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Feb 24, 2007 06:50 PM

Help...It's going to be my birthday and I don't want to cry!

My husband and I are coming down to Orlando for a week's vacation. Lots planned -- Epcot, the Mets, the Yankees, Kennedy Space Center, golf and on and on. We're psyched. We've rented a condo in Kissimmee and we will have a rental car. We're not at all adverse to driving around. It's interesting...unless the traffic is terrible.

I've done a lot of searching on the board...thanks to all those who post! Le Coq Au Vin for French or may be La Crepe; lots of great choices for BBQ, and the Vietnamese choices look great too. I still haven't settled on any place for Italian tho Enzo's on the Lake has some interest. And sushi at the Hyatt. Still looking for a zing-y fried chicken place.

In general we like local-type places and not chains. I had pretty well set my mind to go to Maison et Jardin for my b'day in the middle of the week but I just read that it's closed now except for special functions. I don't want an extravaganza like V&A or Emerils. There's lots of that here in NYC. I just want a romantic, quiet restaurant with good food where I can have a feel good birthday celebration. Driving is fine. Close by is fine. All suggestions are greatly appreciated.

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  1. seasons 52, Roy's, christini's, chez vincents, manuels on 28th all seem to have reviews where romance and quiet go along with great food and service......

    1. A couple of others are Normans at the Ritz Carlton which might fit the bill as it is away from the hustle and bustle.......expensive though. Venetian room is also good but a little more formal...kind of like "Maison Jar".

      1. How about a trip to Animal Kingdom Lodge's Jiko restaurant. Call ahead and find out what time their animal feedings are. I think that, for a fee or maybe it's free, you can accompany the staff out to feed the animals. The building itself is really incredible, like being in some huge old African lodge. The grounds are wonderful, and the restaurant is exceptional, very intimate. It's a little on the pricey side so you won't have to worry about being there with a gazillion rugrats. They are at the buffet upstairs. You won't find a place like this in New York. Here's a web site, scroll down to read reviews of the restaurant:

        1 Reply
        1. re: Tandoori Girl

          I believe you have to be a guest of the hotel and staying on the concierge floor to sign up for the savanah tour, but you can stand on the observation deck and view the animals for free. I agree with the Jiko or even better they may like Boma.

        2. Jiko's (Don't know Boma) sounds a little too extravaganza to me. That's what I'm really trying to avoid. That and the corporate scene. I checked out the Seasons 52 website and that seems to be a chain and a little corporate too. I've been to Roy's here in NY and didn't like it - although my niece loves it. I felt it was really expensive AND they rushed us through dinner. I'm really looking for quiet, good and low key. So far Chez Vincent's sounds the most interesting. Better - nicer (??) than Le Coq au Vin? Or else Manuel's on 28th. Does my husband need a jacket there?

          1. Chez Vincent is a little more romantic than Le Coq Au Vin, which has attained landmark status here, mostly because oof its longevity and the convivial nature of Chef Perotte -- especially to other chefs.

            I think his food is a smidge better than Chez Vincent, but on any given night either would be a winner.Le Coq Au Vin is closer than Chez Vincet as well.

            This is Florida. Only two place I know of require jackets, V&A and Norman's, and you'll likely see jeans, flip flops, ball caps and all manner of inapproprate attire in nearly any restauaant you visit. Slacks and an nice polo or print short are perfect anywhere you go.

            Jiko is perhaps the least "corporate" Disney restaurant I can think of, and the menu is quite different.


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