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Orlando Recomendations for non-hounds

cloudship Jan 31, 2009 06:09 PM

I have to entertain a few people in the Orlando Attractions area next week. These are non-gourmet types, non-adventurous and totally not into the chains (why are we even going to Disney???). They also do not like anything fancy, the plainer, more homestyle the better.

I have a car, but do not want to drive too far, so Downtown is out of the question. I am more than willing to get off the beaten path, though. Does anyone have any good ideas for something that is:

South of Millenium
not a chain (or very, very small chain)
rather plain, non-ethnic
But good simple cooking?

I know of the great food, well done fancy restaurants, I am trying to find that which I would normally never go to.


  1. s
    StephSky Feb 3, 2009 07:19 AM

    If you want some places in Disney parks here are some suggestions although nothing at the parks is really spectacular dining:
    Magic Kingdom - for sit down I would recommend the Liberty Tree Tavern (New England menu) or The Crystal Palace, which is a character buffet but the food is pretty decent.
    Epcot - this park is a little more challenging if you do not want ethnic since most restaurants are in the various countries. Try Coral Reef which is seafood with beautiful scenery, Garden Grill (may be character dining depending on when you eat), Rose & Crown is an English Pub or Canada's steak restaurant Le Cellier.
    Animal Kingdom - skip the dining! The only place I would recommend is Rain Forest which is a mediocre chain at best.
    Disney Hollywood Studios - 50's Prime Time Diner is old fashioned cooking and the waitstaff is great. The other 2 are Hollywood & Vine which is buffet or Brown Derby which is fair.
    At Disney's Boardwalk there is a good place called the Flying Fish Cafe which is mostly seafood and American Cuisine. It is also a nice place to walk around.
    The other place I would recommend is at Wilderness Lodge. There is Artist Point which is a little on the nicer side and my husband's favorite is Whispering Canyon Cafe which is family style but good food and a lot of fun.
    Celebration is an exit away and a little quaint with some cute little restaurants. I agree that the Town Tavern and Market Street Cafe are your best bets.

    3 Replies
    1. re: StephSky
      tommyvee Feb 3, 2009 09:49 AM

      My first thought was Rain Forest Cafe in Downtown Disney. Great atmosphere and safe food. Make sure you get reservations well in advance.

      Another option would be one of the buffet / all-you-can-eat places within Disney. Here's a list of all of them: http://allears.net/din/buffet.htm

      1. re: tommyvee
        cloudship Feb 3, 2009 02:37 PM

        We will probably do at least one Disney restaurant just for the experience, but outside of that I am hoping to get outside the parks a little. Not sure about the buffet idea. I know it makes no sense, but they are all about plain food but hate the idea of buffets, which to me always tend to be on the plain side.

        Are there any real diners in that area?

        Oh, another question - Biergarten. I have never eaten there, how is their food? I am sure that the names would sound a little intimmidating, but German Food is not exactly spicy. Is it really authentic, or is it the typical Disney frozen meals with an ehtnic name type of deal?

        1. re: cloudship
          mountdorahound Feb 4, 2009 06:10 AM

          Randy's is a Diner

    2. b
      BelleJo Jan 31, 2009 06:43 PM

      I'd recommend the Market Street Cafe in Celebration. It is an upscale diner and everything is fresh and homemade. They have excellent entree salads, great sandwiches as well as serving neutral dishes like meatloaf and turkey. They also have all day breakfast. Their prices are very reasonable. Although the link to a place address will say Kissimmee, they are actually in the nearby town of Celebration.

      Market Street Cafe
      701 Front St, Kissimmee, FL 34747

      3 Replies
      1. re: BelleJo
        kchurchill5 Jan 31, 2009 06:49 PM

        I second that, was there a couple of months I think ... ago. Was with a friend good food, low key, diner food basically but nice.

        1. re: kchurchill5
          Rona Gindin Feb 1, 2009 05:29 AM

          Right near Market Street Cafe, there's a good, reasonably priced New England-style seafood restaurant called Celebration Town Tavern. Great fried shimp, very casual.

          1. re: Rona Gindin
            mountdorahound Feb 2, 2009 08:48 AM

            Randy's on Hwy 27 at 192. This place is authentic southern home cookin and NOT a chain. Fried everything and good! macaroni and cheese good!

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