Sunday, August 31, 2014

Pig Floyds International Barbakoa Restaurant Now Open in Orlando Mills Virginia

Pig Floyd's is a new restaurant coming very soon to the Mills/Virginia area.

According to their website Pig Floyd's is described as:
"Introducing a fresh interpretation of the barbecue experience. Pig Floyd's integrates cultural influences with traditional fire, smoke and pit methods to craft vibrant, delicious fare."

Thomas Ward the owner and founder of Pig Floyd's described the restaurant's concept to me as: "traditional inspired Barbakoa with international influence. Barbakoa is the latin term for barbecue"

Pig Floyd's is in the former location of Friends restaurant and more recently Atilla's Turkish Steak and Salad. The building was completely gutted and rebuilt almost from the ground up which should help clear the air of any failures of past enterprises here. Expected opening date is the September 11th at 4pm.

I've known Thomas for many years from his past endeavors like his deliciously successful food truck here in Orlando and his restaurant in Puerto Rico which I visited a few years ago.

I recently got to have a little sneak peek at the Pig Floyd's menu and the opportunity to taste some menu items. Now that I've seen what they are cooking up there, I'm very excited. Chef Jason Carlucci has lots of unique takes on sandwiches. Some selections include the Matahambre sandwich with brisket and chimichurri, another is the very delicious BBQ banh mi with kimchi cucumbers. They will also have some some great taco creations: butter chicken taco, shrimp & North African sausage tacos.

I also tasted the oak smoked brisket which was very good, smoke flavor came through but was not overpowering.  I can't wait to try the ribs. They will have platters with your choice of Brisket, Pulled Pork, Chicken, St. Louis Ribs or North African Chicken Sausage & some sides.

They will have a nice variety of sauces from the traditional sweet BBQ & hot BBQ to the exotic Dragon Sauce and Indian inspired Tikka Masala sauce.

Vegetarians do not be disheartened, they will be able to make many items with tofu and will have some solid salads & meat free side dishes.

Salads include one with baby kale, roasted peppers and BBQ croutons, another has field greens, spiced walnuts, apples, beets, fennel & goat cheese.

They are going to have a great outdoor seating area and eventually some pig roasts!

More Food pics on this post:

If the food wasn't exciting enough they are also going to have a solid collection of craft beers. Cigar City, Founders, Unibroue, Mendocino, Ommegang among others and also Cider and Wine.

They plan to be open very late night on the weekends so add them as a stop along your bar crawls from Wally's, Wills or Peacock Room.

Pig Floyd's is located between Black Sheep and 7-11 very close to the Southwest corner of Virginia and Mills.

1326 N. Mills Avenue
Orlando, FL 32803
(407) 921-1696

Pig Floyd's Smokehouse on Urbanspoon

Mingo's Restaurant Downtown Orlando

Despite being open since late 2013, I have never been to Mingo's. Since they are participating in Magical Dining month I thought I'd give them a try.

Mingo's is located downtown just a couple blocks south of Lake Eola. It's in the space where Lotus Flower used to be, across from Mucho Tacos.

The space is very clean and nice and the decor is modern, lots of white and some wood, many large windows.

The host, server and bartender were all especially helpful and friendly.

Magical Dining is a month-long promotion done by Visit Orlando where participating restaurants feature three-course, fixed price dinners for $33 per person. One dollar from each meal sold will benefit the Foundation for Foster Children. It runs August 25- September 30, 2014. More info:

The Mingo's Magical Dining menu lets you pick from one of 3-4 appetizers, entrees & desserts.

For the appetizer course they offered the choice of: salad, pork wings with fruit kimchee & smoked plum sauce, Blue Crab cakes with yellow pepper remoulade, orange and hearts of palm.

Blue Crab cakes with yellow pepper remoulade, orange and hearts of palm

Pork Wings with fruit kimchee & smoked plum sauce

For the entrees you could choose from:

Seared Sea Scallops - with spicy shrimp mash, truffle butter

Sea Bass - smoked bacon ratatouille, Chardonnay sauce

Grilled Skirt Steak - chorizo, porcini mushrooms, leeks, yukon potatoes

Bone-In Pork Chop - red wine glaze, green pea risotto, vegetables

Sea Bass - smoked bacon ratatouille, Chardonnay sauce

Grilled Skirt Steak - chorizo, porcini mushrooms, leeks, yukon potatoes

Seared Sea Scallops - with spicy shrimp mash, truffle butter

Dessert selections are: Chocolate cake, cheesecake, pineapple cake

Overall dinner was a great pleasant experience, the server and manager went above and beyond to make sure we had a great dinner and you could tell they genuinely cared.

The food was all very good and visually impressive. The most delicious things were the Pork Wings, the sauce with it was excellent. Also the house made Chorizo was really good, pretty spicy.

On Saturdays they have all you can eat Crab Legs. Here are some pics of their regular menu:

Mingos on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

O-town MacDown Mac & Cheese event

"A delicious “food fight” cooking competition featuring professional chefs and restaurants as well as home cooks and non-profit organizations who will duke it out to the very end to be named Orlando’s Mac-n-Cheese Champion.

Prizes will be awarded in various categories, and the event will include live entertainment, celebrity chef cooking demonstrations, live performances, a kids’ fun zone including face painting, bounce houses and macaroni art station, theme park character meet-and-greets and vendor booths.

Presenting sponsor SeaWorld along with Give Kids The World invite the general public to come sample the cheesiest mac-n-cheese that area culinary combatants have to offer at this cooking challenge.

Attendance and participation benefits Give Kids The World Village, a 70-acre, nonprofit resort in Central Florida that provides weeklong, cost-free vacations to children with life-threatening illnesses and their families."

Saturday, August 23, 2014
Orange County Convention Center, Hall D2 West Concourse
9800 International Drive, Orlando FL 32819

$10 for Adults - includes all the mac-n-cheese you can eat!

Some of the competitors include local restaurants:
Bar Harbor Seafood/Boston Lobster Feast
CaveMen - Cave Inn BBQ
Cheesy Chicks!
Cib's Smokehouse
Collette's Clean Eats
Cox Radio's All Hallows Cheese
The Crooked Spoon
Love and Jinny
Le Cordon Bleu College of Orlando
Loud Mouth Grill
Muse Gelato
Napa Restaurant/Hyatt Regency Orlando
Pretzel Crisps
Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida
Talk of the Town Restaurant Group
Taverna Opa Orlando
Westgate Smokehouse Grill
Yak & Yeti

buy tickets here: