New Tastes!


Moroccan Breeze

9404 S Orange Blossom Trail
Orlando, FL 32837
(407) 730-4698
View Website Here

A few weeks ago, I finally made the time to attend an Orlando Foodie Forum meetup, with a group of people I met from my friend and fellow food blogger Ricky Ly and his Facebook group of the same name, and I was so glad I did.

Moroccan Breeze is quite simply real authentic Moroccan food, and possibly some of the best you can find in Central Florida, the prices and portions here are great. What's even even better, the owners are genuinely down to earth and so grateful for each and every guest, you will feel like family during your visit.

To get to Moroccan Breeze, you have to enter through the front doors of Apna Bazaar, which in and of itself is a worthwhile foodie destination with one of largest selections of international foods and fresh halal meats. So don't worry if you can't find it from the outside.

The menu here is pretty simple and upfront with a selection of Couscous dishes, Tagines, (Moroccan tagine dishes are slow cooked savory stews, typically made with sliced meat, poultry or fish together with vegetables or fruit, spices, nuts, and dried fruits are also used) soups and salads, side items like Beef Briwat, sandwiches and a nice little bakery selection of fresh baked cookies and other Moroccan sweets.

Inside is not fancy at all, it's more like a food hall or a cafeteria feel, and there is also another Indian restaurant that occupies the space to the right, but I can assure you the food is five star quality. 

The Beef Briwat at Moroccan Breeze is simply amazing... this is a savory pastry filled with Moroccan Kefta (ground beef) deep fried and dusted with powdered sugar. Savory, deep fried and a touch of sweet, this is simply phenomenal and I could seriously eat about a dozen of these.

This is the Merguez Sandwich, Merguez is a sausage made with uncooked lamb, beef, or a mixture stuffed into a lamb intestine casing and then cooked. It is heavily spiced with cumin and chili pepper or harissa for great flavors and a touch of heat. 

Lamb couscous comes in a generous portion, it can easily be shared. This dish is full of flavor with veggies, chickpeas, sweet raisins, and a good amount of lamb with aged butter served over a bed of freshly made couscous. You can get lamb, chicken or beef couscous at Moroccan Breeze, but if you want something extra special, get the Royal Couscous with beef, lamb and chicken for all of your meat coma dreams.

Sure, all of the couscous dishes, the tagine the merguez sausage and probably everything here at Moroccan Breeze is really damn good, but they also make a good Shawarma packed full of chicken and beef with excellent flavors.

The selection of baked goods and sweets here is pretty decent as well. Chef Habiba graciously gave us all a free sample of a variety of cookies, and all were really good. We especially enjoyed the Ghoriba Bahla Moroccan Shortbread and the Semolina and Almond cookies that were not overly sweet but quite tasty. 

Mint Tea is always a good after meal drink, as it is said to help digestion. Chef Habiba also gave us this on the house as well. This was offered with sugar to add, but I found it was not necessary as I really enjoyed the fresh minty and smooth flavor of the tea.

This a simple place, that is quite honestly unheralded and somewhat unknown, but the quality of food here is as good as it gets for Moroccan food, and Chef Habiba and the staff here are wonderful people. 

For authentic Moroccan food with great flavors, great service and a simple non hurried low key dining spot… Moroccan Breeze is your place. Stop in and say hello to Chef Habiba.

If you are looking for new food spots, unknown places, or are new to the area and want to get plugged in to one of the best foodie communities in Orlando on Facebook, check out the Orlando Foodie Forum presented by Tasty Chomps! by clicking here

There is usually a foodie Friday where members of the group get together and check out some cool food spots in the area… whether they are the new hip spots in town, or off of the beaten path.

Moroccan Breeze is closed on Monday, and they are open Tuesday through Saturday from 11:00 am to 10:00 pm. They are open until 9:00 pm on Sunday.

Moroccan breeze restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Park Pizza & Brewing Co.

6941 Lake Nona Blvd.
Orlando, FL 32827
(407) 955-4472
View Website Here

Park Pizza & Brewing Co. is Lake Nona’s newest home away from home, a welcoming retreat for the entire community where they serve up wood fired pizza and house brewed beer.

This is Tavistock Restaurant Collection’s fourth Central Florida restaurant concept that includes the recently opened Boxi Park, Chroma and Canvas, all of which are great concepts with great food. Tavistock knows a thing or two about creating atmosphere and good food that fits with the community.

Located in Lake Nona Town Center, Park Pizza & Brewing Company is a 5,055-square-foot, community focused gathering place featuring an onsite brewery and indoor/outdoor seating appropriate for families, friends and coworkers.

Fired in 900 degree wood burning ovens, the artisanal pizzas are topped with traditional toppings like pepperoni and buffalo mozzarella, as well as elevated gourmet toppings.

Menu Items here go as follows...Pre-Pizza, Not Pizza, Pizza, Your Pizza and Post Pizza, as well as a selection of Beer and Not Beer, and Also Not Beer for cocktail and regular beverage selections.

Head Brewer Marco Reyna, has taken care of the brewing duties, and they have some damn fine beers available here. Everything we sampled was fresh, crisp and refreshing, even the heavier IPA’s and stouts that were 10.5 abv.

We started off with a 4 Beer Flight ...from left to right we have the Standard Lager 4.5% abv, Belgian Wit 4.5% abv, Czech Pils 5.5% abv and Belgian Pale Ale 5.5% abv.

From the "Pre Pizza" menu is this wonderfully delicious and amazing Giant Soft Pretzel with Jalapeno Hefeweizen Beer Cheese...which is so perfect with a flight of beer.

Also on the "Pre Pizza" menu is the Burrata and Blistered Veggies with green peppers, artichokes, tomatoes, zucchini and mushrooms lightly cooked in olive oil and served with creamy Burrata Cheese...and it all pairs perfectly together.

Another 4 Beer Flight we tried...from left to right ... Russian Stout 10.5% abv, IPA 6.8% abv, Brown Ale 7% abv and Hibiscus Gos 4% abv. All were crisp and refreshing and surprisingly smooth for the abv content.

On the "Not Pizza" menu is a Di Capri Salad with Bocconcini Mozzarella, Cherry Tomatoes, Basil, Red Onions, Olive oil and Balsamic Vinegar.

The first pizza we tried at Park Pizza was the Red White and Bleu Pizza that features Garlic Cream Gorgonzola, Bacon, Granny Smith Apples and Red Onions for a very unique flavor combination. 

Since we couldn't settle on just one more pizza, we went with a half and half with the Pepperoni Picante on the left with San Marzano tomato sauce, Grande Mozzarella, pepperoni, banana peppers and Chili Flakes... on the right is the Awesome Saus! with housemade sausage, elephant garlic, baby portobellos, red peppers and red onions and we enjoyed each half equally. All of our pizza selections here were terrific. 

In addition to all the fine Craft Beer at Park Pizza, they have a few Sangrias, Wines and Cocktails available as the Green Apple with Sauvignon blanc and Jim Beam apple bourbon, ruby red grapefruit, sparkling water and fresh apples...and the Kickin Mule on the right, a traditional mule made with Uncle Nearest 1856 Whiskey.

The Cannolis were quite delicious with just the right amount of sweet to finish our evening.

Within the dining room, at the bar, or on the patio, you’ll find a place to grab a bite and a pint, watch the game, hang with your kids, and catch up with friends. Come as you are, comfort is key.

Complimentary parking is available in the five-story central parking structure featuring Lake Nona’s interactive landmarks, The Beacon and Code Wall.

Park Pizza and Brewing Co. is open from 11:00 am to 12:00 am, and on Friday and Saturday they are open until 2:00 am.

Park Pizza and Brewing Co. Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Hopdoddy coming to Orlando...

9101 International Dr.
#1208, Orlando, FL 32819
View Website Here

Hopdoddy Burger Bar, the nationally renowned burger and beer joint, is thrilled to announce their expansion into Florida with a new location in Orlando opening Monday, February 18.

Specifically, the restaurant will launch in Pointe Orlando and will feature a menu of popular burgers, shakes, fries, and a full liquor bar.

Founded in 2010 by Guy Villavaso, Larry Foles, Chuck Smith, and Larry Perdido, Hopdoddy stands out for its “from scratch” ethos and full bar. Designed to be devoured in your hands, all burgers at Hopdoddy are made with all natural meats.

Hopdoddy grinds their meats in-house daily and offers a wide variety of proteins like Angus beef, grass-fed Kobe beef, chicken, turkey, and sushi-grade tuna that are stacked between baked-from-scratch buns. They also offer vegetarian and vegan menu items such as The Impossible and La Bandita burgers.

Alongside its burgers, Hopdoddy serves a lineup of hand-cut fries, fresh salads, and handcrafted milkshakes made with Jersey Cream Custard. Hopdoddy also carries an array of local craft beers on tap as well as in cans and bottles.

"We are looking forward to opening the first Florida location next week. This has been a market we have been excited about for a while and are thrilled that this is coming to fruition," said Jeff Chandler, CEO of Hopdoddy Burger Bar. "This will be the 31st Hopdoddy location, and we feel fortunate to be joining Pointe Orlando."

As part of the mission to “Do Right,” the burger bar offers the Goodnight/Good Cause program nationwide where Hopdoddy donates a portion of the proceeds from each Good Night Good Cause burger sold to charitable organizations. Since 2010, Hopdoddy guests have helped raise more than $1,000,000.

The Goodnight/Good Cause burger is made with Angus beef, Tillamook cheddar, caramelized onions, jalapeños, caffeinated barbecue, Sassy Sauce, lettuce, and tomato.

Originally founded in Austin, Texas, Hopdoddy has a total of 31 locations in seven states. This will be the first Florida location. A full list of Hopdoddy locations can be found in the link HERE.

Hopdoddy will be located at 9101 International Dr. #1208, Orlando, FL, and will be open Monday - Sunday from 11 a.m. to close. The location will also be available to book for large, catered parties, online ordering, and delivery a few weeks after opening. For more information, please visit and follow on Instagram @hopdoddy.

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4820 Candia St.
Cape Coral, FL 33904
(239) 540-6800
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We planned a trip to Ft. Meyers a few weekends back to visit some friends, and they told us we absolutely have to visit Slate’s in Cape Coral while we were there. 

It is a very highly rated and highly recommended restaurant in the area, that pretty much requires reservations for a visit, especially on the weekend.

Slate’s is the newest addition to the long and lustrous restaurant career of Chefs and owners, Allan and Nancy Cotter. “Retiring” to Southwest Florida in 2010 from the island of St Croix in the US Virgin Islands, the Chefs Cotter soon found themselves quite disillusioned with all the free time retirement gave them.

Missing their passion for creating exquisite food featuring their much-heralded signature Cajun and Caribbean infused dishes, the Cotters set about the task of creating Slate’s. Their vision was to create a casual, fine dining experience that simultaneously evokes a feeling of pure enjoyment for friends and patrons.

Prior to their 2010 arrival in Cape Coral, Allan and Nancy were the Chefs and owners of the renowned Blue Moon Restaurant and Jazz Club on St Croix for 16 years. 

The food here is half Cajun inspired cuisine, and half Steak House. Jambalaya, Bayou Bread, Crab Cakes, Gumbo and Crawfish Etouffee all share menu space with USDA Prime Steaks, Fresh Seafood, Pork Chops and a variety of sides.

Reservations are highly recommended at Slate’s, as even the quaint bar that greets you with a very talented bartender fills up fast with pre-reserved seating.

A classic Hurricane with Cruzan light and dark rums and a Blueberry Rumshine Cobbler made with Wicked Dolphin Blueberry Rumshine, Florida sugarcane and blueberries with housemade sour mix, Cointreau and muddled blueberries to create this tart treat which is akin to a Blueberry Margarita. They also make a mean Pimm’s Cup here.

Crab Stuffed Mushroom caps were part of the daily special for Saturday at Slate’s and are not on the regular menu. These were savory and delicious.

The Fried Green Tomatoes were very thick sliced with a house made remoulade sauce topped with fresh gulf shrimp and they were quite enjoyable.

Bayou Bread at Slate's is made with crostini bread topped with cajun bacon, fresh pico de gallo and crumbled blue cheese that is a play on the restaurants Cajun roots with an upscale creativity.

The Cajun Gumbo here is a rich, smoky blend of chicken, crawfish and Andouille sausage, with steamed rice.

Country Boneless Short Ribs at Slate's features Slow-cooked ribs au jus served with a fried country cheese grit cake. The the au jus was quite flavorful, and the grit cake was awesome, but overall, it lacked seasoning.

Country Comfort Fried Chicken is a plump and rather large chicken breast breaded and fried then topped with pan gravy and served with cajun kernel corn and garlic mashed potatoes. All the flavors really did well for this and when combined together in one bite, it was quite extraordinary.

Filet Mignon, and all steaks at Slate’s, are served on a bed of fresh Parmesan creamed spinach and a mixture of roasted potatoes, onions, Andouille sausage and mushrooms and accompanied with two fried oysters, two fried shrimp, or one of each. The steak by itself was rather bland, but when combined with all the accoutrements it was much better.

The 16 oz. Boneless Ribeye was cooked to a perfect medium, and was served with the same accoutrements as the above filet, but once again, it was bland and lacked any flavor, a real shame for USDA prime cuts .

The main dining room at Slate’s.

On Saturday’s they have various live bands that range from Jazz to New Orleans style Zydeco music.

Overall, we really liked slates. The appetizers were awesome, the drinks amazing, and most of the entrees were very good. I just can't figure out the lack of seasoning on their meat, especially USDA Prime steaks that are in the $32.00 to $40.00 range.

It is worth noting they offer a variety of steak toppings or sauces such as Bernaise, Marchand de Vin, Worcestershire, Creamy Horseradish and Gorgonzola. Maybe I'm just a steak snob...good steaks need no extras.

Slate’s is open Tuesday to Saturday from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Sunday they are open for brunch from 10:30 am to 2:00 pm., they are closed on Monday.

Slates Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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SOBEWFF Releases 18th Annual Program With More Than 100 Events for 2019

13th Street & Ocean Drive
Miami Beach FL, 33139
View Website Here

The Festival Returns to EAT. DRINK. EDUCATE inn February 2019 -

Widely recognized as one of America’s most prestigious gourmet gatherings, the Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival (SOBEWFF®) returns for its 18th annual edition February 20 – 24, 2019.

The five-day, star-studded Festival is composed of an unprecedented line up of more than 100 events spanning Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties. To date, the Festival has raised more than $28 million in support of its mission to EAT. DRINK. EDUCATE. with the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management at Florida International University. 

“We are excited to unveil the 100-plus events we have planned to our passionate fans and partners,” said Festival founder and director Lee Brian Schrager, who also serves as senior vice president, communications & corporate social responsibility for Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. “With a variety of new offerings and the return of the specially-curated CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series, the 18th annual edition of the Festival is our most robust event line up yet.”

Kicking off the 2019 Festival, as well as the featured CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series, will be a dinner hosted by Donatella Arpaia, PJ Calapa and Michael Chavez.

The series continues throughout the Festival with:

-Dinner hosted by Anne Burrell and Angelo Elia

-Dinner hosted by Elizabeth Karmel and Martina McBride

-Clambake hosted by Alex Guarnaschelli and Jorge Ramos

-Rock ‘n Roll hosted by Adam Richman

-The Great DOCG Wines of Italy Wine Seminar presented by Bank of America

-Drag Brunch hosted by Alex Carr and Elvis Duran, in collaboration with PRIDE Fort Lauderdale

-Sunset Spritz Party hosted by Valerie Bertinelli

-A Siren’s Soirée: Dinner hosted by Paula DaSilva & Friends

-Cajun-Cooking Master Class & Lunch hosted by Sam & Cody Carroll

-Bloody Mary Brunch hosted by Jeff Mauro & Geoffrey Zakarian

The Festival’s iconic white tents nestled on the sands of Miami Beach will once again house returning and reimagined fan-favorite tastings. The Goya Foods’ Grand Tasting Village featuring Mastercard Grand Tasting Tents & Culinary Demonstrations takes place on Saturday, February 23rd and Sunday, February 24th.

Signature evening offerings begin on Thursday, February 21st with Italian Bites on the Beach sponsored by HCP Media and the Miami Herald Media Company hosted by Giada De Laurentiis, and continue Friday, February 22nd at the Heineken Light Burger Bash presented by Schweid & Sons hosted by David Burtka & Neil Patrick Harris.

The party keeps going on Saturday, February 23rd at the Beachside BBQ hosted by Guy Fieri, which will feature special musical performances from Cassadee Pope and Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real. Closing out the weekend on Sunday, February 24 is BACARDÍ’s Beach Carnival hosted by Andrew Zimmern. 

Brand-new events taking place at the 2019 Festival include:

-Bites & Beats on the River hosted by Adam Richman

-Wine & Cheese Happy Hour hosted by Martha Stewart

-Taste Jamaica hosted by Cindy Hutson & Delius Shirley

-Mangia After Dark hosted by Marc Murphy

-Rosé Pool Party hosted by Geoffrey Zakarian

-Sunset Stone Crab hosted by Emeril Lagasse

-Plus, an array of new Master Class experiences covering a variety of carefully-curated topics!

Other notable 2019 Festival highlights include:

Family-friendly events taking place during the Festival will once again include Fun and Fit as a Family featuring Goya Foods Kidz Kitchen and the Family Ice Cream Social hosted by Buddy Valastro, plus Nulo Pet Food’s Yappie Hour hosted by Katie Lee. Fitness-focused offerings return with Bootcamp & Bites hosted by Robert Irvine and Buddhas & Bellinis.

Fans will continue to be satiated by the return of other popular events, including Tacos After Dark hosted by Michael Symon, Oyster Bash hosted by Josh Capon, Chicken Coupe hosted by Andrew Carmellini, Southern Kitchen Brunch hosted by Trisha Yearwood, Goya Foods’ Swine & Wine hosted by Eileen Andrade and Fernando Desa, and featured Wine Spectator Wine Seminars presented by Bank of America.

A plethora of intimate dinner experiences hosted by some of the country’s most celebrated, critically-acclaimed chefs will accent this year’s events, featuring renowned talent like Floyd Cardoz, Scott Conant, Rocco DiSpirito, Bobby Flay, Tyler Florence, Evan Funke, Barbara Lynch, Adam Perry Lang, Angie Mar, Michael Mina, Charles Phan, Fabio Trabocchi, Michael White, and many more.

The Festival’s annual Tribute Dinner presented by Bank of America part of The NYT Cooking Dinner Series at Loews Miami Beach will honor two pioneers of the food and beverage industry on Saturday, February 23rd. The acclaimed chef and restaurateur Nancy Silverton and Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery chief executive officer Rhonda Carano will be honored with revered author, editor and former restaurant critic Ruth Reichl serving as the evening’s master of ceremonies.

A complete line up of 2019 events can be found online at, and by following along with the hashtag #SOBEWFF on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

SAVE THE DATE: The exclusive Mastercard pre-sale for the 2019 Festival has already begun online at or by calling (877)-762-3933 (phone sales open Monday – Friday, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM EST). 

Between SOBEWFF® and its sister NYCWFF, which takes place each October in New York City, more than $39 million has been raised to benefit the respective charities for each Festival. Beyond the funds raised, both Festivals draw attention to the vibrant dining culture in their respective cities, provide economic stimulus in their communities, and serve as an invaluable platform to drive awareness, engaging and inspiring people to get involved in philanthropic activities.

Essentia is the official premium water sponsor at this year’s festival, and they’ll be at various events throughout the festival and will have a booth presence Friday through Sunday with a DJ, their ionized alkaline water and coupons.
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Castaway's Sports Bar and Grill

504 N Alafaya Trail
Suite 102
Orlando, FL 32828
(407) 377-5895
View Website Here

Taking over the old Buffalo Wild Wings Location on Alafaya Trail in 2017, is Castaway’s Sports bar & Grill, A beach themed sports bar and grill with an outstanding food and liquor menu.

They are not a corporate chain like the former tenants, as they are locally owned and operated. The owner, Andrew grew up loving the beaches in Jupiter, and like many of their staff members came to Orlando to attend the University of Central Florida. He also had a dream of owning a Bar and Grill.

Castaway’s is a beach themed sports bar and grill with 37 HD 65" flat screen TV's, 6 HD 110" projection screens with 20 plus specialty drinks and signature cast iron cooked seafood and build your own burgers.

The menu here has plenty of options with a variety of seafood appetizers, onion rings, tots, wings, burgers, sandwiches, tacos and daily specials with a pretty decent cocktail menu.

Much of the overall design from the BW's days is still in tact, but with an Island Vibe and a more focused menu that includes way more than just wings. In addition to keeping the TV’s they added some pool tables and a saltwater aquarium at the bar.

The Island Smoked Fish Dip with wild caught Mahi hot smoked, jalapenos and club crackers was really good.

Mango Pineapple Mojito on the left with Captain Morgan Coconut Rum, and a Florida Mule on the right with Deep Eddy Orange Vodka. We also had a Category 5 Hurricane here that pretty much knocked me on my ass. All Cocktails were strong and delicious.

For $6.00 on the late night menu at Castaway’s, you can get these volcano strips with a variety of sauces and some really good tots....this is a great option if you plan on drinking more and eating less, as its plenty for 1 person.

Wilson's Beer and Cheese Bacon Dog is a half pound dog served on a sub roll covered in beer Cheese and Bacon. We got the Onion Rings for an up charge at an additional $1.29 as our side.

The Philly Cheesesteak here is made with hand shaved Angus beef Ribeye, loaded with caramelized onions, sauteed mushrooms, sweet peppers and jalapenos drizzled with beer cheese and topped with provolone. A bit different than a traditional Philly, but good nonetheless, and the sweet potato waffle fries were excellent.

The Bar at Castaway’s has plenty of alcohol to make the cocktail magic happen, and plenty of TV’s so you never miss a moment.

Pool Tables are an addition to the original Buffalo Wild Wings spot that Castaway’s took over, and I think they are a good addition.

Castaway’s is open from 11:00 am to 2:00 am everyday of the week, and they have daily specials like $12.99 all you can eat wings on Wednesday and a daily happy hour and late night menu with reduced prices on select items.

We will definitely return here and try some wings and other menu items and look forward to their continued success.

Castaway’s Sports Bar and Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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