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Jan 28, 2007 05:21 PM

Thai and Chinese Recs for Orlando and Tampa?

Baltimore hound looking for Thai and Chinese recommendations for Orlando and Tampa... have been reading the many recommendation requests for Orlando area, but haven't seen a lot with regard to Thai and Chinese.

Siesta Key/Sarasota recommendation welcome as well! We are anxiously looking forward to eating at the Beach Bistro again in Holmes Beach :). Probably will hit Delfrisco's in Winter Park.

We also really like Cajun/Creole - have heard some decent things about Jackamo's New Orleans. We are really willing to drive just about anywhere!


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  1. Look on Jockamo's website. They are having crawfish boils on the weekends, but you should call them to see what the specials are. If I am in Orlando I usually have to stop there.

    I also recommend Cherry Pockets in Lake Wales.

    1. Check out Thailand Restaurant, 5252 S Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa.

      1. My favorite chinese in Tampa is China Yuan. It is a block and a half north of Waters Ave. on Armenia.


        1. Thanks a bunch for the recommendations! Anything else? Thai in Orlando perhaps?

          1. One of Central Florida's restaurant weak links is Thai & Chinese food, so don't raise your expectations too high.

            Personal favorite Thai in Orlando is Napasorn, downtown. I like the food, but love the upscale, French-feeling decor and the service.

            Tasty Thai on Curry Food is pretty good everyday, as is the Thai Cafe on Magnolia Downtown. Royal Thai at Semoran and Old Cheney Highway is a bit pricier, but usually good.

            Can't speak from experience but Red Bamboo on Kirkman also gets high recommendations from those who have eaten there.

            Three Orlando Chines favorites are small, family operations. Tasty Wok is on Shine at Colonial Drive, Magic Wok is out on Conroy-Windermere Road near Turkey Lake and, for the best dim sun around, Ming's Bistro 1 block east of Mills and north of Colonial.
            Winnie's on Orange just off 17-92 is OK and the Cantonese style seafood at China Marketplace is pretty good.



            6 Replies
            1. re: Bob Mervine

              What happened to Winnies that it is now just OK? I thought it was very good, as it is in you book. Has it gone down hill? That's too bad cause I always wanted to get out there but just haven't yet.

              By the way I was looking through your book lately and a few tears were almost shed. As you say, the restaurant biz is volatile, and though the book is only 1-2 years old several restaurants in there have already bit the dust. Perhaps I could start a thread that is a bit of a rehash of the book and lists all the now gone restaurants/ or those that no longer meet approval and possible substitutions. I know that Annelle and Hugo (?) is gone and that Alfonso's Pizza in College Park is no longer the same. Examples like that. It's all unfortunate because I never got out to either of those.

              1. re: frienetic

                Excellent question, and one that gives me pause. I have to say it is less that Winnie's has gone downhill, as I had dinner there within the last month and it remains stalwart, but perhaps that I have discovered some newer and better places.

                Winnie's charm, above all, is what makes it good. Her presence, the little rock garden alcove, the lamb, the eggplant with garlic, the traditional three course Peking duck still remain. Our tastes change and, I suppose, it depends on what people are looking for. I would continue to include her in any updated version of the book.

                At last count, there are only 5 out of 93 that are gone and 11 on the edge of going. I think, in three years, that's pretty good.And I am working on winnowing 30 restaurants down to fill those spaces.

                You mention Anaelle & Hugo -- I must mention the restaurant that has replaced it. It is called Jeffery's and I had an absolutely wonderful meal there last week. This one is a comer. The chef, Corey Fair, is an alumni of Landry's and a ton of restaurants, did an outstanding job with some lamb carpaccio and some of the best veal cheeks I've ever eaten. They have totally redone the room, making it warm and welcoming and, while still young, the service shows promise. A bit pricey, but I think they are finding their way in the neighborhood.

                Your thoughts about the book are kind. However, in honesty, I defer to the board, to Jim Leff and to the keepers. I am not comfortable even bringing the book up on this website -- I don't believe it is appropriate to the board. I'm glad to answer questions, here or ofline, but I defer to the founders and their purpose for creating this board.


              2. re: Bob Mervine

                Sorry for the late report back - we actually were not able to try any of these recs during our 1st trip earlier this year, but was able to try Napasorn Thai last night - very pleased. We had the Spring Rolls and Chicken Satay for appetizers, followed by the Pineapple Chicken (quite spicy!) and Shrimp Pad Thai - all of which exceeded our expectations.

                We also visited the Dessert Lady afterwards and had a fantastic experience. What a great place!

                Also - thanks for the Tu Tu Tango recommendation(s) - we will definitely be returning there as well!

                1. re: pittpanther

                  For those doing a search on "Thai in Orlando," I wanted to add my two cents. The best thai food in Orlando is Thai Thani. It is on the corner of International Drive and Central Florida Parkway, near SeaWorld. The owner is a retired official with the Thai government, and is passionate about using the restaurant to promote Thai culture. The service is great and the menu is extensive, including the standard favorites. There is a large dining room, with entertainment on the weekends.

                  1. re: pittpanther

                    tasty wok and ming's bistro are both great choices, may i also recommend golden lotus near sand lake and john young. they have amazing dim sum and traditional chinese dishs altho a bit out of the way for most folks.

                  2. re: Bob Mervine

                    We also ate at Napasorn on a girls night out and loved the food and the service.