Florida restaurant recommendations

Hi all of you Florida shoppers,
My son has a birthday coming up, and I want to take him somewhere special. Do any of you know of a good Italian restaurant that’s not a chain? I’m hoping for a family owned place with delicious food. He’s quite the home chef, so hard to wow, if you know what I mean. Right now, Maggiano’s is my first choice, but any and all recommendations will be so appreciated.

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So, Florida is a big state...if it's not a chain, then what region of the state are you looking for?
Oh, okay. I am originally from NW Florida and still visit there pretty often so I don't know much about the Orlando area.
I would look at Trip Adviser for that area and specify Italian restaurants. I'd be surprised if you did not find a top rated, family owned sort of place that is highly rated.

Based in MD, near DC
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When I was going to Sarasota, I was introduced to Bone Fish Grill and loved it..not Italian, but you might try yelp for a smaller Italian place in your area.

Skills can be taught, Character your born with....
Anthony Bourdain
Thanks everyone for answering. I’ve checked yelp and trip advisor. I think I’m going to try Maggiano’s. It’s got good reviews.
Maggiano's is a chain, they have one here all the way across the US from Florida

My daughter lives in Vero Beach and says Carrabba's is the only authentic Italian food restaurant there.
@Sassyangi wrote:

Hi all of you Florida shoppers,
My son has a birthday coming up, and I want to take him somewhere special. Do any of you know of a good Italian restaurant that’s not a chain? I’m hoping for a family owned place with delicious food. He’s quite the home chef, so hard to wow, if you know what I mean. Right now, Maggiano’s is my first choice, but any and all recommendations will be so appreciated.

Maggiano's is actually a chain, but I agree it is good. Last time I was in Orlando, I was taken to Delmonico's Italian Steakhouse and I thought it was really good. There's also a great place called Mama Della's. Buca di Beppo is a chain, so you might not want that, but it's great for big family meals, and there's one in Orlando.
I didn’t realize that Maggiano’s was a chain. I just thought the family style option looked pretty neat. Thanks smiling smiley
We have a Delmonico's here in Encino, it's terrific. Buca is a chain and very commercial, good for big families as you said. We have a Maria's kitchen which is good, check it out and let us know

Skills can be taught, Character your born with....
Anthony Bourdain
[www.tripadvisor.com]

I googled "Orlando Italian Restaurants" and Trip Advisor populated in the list, always a great way to find reviews from travelers. Looks like there is a restaurant called Chatham's Place that might be what you are looking for.
Ouuu, Chatham's place looks like it has amazing ambiance! Did you see the decorated table. I would absolutely order that pot roast and souffle! What do you think? $65 per person!
Well, $65 per person is not bad for fine dining, and it sounds like it's unique enough to intrigue her son's sophisticated palate. It is a special occasion, after all.
Did OP want a shop, maybe not....

Skills can be taught, Character your born with....
Anthony Bourdain
I did not get that impression. Sassyangi was looking for something that was not a chain, and not many (if any) family owned restaurants are mystery shopped.
We have an amazing woman owned restaurant, Stone Fire Grill, they have two that are shopped, but don't need to be. True, most are chains, but just wondering as she asked us.

Skills can be taught, Character your born with....
Anthony Bourdain
Yeah, I guess because this is general chat and not MS discussion, and she asked about someplace special to take her son for his birthday...I figured not looking for a shop.
No, I’m not looking for a shop and Chatham’s looks perfect!! His birthday is not until next week, but I will definitely let you know how it went.
Thanks!!
Cool. My nephew lives in Orlando, I should make it down there one of these days to visit and maybe I can take him and his wife there if you recommend it smiling smiley
Have been to one in Orlando and the service and food are Top Notch!!!!! If you have more people in your party, I would recommend ordering Family Style. You can try many different dishes.

Christy Pinkston

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@Eric in Tampa wrote:

OP, Maggiano's is definitely a chain.
.too commercial.....but really has ambience and a piano player and is dark.

Skills can be taught, Character your born with....
Anthony Bourdain


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/14/2018 03:09PM by Irene_L.A..
Thank you all for answering. We’re going to take him to Chatham’s. I want it to be special and a little extravagant. Chatham’s atmosphere and menu look perfect. We’re going on the 17th. I’ll let everyone know how it went.
Sassyangi, sorry for the late response. There is an Italian restaurant called Tarantino's in Kissimmee, Fla., right on US 192. Their web address is tarantinositalianrestaurant.com. I have always had a very good experience at Tarantino's. Enjoy your dinner, wherever you go!
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