Eating in Orlando Vol. 4
Have you gone to Pizza Bruno yet? You really need to get on that, but may I suggest doing a little research on Neopolitan style pizza before you go.
Neapolitan style pizza isn't your average Pizza Hut pie, thank goodness. There is often more sauce than cheese which can sometimes leave the middle feeling a little soggy. They are also smaller than the pies you might be use to (about 10-12 inches), making them closer to the size of a personal pizza. Also, this isn't the type of pizza you want to take to-go. For the best pizza experience you need to eat it fresh out of the wood burning oven.
Now that you know exactly what you are getting into, it's time to go because it's SO good. There are red and white pies that you can choose from or make your own. Note to all vegans, their dough and sauce is Vegan so you can go to town here.
Perhaps just as worthy of a subtle food tear are their garlic knots. They are slathered in garlic, pecornio, chili flake and oregano. In all honesty I'd go to Pizza Bruno just for garlic knots and their chopped salad which is delicious and large enough to be shared.
This place gets busy during peak hours so if that is when you go be prepared to wait and don't complain if they run out of something, just go back and try again.
Eating downtown is always a feast for the eyes. The people watching is superb, but the parking is always a pay-to-play nightmare. Not a lot of restaurants lure me to deal with $5 parking, but I am a big fan of RusTeak whose College Park location I frequent, so I was interested to hear they were opening up a concept downtown.
It's called The Stubborn Mule, but it honestly just feels like another RusTeak location.
The menu feels exactly the same with a few item changes, but the good and most important news is the five dollar happy hour drinks and appetizers remains in tact. Pictured below is the Stubborn Mule Burger consisting of Seminole county beef, beefsteak tomato, spring mix, maple-pepper bacon, Gruyere cheese fondue & crispy sweet potato nest. We also got two of the happy hour appetizers; garlic edamame with toasted pumpkin seeds & Parmesan cheese and Teriyaki glazed dumplings.
The burger was really good, and I've always been a fan of their edamame as long as they don't overcook them to mush. I could have done without the dumplings, since they didn't taste much different than the frozen ones I get from Trader Joes.
All in all I'd go back if I was guaranteed that same delicious burger again paired with a few $5 cocktails, but in reality I can just continue to go to RusTeak and not pay for parking. Hopefully people living within walking distance downtown will give it a try and the owners will make good use of prime South Eola real estate and a beautiful outdoor patio.
Truth be told I went to Sanford to visit a few places that had opened up since my last visit, and Tennessee Truffle was top on my list. Unfortunately we got there about ten minutes before they were closing (at 2 p.m.) and they did not let us in. Despite my bad timing I was surprised that they were so eager to turn away paying customers.
I walked over to another newer joint called Fuel to try their BBQ. Everything is a la carte, so pick what you want and have as much or little as your belly can handle. I actually appreciated that I could choose a smaller portion of meat so I could keep things on the lighter side as we explored. I got 4 ounces of brisket, mac and cheese and coleslaw with a piece of cornbread. The good news what that the brisket was pretty good, bad news all the sides were not. All three missed the mark for my taste buds, but we did enter a virtually empty restaurant well after the lunch rush so I'm not sure we were getting the best of the best.
Well I still haven't made it to Dove Cote for a full meal, but I did stop by one morning to check out the coffee bar. I used to work in the Bank of America building years ago, and I remember going to Harvey's Bistro a few times and the space looked beautiful compared to my memories of awkward business lunches.
Any person can come in and head straight to their coffee counter (which is smart seeing as they are in a high rise filled with business professionals needing caffeine perks in the morning) including a variety of baked goods. You can sit at tables right outside their restaurant basically in the Bank of America lobby and enjoy a latte and a cinnamon bun or many other baked goods like cookies filled with candy and potato chips. Breakfast of champions.
I've heard mixed reviews about the actual lunch and dinner experience so I might wait a little and let them get settled before going back for a full meal.
I'm still not to sure how I feel about Viet-Nomz. Vietnamese food in a fast casual segment is a great idea, but food comes out pretty fast in all the Vietnamese spots I got to, so I feel like this is just a place talking to a younger audience with more a more modern look and feel, and there is nothing wrong with that.
I honestly need to give it another try since I only visited during their soft opening, but one problem is that it's not in my hood, and I have several Vietnamese options much closer to my house that I love so much.
However, if you live or work near their location near the corner of University and Goldenrod you might want to check it out for yourself. I got the noodle bowl with chicken, and for me the noodles were a little too cold. I prefer them closer to room temperature rather than ice cold which is about what I got, but that's a personal preference.
Also while the aforementioned decor is youthful the stools at the long communal table are unbearably uncomfortable for my grandma back. I know, next thing you'll see me in my going out moo moo.
When I'm in the area again I'd like to try the Vietnamese street tacos I've seen people raving about and the Banh ice that wasn't available when I visited.
Til next time, happy eating.
All pictures and opinions are mine and all food paid for by me.