July 29, 2014

Fight Hunger With Beer

This year's Taste of the Nation Orlando will be celebrating 25 years of working to combat childhood hunger. The event takes place August 9th at the Orlando World Marriott Center.

I had an amazing time at the event last year. It was culinary heaven! I'm looking forward to to this year's event, which will be showcasing the culinary delights of 35 of Central Florida’s leading chefs and restaurants. This year’s Taste of the Nation Orlando will feature two James Beard Foundation Award semi-finalists – Hari Pulapaka of Cress Restaurant and Kevin Fonzo of K Restaurant and Wine Bar

While food is the main draw for many folks I appreciate that there will be plenty of craft beer to enjoy at the event. You'll be able to drink like a local enjoying beers from: Cigar City Brewing, Orlando Brewing, Due South Brewing Co., Engine 15 Brewing Co., Funky Buddha Brewery, & more. There will also be plenty of libations and wine offered at this years Taste of the Nation as well.

World of Beer is one of the many participating beverage suppliers this year. Along with sponsoring a European-style biergarten at this year's Taste of the Nation they will be hosting a pre event benefit on August 7th at their Dr. Phillips location.

Proceeds from sales of select craft beers at Fight Hunger With Beer night and Taste of the Nation will benefit the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida and Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida. Guests who purchase one of the fundraising brews will receive a free raffle ticket for a chance to win a variety of prizes, including Taste of the Nation Orlando tickets.

While there will be plenty of good beer to enjoy at Taste of the Nation Orlando 2014 there will also be some unique beers prizes offered including a trip to Munich, Germany for Oktoberfest and 99 bottles of beer from World of Beer, a private party cycle for 15 with a two hour tour of historic sanford from Limo Cycle and Burgers and Beer for 20 from Marlow's Tavern.

I hope you will join me on August 9th. It's a great event supporting a wonderful cause. Along with appetizers, entrees and desserts from the area’s finest chefs and restaurants, guests can sample wines, beers and spirits while enjoying the silent auction, exciting raffle prizes, and entertainment by the Mud Rooster Band at this premier culinary fundraising event.

Food Network celebrity chef Melissa d’Arabian, best known for her TV series Ten Dollar Dinners,  is cooking up her support for this year’s milestone event as a featured guest. 

You could think of it as a craft beer event with benefits. Why not enjoy some great craft beer and fight hunger at the same time. Sounds like a win win to me.

Taste of the Nation Orlando
August 9, 2014
6:45 - 10:00 p.m. 
Orlando World Center Marriott 
8701 World Center Dr.
Orlando, FL 32821

Share Our Strength's Taste of the Nation Orlando event brings together the area's top chefs who donate their time, talent and passion to end childhood hunger in Central Florida. Along with culinary delights, guests have the opportunity to sample select wines, cocktails and premium beers and enjoy silent and live auctions and entertainment. Every dollar raised fights hunger and homelessness in the Central Florida. Local beneficiaries include Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida and Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida. 
For more information: 
Website: tasteofthenation.org/orlando 
Facebook: www.facebook.com/OrlandoTaste 
Twitter: @OrlandoTaste

Share Our Strength®, a national nonprofit, is ending childhood hunger in America by connecting children with the nutritious food they need to lead healthy, active lives. Through its No Kid Hungry® campaign—a national effort to end childhood hunger in America—Share Our Strength ensures children in need are enrolled in effective federal nutrition programs; invests in community organizations fighting hunger; teaches families how to cook healthy, affordable meals; and builds public-private partnerships to end childhood hunger, at the state and city level. Working closely with the culinary industry and relying on the strength of its volunteers, Share Our Strength hosts innovative culinary fundraising events and develops pioneering cause marketing campaigns that support No Kid Hungry. For more information, visit http://www.nokidhungry.org/

July 28, 2014

Exploring Orlando's Mills50 District, Baldwin Park, Winter Park and more

I did a lot of exploring in Orlando's neighborhoods last week. Monday I was over in the Mills 50 District enjoying some dinner at one of my favorite local restaurants.  I joined fellow Elite Yelpers for some delicious dinner at Tako Cheena. The Cod Takos are may favorite!
Takos at Tako Cheena Restaurant in Orlando
Panko Crusted Cod Tako & Pork PernilTako
After dinner I went next door to Saya Couture & Decor. A unique boutique in the neighborhood worth checking out. They have jewelry, clothes, accessories, home decor and more.
Jewelry on display at Saya Couture & Decor in Orlando
Thursday I headed downtown with some friends to celebrate Frank & Stein's 3rd Birthday. They were celebrating with free food and drinks. Frank & Steins also had some speciality taps for the event. Cheers to 3 years and many more!
Hot dog & craft beer at Frank & Steins Eatery & Pub in Downtown Orlando
Victory Brewing Wild Devil Belgium IPA & Complimentary Bites
I'm one of those folks that feels like they are going to melt in the heat. I haven't been getting out much in the day. I felt cooped up and decided to brave the heat and enjoy an afternoon walk in the neighborhood. Harbor Park is one of my favorite places to just be. I enjoy sitting and taking in the view of nature and those there enjoying the park as well.
Boardwalk at Lake Baldwin in Baldwin Park
After our walk Bryan and I decided to check out Café 906. We had stopped by their previous location in Winter Park, so we were happy to see they would be relocating closer to home in Baldwin Park. We enjoyed a baguette sandwich and need to come back for some french pastries. Café 906 is a nice addition to the neighborhood.
Baguette Sandwich at Café 906 in Baldwin Park Orlando
Champs-Élysées Baguette
Friday Bryan and I were headed over to Rogue Pub for a Persimmon Hollow Brewing Company Kick Starter Event. Before we made our way to Rogue Pub we stopped by Gringos Locos at their new location in the Milk District. Nice to have them closer making it a bit more convenient to stop by. While they do have parking in the back, this location does not have any seating inside. We ate our tasty dinner in the car before we headed over to the Pub.
Happy Hour sign at Gringos Locos in the Milk District
Rogue Pub is one of my favorite places to enjoy craft beer in Orlando. When I heard they were going to host a kick-starter event for Persimmon Hollow Brewing Company I knew I could get some Lady Crafters out to support the event. Our group really enjoyed the beer and cider that were offered from Perismmon Hollow. I wish them luck on their journey. They brew some good beer and Central Florida is in need of some more breweries. 
Orlando Lady Crafters at Rogue Pub in Orlando
Sunday I wanted to get out and do something on the cheap and close to home. I took Bryan to the Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College. We stopped by in the afternoon and there were about a dozen other folks out enjoying the museum as well. It's nice that they offer daily free admission.
Art at Cornell Fine Arts Museum
After our visit to the museum we took a stroll and made our way over to Cask & Larder for a Happy Hour beer.  There's a nice path on the campus that runs along side of Lake Virginia.
Walkway along Lake Virginia at Rollins College
You all know how Cask & Larder is my favorite spot to enjoy a beer for Happy Hour. Ron had one of my favorite IPA's on tap. This Five Points IPA is made with Citra Hops making it delicious. I found out the beer is named after the five-point intersection next to the restaurant.
Craft Beer at Cask & Larder
Five Points IPA with Citra Hops
We ended our afternoon with a stroll back through Rollins. It is such a visual delight walking through the campus. 
Buildings on campus at Rollins College

Check out what other local bloggers were exploring in Orlando last week:

Amanda over at Where's Amanda indulges in Our Royal Tea at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando.

Rickey at Tasty Chomps has a mouth watering Photo Tour of the newly opened Southern Moon Smokehouse.

Denise at MouseSteps does some exploring of the new Four Seasons Resort Orlando.

Jason at Orlando Fun and Food goes to Chocolate Camp at Peterbrooke Chocolatier in Winter Park

Sarah from Eating WDW enjoys Dinner at ESPN over on Disney's Boardwalk

ESPN at Disney's Boardwalk

This week on the blog I've got a beer theme going on. Fun stuff!

A few local event worth checking out this week:

Tuesday 7/29-   Belgian Beer Dinner at Cask & Larder ~ $65 6:30pm.

Wednesday 7/30-  Charlie & Trevor's Hoppy Birthday Party at Redlight Red Light ~ 5pm.

Thursday 7/31-  Sunshine Shop & Sip at the East End Market ~ 6pm-8pm

Friday 8/1- Date Night at Leu Gardens ~ $6 6pm.

Saturday 8/2- Credo Market at Downtown Credo ~ 10am-5pm.

Sunday 8/3-  Cuisine Corner: The Pastrami Project Delicatessen at the Orlando Public Library ~ 4pm

Monday 8/4 - Free admission to Leu Gardens the 1st Monday of each month.
Leu Gardens in Orlando

July 23, 2014

Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College

I always enjoy discovering hidden gems. One of my favorite finds lately is the Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College. I enjoy exploring this beautiful school and was looking forward to visiting the museum on campus.
Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College
The Cornell Fine Arts Museum is located on Holt Avenue along Lake Virginia. You will find free parking located next to the museum making it convenient for a visit.

July 21, 2014

Exploring Orlando Enjoying Local Restaurants, Craft Beer, I-Drive, CityWalk & More

I did a lot of exploring this week.  I was all over Orlando. Wednesday I had a friend in town for a convention, so Bryan and I headed back down to International Drive to meet up for drinks. Bryan and I started at Café Tu Tu Tango. They have great BOGO drinks and $2 off tapas for Happy Hour.
Cocktail at Café Tu Tu Tango
Gummy Bear Cocktail
After a drink and some tapas we headed down International Drive to Pointe Orlando and met my friend at Cuba Libre. This is a beautiful restaurant. They also have a nice "Caippy Hour" with food and drink specials daily from 5pm-7pm.

July 18, 2014

Exploring Sanford With a Visit to Hollerbach's Willow Tree Café

I remember how charming I thought Sanford was the first time I visited the historic town. Their main street in town offers a lot and makes for a nice afternoon of exploring. A fun way to get around this town is with Limo Cycle Tours. Grab some friends and enjoy some beers as you peddle your way around Sanford.
Limo Cycle Tours
The folks with Limo Cycle want you to have a fun time. There's beer on board and music to enjoy. They even have some mister fans for those hot Florida days.


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