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Attempting to be a foodie in one of the biggest tourist cities in the world can be quite a challenge. A challenge I gladly accept. Game on Orlando.

Eating like a local in Orlando is actually possible.

If you do find yourself in the hometown of Mickey make sure you check out these spots for grub, cocktails and good times.

Pom Pom Tea House & Sandwicheria

This delicious gourmet sandwich shop spices things up with Eastern flare and hours of operation that bring only joy to all humankind.

You MUST try their Mama Ling Ling’s Thanksgiving Sandwich (turkey, gouda, stuffing, ginger cranberry chutney, mashed potato, & cream cheese with a side of gravy). Absolutely amazing! #thanksgivingyearround

Our Uber driver was fond of the Woody sandwich (pastrami, swiss cheese, honey mustard, thousand island, southern slaw & red onion) and shouted out his window as driving away,

“Thanks for the Woody Ladies!”

Eating like a local in Orlando is actually possible

WARNING: Mama Ling Ling is worth fighting for!

How to eat like a local while visiting Orlando

If you prefer green things on your sandwich…try out their Veggie.

Highball & Harvest (@ the Ritz Carlton Orlando)

This modern, southern-inspired cuisine is oh so yummy. Make sure to snack on their Chef Jeffers’ Jerky (peppered-molasses flank) with your handcrafted cocktail. My dorky farmer side is also thankful that they use locally farmed produce.

How to eat like a local in Orlando, Florida

Their donuts are served in brown paper bags with tubes of frosting. As they should be!

The Pharmacy

Walk through an elevator from the 20’s and be transported to a world of delicious elixirs and prescriptions at this super tasty speakeasy. Seriously, every single item was DELICIOUS! Also, quite a bit of hipster eye candy working and dining here. Just saying.

There are some great restaurants in Orlando

You would never expect it to be this good!

How to eat like a local in Orlando

Must-refrain-from-licking-the-bowl fondue.

How to eat like a local when exploring Orlando

Chocolate moonpie. Just do it.

Taco Cheena

A cross between a food truck and a restaurant – Tako Cheena’s unique food style is the perfect mixture of two great food cultures.

You MUST try their Tom Yum Mojo Shrimp Tako (Latin and Asian infused marinate with a seasoned slaw, scallions and cilantro) and surprisingly their Indian Yellow Curry Dusted on Crispy Tofu Tako (with mixed cabbage, cilantro, celery and scallions)!

This is how you can eat like a local in Orlando

Damn good takos!

Shari Sushi Lounge

Omakase is always the best way to go in the land of sushi but if you order off the menu make sure to try the surf & turf signature roll (Tempura shrimp rolled with grilled shishito peppers, avocado, Japanese mayo, topped with blow torch seared Kobe beef, toasted garlic, scallions and truffle salt, with eel sauce).

Everything was super tasty despite being the fancy outfit type of sushi. #fancyoutfitsushi

Hanson’s Shoe Repair

This is quite the clever speakeasy. You must call, leave a voicemail, and hopefully get a reso texted back. If successful, do expect to wait hours to get in but I promise…the cocktails are worth it. Strong enough to kill a horse quite possibly.

Hang in the bar downstairs while you wait (I told you they are clever) and partake in their photo booth and super rando artwork. Post your pic on the ceiling for free shots. Overall…good times.

Girls night out in Orlando

Da’ girlz.

Photo booth fun while eating in Orlando

Photo booth fun!

 The Lodge

Dive bar in downtown. You know it is the right spot to be in when PBR is passed out for the New Year’s Eve midnight toast and the inflatable santa is wearing a camouflage jumper.

Happy New Year from Orlando


 Planet Pizza

Awesome late night pizza stop after bar hoping in downtown. The line gets long for a reason. (The white and BBQ chicken are delis!)

You know it is good pizza when you still eat it off the floor!

So good that even if it falls on the ground you won’t think twice. #3secondrule

Amy Hates Carrots in Orlando, Florida

Pizza on (not in) a cop car tastes even better!

Thank goodness for foodie friends with awesome taste buds. My heart loves you…my liver has mixed emotions.

Visiting friends in Orlando, Florida

Getting hammy…

Downtown Orlando for New Year's Eve

Festive downtown decor

Other Spots For Eating Like A Local in Orlando:

 Cask & Larder

Craft brewery and southern kitchen with seasonal dishes and oyster bar.

The Ravenous Pig

Sister restaurant to Cask & Larder…A gastropub with New American menu and handcrafted cocktails.

903 Mills Market

Lazy Sunday afternoon breakfast spot.

Christo’s Café

Inexpensive Breakfast – tons of food for very little money.

The Table

 Upscale, New American fixed-price dinners & wine pairings served at a communal table on weekends.

Pho 88

Casual Vietnamese spot that specializes in classic beef noodle soup & other Vietnamese dishes.


Array of Asian street eats, beer & wine.

Have you been to any of these spots? Do you have any fav local spots in Orlando that I missed? Please let me know in the comments below.  

Shop Amy’s Florida Inspired Favs Here:

It is possible to eat like a local in the largest US tourist city - Orlando, Florida. Let me show you how.

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find me grammin' at @amyhatescarrots

find me grammin' at @amyhatescarrots

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