We know parents want to stay at their resort. Getting off Disney or Universal property seems like a tough task but the rewards for those who leave and experience the local scene are rewarded with great food. That’s why we ask if you can hit three Local Orlando area restaurants when you visit central Florida. Here are some of our suggestions:
There is something glorious about finding a local gem when on vacation. That’s part of our love of travel and our wish to share our stories from the road. Who knew that we’d find love in the heart of Orlando’s Milk District at ‘Se7en bites.’ Self-described as ‘a sweet and savory bakeshop specializing in nostalgic southern comfort foods, with a modern twist’ it lived up to the billing and not to mention a pretty tasty cup of iced coffee. Once a pasture filled with T.G. Lee Dairy’s grazing cows, the milk district is now filled with great local shops, food and a favorite Colonial Lanes.
But, we’re here to talk about Se7en Bites! First off, finding the sign that says Se7en Bites is not necessary with this waiting for you:
This beautiful mural of a lady holding a tasty pie is the sign you’ve made it. Also, you can tell we added a photo of the goodies waiting inside. First thing to know at peak times this place is packed and be prepared to share a table with strangers. It’s O.K. because the people of Central Florida are lovely and it’s often in these times you find the next gem. With all our suggestions they are kid-friendly.
This too cute glass of milk and Apricot Scone was excellent and baked perfectly. The coffee is excellent but this is not a coffee shop. This is a bake shop that does great coffee. The baker and her staff are top shelf and deserve every award and accolade. this scone was perfect bliss on a Saturday morning. Now the wife and I tried this:
The Southern on top and Farmhouse on bottom from Se7en bites are wonderful. That iced coffee is brilliant. Now, one of their signature dishes is the Southern Morning Biscuit and it’s made with buttermilk garlic biscuit, baked egg in ham, pimento cheese, apple-wood smoked bacon, smothered in cheddar chive grits. The Farmhouse had the best ciabatta bread I’ve ever tasted and it’s freshly made sausage with local egg. I think there was a nice fried tomato that I sort of ignored because of the prior ingredients. We were stuff and couldn’t try anything in the bakery display:
Some other great breakfast grabs (which this place is not only breakfast since it’s open for lunch) that I heard oohs and aahs over were things like the 7th Trimester,egg, bacon, cheese, mac & cheese all piled on a biscuit (Photo via @orlandogastronomy on Instagram):
The Next spot, Sofrito Latin Cafe– This is the front and it’s located 8607 Palm Parkway. The best way to describe it is when Leaving the Disney Springs Area North hang a left S. Apopka Vineland Road and it’s the next right and you are there. It’s pretty easy to find with GPS. First off it’s a beautiful space and concept and very clean:
I ordered one of the best Cuban sandwiches I’ve ever had. It consisted of Ham, house-made roast pork, Swiss cheese, house made pickles and mustard on Cuban bread. A very simple sandwich but great tasting:
My wife ordered a tasty Cachapa. Cachapa is traditional Venezuelan sweet corn pancake filled with a generous portion of Queso de Mano (Handmade white soft cheese), and topped with crema. We added Shredded Beef. It was good, not as good as the Cuban in my opinion but good:
My daughter ordered (didn’t finish it because it was huge so I got to taste quite a bit of this) the Pabellon. Pabellon is Venezuela’s national dish. Seasoned shredded beef, white rice, black beans (we subbed a salad for the beans) & sweet plantains.
This was a very good steak and the rice was cooked well but, and I say but…. I wish I had a full plate of those sweet plantains. So good and worth coming back to this restaurant for.
For dessert we tried Vanilla Flan ‘Egg custard enhanced with vanilla’ (they were sold out of coconut and usually sell out early), Nutella Empanada ‘Fried round pastry stuffed with Nutella, dusted with a touch of powdered sugar’ and Tres Leches ‘Pound cake soaked in three milks, topped with whipped cream.’
The other great thing about this restaurant is the staff. They worked hard to make sure we were taken care of and were pleasant to speak with about the area and other places we needed to try. Also, the restaurant is doing a great job with Social Media and has created the hashtag #LoveSofrito which give you great photos click here to see. You can find them on Facebook, Instagram and on their website www.sofritocafe.com. We hoped you enjoyed this and will try out Sofrito. We will be doing these reviews of Local stops for Buy Local Bowling Green Travels or #BuyLocalBGTravels because as much as we love shopping local, we love to travel.
Three Other Must-Try Spots in Orlando
- Pig Floyds Urban Barbakoa-Rustic counter-serve joint offering globally flavored BBQ dishes plus craft beers.
- Dharma Fine Vittles– Hip, counter-serve hub at Market on South with late hours, Southern-inspired vegan meals & desserts.
- The Ravenous Pig– The Euro-American gastropub, helmed by chefs James and Julie Petrakis, opened back in 2007—right at the forefront of Florida’s seasonally-inspired cuisine movement that has yet to lose steam. Their “Polite Pig” is located on Disney Property if you want to try some local flavor while on a Disney Property.