volcano Bay. In short, Orlandoans who want to get a Chicago-style dog from the beloved chain are fully between the horns.

The first Orlando-area location is out toward Lake Buena Vista, in the shadow of SeaWorld and Walt Disney World. No matter which location they might choose, folks are going to have to earn their Italian beef by navigating several layers of tourist hell. 

That first restaurant's opening was delayed indefinitely earlier this year, mere weeks before its scheduled opening date. 

"The Portillo’s in Orlando is getting closer to opening, but we still need a little more time to make sure our restaurant is perfect for all our loyal fans. We will not be opening on March 23rd, and we aren’t prepared to announce a new opening date at this time," the chain told Orlando Weekly at the time. "As the first building to open on a brand-new development, there are a few more items on our to-do list before we can welcome everyone to our beautiful restaurant. Hang in there, Orlando." As for the proposed new location, mum's the word. Neither Portillo's nor the building's current owners have confirmed a deal is on.

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