Downtown Orlando has not always had the best culinary rap, but if you look around, there are tons of local eateries making waves. Most of these restaurants make it their mission to cater to both the business day traffic in the city and the late night crew looking to enjoy the night.
Another strength is the diversity of food options that are offered downtown. From classic American food to Spanish, here is our list of the downtown Orlando eateries you should have tried by now.
Restaurants In The Central Business District
Waitiki on Wall Street offers tacos, flatbreads, burgers, and sandwiches to the lunch or dinner crowd breezing by Wall Street. A highlight of the menu is the Kimchi Burger, made with house-ground chuck, house kimchi, pepper jack cheese, radish, pickles, pickled red onions, bacon and sesame-chili mayo.
Waitiki also has a snack menu that is headlined by their eight wings, tossed in either buffalo, soy garlic or bbq sauce. They also have three varieties of spuds which are waffle fries topped with either bacon and cheese, pizza toppings or buffalo chicken.
Fuzzy's Taco Shop is a new entrant to the downtown scene in an area that has a variety of establishments popping up. They originally started in Fort Worth, Texas in 2003 and have spread their Baja tacos, chips and guac and frozen margaritas across the country.
Fuzzy's has other Tex-Mex favorites like burritos, burrito bowls, and enchiladas on the menu. They are the perfect place to check out if you are looking for a new lunch spot during the week or a place to dine in before heading out for the evening.
Dapper Duck is a favorite bar for downtown partygoers, but their menu also delivers. They have a healthy list of handhelds to choose from and also some main entrees like the roasted half chicken, skirt steak, and short ribs.
One of the best things on the menu is the mix and match burrito bowl that allows you to choose your protein and two sides. The Dapper Wings are also available naked or breaded, with four different sauces and two rubs to choose from.
Elixir Orlando is another local watering hole that also has excellent food. The lunch crowd loves their jerk chicken, chimichurri chicken, chicken pesto and grilled blackened mahi sandwiches.
Elixir also has succulent, meaty wings that they serve in quantities of 8, 12 and 20. This bar is the perfect downtown Orlando restaurant spot to enjoy during football season and order a host of their most-loved creations.
Artisan's Table is a restaurant committed to infusing their menu with local, seasonal ingredients. Their American contemporary cuisine is crafted around whatever is fresh.
Try entrees like the Honey Seared Duck Breast, Shrimp Cavatapi or the Pork Osso Buco. They have daily specials and for the rest of June, their Bite30 menu allows people to enjoy a three-course dinner for $30.
DoveCote is beloved by all those working in the Bank of America building. The downstairs brasserie has some French staples on the menu and other items that are not as adventurous.
DoveCote has a raw bar with a variety of oysters, clams, and shellfish. They regularly work to pare their wine, beer, and cocktail program perfectly with the food they serve.
Super Rico Colombian Bistro is the perfect example of the Latin culinary influence that is sweeping through Central Florida. People have raved about their Colombian burgers since they opened the late-night food truck, Que Rico.
They also have other delicacies like petacon, arepica and steak and chicken platters. Super Rico is also open for breakfast during the week, making it a great stop-off before you head into work.
Beth's Burger Bar is one of the best places to get a burger in Orlando. You can create your own burger by choosing the size, toppings and sauces.
Beth's also has very creative signature burgers like The Peanut Butter Burger, the Western Burger and the Black Jack Burger. They have a variety of sides and serve a few other items like chicken sandwiches and wings.
Latin Square Cuisine prides itself on providing the downtown business crowd with fast service and fresh Latin flavor. They start the day with a very affordable breakfast menu with things like breakfast sandwiches and bagels.
At lunchtime, people flock to Latin Square Cuisine for their house specials that can be served with one or two sides. Those specials include oven roasted chicken, shredded pork, Cuban-style shredded beef, and tilapia.
The lunch menu has the Daily Chef Features: Pizza Monday, Taco Tuesday, Wellness Wednesday, Sandwich Thursday and Fish Fry-day. Sundays are the highlight of the week with the brunch featuring specialty chef's stations, a la carte side items, and unlimited mimosas.
Restaurants In The Church Street District
El Buda Latin Asian Restaurant is one of Orlando's more unique fusion concepts. Iron Chef champion Chef Trevino is the mastermind behind this spot, which is one of the newest to open on Church St.
El Buda mixes flavors on dim sum dishes like the pork, sweet plantain dumplings, and Peking duck nachos. Their main menu also has innovative creations like Grilled Churrasco with Ho Fun Noodles and Chicken Chicharron with Lo Mein Noodles.
Hamburger Mary's can certainly hang with Beth's Burger Bar on a list of the best burgers in Orlando. They have 12 different gourmet 100% all beef burgers that are served with a side.
Hamburger Mary's also makes their burgers with vegetarian, turkey or chicken breast patties. They are known as much for their food as they are for their entertaining drag shows, which is a staple of special dinner events and the Sunday Broadway Brunch.
Ceviche Tapas Bar & Restaurant has been an Orlando date-night favorite for years, so if you have not been here, you are missing out! There are over 100 different Spanish tapas dishes to choose from.
Ceviche also has a variety of paella dishes available. On Tuesdays, they run various specials on their tapas offerings.
Pepe's Cantina has an original location in Winter Park and they brought their popular traditional Tex-Mex food to downtown a few years ago. The lunch menu has affordable fajitas, quesadillas, chimichangas, and enchiladas.
There are also XXL burritos, tacos, burgers and more available on the menu. On Tuesdays, come in and dine on $2.99 tacos, $1.99 tequila and $2.99 Tecate beer.
Kres Chophouse is downtown's premier steakhouse and the place for special occasions. Dine on delicious cuts of meat and enjoy other carefully crafted entrees.
Kres has a lunch menu with sandwiches and burgers as well. Make sure to grab a drink from their well-regarded bar or sip on a glass of wine from their extensive list as well.
The Rusty Spoon is also elevating the Church St. dining experience. Kathleen Blake is a James Beard Award-nominated chef and she presides over the farm-to-table restaurant.
The Rusty Spoon has a regularly rotating menu of handhelds, pasta dishes and main courses like the Jamison Farm Lamb Shank. People also swear by something as simple as their Haystack Fries.
Schumann's Jager Haus has been providing downtown with an outlet for German food since 2013. They serve up a variety of tasty sausages and schnitzels in addition to other German standards.
On Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, Schumann's has $8.95 lunch specials. They also have a healthy selection of German beers.
Restaurants In The Thornton Park District
Truck Stop took over the former space that Graffiti Junktion was in and created their pop-up kitchen. They are all about local businesses and regularly collaborate with local chefs and food trucks on special pop-up nights.
Truck Stop also has their own signature menu with burgers, sandwiches, and wraps. They also have brunch on the weekends from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays.
The Stubborn Mule partners with local farmers, fisheries, and businesses. They have some unique sandwiches like the Mr. Burnstein, that features a 6 oz flat iron steak with melted ghost pepper jack cheese, caramelized onions, bacon mayo on a toasted brioche bun.
The Stubborn Mule offers starters, salads, flatbreads, burgers and other entrees as well. Try their pork osso buco, a 10 oz braised pork shank served over smoked gouda grits, sauteed zucchini, and cherry tomatoes and finished with a fig crema.
Shari Sushi Lounge is the standard-bearer when it comes to downtown sushi spots. They have been in business since 2003, providing quick service and fresh ingredients to their customers.
Shari is particularly known for their great happy hour specials. They price a variety of their rolls at $5-$6 and also offer $5 specials on drinks.
Soco Restaurant has their own contemporary spin on Southern classics. Their menu of main courses includes dishes like Grilled Meatloaf on Lobster Mashed Potatoes, Handmade Smoked Black Eyed Pea Ravioli and Pecan-Crusted Florida Snapper.
SoCo is a popular spot for the Sunday brunch crowd as well. They offer daily specials that change weekly to always keep things fresh.
Maxine's on Shine is the definition of a neighborhood restaurant. They offer dinner service throughout the week and are a very popular spot for their Saturday and Sunday brunch.
For brunch, try their fried green tomatoes or cajun lumberjack omelet. Maxine's was recently granted the permission to serve liquor too, making them even more of a destination for your boozy brunch or evening out.
Downtown Orlando Restaurants Near Lake Eola
310 Lakeside is the perfect place to sit down and have either an intimate meal or a great celebration. They have a menu of contemporary American cuisine and a full bar available.
310 Lakeside also has an exceptional late night menu with appetizers, salads, and sandwiches. Their Saturday and Sunday brunch offers unlimited mimosas and is an area favorite.
Relax Grill is set in a fun environment right across from Lake Eola. They have an extensive lunch specials menu, where for $10 you can have one of their sandwiches, wraps and burgers, french fries or a Greek salad and a fountain drink.
The Meditteranean-American concept has dishes like kabobs, gyros, and stir-fry as well. It is the perfect place to enjoy an afternoon or evening watching people around the lake while taking in the natural scenery.
Pizza @ Lake Eola is not your typical pizza joint. They make custom pizzas in 120 seconds and millions of combinations can be made from their robust list of toppings.
If creativity is not your thing, Pizza @ also has ten different signature pizzas to choose from. They have salads, calzones, strombolis, and wings on the menu as well.
World of Beer is where most people go to sample a wide variety of beers, but this Lake Eola location also has a full-service menu. They serve lunch and dinner and have a variety of flatbreads, handhelds, and tacos available.
Their shareables menu is highlighted by the giant Bavarian pretzel that comes with house-made stone ground mustard and the brown ale beer cheese can be added on. WOB has some fun weekly specials, like $5 Burgers Mondays and Tuesday Tacos.
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