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Showing posts with label Meatballs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Meatballs. Show all posts

The Meatball Stoppe

7325 Lake Underhill Rd.
Orlando, FL 32822
(407) 270-6505
View Website Here

Last year, I told you about a little spot in East Orlando called The Meatball Shoppe. I say little enthusiastically though, because the shop is small inside, but full of great flavor and great character. That great character is attributed to the owners of this establishment - Isabella Morgia di Vicaria, a first-generation American, born of Italian heritage in Brooklyn, NY. and her Husband Jeff Morgia. You can see more of that review here

The Meatball Shoppe is now called The Meatball Stoppe, and they have added a few more things to the menu then just meatballs.

The concept of The Meatball Stoppe is to bring you the classic and traditional Italian meatball and then take it in a different direction. The menu is based on tradition fused with innovation that brings new life to the ‘classic meatball’. Patrons can expect to find a combination of an old world style with a retro feel and fresh originality. Everything from classic meatballs, to mediterranean style and the all new buffalo bleu chicken meatball is on the menu.

What's new is a selection of Italian favorites recreated as only Isabella could do with a selection of entrees titled Famiglia Favorites. It is here you will find such items as Baked Ziti, Eggplant Stack and Lasagna Bolognese. Additionally a few side items or starters have been added like fried calamari, bruschetta, caponata, and The Meatball Stoppe serves beer now too.


The Caprese Salad features tomato, mozzarella and a house made pesto.

The Bruschetta with crostini was pretty fabulous in a very decadent red sauce with fresh mozzarella melted in it.

I was very impressed with the Fried Calamari at the The Meatball Stoppe. I can honestly tell you..this is some of the best I have had in Orlando. The sauce had a bit of a bite to it as well. Very tender calamari, and it was served properly with the tentacles as well as the rings.

The Eggplant Sandwich is a winner. I admit, I have to have meat everyday, but I have some vegetarian friends, and If this was all I could eat...I'd be pretty happy without meat. This sandwich is stacks of fried eggplant with mozzarella, arugula, red onions and a pesto mayo on a focaccia bun.

New to the meatball section of the menu is the Chicken Parmigiana meatball with Buffalo Bleu Cheese sauce. A very tasty addition that is gluten free also.

The Eggplant Stack is a delicious stack of breaded eggplant with a mixture of imported cheeses and a roasted tomato sauce.

Of course you can never go wrong with Nona’s Traditional Italian Meatball with a fried egg in the top.

The Meatball Stoppe has always had great cannolis, and they are the perfect size.

 
Sfogliatelle is a traditional Italian pastry that is flaky on the outside and stuffed with a lemon ricotta filling. These are served piping hot and the filling just oozes out of them once they are opened. This was a very tasty treat.

Isabella believes her meatballs are special and are a representative of the best of many cultures including the Mediterranean and Latin American Countries. Jeff says his love of meatballs comes from the nostalgia that takes him back to when he was growing up, and they’re warm, inviting and are universally loved by all. 


Whether you are in the mood for some great meatballs or some really good Italian family favorites, stop by the Meatball Stoppe and say hello.

The Meatball Shoppe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Spoleto : My Italian Kitchen

12101 University Blvd.
Ste. 219
Orlando, FL 32817
(407) 658-0593
View Website Here


Spoleto is the newest arrival to the ever growing world of the “Fast Casual” dining experience. Fast Casual is a type of restaurant that does not offer full table service, but promises a higher quality of food with fewer frozen or processed ingredients than a fast-food restaurant. It is a concept that is positioned between fast food and casual dining. The typical cost per meal is $8-15 and is exemplified by chains such as Chipotle Mexican Grill Panera Bread.

Guests dining at Spoleto will find a restaurant that combines the speed of fast casual service with the sophistication of an Italian restaurant with gourmet quality food. Spoleto further defines the uniqueness of the concept by offering a seasonal menu based on the availability of fresh local products and an endless number of guest selected food combinations.


With a choice of over 25 authentic Italian inspired ingredients, it gives everyone a chance to create meals that inspire their palate. You can choose to indulge in richer ingredients like meats and cheeses, as well as a full complement of fresh vegetables, whole grains and fruits. All of this sounds great and looks even better in person, but it may be confusing to a first timer of Spoleto.

As you enter the queue, your first choice is what type of pasta you would like, or if you want to customize a flatbread or salad. You then interact with someone behind a counter that tells you to pick six additional ingredients that will go into your dish. There are over twenty five additional ingredients to choose from and include things like broccoli, tomatoes, onion, sausage, kale and scallions to name a few. Don't feel bad if you give that person behind the counter a blank stare...it's a lot to take in on your first visit.

Next you can choose an upgrade. If you go with just pasta, its about $8.00, and if you add a protein upgrade, you will add another couple of dollars to your tab. Upgrades include House Made Giant Meatball ($3.50), Prosciutto ($2.50), Roasted Link Sausage ($2.50), Herb Roasted Chicken ($2.50), and a Basil Marinated Shrimp for $4.00. Naturally your next decision will be what sauce you would like...choices include - Pesto, Marinara, Bolognese, Alfredo, Brodo di Pollo (chicken broth). Your final question is whether you would like to top off your creation with crushed red pepper, Parmesan, Italian herbs and a variety of other toppings.



After you select a pasta, you can choose up to six of the twenty five plus additional ingredients.


At Spoleto your ingredients are actually cooked together, and not just picked out of hot pans and mixed. The chef is always fun to watch and conversate with as he prepares your meal.


I chose the penne pasta with bacon, truffle roasted mushrooms, tomatoes, caramelized onions, pepperoncini and Italian cheese blend as my six ingredients. I also added the house made meatball and topped it off with fresh grated Parmesan. This looked and tasted as good, if not better, then anything you may get at a traditional sit down restaurant and was ordered and ready in under 10 minutes.


My guest chose the fettuccine with broccoli, carrots, pine nuts and sun roasted garlic and added the herb roasted chicken. You don't have to choose six ingredients, you may choose less, if you so wish. This dish was sauced with the Alfredo sauce and topped with fresh grated Parmesan and Italian herb blend. This was a perfect portion size and tasted wonderful.


As an added bonus, and I must say “You have to try this,” we had the Nutella flat bread with fresh strawberries. This is very simple and quite understated, but the Nutella and the delicious flat bread taste like they were made for each other.

Although the ordering system may be confusing at first, don't let that prevent you from trying out Spoleto. The food here is really good for fast casual Italian, and the number of dishes you can create is only limited by your imagination. The inside is very nice and open as well, and features open face brick and unique lighting fixtures made of cooking utensils.

Spoleto : My Italian Kitchen is open from Monday - Sunday 11am - 10pm. Keep an eye out for the newest location to open up inside of the Florida Mall’s all new food pavilion, and a third location coming to Winter Park at 349 N. Orlando Avenue.

Click to add a blog post for Spoleto on Zomato
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Crimson Tavern at Orlando Airport Marriott

7499 Augusta National Dr, Orlando, FL 32822
(407) 851-9000
View Website Here


I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again...Some of the best dining in Central Florida can be found inside some of the great hotels and resorts scattered throughout our community. Sure, Orlando is experiencing a restaurant renaissance of sorts, but that also includes many great hotels.


I was recently invited to a “Lamb Everything” dinner at Crimson Tavern inside the Orlando Airport Marriott Lakeside and I was thoroughly impressed with the restaurant, and the hotel itself. I don’t live too far away from Crimson Tavern, but like many of us, It’s never on my list of restaurants to visit, mainly because I think of the hotel only. I can assure you though, Crimson Tavern is a place you need to visit soon, and here’s why...


It isn’t too often that many of the items which appear on a diner’s plate come from just a few hundred feet away, and in the restaurant’s own Chef’s Garden. At Crimson Tavern, diners are invited to take a stroll through the nearby 2,500 square foot Chef’s Garden and see what is ready to be harvested and will soon end up on the menu or quite possibly, on their plate that very evening.

For Executive Chef Anthony Hull, Crimson Tavern truly defines the “farm to table” culinary movement. The restaurant actually came about because there was an open dining space at the Orlando Airport Marriott and since much of the hotel’s senior management were all serious foodies, including General Manager Chris Donohue, the logical step was to create a restaurant that represented what most chefs believe is an iconic way to eat : Farm to Table.

Since every dish is the sum of its components, the farm to table philosophy means a strong connection to the surrounding farms and artisans. The culinary team works very diligently to develop partnerships with many of Orlando's best purveyors to source the finest ingredients available. They also invite the local farm community to grow for them, which helps these farms to sustain a way of life. Additionally, as the Chef’s Garden grows and evolves (it currently produces approximately 20,000 pounds of food per year), more of the fruit trees will start to produce and evolve the experience even further as they will supply many of the ingredients, which the team can use for jamming and pickling.

In fact, the culinary team is exploring the branding and retail sale of their homemade condiments and jams. They will continue to make hot sauce, pickles, jams, and chutneys from their garden and seasonal offerings. As the BBQ program grows (the restaurant offers seasonal Friday Night Barbecues) a line of rubs and sauces will also become available.
According to Chef Hull, “The main reason we are producing these products is to control what goes into them, not just from a flavor standpoint, but also a wellness aspect by eliminating additives and unnatural ingredients, and if we have a really good harvest, it is also a way to preserve the extra product”.

Chef Anthony Hull of Crimson Tavern, spent much of his youth in England cooking with his grandmothers. While he enjoyed the opportunity to practice his latest jokes on them, they in turn, would tell him the jokes they had also heard. “To this day, I have vivid memories of my grandmother trying to tell me a joke and laughing so hard she could not get to the punch line.” During this time, his grandmothers love of baking, making jams from fruits harvested from the family garden, and pickling onions and beets and storing them under the stairs for the holidays became entrenched in his DNA. When his paternal grandmother had the faith to let him cook the Christmas turkey from start to finish, it was probably the single defining food event that made him decide to become a chef.

Here are some of the highlights of Chef Hull's "Lamb Everything Dinner".....


Peak Organic Simcoe Spring Ale



Meatballs with ground lamb leg, mortadella, house pomerola, tarentaise and alpine cheese.  


Pickled lamb tongue with hydroponic arugula, garden pumpkin blossoms and granny smith apple vinaigrette.


Ramen Bowl, house pulled ramen, lamb breast & belly, lamb dashi, Kissimmee river oyster mushrooms, poached lake meadows pullet egg, crispy taro.



Roasted Saddle & Loin with charred baby artichokes, cannellini beans, lamb reduction, arbequina olives in a true grit petite sirah.



Parksdale farm Strawberry Gelato with house spun gelato (house preserve, cream, whole milk),cardamom shortbread and strawberry basil flower salad.


The restaurant can fit 80 people, the private dining room can seat up to 16, and semi-private dining on the upper deck is up to 30 guests.

Price range: Appetizers: $7 - $18
Salads and Sandwiches: $7 to $16
Entrees: $20 - $26
Desserts: $9

Beverage menu features 21 domestic, imported, and artisanal beers, 30 wines by the glass or bottle including two sustainable wines, and 7 signature cocktails. The wine list focuses on domestic wines from California and the East Coast as well as a number of international wines from Argentina and Australia.

Hours of Operation: Open daily
Lunch: 11:00 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Dinner: 5 p.m. to midnight.

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The Meatball Shoppe

7325 Lake Underhill Rd.
Orlando FL. 32822
(407) 270-6505



East Orlando's newest dining spot is a little place called The Meatball Shoppe. I say little enthusiastically though, because the shop is small inside, but full of great flavor and great character. That great character is attributed to the owners of this establishment - Isabella Morgia di Vicaria, a first-generation American, born of Italian heritage in Brooklyn, NY. and her Husband Jeff Morgia.

Isabella and Jeff have over thirty years of time and experience combined in the restaurant and food industry. Isabella’s Bella Cucina, a catering company that the couple operates, has been in business since 1992 in Central Florida. A few years ago, Isabella and Jeff were thinking of ways to bring something new and innovative to Central Florida... and The Meatball Shoppe was born. With the aquiring of a location for The Meatball Shoppe, Isabella’s Bella Cucina also acquired a larger kitchen facility that will make it possible for the two companies to support each other. The Meatball Shoppe will also serve as a retail space for Isabella’s Bella Cucina.

Isabella believes her meatballs are special and are a representative of the best of many cultures including the Mediterranean and Latin American Countries. Jeff says his love of meatballs comes from the nostalgia 
that takes him back to when he was growing up, and they’re warm, inviting and are universally loved by all. 

The concept of The Meatball Shoppe is to bring you the classic and traditional Italian meatball and then take it in a different direction. The menu is based on tradition fused with innovation that brings new life to the ‘classic meatball’. Patrons can expect to find a combination of an old world style with a retro feel and fresh originality.

When ordering you first choose "How would you like them" your options are "On Top", "Alone" and "Smash". If you select "On Top" you then you select a side you would like your meatballs on top of. Choices include Creamy Polenta, Penne Pasta with choice of sauce, Gluten-Free Pasta, Pasta Aglia Olio and a White Bean Ragout. If you want your meatballs by themselves, you would choose "Alone" and they are served atop a bed of arugula. The "Smash" option gives you the meatballs smashed on freshly baked focaccia.

Next you select the type of meatball you would like. The list of meatballs includes Nonna’s traditional Italian meatballs, Vegetarian, Gluten free Jeffy’s sausage,  Mediterranean grass fed lamb with pita bread and tzatziki sauce, Spicy pork, Chicken Marsala and a Reuben ball topped with a traditional Reuben Sauce.

Your next step is to pick a sauce. Sauces  available are Roasted Tomato Sauce, Isabella’s Signature Pesto, Creamy Provolone , Rich Marsala Mushroom Sauce, Spicy Pork Sauce. You can mix and match all you want, but the sauce selections go hand in hand with your meatball choice. You can also get a fried egg to top everything off, if you choose.

I had the opportunity to go to a blogger and foodie meet up recently, and I got to sample a bit of everything at The Meatball Shoppe. Everyone really enjoyed the flavors and creativity of all the meatballs we sampled. They were firm and seasoned well and the sauces and sides were quite tasty too. 


I ordered Jeffy's Sausage meatball smashed on focaccia with creamy provolone sauce and a fried egg on top. That was a pretty damn good sandwich.


Nonna's traditional Italian with roasted tomato sauce.








Mediterranean grass fed Lamb with pita bread and tzatziki sauce on top of creamy polenta.






Vegetarian Meatball on top white bean ragout.









Chicken Marsala Meatball with Marsala Mushroom Sauce. 







The Meatball Shoppe is open Monday to Saturday, for lunch or dinner from 11 AM to 8 PM. Stop by and say hello to Isabella and Jeff and enjoy great company along with great food.They will satisfy the kid in you with fun, delicious meatballs and satisfy your more sophisticated adult palate with gourmet flavors.

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