New Tastes!


Bite Hot Dog Company

Bite Hot Dog Company                                       
470 West SR. 434
Longwood FL. 32750
(407) 389- BITE (2483)

Since I do sales, I am always in the Longwood area a few times a week. Several months ago I noticed a new Hot Dog place that opened where a a Sobik's sub shop  use to be located at on West SR.434 in Longwood.  I occasionally enjoy a good dog or two, and after eating lots of turkey over the holiday break, I thought a good hot dog for lunch was  just what the doctor ordered....So I decided to see what  Bite was all about.

Bite Hot Dog Company aims to "Bring A Taste Of The Windy City To The Sunshine State" according to a sign inside the restaurant. They serve 100% Vienna Beef hot dogs, with a variety of toppings and styles.

You can get a plain old hot dog or the Chili Cheese dog....or you may opt for a "Signature Dog"-----like The Bloody Mary Dog (tomatoes, green olives, celery, horseradish-pepper sauce, celery salt) or the Garlic Mashed Potato Dog (mashed potato's, brown gravy, potato sticks)....or a traditional Chicago Dog (mustard, tomatoes, dill pickle, relish, onion, peppers, celery salt)

All dogs are available as 100% pure beef dogs, but for .69 cents more you can "increase the heat" and go for a spicy dog. You may also want to "increase the beef" for .99 cents and go with a Jumbo Dog

Bite also serves up all natural fresh cut - skin on french fries that are cooked in 100% peanut oil. You can get them with a combo or order them on the side with chili cheese.

They also serve mashed potatoes with gravy, coleslaw and chili,---all of which are available as a topping!!

For my lunch break I decided to keep it simple for my first time and went with the Chili Cheese Dog Combo. I decided to increase the heat and make it a spicy dog also, which was a real good choice---it was hot,  not too hot...just the right amount to compliment the chili. The chili is available with or without beans.

 The poppy seed bun was nice and fresh and overall the dog was very good! The french fries were quite tasty also, as they are fresh cut fries. I personally prefer a more crispy french frie (some of the fries were soggy), but nonetheless with a dab of ketchup--they were good, and I could not even eat half of them---it was a large portion of fries!

Bite is a neat concept on an American favorite--Hot Dogs!!

But be ready to pay a tad more than the guy who sells dogs on the side of the road.

 A combo with the spicy dog upgrade set me back $8.33 for lunch, but it was worth it. Bite is kind of like a Five Guys for Hot Dogs with a Chi-town style and a rock & roll flair.

Inside you will find ketchup red walls with quotes from the likes of Mick Jagger and Neil Young  with sayings like "Anything worth doing is worth overdoing" and "It's better to burn out than it is
to rust out,"

 The tables have salt and vinegar on them, and a condiment station is up by the soda fountain with all the ketchup you need to sop up those french fries.

Be sure to sign up for their " Frequent Biters Club" via the little touch screen at the end of the pickup counter to get special offers and deals--Like "Buy One Get One Free" and a "Free Bite" on your birthday.

Although the price was a tad more than I expected, they do have specials... like on Tuesday from 4pm to 8pm--all meals are $5.99---and that's a good deal on a good "Bite"

Tastes Of Orlando recommends you  take a "Bite" at Bite Hot Dog Company!!

Bite Hot Dog Company on Urbanspoon

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Christmas Eve Rib Eye Steaks with Baby Bella Mushrooms!

Something a little NON-TRADITIONAL---since most of us will be getting our fill of Christmas Turkey and Ham---we have decided to cook up some Rib Eye steaks---on the grill.

That's the beauty of Florida...It's still in the 80's temperature wise we decided to go to the pool and sunbathe, then Cook up some good old fashioned Rib eye's on the grill....on Christmas Eve... which we wanted to share with you!

Rib Eye Dry Rub
Garlic Powder

Dry Rub
Garlic Salt
Salt and Pepper
Minced Garlic

- Rub steaks with a dash of each of the ingredients listed above.

- Place steaks on grill and lightly char the entire steak on both sides on the hot grill.  Cook for 3 minutes then turn the steak over and repeat on the other side. At that point remove the steak and finish in the oven.

-If you are able to finish the steak in an oven, do so, otherwise finish on the grill to the desired doneness. Rare to medium rare will just be a few minutes longer on the grill, where as medium and medium well will see a small pool of juice come up out the top of the steak after a few minutes. To finish steak in oven,  heat oven to 350 degrees place in oven until desired doneness---(Medium well should be about 8-10 minutes)


- The key to the perfect steak, is allow the steak to rest after cooking. Simply remove the steak from the grill or oven, place on a plate in a warm place for a ¼ of the cooking time. The reason you need to rest the steak is because the meat is all tensed up from the heat of the cooking and you need to allow the meat to relax.
Lightly charred on outside

Baby Bella Mushrooms
- Wash mushrooms and slice to about 1/4" thick pieces
- Heat skillet to medium low and melt 1/4 stick of unsalted butter. Once Butter is melted add 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil. 
- Add a dash of salt and garlic
- Add mushrooms and saute over low heat for about 30 minutes or until mushrooms reach desired tenderness. 

Served with baked potato and cherry tomatoes 

Plate, serve, and enjoy!!

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Oblivion Tap Room

5101 E Colonial Drive
Orlando, FL 32828

Phone: 407-802-4800

Open Tuesday - Sunday, 4pm till 2am. Closed Mondays

Oblivions Website

So lets start at one word..."OBLIVION"-----

What is it??--

Well its defined like this:

[" 1. The condition or quality of being completely forgotten:"
 2. The act or an instance of forgetting; total forgetfulness:
3. Official overlooking of offenses
4. the condition of being forgotten or disregarded
5. the state of being mentally withdrawn or blank
6. (Law) Law an intentional overlooking, esp of political offences; amnesty; pardon
[via Old French from Latin oblīviō forgetfulness, from oblīviscī to forget]

Now after reading the definitions, it may indeed sound like a strange name for a restaurant---but not for a taproom.

The food and drink served here is very memorable, and not soon to be a good way!

 I assume that if you stayed long enough and sampled all of the 40+ craft beers on tap you personally may be induced into a state of total forgetfulness, and may need someone to overlook your past offenses while being mentally withdrawn or blank....but that's just my guess!!

Oblivion is the creative child of  Missy Jahn and Pete Wesenberg. As the website states, Oblivion is the fulfillment of a lifelong dream of Missy's to own a bar & grill and bring the kind of experience, food, and drinks to people that she feels you deserve when spending your hard earned money.

 Pete is the "creative" guy. He brings to Oblivion a background in film, photography, graphic & web design and marketing.

Jim "Goody" Goodman - The Chef:
"Chef Goody" has learned his trade both ways, the school of hard knocks and higher education. Starting out as a dishwasher he worked his way up in the industry for 6 years until he was able to attend the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, NY. He then worked for nearly a decade for Marriott in New Jersey, Baltimore, Houston, New Orleans, Maui, and Orlando.

 He has traveled the world in pursuit of great food, taking culinary trips to the Caribbean, Australia, Mexico and the Philippines among others. He has also competed for the last seven years in the largest BBQ competition in the world, the American Royal in Kansas City.

Goody knows his stuff when it comes to BBQ, charcuterie, butchering, and even homebrewing.

Now that you have some background info--lets get to the grub!!

For starters we had the Smoked Chicken Wings
The wings were cooked very well with a lightly crisped skin on the outside. They are seasoned with a homemade BBQ seasoning and then slow smoked and crisped to perfection. The wings are not overly flavorful as some wings tend to be, they had just the right amount of seasoning and smokiness to them. I would recommend them for an app, or if you just wanted to have some wings and beer---you would be good.

Next it was on to the " Rings of Oblivion"----that's what they call onion rings at Oblivion.

Jerkin Your Chicken Sandwich with Rings of Oblivion

Oblivion's onion rings are fresh onions battered in a special beer batter that comes from a beer in one of their taps. The rings were fried golden brown to perfection and were a bit unusual.

My wife joked around with me that we should call them Donyun rings---because the batter was so thick, it was like eating a fried doughnut with an onion it. The rings were tasty and good, but because they were so thick they were very heavy---and when you are eating burgers and sampling a few beers---eating a jumbo fried doughnut is not such a good idea.

One of the good things about Oblivion and having a great chef like Chef Goody, is the fact that although they have a set menu of food, they are always rotating in good and different specials just like the the 40+ taps are always being rotated. 

Some things may sound weird, but you may like to try the Scrapple Egg- a delicacy of pork scraps and cornmeal. Often served as a hardened slice from a loaf. Or perhaps you would like the Fried Black Eyed Peas, or Egg Drop Soup...on our visit, we just had to try the Tater Tot salad.

I know it seems really weird....but man o man was this good!!--Cold  tots tossed in a sweet and tangy potato salad sauce. I would never imagine cold tots tasting good, and being used for a salad, but it works really well!

Oblivion is getting quite a reputation for great burgers around town, but unfortunately we had beef the night before, so we opted to split the Jerkin Your Chicken sandwich  (it is pictured above with the rings of oblivion) 

This was a very spicy Jamaican jerked rubbed chicken breast chargrilled and topped with pickled mango and passion fruit aioli served on a brioche bun. This was a spectacular sandwich that was extremely hot---but it was cooled with the pickled mango slices and aioli...a good choice if you like it hot.

The burger menu looked very tasty with selections like The Jalapineo ( teriyake marinated beef burger with jalapeno cream cheese, grilled pineapple and apple wood smoked bacon) or The Pretzel ( grilled beef burger with caraway, beer mustard --served on a warm pretzel bun with a side of cheese sauce)

The daredevil in you will want to try THE FATASS---(fire grilled patty, Italian patty, pickles, bacon, jalapenos, 2 fried eggs, chopped pork, Tasso ham, griddled onions, chicaronnes, sharp cheddar, smoked bleu cheese, and cheez whiz on a garlic bun----WHEW!!!

 On our next visit we will certainly try the burgers!! We also found it neat that you can try all types of potatoes---like Potato Wedges, French Fries, Potato Chips, Potato Tots and Sweet Potato Fries with a variety of different seasonings available.

Did I mention this is a TAPROOM???

---well of course no trip to Oblivion is complete without trying one or 10 of their amazing craft beers. You will not find Budweiser or Miller Lite here..all 40+ taps are unique craft brews that change as often as the season does. Since it was just before Thanksgiving we opted for a sampler of the Winter seasonal ales.

The Winter Seasonal ales included St. Feuillien Cuvee de Noel, St. Bernardus Christmas Ale, Scaldis  Noel and one other assorted Winter Ale....all of which were very tasty and almost had a wine like fruitiness to them.

 Again, as I said--this is a taproom---so no fake beers here!!--They have something for every palate and taste. From India Pale Ales - Amber Ales - Pilsner to Stout---They have it on tap. If you are not sure what to order because the names are unfamiliar...just ask your server or bartender and they will help guide you through making a good decision.

Oblivion is just that---a Taproom--with good food---Its not quite a Gastro pub, but more of  a good place for food and beer--and not just bar food--Chef Goody really brings the goods.

Inside you will find pool tables and steel tip dart boards to play games. You can sit at the bar, or sit at a table or booth. The Decor has caused a lot of debate, because many think its a little too dark inside. The walls all have murals on them depicting skeletons and skulls and the walls are painted black and blood red.

At times I did feel the need to step outside and get a breath of fresh air..It was not so dark that you could not see your food..the booths and tables are well lit, but the red and black walls just make it feel claustrophobic at times...but here in lies the debate---the atmosphere of the restaurant works well with the theme---So??--

You will find no hard plates or silverware here...everything comes served on a plastic plate or basket along with plastic although the food is great---it is not served fancy. I have been told this is due to a problem with the aging septic system. Oblivion is making use of the old Straubs Seafood building that has long been closed. I personally did not mind the plastic ware. 

We found our server and hostess to be very attentive and and we were well taken care of the whole time.

The wife and I will definitely return to Obivion sometime soon---(we have to try the burgers) We had a very good experience and enjoyed the food and the brews.

 I think its a great addition to Orlando and a unique take on a taproom---that serves food.

 Most other taprooms and beer specialists do not have much to offer for food---but Oblivion has taken the "Bar Food" concept to another level----You should check it out for yourself sometime soon!!

Oblivion Taproom on Urbanspoon
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The Ultimate Dining Experience
(321) 724-8751

The last week of October, was my sister in law's birthday, so she wanted to have a family get together at Makoto's of Melbourne. Since it has been quite some time since my last blog post, I thought I would go ahead and do a revue to share with everyone who may not be familiar with Makoto's or with Teppanyaki style dining.

Located in the heart of Melbourne, Florida ....Makoto's ideally situated in the Nasa Plaza which is on the corner of Babcock and Nasa Blvd. From Orlando its probably a 45 minute drive. Although you can purchase Makoto products anywhere in Florida (more on that later)..This is one of only 2 locations in the U.S. The second one being in Boone, NC.

Lets get started with Teppanyaki style cooking...What is it you ask?

 Teppanyaki (teppan-yaki) is a style of Japanese cuisine that uses an iron griddle to cook food. The word teppanyaki is derived from teppan-- which means iron plate, and yaki, which means grilled, broiled or pan-fried.

In Japan teppanyaki refers to dishes cooked using an iron plate, including steak, shrimp, okonomiyaki, yakisoba, and monjayaki. Typical ingredients used for Western-style teppanyaki are beef, shrimp, scallops, lobster, chicken and assorted vegetables. Soybean oil is typically used to cook the ingredients.  

Japanese-style teppanyaki may also use noodles (yakisoba), cabbage with sliced meat or seafood (okonomiyaki), which are cooked using regular vegetable oil, animal fat, or a mixture.

Side dishes of mung bean sprouts, zucchini (even though zucchini is not a popular vegetable in Japan and rarely found in the market), garlic chips, or fried rice usually accompany the meal. Some restaurants provide sauces in which to dip the food. In Japan, only soy sauce is typically offered.

In the United States, teppanyaki was made famous by the Benihana restaurant chain, which opened its first restaurant in New York in 1964. Benihana and other chains of teppanyaki steakhouses like KOBE, continue to place an emphasis on the chef performing a show for the diners, continuing to introduce new variations and tricks.

The chef might juggle utensils, flip a shrimp tail into his/her shirt pocket, catch an egg in his/her hat, toss an egg up in the air and split it with a spatula, flip flattened shrimp pieces into the diners' mouths, or arrange onion rings into fire-shooting volcanoes.

Now with that out of the way....Welcome to Makoto's.

Although you may purchase individual side dishes and a few starters like teriyaki chicken wings and spring rolls seperately,  Makotos is all about the western version of teppanyaki. Which is to say that most meals are selected from the menu and then cooked to order while putting on a show right in front of you and the group of people you are sitting with.

The menu is not too big, nor is it to small...It covers all the bases from seafood, steak, chicken to even vegetarian. You have the option to purchase Lobster Tails, Scallops, Mahi-Mahi, Ahi Tuna, Shrimp, NY. Strip Steak, Filegt Mignon and the ever popular Sesame Chicken.

You can make individual selections or you can opt to get the Shrimp and NY Strip Steak or Chicken and the NY. Strip Steak.

Everyone in our party got combos, so we all got a chance to taste all the offerings.

All meals come with the following:

Teriyaki - Vegetable Sauce - Ginger Dressing.
All of the sauces are very good and the vegetable sauce is quite unique and complements the Yasi very well.

Chiken Liver Pate
They call this a.."Japanese Hamburger"---Its not for everyone, and I especially do not like liver, but this was not that bad. Its essentially a small puck made out of a paste of seasoned and buttered chicken livers then sauteed on the grill.

Makoto's House Salad served with their very own Ginger Dressing.

The salad is pretty basic and simple, but what makes it a treat is Makoto's home made Ginger dressing. Makotos' really specializes in this as they have their own manufacturing facility that makes all of their dressings and sauces that are available to purchase not just at Makoto's but at your local super market or specialty food store.

Aromatic Soup  Clear Broth with fresh green onions and mushroom

Again, nothing too spectacular, but it was good nonetheless---Just a small hand held cup of a chicken broth like soup with fresh sliced mushrooms and green onions.

In season fresh vegetables (onions, zucchini, squash, carrots, etc.) that are fried up on the teppan grill seasoned with salt and pepper, soy sauce, and a dash of teriyaki sauce.

The Yasi is very good to eat by itself, but the trick is to save some of it and mix it with your fried rice and meats that you get.

Fried Rice
Cooked rice, traditionally fried along with special seasonings. The rice is always pretty good, and usually you get a pretty good serving of it.

Once all of that is out of the way the chef will start cooking the meats. I ordered the NY.Strip Steak with Chicken combo. My steak was cooked medium well to perfection, and the chicken was also cooked and seasoned  perfectly. I still had a mountain of rice and a decent portion of vegetables to mix it all together on my plate and have somewhat of a stir fry platter. I was very impressed with the flavor and tenderness of the meats.

My wife had the Shrimp with NY. Strip Steak combo. Once again, the steak was done perfectly. The white shrimp were also very delicious and tasty.

My brother in law had the Sesame Chicken  that consists of moist and tender breast of chicken with toasted sesame seeds and Makoto’s very own teriyaki sauce. The chicken was cooked very well and the splash of teriyaki set it off quite nicely!

After we got all of the food on our plates, we could not fit it all and almost all of us had to take some home with us.

All in all you can not go wrong with any of your selections at Makoto's. They also have a newly added sushi bar that we did not get to try. Since it was my sister and law's birthday they did the traditional happy birthday song in Japanese and served up a Hawaiian pineapple boat.

The pineapple was delicious too. Makoto's does not have much in desert offerings other than pineapple  boats and vanilla ice cream or sherbet. It would be a nice addition to add something like fried ice cream or something else to the menu.

Overall we had a good time out with the family, and that is what Makoto's strives for.

I would definitely recommend having reservations, especially if you want to go on a Friday or Saturday night as they can get quite busy. Without a reservation, expect to wait 30-50 minutes before being seated. At peak times service does tend to be a little slow, but not so bad that you are left starving between servings.

In closing, I will say this...I have read some complaints that while the restaurant itself is in nice shape, it is showing signs of wear. We noticed this especially on the carpets and table edges.

Maybe its time for Makoto's to do a makeover of sorts, but don't let that deter you from going to Makoto's and having a fun entertaining dining experience that the the whole family can enjoy!!

And as a side note ---- all of Makoto's great dressings, dips and sauces that they make in house, you can find them at Publix or other specialty food stores or right here online

Makotos Seafood & Steakhouse of Japan on Urbanspoon
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Warm Choclate Melting Cake

As we prepare for our long awaited vacation aboard the Carnival Dream at the end of July, I thought I'd share a great recipe with everyone.........

If you have ever been on a Carnival Cruise you may have certainly had one of their premier deserts.

 The Warm Chocolate Melting Cake is a thing of legend aboard every Carnival vessel. Most people tell me they eat at least 1 per day. Even you have not been on a cruise before you must have heard plenty of story's about this desert. There are entire blogs and message boards devoted to this sinfully delicious desert!!

Thanks to our friends at Cruise Critic and the nice people of Carnival...they have divulged the secret recipe in a smaller version. For years Carnival would only give out this recipe in a portion to feed 3,000 people. After some secret handshakes and info sharing with one of Carnival's top chefs, Cruise Critic got the recipe broke down into a normal size version for you to make at home.

So Here it Is...ENJOY....!!!

MELTING CHOCOLATE CAKE:      Yield: 4 Servings
6 oz Dark Chocolate
6 oz Butter
4 ea Eggs
6 oz Sugar
2 oz Flour

Melt the chocolate and butter
Mix the eggs & sugar and whisk for a few minutes, add the flour
Add the egg mix to the melted chocolate and mix
Pour the mix in a greased mould.
Bake directly in the oven at 200 degrees Celsius (or about 395 degrees Farenheit for us Americans) for 14 minutes

(Note: - Please make sure that the eggs are at   room temperature and chocolate is warm enough while making the mixture)

Serve with ice cream and fruit garnish

(Recipe is courtesy of Cruise Critic and Carnival Corp. 2011)
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The Moat Sports Grille

4250 Alafaya Trail, Oviedo, FL 32765
(In the University Palms Shopping Center)

What is "THE MOAT" you ask??...well glad you asked...

The Moat is kind of like the official UCF sports bar and grille. As a sports bar and grille here is what you can find inside:
  • Over 40 High Definition Plasma and projection TV’s
  • 2 bars
  • Full liquor bar with 16 varieties of beer on tap and more varieties available in bottles
  • Large outside deck (mostly covered). 
  • Friendly staff
  • FREE WiFi
  • And of course all of the UCF memorabilia and some decent food to grub on as well.

The wife and I have been to the moat a few different times and we recently went with a group of friends to introduce them to the moat as well. Having ate there on 3 occasions and sampling the menu extensively..I thought I would share my thoughts on this establishment.

When you walk in you are instantly greeted in a foyer with a fine collection of UCF memorabilia. From trophy's and signed pictures from the players and coaches of present and past UCF sports teams.

Even if you are not a UCF fan, you can admire the memorabilia and the overall design theme of the restaurant. Its done in a very taste full and well laid out manor.

The Moat is not only all about UCF...but all about sports in general. Its a great place to go watch NFL Monday night or Sunday night Football and you can catch just about any other college team game there as well...(This is barring when UCF is live and playing...All screens are UCF)

The Moat is a true Sports Bar...with 2 main bars and a patio outback. They have over 16 brews on tap always,  plus an extensive collection of bottled beer and wine..and I'm sure the bartender can make you any concoction you may delight in. A hit with all  the college kids is what is known as the tower..its 80 giant ounces served in a large tower with a drought spicket on the bottom!!

During the school year and especially during UCF Football and Basketball seasons the place is usually packed and can have a lively atmosphere most nights. During the off seasons and summer time the restaurant is tame and quiet. We recently went on a Saturday around 7:00 pm and it was pretty quiet inside.

After we get past the decor and libations...we must discuss the food....
The menu at The Moat consists mostly of sandwiches, burgers, salads, appetizers and a few offerings for a main dish type of meal. So far from my experience the food is really hit and miss...there is a lot to enjoy on the menu...but there are some things I would caution you about.

I will break down what Ive had so far...and define them as HIT or MISS

Chips and Queso---MISS---The chips are like unflavored yellow Doritos, and the queso had a weird almost unflavored taste to it...don't know what else to say except..Avoid!! 

Flat breads---HIT---The flat breads come in 4 variety's.......

Steak:  Angus beef with blue cheese, red onion and drizzled with balsamic vinaigrette

Southwest chicken: Grilled chicken, Monterrey jack, red onion and drizzled with chipotle sauce.

Roasted Vegetable:  Red peppers, onions, mushrooms and mozzarella cheese

BBQ Pork: Homemade pulled pork with red onion, cheddar cheese and drizzled with BBQ sauce

All of the flat bread offerings are done very well and the bread is baked to a perfect crispness yet soft where it needs to be. The pulled pork is my favorite...and that's because of the pulled pork they make in house and its good on everything.

Wings---MISS  The wings come in a variety of sauces.. like Mild, Medium, Hot, Dragons Breath, Parmesan Garlic, BBQ, Teriyaki or The Moats very own Black & Gold wing sauce. We had the hot wings with some garlic added to them. The wings themselves are a tad small for a restaurant and just did not come off very well. Its not that the wings were awful...I just expected a sports bar to have really superb wings. Instead they have sub par wings. I think the Management at The Moat should work on this a little more.

Pulled Pork Nachos---HIT--HIT--HIT!!!  
Fresh tortilla chips layered with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, jalapeno peppers, cheddar, and Monterrey Jack cheeses then smothered with our homemade pulled pork and drizzled with BBQ sauce.

You must order this---its fantastic. Again the winner here is The Moats very own home made slow cooked pulled pork---There is so much flavor in every bite and its all delicious. There is more than enough here to share with others as it comes a jumbo plate-- and you cant beat a price tag of $8.99. This is my personal favorite dish here--its technically an appetizer but I would eat this for dinner...and why not its got all the food groups a well rounded meal should have---Veggies, Cheese, Pulled Pork,,,and Pulled Pork..and..OK-Its good!

Reuben Won Tons---HIT  A Reuben won ton is twist on a traditional won ton. It is a won ton stuffed with corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and fried golden brown. Served with 1000 Island for dipping. If you like Reuben's...and for that matter won tons---this is a mach made in food heaven. Delicious corned beef and sauerkraut fried to perfection.

The Reuben---HIT   The Reuben is not far from the tree as the Reuben won ton--same quality ingredients just slapped between 3 delicious pieces of a marble swirl rye bread----Simple and good!

Beef Tenderloin Sandwich---MISS    The menu claims that this is their most tender cut of beef marinated in olive oil and garlic, seared and served on a Ciabatta roll. While the beef was in fact lacked any real flavor. Whats worse is that the sandwich came on a good Ciabatta roll with a slice of a tomato and a piece of lettuce---and thats it! A bland slab of beef with no mayo or cheese or nothing...I felt kind of cheated with this selection and only ate half of my sandwich. The only thing good here was the french fries. All sandwiches and sliders come with seasoned fries.

Pulled Pork Sliders---HIT  Well as you can guess,  a theme is occurring here......anything with the pulled pork is really good. Just be aware though!!---These are not traditional sliders. You get 3 large rolls stuffed with pork--it measures altogether as long as a foot long sub. So be ready to eat or share!!

At this point if they served pulled pork on saltine crackers I would give it an excellent review!!

Cajun Chicken Club---MISS    This is a traditional Cajun grilled chicken breast, topped with bacon, lettuce, tomato and bistro sauce. However..once again the sandwich lacked any real flavor and there was barely any Cajun seasoning on it all.

At the end of the day the Moat is a fun place to go with friends or family and have a good time....even if you are not a UCF fan or student or Alumni. The food is for the most part good. and the service was very attentive on all occasions.

The menu is very reasonably priced as well.  If they would revamp the wings a little and add some much needed flavor and seasoning to some of their dishes this place would be a top notch eatery..not just a really good sports bar and grill.

 Maybe when you visit The Moat you will have to experiment a little on your own with the menu, after all that's fun of trying something new. 

As you can imagine if I can recommend anything to you I will recommend anything with the pulled pork on it!!

 I would definitely recommend you and your friends hanging out at "THE MOAT"

The Moat Sports Grille on Urbanspoon
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Tibby's New Orleans Kitchen

2203 Aloma Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789
407- 672-575

Tibby's Website

A little background on Tibby's.....

Tibby's is the brainchild of the same people who brought you Tijuana Flats. So when you walk into the restaurant it has a feel of Tijuana Flats in a sense.

There are bright paintings of Mardi Gras dancers, lively people and musicians as well as actual pictures of New Orleans and the streets which make it famous.

All of this is accompanied with lively jazz music playing in the background that one might expect to hear in the French Quarter. There’s even a large door hanging on the wall that is an actual piece from Hurricane Katrina complete with spray paint from a search team.

Here is a little more about Tibby.....

(From Tibbby's Website)
"Tibby would brag of his plans if the Saints ever made the Super Bowl: “Breakfast would be beignets at Cafe du Monde at the French Market & then a two-block walk for Bloody Marys at the Court of Two Sisters. Catch a Mardi Gras parade on Canal Street & grab an oyster po-boy at Johnny’s in the Quarter. I would then stroll over to the Superdome parking lot for tailgating & enjoy an early dinner at Galatoire’s. Taste some Hurricanes at Pat O’Brien’s & then watch the Saints win the Super Bowl at the Old Absinthe House. I would head back to Canal Street for another parade & then close out the night on Bourbon Street. After the celebration, I would sleep all day on Monday.”

Tibby lived to be 93.

He was an uncle who would share his stories & share his love. We created this place in his honor"

The main difference aside from the food and overall atmosphere here and at Tijuana Flats is that this is not a "Walk Up and Order" type of place...Tibby's is a "Wait to be Seated" style establishment where you are waited on.

We decided to kick off our New Orleans experience the right way with Craw Fish Remoulade...and it was quite tasty indeed!!

Tibby's craw fish remoulade is simple lightly fried craw fish served over a bed of lettuce & topped with a darn good remoulade sauce served in a large Schooner glass with forks.

 (If you never had Craw Fish before....think of a Shrimp texture and taste..but a little more meatier!!)

We decided to wash our food down with some of the craft beers they have on tap. The first beer was similar to an Amberbach or an Irish Red...a dark brew with a carmel and slightly nutty flavor..It was very good.

The second brew we tried was the Raspberry Ale...wooo..Pucker UP sweetie...its good..but the Raspberry is very strong in this one.

What makes all the beers extra good is the fact that they come in what is called a "Schooner" type of glass. Its basically a really big goblet, but the Schooners are frozen before serving so as to keep your brew extra cold!! On to the main course..

First I had the...let me spell it out for you....A (MUF-FU-LE T-TA) The Muffuletta is a traditional style New Orleans sandwich much like the Po'Boy is. It is made from Genoa salami, hard salami, sweet ham, provolone & mozzarella cheeses topped with Gambino’s olive salad & served on true New Orleans bread.

Having never had one before it may seem a little harsh...but this was NOT a good sandwich. It was super duper salty.

You can order it by the half or by the whole..and I was glad I ordered the half.

 I don't know if this sandwich is supposed be salty or not..So I can't honestly tell you what to think about it. But it was way too salty for my tastes. I even tried removing some of the ham....not much help!!

I decided to try a side of the New Orleans Potato Salad Mixture just because I was curious form reading the menu. It consists of potatoes, eggs, bacon, sausage, olives, pickles & onions.---That sounds very I could not resist, and I must say it was well worth the adventure.

It sounds a little weird....especially if you are used to a southern style of potato salad, but all the ingredients work out very well for a great taste and texture to boot!!

My wife went with the Shrimp & Andouille Cheddar Grits. For $13.00 you get some succulent sautéed shrimp, andouille sausage & sweet onions over cheese grits and they finish it off with a red wine gravy.

If that was all it was that would be fine with me...but wait theres more...It comes with some good old Cajun andouille sausage and then the whole dish is drizzled with a delicious red wine gravy sauce. Man was that good.

The dish is however very rich in flavor and very filling. After eating about half of the bowl my wife had to call it quits. Grits by themselves can be quite filling. I would recommend this dish to anybody and would order it my self!


 Beignets are the official state doughnut of Louisiana. It is a little square pocket type of pastry that is deep fried & loaded with powdered sugar.

A single serving (three per order) for $2.75 is enough for 2...especially after eating such rich meals, but if you insist you can order them family style which is seven per order for $5.00.

As you can imagine---FRIED--PASTRY DOUGH--SUGAR---enough said... and these things melt in your mouth!!!

 All in all we definitely return to Tibby's. Maybe next time I will go for a Po'boy of some sort and my wife will try the Chicken Pontchartrain.

There is something for everyone at Tibby's even if you dont like crawfish. From salads to sandwiches..from wings to are sure to find something you will like.


As the saying goes...Laissez les bon temps rouler (let the good times roll )

Tibby's New Orleans Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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4520 W Sr-46
Sanford, FL 32771
(407) 322-6543

Sun Valley is the new Chineese Buffet/Mongolian BBQ that has recently occupied the old Bennigans building on SR.46 in Sanford.

After hearing all the rants and raves from friends and family alike,  I decided the wife and I would make a trip from Orlando to Sanford to find out about this all new grand Chinese buffet. After all, who doesn't like a good Chinese buffet-- as they are hard to come by these days and with so many of them having terrible food quality...we had to check it out!!

First let me say this...The service was good and the sweet tea was great. ...but our feel good story pretty much ends there.

The food overall was a grade C- ... sub-par for human consumption.

Most of the food wasn't even lukewarm, let alone hot. The food was not very good at all. It ranged from salty to just plain weird.

Most of the traditonal Chineese food just did not taste right at all...almost as if they were trying new recipes for traditional foods. The soups were good as was the fried won tons and eggrolls, but I think those are pre-packaged foods that are pretty hard to mess up.

 As I stated already, the food was not tempered correctly. Most of the food was lukewarm....even the ice cream was half melted and when you are eating buffet food...YOU SHOULD BE VERY CONCERNED ABOUT THIS!!

I had high hopes for a good Mongolian BBQ, but even the Mongolian BBQ was oily and did not taste right. The food was just bathed in an oil slick and the flavor aside from being really hot, lacked any real flavor at all.

Now the Chinese food tasted weird, did the American section of the buffet fail miserably...that was some the worst tasting and over salted food I have ever had!! Beware of the MEATBALLS!!!---They are like large Salt Bombs that explode in your mouth!! Other items like collard greens, chicken nuggets, spinach and mashed potatoes did  not look very good either.

At $6.99 for lunch the price seemed reasonable at first glance, but  @ $12.95 + drinks pp for dinner is a bit steep for a below average Chinese buffet.

Unfortunately Sun Valley will just be another buffet in the glut of Central Florida Chinese Buffets offering strange food at an even stranger price. It's a shame really, because the place is very nice!

The Verdict....
 Sun valley is a nice place...but has not so nice food.......

Sun Valley Buffet on Urbanspoon
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A little info about me and this blog.....

Andrew Heaberlin @ Tastes Of Orlando

My name is Andrew Heaberlin, and this is Tastes Of Orlando. 

My team and I are pretty much a full-time blogging force that specializes in giving you the latest tastes, sounds and sights of Orlando and surrounding areas.

We have been doing our thing in the blog scene since 2011, and we love every minute of it. I am a blogger, journalist, dynamic taster, and an overall thinker...most of all I am a true Florida Native having been born and raised in Sanford FL., and later moving to O-Town in 2001.

The goal of Tastes of Orlando is to bring you the best tastes, sights and sounds that Orlando has to offer. That includes restaurants, hotels, bars, nightclubs, events, recipes, and the latest related news. 

You can contact us @




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