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Old 09-09-2010, 05:28 PM   #1
ChristaDeVil
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Non-Disney Restaurants that are worth your while!

Hey all! We're planning our April 2011 trip, and this is the first time I'm planning a "not complete Disney" trip. We are staying off-site for the first time (Cypress Palms), and we are going to venture out and do Sea World, maybe Universal, and some other things. We have used the Dining Plan for three years in a row, so we're excited to get away from the Mouse for our meals this time! We will be making some things in the condo, but are looking for some quality restaurants for dinners. We're two adults and one child (who will be 10 on the trip). We will eat pretty much anything...we're all a little adventurous when it comes to food. We like a really good steak every once in a while. We're looking for "normal" prices, but we would splurge a couple of times. What are your favorite Orlando "non-Disney" eats? I already know that we need to go to Sweet Tomatoes, so that's on our list. We're also thinking about heading over to Universal City Walk one night, so recommendations for there would be great, also!!!!! Thanks in advance!
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Old 09-09-2010, 05:36 PM   #2
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we are big fans of Bahama Breeze. Great steak, nice atmosphere, and only about a 10 minute drive across 192 and up 535 from Cypress Palms.
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Old 09-09-2010, 07:25 PM   #3
festivedaisy
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You may want to check out restaurant.com - I just bought gift certificates for Giordano's pizza and House of Blues (downtown Disney). Use code "touchdown" for 80% off.
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Old 09-09-2010, 08:00 PM   #4
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Oh, wow! Thanks for that, FestiveDaisy!
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Old 09-09-2010, 08:50 PM   #5
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You may want to check out restaurant.com - I just bought gift certificates for Giordano's pizza and House of Blues (downtown Disney). Use code "touchdown" for 80% off.
do you know if this offer is for Canadian also?
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Old 09-09-2010, 10:02 PM   #6
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A coupe of favorites along Sand Lake West near Dr Philips.

Seasons 52 has an outstanding menu based on seasonal ingredients and low calorie.

Also really enjoyed Cantina Laredo for Mexican, just off SLW on Via Dellagio.

Found both by reading the food section of the Orlando Sentinel newspaper (online). A great way to find out what the locals think is hot and worthwhile without sticking to the chains we all know.

M Ross
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Old 09-09-2010, 10:30 PM   #7
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As a local, you're going to have a better time offsite.

The sites below will point you to an array of prices, so check the restaurant websites. Pointe Orlando and Dr. Phillips will be in your Sea World / Universal area. Bahama Breeze is excellent, but go to the one on 535 not I-Drive.

Winter Park, Downtown / East Orlando, and even E. Colonial have some good offerings, but they're about 20-30 minutes away, and you should be prepared for some urban exposures in case that's not your thing.

You want to check the South Orlando, Dr. Phillips, I-Drive, Williamsburg, and Kissimmee / 192 areas which are all near enough to your hotel.

http://www.pointeorlando.com/

http://www.orlandomagazine.com/Orlan...Dining-Awards/

http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&ex...ed=0CEAQtQMwAw
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Old 09-09-2010, 11:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digskat View Post
do you know if this offer is for Canadian also?
It's for anybody. Go to their website and select the certificates for the restaurants that you want to visit. Then you create an account. You go to the checkout and input your credit card info. Then you print the certificates. You should also save a pdf copy on your computer.
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Old 09-10-2010, 05:31 AM   #9
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When we stayed at Marriott's Grande Vista in March (near Universal and right by Sea World) we ate late lunch our first day at the Outback Steakhouse right near there. I'm not usually a huge fan of this chain, but now am a convert! It was a delicious meal and very inexpensive (like $15 for a huge steak meal, and good cold inexpensive beer too). The meal was better than Le Cellier at a fraction of the cost. I forget the address, but you can look them up online maybe - definitely recommend it for dinner if you're at Sea World as it's very very close.

Have a great trip!
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:02 PM   #10
ChristaDeVil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pineapple Whip View Post
As a local, you're going to have a better time offsite.

The sites below will point you to an array of prices, so check the restaurant websites. Pointe Orlando and Dr. Phillips will be in your Sea World / Universal area. Bahama Breeze is excellent, but go to the one on 535 not I-Drive.

Winter Park, Downtown / East Orlando, and even E. Colonial have some good offerings, but they're about 20-30 minutes away, and you should be prepared for some urban exposures in case that's not your thing.

You want to check the South Orlando, Dr. Phillips, I-Drive, Williamsburg, and Kissimmee / 192 areas which are all near enough to your hotel.

http://www.pointeorlando.com/

http://www.orlandomagazine.com/Orlan...Dining-Awards/

http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&ex...ed=0CEAQtQMwAw
Thanks Pineapple Whip! What great links!!!! My husband and I are getting more and more excited about exploring outside of what my husband refers to as "the grasp of the Giant White Mouse Hand".
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:07 PM   #11
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I used to live in Orlando, so there's a couple of places we always have to go back to. One is Chevys, a Tex-Mex chain. We've eaten at Chevy's all over and I have to give huge kudos to the location at Crossroads, just across the street from the boulevard that leads to Downtown Disney. Despite how busy it can become, they give great service and the food is always amazing.

We like Margaritaville in Universal City Walk, but go EARLY, before they do their concerts there. Somehow, the service falls off hugely after a certain hour. Earlier on, it's fun and fantastic.

If you're looking for a quick, fast food dining experience that's different, and run across Fazoli's, they're a great Italian fast food place. Excellent breadsticks and alfredo sauce.

There used to be a lot more places but they keep changing hands or closing, so I'm starting to feel like a tourist there myself these days.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:37 PM   #12
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I have to say I'm not a huge fan of Bahama Breeze but I'm more of a quality over quantity gal

We went to Carrabas for Italian and it was great. We also went to Roy's for a great special meal.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:51 PM   #13
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When in April are you going? If it's Easter week, then be prepared for LONG wait times/lines at any of the restaurants (unless you avoid normal meal times). Bahama Breeze can get crazy for wait times - almost 2 hours during prime dinner time during any holiday/tourist week.

Hubby & I enjoy Smokey Bones and frequent them during their 1/2 off appetizer/drink hours. Check their website for addresses, special offers.

Also, we found a Japanese restaurant on 192 that was wonderful - very inexpensive, fixed meals right in front of you. I need to try and find out the name of this one - it was a "keeper" in my book and we'll be wanting to go back when we're there in January 2011.
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Old 09-10-2010, 01:00 PM   #14
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We will be there the first week of April, so we'll miss the Easter crowds. We've dealt with the spring breakers before, so we're not worried about that.

I'm so glad someone recommended Chevy's. We don't have one around here, and I've always wanted to eat there! Thanks for all the input!!!!!!!!!
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Old 09-10-2010, 07:17 PM   #15
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I compiled a list of off site restaurants for our trip. Here is a link to the thread, hope you find it helpful....

http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2522966
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