Lunch near Orlando
Will be driving from Miami to Tallahassee next week and would like to have lunch near Orlando and environs. Taking the Fla Turnpike, so would not like to travel too much afar from the Tpk.
Would prefer good seafood restaurant or local restaurant with good lunch menu. Price should be moderate. A few suggestions would be appreciated, since we will be returning the following week and plan to have lunch on our return trip near the Orlando area again.
Have been advised that there are a few good seafood restaurants about 20 minutes away from the Turnpike (ie, High Tide Harry's, Boston Fish House) but I would not like to stray that far away from Turnpike if we do not have to..
Anything decent and closer to the Turnpike?
First, I have two thoughts, we'll see how the list weighs in on them.
1) Orlando has plenty of good restaurants that offer nice seafood selections or daily seafood specials, but with Orlando being as inland as you can get in FL, most "seafood" restaurants in the Orlando Metro are local or national chains. (Miami, Tampa, Jax, Daytona, and the smaller coastal towns offer lots of great local seafood restaurants for a moderate price.)
2) The Turnpike cuts through the Orlando Metro Metro at I-4, south of Downtown and north of the attractions, which can be somewhat limiting if you are wanting less than a 20 minute drive at lunchtime. (lots of traffic!) On that note, High Tide Harry's will be more than 20 minutes from the turnpike, esp. at lunchtime.
Recommendations factoring in the above:
1-4 at Conroy (outside of the mall of Millenia) is close to the Turnpike and offers lots of options, all with seafood. The Village Tavern has great mussels and their Grouper Hemingway is good.
Here is the mall listing, which has a McCormick & Schmick's Seafood which is open for lunch.
Cityfish is downtown (further than Conroy but much closer than HTH and better food.
Graze has a great menu and when I've been there for lunch the specials were fish, I'm sure you can call to see if fish is being offered. I've had fresh Mahi-Mahi specials there twice for lunch, wonderful!
It's the lunch hour that causes the problems. There are plenty of good seafood restaurants five to ten minutes from the Turnpike exit -- Ocean Prime, The Oceanaire, Moonfish -- but they're dinner-only spots.
Winechic's recommendation for McCormick & Schmick's is a good one. Cityfish, too, though it's a hike from the pike. For my taste, High Tide Harry's isn't far enough away.