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Orlando Travel Guide

The 10 Best Restaurants in Orlando

You might be surprised by the breadth and depth of Orlando’s cuisine scene.

If your idea of Orlando dining is of the fast food Turkey Leg, Dole Whip, and Butter Beer variety of the theme parks, you’ve got a lot to learn about this city brimming with innovative chefs, Michelin-starred restaurants, and unassuming haunts, too, that go all in on flavor and fusion.

From fine dining spots at five-star resorts near Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando that have earned their Michelin stars to hideaways in the city’s Mills 50 district–a hotbed for Southeast Asian and omakase–it’s all about being surprised by the breadth and depth of Orlando’s cuisine scene.

Make sure to depart the tourist corridor for restaurant hopping in leafy downtown neighborhoods like Thornton Park and College Park, which harbor a far more local scene. Set your sights on the tony lake-lined nearby town of Winter Park, too, where pedestrian-friendly Park Avenue has vibes that feel borderline European and is lined with great little cafes, bars, and boutiques.

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WHERE: Lake Eola Heights

Filipino cuisine doesn’t catch the spotlight nearly as often as Thai, Vietnamese, and other Asian cuisines. So we love that there’s a delicious spot to try it at this casual restaurant in Orlando’s Mills 50 neighborhood. By the same owners as Japanese heavy hitter, Kadence, Kaya blends fresh Florida ingredients with the owners’ love for Filipino food in a menu that changes daily and might feature dishes like mung bean noodles with mushroom jus, pork belly sliders with puto cakes (steamed rice cakes) and adobo risotto. A pretty little outdoor patio and garden bring the regulars for karaoke and Filipino barbecue nights.

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WHERE: Winter Park

It’s always fun to stroll the boutiques and cafes lining pretty Park Avenue in Winter Park, a tony suburb (and town of its own) just north of downtown Orlando. If you only have time for one meal here, make it Prato, where chef Brandon McGlamery, who did a stint at French Laundry, does wonders with cacio e pepe and wood-fired, Italian-inspired cooking. The bar is a perfect spot for solo diners to blend in with the buzz, and there’s a scattering of outdoor tables on the Avenue for peeping passersby on a balmy Florida night. Among the many delicious dishes given the open-fire treatment at Prato are the veal meatballs, ground in-house and served atop polenta made extra creamy with mascarpone, and the excellent Neapolitan-style pizzas.

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Selam Ethiopian

WHERE: Williamsburg

Don’t let the dull strip mall surroundings uninspire you at this excellent Ethiopian restaurant hidden away in a hotel corridor near SeaWorld. Selam Ethiopian and Eritrean Cuisine bring a taste of the Horn of Africa to Central Florida through authentic Ethiopian and Eritrean dishes that blaze with spice, color, and flavor like the marinated beef dish called Gored Gored and the spicy legume melange called Tegabino Shiro, best scooped up with the delicious injera bread. Finish your meal with a steaming cup of Ethiopian herb for a soothing finish to all that heady spice.

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Knife & Spoon

WHERE: The Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes

The name of this fine dining steak and seafood restaurant inside The Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes references the spoon lure on a fishing rig. Flopping-fresh seafood is one of the stars at Chef John Tesar’s Knife & Spoon, awarded its first Michelin star in 2022, whether you’re ordering the diver scallops, local whole fish, hamachi, or lobster tail. For the landlubbers at the table, the Wagyu flat iron steak and ribeye from Texas’ celebrated 44 Farms are surefire favorites. Side dishes stick with steakhouse standards–think sauteed mushrooms, tempura onion rings, creamed spinach, and mac and cheese. But that only lets the surf and turf stars take the spotlight all the more–right where they rightfully belong.

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WHERE: Four Seasons Resort Orlando

For a romantic date night within easy reach of the theme parks but in a setting that feels like a world apart, make for the 17th floor of the Four Seasons Resort Orlando and Capa, another of Orlando’s Michelin-starred establishments, open for dinner only. The Spanish-inspired steakhouse offers tapas and raciones (slightly larger portions) that make it easy to sample different dishes, including things like the pulpo a la Gallega, beer-brined pork belly, and perfectly thin slices of the famed, acorn-fed Jamon Iberico. Parilla dishes, cooked on an open fire, include an incredible 40-day wet-aged bone-in ribeye from a North Carolina farm, a Wagyu flight (with American, Japanese, and Australian options), and cobia with a roasted tomato garlic ragu. For the best view of the nightly theme park fireworks, ask to reserve a table on the outdoor terrace.

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WHERE: Winter Park

One of Orlando’s most coveted bar seats (there are only ten) awaits at this Winter Park omakase star that received its first Michelin star in 2022. Soseki’s “chef’s choice” menu buts a modern spin on one of Japan’s most celebrated culinary traditions while spotlighting Florida terroir both in what’s on the plate (fresh seafood and artfully prepared vegetables) and the plates themselves, some of which are crafted by Florida artisans and are there own tiny little works of art. The roughly 15-course meals are proffered by the chefs behind the counter and served as soon as they’re ready, leaving it to you to grab and try them, creating an informal and intimate experience. That’s just the vibe that keeps regular diners coming back here compared to more formal omakase spots in town.

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The Ravenous Pig

WHERE: Winter Park

Orlando’s most beloved gastropub is this neighborhood spot in Winter Park with an outdoor beer garden and arguably the tastiest steak frites in Florida (porcini marinated New York strip, garlic aioli, and truffle fries for the win). The Ravenous Pig’s come-as-you-are vibe makes it as popular for a date night as it is among families. If you’re a beer lover, you’ll be into the small-batch craft brews concocted on-site. The restaurant is the brainchild of Julie and James Petrakis, Culinary Institute of America grads behind other restaurants in town, including quick-service favorite, The Polite Pig, at Disney Springs. Solo diners gravitate to a long communal table in the restaurant’s Taproom here, while the main dining area mixes white linen tablecloths with industrial decor for something a little more polished.

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Kabooki Sushi

WHERE: Downtown Orlando & Sand Lake

James Beard finalist Best Chef: South, Henry Moso, one of Orlando’s most celebrated chefs, is at the helm of this contemporary Japanese restaurant with two Orlando outposts (downtown Orlando and the Sand Lake area, closer to theme parks). Fresh fish is sourced from Tokyo’s Toyosu market and nearer waters and top-notch purveyors, too. You’ll never go wrong ordering nigiri of whatever fish is the freshest of the season, perhaps king salmon or Japanese amberjack, but the chef will surely let you know. Kabooki Sushi offers omakase menus as well as nigiri sashimi, makimono sushi rolls, and more. It’s a whole experience, whatever you’re ordering, so settle in and enjoy.

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Bombay Street Kitchen

WHERE: Sky Lake

This casual street food-inspired Indian restaurant was awarded a Bib Gourmand from Michelin inspectors. And if you’ve got a hankering for spice and serious flavor, Bombay Street Kitchen will transport you to the streets of Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, and Mumbai with dishes like bharwan mirch pakora (chilis stuffed with pureed potato) and the super spicy tandoori dish called hara teekha murgh tikka. Come for the kind of super authentic dishes you won’t find at just any Indian restaurant outside of the Subcontinent.


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WHERE: JW Marriott Orlando, Grande Lakes

Orlando’s finest upscale Italian fare draws locals and visitors to this organic-driven yet unfussy restaurant inside the JW Marriott Orlando, Grande Lakes. James Beard award-winning chef Melissa Kelly is behind the magic at Primo, where you’re best off ordering family-style to ensure you get to sample as much as possible from this very inspired menu of Tuscan offerings. Many of the ingredients are house grown and all of the seafood served at Primo–things like Cedar Key clams and Cape Canaveral shrimp, squid, and grouper, to start– comes from Florida’s rich waters. Menu standouts include the pork belly and scallops with sheep’s milk polenta and the grilled octopus with pecan romesco sauce made with charred tomatoes.