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Restaurant Equipment World (REW) Visits Anna’s Polish Restaurant

April 15th, 2014 by REW Blog Team

Welcome to Restaurant Equipment World’s restaurant review, on today’s menu is Anna’s Polish Restaurant. Located in a small shopping plaza just off Aloma Avenue near Forsyth Rd, is where you will find this hidden gem. It is not the easiest place to find and if you’re not careful, you just may miss it – something I do not recommend.

As you walk into the main dining room you’ll see the walls are adorned with old world charm all in a quaint setting. Pictures and trinkets from Poland bring about that warm, welcoming feeling along with traditional Polish music playing ever so subtle in the background. A sign over the kitchen welcomes all – too Anna’s Kitchen. And that it is, Anna herself can be found there on any given day whipping up some of the traditional favorites from her homeland in Poland.

The menu includes many different Polish favorites including Golabki (stuffed cabbage), Goulash and Schnitzel. The aroma coming from the kitchen was so fragrant; we were excited to get started. We chose the Polish Trio as an appetizer. It included two pierogies, which are stuffed full of your choice of meat or cheese (we chose one of each) and topped with caramelized onion and served with sour cream for dipping. They were amazing. Also included was fresh polish sausage, grilled and covered with bacon, along with (a house favorite) potato pancakes served with homemade applesauce. Needless to say it was gone in mere minutes. Definitely enough on its own, but given our delight for the appetizers, we were ready to move on . . . and that we did. I chose a popular menu item called Wazanki or Polish Cabbage Noodles for those of us who don’t have a clue (like me). This is an old family Polish pasta dish that contains flat noodles combined with sauerkraut, mushrooms, bacon, onion and spices. Perfectly seasoned to perfection and oh so tasty. The other entrée we chose was the traditional Gypsy Potato Pancake. This is a plate sized potato pancake filled with chunks of beef, onions and bell pepper in a rich gravy, topped with sour cream and parsley. The sight of this entrée was amazing and the taste was like nothing we have ever had before. The entrees are hearty and enough so you can share and taste a little bit of everything – a MUST do! We finished off the meal with the Pychotka (Walnut Delight) – almost too pretty to eat! Alas, we dug into this dessert of walnut cake divided by a wonderful vanilla cream with strawberries and whipped cream on the side. It was amazing – a house specialty made by Anna herself. The food was beyond mere colorful words, I can’t wait to go back and try more items on the menu!

If you have a large party, never fear . . . Anna’s has just opened an additional space adjacent to the restaurant for parties and catered events. Additionally, in the new section in the back is the new Polish Deli. When we were there it was only a few days away from opening, so I’d say it’s open now. Don’t have the time to stop in for dinner? Run (don’t walk) on over to the deli which I’m told will be chock full of fresh meats, pastas and an assorted array of traditional Polish treat for you to take home and enjoy.

The food at Anna’s is the epitome of Polish fare. From pierogies to Wazanki, potato pancakes to Pychotka and so much more, you’ll find it all at this restaurant. A culinary delight prepared with Anna’s love for her country and her passion for cooking the finest Polish cuisine in the area. Check out their website at www.annaspolishrestaurant.com for the full menu and weekly specials. Anna’s is open Wednesday from 4:30pm to 9pm, Thursday from 12pm to 9pm, Friday & Saturday from 12pm to 10pm and Sunday from 12pm to 8pm. The restaurant is located at 3586 Aloma Ave, Suite 7, Winter Park, FL 32792 (here’s a hint, use your GPS or you may pass right by), or give them a call at 407-657-0020. Check out Anna’s Polish Restaurant – you’ll be glad you did!

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Restaurant Equipment World (REW) Visits Mom’s Country Kitchen

February 17th, 2014 by REW Blog Team

Welcome to Restaurant Equipment World’s restaurant review. On today’s menu is Mom’s Country Kitchen located in Casselberry, and nestled in Casselberry Commons, right by the Casselberry police station and city hall. Walk inside this completely refurbished restaurant and you will find a bright cheery atmosphere, with signs and smells making you feel right at home. This family owned restaurant brings to mind a cozy feeling, just like in your own mom’s kitchen. The owners and sisters, Cindy and DJ, have a true passion for the restaurant industry having spent plenty of time helping out at their aunt and uncle’s restaurant when they were younger. Their passion shows in every ounce of effort they have put into this brand new venture. So, sit down, relax and get ready for some real home style cookin’.

The kitchen is well equipped with all the latest state-of-the-art equipment right from REW’s very own showroom floor. The owners have put their heart and soul into this restaurant and we were there to help along the way. Everything is literally fresh off the griddle, from the food all the way to the dining room chairs. They have spared no expense to update and renovate, resulting in an efficient and cozy place to eat and enjoy the company.

From the menu, guest favorites include the Philly cheesesteak, fresh steak piled high and grilled with onions and on a nice soft bun with a mound of crispy French fries. Or if breakfast is on your mind (which is served all day) then you may want to order mom’s enormous country breakfast. A flaky biscuit smothered in sausage gravy, two eggs fixed just your way, your choice of regular or smoked sausage or bacon and home fries, hash browns or grits and of course toast. A giant undertaking, but if you are up for the challenge, I highly recommend it. Mom’s uses only fresh local ingredients, and everything is always cooked to order. Right now, there are no desserts available on their menu – something they will be adding in the very near future. Mom’s also plans on adding specials and providing catering services, something that’s just a little while down the road. Check back often as their menu and specials are always changing, but rest assured you will always find those good ole’ breakfast and lunch staple items that keep you coming back.

Mom’s Country Kitchen is the essence of home style, country cooking. The staff and the owners treat you like part of the family, and the prices are way more than affordable. Keep up to date with the specials and anything else they are doing by liking Mom’s Country Kitchen on Facebook – www.facebook.com/moms-country-kitchen. They are located at 4275 S US Hwy 17/92 in Casselberry and they are open from 7:00 am to 2:30 pm for breakfast and lunch. If you are in the neighborhood, and you are looking for a hearty meal and friendly face, stop on in and give them a try – you’ll be glad you did!

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Restaurant Equipment World (REW) Visits Tacos El Rancho

January 14th, 2014 by REW Blog Team

In the heart of downtown Orlando, lies the latest addition to the Tacos El Rancho family. Located right on Orange Avenue just across from the Orange County Courthouse, you will find this locally owned and operated gem of a Mexican restaurant.

The decor is bright and festive with plenty of seating to accommodate the largest of crowds. Each menu item is expertly crafted using only the freshest of ingredients. On or trips we were able to try several different local favorites. First up, the Gold Chimichanga with a spicy chicken filling rolled up in a flour tortilla with salsa, onion, cheese, tomatoes, sour cream and delightful queso sauce. Delicious! We also tried the steak quesadillas, chicken enchiladas and the flautas. Everything tasted so amazing, right down to the fresh sour cream and cilantro topping and with serving sizes that are easily shared (this is IF you want to).

Tacos El Rancho has two additional locations – one in Orlando and the other in Belle Isle. Nostalgic artwork and photos adorn the walls of the Orlando location on Chickasaw Trail. Here (and Belle Isle I assume as we did not go there) you will find all the charm and the same tasty menu items.

If that isn’t enough, check out their brand new food truck called the Tamale Company. For those of you who don’t know, a tamale is a traditional Mexican dish made of masa (which is dough) and filled with anything from meats to fruits and vegetables, then wrapped in a cornhusk and covered with different types of sauces. Their roving menu is extensive, with every kind of tamale you can imagine and then some. Check them out on Facebook to find out just where the Tamale Company truck will be next.

Tacos El Rancho is a great example of a locally owned and operated restaurant with a simple formula for success – serve fresh ingredients with authentic recipes and expert assembly. It is as easy as that or so the family says. Check out their website at www.tacoselrancho.com to see their full menu, hours of operation and to find a location near you. Tacos El Rancho . . . authentic Mexican cuisine at it’s finest.

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How did you spend your holiday dough? Fun infographic by Restaurant Equipment World (REW)

December 30th, 2013 by REW Blog Team

Well . . .the holidays are finally over. How did you spend your holiday dough? Interesting stats about shopping and social media trends during the holiday season. It is cool to see how online shopping and social media has changed our spending habits over the years and on into the future. Check out this infographic and see. Have a safe and wonderful New Year from Restaurant Equipment World (REW).

HolidayDough

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REW Visits Eastside Bistro in Avalon Park

October 18th, 2013 by REW Blog Team

Come one, come all to the friendly community of Avalon Park and visit a neighborhood favorite . . . the Eastside Bistro. This charming café style restaurant is the epitome of upscale casual dining. Purchased by a new owner at the beginning of the year, the Eastside Bistro has been completely renovated. Not only has the inside been rejuvenated, but the outside boasts a delightful new patio and bar area that overlooks a quaint little park with a great view of the fountain in Avalon’s town center.

Eastside Bistro features an extensive menu featuring food for all age ranges and appetites. We decided to start of with the stuffed mushrooms. Mushroom caps stuffed with lump crabmeat stuffing and topped with a lemon white wine sauce. They were just as delicious as they looked. For main entrees we choose to experience the menu from different sides of the spectrum picking the Pan Seared Salmon and the Pub Burger. The salmon comes pan roasted to perfection, accompanied by crisp asparagus and Florida citrus salad with arugula, cherry tomatoes, orange and lime slices, citrus dressing and salsa verde. A great combination of flavors that was very light and tasty. The Pub Burger was charbroiled and topped with caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, Swiss cheese, an excellent house made steak sauce with a heap of freshly cut, crispy steak fries on the side. I’d say it was burger heaven for sure. On Tuesday’s I’m told they have all the burgers on their menu for just $6, what an awesome deal and something I would highly recommend. The owner, JC has told us that he will be bringing back the ever popular Sunday brunch in about a month – okay I’m in because it’s back by popular demand and it’s bound to be as palette pleasing as his daily menu. And last but certainly not the least by far, was the pumpkin cheesecake for dessert. Seasonal decadence at its finest and just so you know all of Eastside Bistro’s dessert are made locally by a bakery right in Avalon Park.

Craving good food along with entertainment? Eastside Bistro has something yummy or entertaining every night of the week. Bingo, trivia, $6 burger night and live music on the weekends. What more could you ask for? Take your pet for an evening walk, on your way stop by Eastside Bistro and have a bite to eat, enjoy the ambiance and chat with a few of your neighbors. A great place to socialize, bringing the community together like JC says, “it’s all about relationships”. Visit often and keep your eyes peeled – I hear an expansion is a brewin’.

If fun, food and a great atmosphere is what you crave, check out Eastside Bistro. It is located in the heart of Avalon Park at 12001 Avalon Lake Dr., Suite F in Orlando. Planning a big event, they cater too. Give them a call at 407-381-0096, you’ll be glad you did!

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REW Visits Stefano’s Trattoria

September 12th, 2013 by REW Blog Team

So . . . this is one of those restaurants where I say to myself “Where do I start?” Stefano’s Trattoria is the epitome of fine Sicilian dining. Owned by Stefano and Marie La Commare, and keeping it in the family you will see his daughter Antoniella and son Leonardo “Lenny” working right along side of them. It is tucked away in the back corner of a strip mall in Winter Springs, but don’t let that hinder you. Just walking up to the entrance can send your taste buds awry – you can actually smell garlic miles away. Okay, that may be exaggerating a bit but you get the picture, it smells wonderful. As you enter the restaurant you are taken aback by the plethora of awards and accomplishments that adorn the walls. Pictures of Stefano on the boat he grew up on in Sicily and stories and photos from years gone by definitely tell the story of a long line of family tradition. And if you were lucky enough to catch Stefano not in the kitchen cooking up delectable new recipes (like I was), he is more than happy and willing to talk about his family and their history. Walk inside Stefano’s and the ambiance makes you feel as if you are back in Italy enjoying a meal with Stefano and is family. Italian music playing, pots clattering and people everywhere running around with food – makes you feel right at home. And right at home you are with Stefano – who personally chats with each and every customer to make sure they thoroughly enjoyed their meal. Now that’s Italian!

On to the food . . . and again I am speechless (which is hard to believe where I’m concerned). Stefano fixed us up a “little” something he likes to call Antipasto Contadina. Not only was it extremely pleasing to the eye – a piece of culinary artwork, but it was more than tasty. Chunks of salami, sopresato, prosciutto, sharp provolone cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, artichokes, mushrooms, black and green olives and anchovies marinated in a seasoned olive oil. The very best antipasto I have ever had, packed with only the freshest ingredients, bright colors and an amazingly simple marinade.

Then, we were lucky enough to be able to go back in the kitchen and watch as Stefano prepared our entrees. I think it was because we were filming him and he has a secret passion to be a movie star . . . but that is another story. As we watched him cook our entrees, I was amazed at how effortlessly he seems to breeze through the process. I was talking with his daughter Antoniella and she was saying how she has asked her father how he makes everything taste so good – his reply in his strong Italian dialect “it isn’t'a not rocketa science Antoniella”. No, he just makes it look easy. He conjured up his famous Zupa di Mare di Stefano for us in a matter of mere minutes. A colorful seafood platter with shrimp, mussels, calamari, clams and snapper deliciously simmered in a tomato sauce over linguine. Magnifico! Stefano also prepared one of his extremely popular daily chicken specials for us, Pollo Romano. Chicken wrapped around mixture of mozzarella, prosciutto, spinach and pine nuts covered in a marsala wine sauce with mushrooms. Call ahead and you can find out their specials of the day – I highly recommend this one.

Stefano’s specials, entrees and soups are so wildly popular that they actually have a book you can leave your name and number in and on the day that item comes up you will get a friendly call to let you know. How is that for customer service? Stefano’s also has an event called the Tavolata – six courses with a variety of dishes paired with wines from around the world. Call and get your name on the list – it’s a must do and it sells out very fast I’m told.

For desert we were presented with the Italian classic tiramisu and cannoli. What a way to end a meal, made fresh at Stefano’s and scrumptious beyond mere words.

The food, the family atmosphere, the service . . . oh did I mention the food. Well, it is by far one of the best I have ever experienced. The pride and the passion that goes into every meal is truly evident at Stefano’s Trattoria. If you don’t go to Stefano’s Trattoria, you will be missing out on a little slice of Italian heaven – it’s as simple as that. They are located at 1425 Tuskawilla Road in Winter Springs. The hours are Tuesday through Friday 11:30am to 9:15pm, Saturday 12pm to 9:15pm, Sunday 5pm to 8:30pm. They are closed on Mondays to take time with “la famiglia”.

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REW Visits Oblivion Taproom

June 17th, 2013 by REW Blog Team

Oblivion Taproom's skull-and-crossbones logo.

Are you looking for good food and craft beer on the east side of Orlando? Then Oblivion Taproom – a tattoo bar with creative pub grub – is definitely worth checking out. It is easy to find, located where the old Straub’s restaurant used to be on East Colonial Drive in Orlando. The pub is painted black and red (inside and out) with a skull and crossbones as its logo. The staff enjoys working there, and our waitress was showing off “faux-blood-stained” socks and chock-full of piercings and colorful tattoos which go surprisingly well with the vivid skeletal paintings that adorn the walls.  The pub contains a pool table and a dart board to satisfy patrons’ entertainment needs, and music plays at a pleasantly-muted volume in the background.  Oblivion Taproom hosts a number of exciting events throughout the year, including the upcoming St. Arnoldus Day (in honor of Belgian beer) and Willy Wonka Party.  Sounds like lots of fun!

True to its name, Oblivion Taproom boasts an extensive list of 40 featured beers on tap and a large selection of ciders, so of course, our first order of business was to order a brew: first, a Rip Tide Amber (a rich beverage with a strong malt flavor) from Pensacola Bay Brewery, followed by a sweet and smooth Mermaid’s Red from Coronado Brewing Company. Some of the beers are changed out as frequently as the keg goes dry, so you’ll never have to worry about a shortage of new flavors to try. The servers are happy to share their knowledge of what’s on tap if you find the selection overwhelming. The list is so extensive and filled with so many unusual flavors, you might find yourself wanting to try a sampler. Oblivion Taproom’s sampler comes with five small samples of your choosing – a way to add some variety to your life.

Although the beer selection is fabulous on its own, nothing can compare to the truly unique findings on the menu. We started out with the Pork Lover’s Delight, and what a delight it was! Pork rinds instead of chips, covered with pulled pork, jalapeño cheese, scallions, black olives, sour cream, salsa and, you guessed it – more jalapeños. It is a culinary masterpiece of the nacho world, but way more than one guest should enjoy (great for sharing!). We placed an order for the wings as well, which came out crispy and juicy with just a spice rub and no sauce.

The food was so good I wanted to take some home to the family (to share, of course, and not at all so I could avoid cooking on a Friday). So Hog Wild I went: I ordered a juicy “Hog Wild” hamburger topped with pulled pork, bacon, BBQ sauce, caramelized onions, cheddar cheese and a big ol’ onion ring. Who would have thought meat and more meat would taste so good? I topped it all off with fried Oreo’s and a food coma. At the end of the night, we were all in agreement about the quality of the service: good food and good beer – a two thumbs up for sure.

Oblivion Taproom is located at 5101 E. Colonial Drive, Orlando. It’s open Tuesday through Sunday from 4 p.m. until 2 a.m. Visit their website at obliviontaproom.com, as they have daily specials you won’t want to miss.

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REW Pre-Owned Equipment

June 17th, 2013 by REW Blog Team

 

Check out this video showcasing tons of pre-owned equipment at Restaurant Equipment World. We sell only high-quality pre-owned equipment for restaurant owners and people in the food service industry. In our Orlando, FL showroom and online at REWonline.com you will find a wide variety of equipment ranging from tables and seating to ranges, refrigeration units, high performance blenders and more! Stop by and check us out. You’re guaranteed to get a great deal on a great piece of pre-owned equipment.

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REW Visits Cariera’s by Castelli in Dr. Phillips

April 9th, 2013 by REW Blog Team

In the heart of Dr. Phillips lies a hidden gem, a traditional Italian restaurant with a twist – Cariera’s by Castelli. During the week, tourists and regulars alike enjoy the traditional Venetian atmosphere and superb dining menu, but when the weekend starts on Friday, Cariera’s is filled with scintillating live music and fun times for the entire family.

Less than a year ago, Cariera’s was purchased by new owners and remodeled to include more comfortable dining chairs, new tableware, an updated wine list, renovated restrooms and several new menu items to add to the restaurant’s already popular menu options. The restaurant walls are decorated with authentic Venetian masks along with digital picture screens that rotate classic pictures and those of some of Cariera’s regular customers. Eat there often enough and you, too, can add your picture into the mix.

Cariera’s by Castelli has been family-owned since its establishment in 1975, and that tradition has not changed with the new owners: two Brazilians and one Argentinean, who came from Italian families and grew up in the kitchen. All three of the new owners have decades of experience in the restaurant industry, including several other successful restaurants and the best Italian chefs in all of Orlando. Even with all the changes, you will find that most of the menu items have stayed the same, with only a handful of new dishes added to the menu. Why mess with perfection, right?

The menu at Cariera’s is filled with delectable items cooked with the finest and freshest ingredients available. For starters, they recommend a traditional favorite – calamari, squid fried to perfection and served with a tasty marinara sauce for dipping. If you want to head straight to a main entrée and you love pasta, try the fettuccine with a vodka cream or Alfredo sauce or the chicken penne (a staff favorite). Cariera’s serves a wonderful Lemon Mahi if fish is what you love to eat, and we heard the Veal Cariera’s is to die for. If you are looking for something new, the owners suggest the Shrimp di Napoli or one of their other gourmet pizzas with ultra thin crust. Other menu items include signature pasta dishes, seafood and a good selection of dessert options. Additionally, Cariera’s offers several of their pasta dishes and their flat breads as gluten free options. Wash all that down with the Godiva Shake (named for the touch of Godiva liquor they add to this new favorite). Just need a drink and a great atmosphere? Hang out in the separate bar area and try either the Tiramisu or the Bada Bing Martini – magnifico!

If you’re in the neighborhood, why not stop by Cariera’s by Castelli? You’ll be glad you did. Cariera’s is located at 7600 Dr. Phillips Blvd. in Orlando 32819.

http://CarierasByCastelli.com

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REW Visits Redeye Bar and Grill

February 21st, 2013 by REW Blog Team

Newcomers Rob and Angie Nelson have transitioned from food truckers to full-blown restaurant owners. Located in Ocoee, Florida, Redeye Bar and Grill has only been open for about four months, but has made a splash in the industry with its succulent barbecue dishes. Originally, the two started off with a food truck, which Rob tells us was “just a hobby.” They would travel to all of the hotspots in Orlando, like World of Beer, to serve some of their custom creations such as the Big Daddy Burger. Eventually, Rob and his wife Angie had to sell the food truck and relocate to Hawaii for Rob’s career in the hospitality industry. After spending just a year there, they moved back to be closer to family, and Rob decided to turn his hobby into a passionate career.

After researching family recipes, consulting with previous restaurant owners, and working with “The Sauce Man,” Rob was able to take his hobby to the next level. The creations were made with passion and custom flavors. Take the Redeye sliders for example. This Redeye favorite isn’t just your typical meat on a small bun. They take homemade cornbread (which is baked by Rob’s mom every morning) and top it with barbecue pulled pork, glazed barbecue sauce and honey. We recommend you follow that starter with a custom sandwich or a Redeye barbecue dish, such as the Sliced Beef Brisket. The tender meat is slow cooked over three types of hard wood for over 12 hours before being served with a choice of soup or salad and a side dish. To top off your meal, indulge in the Bananas Foster, which can easily be split between four people. The crispy pastry hovering over vanilla ice cream, bananas and powdered sugar is absolutely mouth watering.

The drink list is nothing to brush off either. Unlike many other barbecue joints in town, Redeye has a variety of wines and craft brews. They recently upgraded their kegs from six to ten taps and they even have a root beer tap for the kids. One of their most popular brews is Dale’s Pale Ale. Because of the high demand, it gets tapped out quite often, and Rob tells us he is on a waiting list to get more. The combination of delicious food, a good drink menu, and weekly live music makes Redeye Bar and Grill a complete dining experience. Rob also informed us that they have begun serving brunch as of February 10th, 2013, featuring such offerings as puff pastries, mimosas, and a saxophone player to keep you in that relaxed state of mind on a Sunday afternoon. Don’t forget to stop by Redeye Bar and Grill at 2594 Maguire Road in Ocoee, Florida.

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