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The 7 Best Dr. Phillips Restaurants | Dr. Phillips, West Orlando, Florida

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Doctor Phillips, an affluent neighborhood on the west side of Orlando nestled between Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando theme parks, has grown to become a go-to choice for restaurants with a clientele that appreciates diversity for their fine palates. We are here to focus on Dr. Phillips Restaurants that will make your stay even more pleasant.

Dr. Philip Phillips (1874-1959), who received his medical degree from Columbia University, may have used that medical knowledge to make such strides toward processing and packaging orange juice and showing the public just how many oranges it took to produce two quarts of juice (10 pounds). He aided industry promotion by getting people to buy oranges by the pound.

He helped product development by funding the project that created “flash” pasteurization that enhanced the taste of orange juice from a can. The American Medical Association did an independent study before officially endorsing Dr. Phillip’s claims and paved the way for orange juice to be sold as a concentrate by the 1950s. His foundations continue to benefit the Orlando community with his hospital, performing arts center (one of the best acoustics buildings in the world), and charitable giving.

Dr. Phillips’ dedication to “every man” through the land he purchased, and the village thrived to create the perfect space for the surprising combination of an affluent population with world-renowned restaurants found in strip malls. The Marketplace at Dr. Phillips contains a Freshii, Lisbon Portuguese cuisine, El INKA Grill Ceviche Peruvian Cuisine with a Publix, Morton’s Steakhouse, a dog bakery and much more. It’s a cornerstone to the wider neighborhood that we took the time to visit after eating our fill. 

Top 7 Dr. Phillips Restaurants You Must Visit


7600 Dr Phillips Blvd #14 //+14076306163

Domu, according to chef and owner, Sean “Sonny” Nguyen, is a slang term for “a dream come true.” Ask any millennial in the area about favorite restaurants and Domu invariably comes up. It’s their dream come true for a great place to eat, relax, and enjoy hip-hop music over the sound system. I dont know why but Dr. Phillips Restaurants have some special charm.

Gone are the days of the $.33 pack of Ramen, or when I was a college student even better on sale at 10 for a dollar. Now, ask any millennials or Gen Z the best place to eat in the Dr. Phillips neighborhood of Orlando, and nine times out of 10, Domu will be their top choice. It wasn’t until I investigated the menu further that I discovered it’s a sub-specialty Ramen restaurant that is often busy but does not take reservations. 

They have outdoor waiting areas and indoor and outdoor seating areas. We chose outside seating in late November as they keep the restaurant quite cold. Outdoor seating includes six small tables with up to four chairs each and a bar countertop-like area with 10 stools. 

Inside the restaurant and separated with the front third as bar with bar seating available and fun names filling the drink choices is reminiscent of Planta Queen in Fort Lauderdale with the open kitchen concept. Among all Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find the best outdoor seating area.

The signs outside invite you to “ask about our rotating bar specials” and “Enjoy your meal? Buy the Kitchen a round of drinks.” They’re already setting up for success. Their servers are young and hip, fit, and attentive. Their wall to the hostess stand is plastered with awards from “Best Ramen” to “Best of Orlando” to “Best New Restaurant” where they were awarded the Golden Spoon, Best Local Chef, and an acknowledgment from the James Beard Foundation. You just know you are one of the best Dr. Phillips Restaurants.

Reassured from the start that they make their own noodles, favorite daughter and their server may as well have been speaking another language as they discuss the menu and merits of each choice. She’s drawn to the ‘Richie Rich,’ with Shoyu Pork Bone Broth, Chashu (I learn quickly that’s braised pork belly), Ajitama brulee, Kikurage, scallion fried garlic, with black garlic oil and domudama. With the server recommending that as her favorite, even over the Tokyo curry (spiciness level to your liking), miso, Uni Mazemen, New Japan Mazeman, that Chuka didn’t stand a chance.

The five classic flavors of ramen also didn’t win out over that first choice, even with the add-ons of additional chashu, seared garlic chives, scallions, and a selection of spices, proteins, and vegetables. The one item that did deserve discussion was the house-made spicy bomb. While unable to tell me exactly what was in it, the server said it did add “umph” to an already well-seasoned dish. Favorite daughter decided against it this time, deciding to try the original first. She can always try it on a return visit – but turns out the spice was good for the dish as it was originally prepared.

The couple nearest us dug right into their Domu Wings. I thought it might be ribs from a distance but was assured otherwise. They really loved the crispiness with the kimchi butter sauce and sesame seeds and tell us it is their go-to appetizer. 

Vegetable options make for a good appetizer and our server led us to the Cheezus. Say it aloud – it’s funny. Gluten-free if you abstain from the freshly toasted French bread, it’s served for you to eat like a cheesy bruschetta without the tomato.

The mozzarella cheese concoction comes fresh from a cast iron skillet with corn (off cob), scallions, a wedge of lime, Japanese spices, and mayo creating a delicious topping. I’d never thought I’d like corn on a pizza before having this dish but am having second thoughts. It was that delicious. I’d have it again. The corn mixes well with the cheese and is an awesome, unexpected experience with a spice we think is tajin scattered across the upper crust.

DOMU Soft Shell Crab

Fingerling bravas, Sichuan cucumbers, shishito, and kimchi round out the vegetable options. Among all Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find probably most vegan dishes.

I’m looking forward to seeing what the “New Asian Buns” look like. Their take on a New England roll, they have one lobster option, but also a “Krabby Patty, which is fried soft shell crab which I only this year learned you eat with the shell on, and a pigs in a blanket version which is chashu ends with Persian cucumber, pickled cabbage, scallion, and spicy kewpie mayo. That is definitely not my mother’s recipe.

To round out the menu, three rice bowls are available, two with spicy tuna and one with a chashu end base.

Their dessert menu is super simple, with soft serve ice cream served in a waffle cone or a cup with rotating weekly flavors. We’ll have to wait for “New” Mermaid and Horchata to make their way back through rotation.

There are so many restaurants in this section of Doctor Phillips, you could do a “progressive dinner” right along the Marketplace. Appetizer at El Inka – Ceviche Taster.  Entrees Domu – Cheezus and Richie Rich. Desserts at Lisbon – Pasteis de Belem. Perfection. 

El Inka Grill

7600 Doctor Phillips Blvd. Orlando 32819 //+14079302810

El INKA Offers both indoor and outdoor seating. This now holiday-decorated restaurant has both booths and tables inside. Their menu transports us back to our time in Peru. Although, thankfully, no guinea pigs appear to have been harmed in the preparation of these meals. The menu is redolent with beef and chicken dishes and seafood. But our fond friends aren’t taken roasted from a Wood fired oven as we saw in Pisac. 

They do offer lunch specials. Watch for the outdoor chalkboard signs for the current offerings.

Some of their palate-pleasing dishes are:

Papa a la Huancaina o Cassava. While I tend to prefer my potatoes served warm, those that enjoy a pepper cheese sauce will be very happy with this dish.

Choros a la chalaca, Favored by my favorite daughter, who enjoys mussels marinated with olive oil and fresh lime juice. She tells me that diced onion, tomato, and cilantro bring out the flavor nicely, and it doesn’t bother her at all that it’s served cold.

Calamares Fritos are always a favorite, as crispy calamari rings with salsa and fried Yucca could easily make a meal rather than just an appetizer. From the all Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find one of the best service.

El Inka Grill Conchas A La Parmesana

Conchas a la parmesana is another seafood lovers’ favorite dish with five scallops cooked with butter and a white wine reduction. The Parmesan cheese is like icing on the cake.

Papa Rellena captures my attention every time as the Peruvian seasoning in the ground beef was a favorite when we visited Machu Picchu and continues today. I do enjoy a good deep-fried mashed potato and from all the Dr. Phillips Restaurants I visited here, I found the most similar to you make at home.

Leche de tigre with concentrated fish and citrus, lime juices, and a floater of chopped onions, cilantro, and a touch of Concha served cold and their anticuchos de corazon (beef heart) are for someone with a more adventurous palate than I. Let me know if you try it!

I’m missing the Unstoppable Stacey at this restaurant when I see they have their Pulpo Al Grill anticuchado. She would likely enjoy this octopus grilled in their Peruvian panca pepper sauce.

Their Causas all appear delectable, with a delicate potato puree each seasoned with yellow Peruvian pepper, lime juice, and oil, topped with your choice of protein (chicken salad, octopus, Lomo Saltado (sirloin), shrimp, or a sampler of three). This is a great dish for celiacs as it is gluten-free. My go-to has to be the chicken salad. Favorite daughter enjoys the shrimp.

I’m thrilled with the salad choices here: INKA’s salad, and Ensalada de Casa. The two remind me of the lovely vegetable options with a twist. The first (without the feta cheese for me) served with a warm aji Amarillo dressing works perfectly with either salmon or mahi (chicken, steak, shrimp also available).

The avocado based Ensalada is one favorite daughter could enjoy daily. It, too, offers five protein options to add. Their quinoa salad contains cucumber, feta cheese, dried cranberries (fun for the holidays), cancha, and red peppers. I enjoy their sweet passion fruit balsamic vinaigrette.

They offer three soups: parihuela, aguadito de pollo, and chupe de camaron. Seafood or chicken lovers are likely to appreciate the combination. They advertise their parihuela as an aphrodisiac (forewarned is forearmed).

El Inka Grill Chupe De Camaron

Most in the area, though, will tell you they’re known for their ceviches. Those in the know will tell you ceviche is fish that has not been heated, but instead cooked by acid immersion.

El INKA offers traditional Peruvian-style ceviche (white fish, Octopus/squid/shrimp /white fish, shrimp / white fish, seafood medley) as well as Chef’s Special Ceviches. When we were there, the chef focused on either end of the day: both sunrise and sunset options with a new option adding a creamy black olive sauce. Here’s the secret: the sunrise has a little beer in it. 

For those of us that still can’t wrap their heads around ceviche, El INKA comes to the rescue with grilled ceviches. It’s a different taste for lobster tail (grilled in aji Amarillo sauce), salmon (citrus infused tartar sauce), and mahi mahi (rocoto sauce) and something I’m not afraid to order.

If you’re a fan of ceviche and your party is interesting in trying multiple types, go for the sampler options. They’re a good value and allow you to taste several before, perhaps, ordering a special dish just for you.

Their Tiraditos, like sashimi, will likely please the ceviche fans with options between their rocoto pepper cream sauce, creamy black olive sauce, and yellow pepper cream, or, for the octopus, cucumber, olive oil, and citrus lime juices.

Getting back to safer ground for me, I explored their seafood options. They vary from a mixture of fish, squid, and shrimp, to seafood rice, white fish filet (yes, please!), lobster tail, and even some that combine seafood, chicken, and beef. They’ve gone well past the “rules” my mother and husband taught me about cooking when they combine all three of these.

I think it was more common in Brazil than Peru to have limbs of meat (they called them churrasco when we ate in Cuiaba Brazil and they carved tableside, but El INKA’s beef menu reminds me of that. They serve their traditional Peruvian sliced beef and Black Angus skirt steak in such a variety of ways it makes me want to get back to the kitchen to experiment. That may mean I’ve been on the road too long.

People that know me would take one look at this menu and guess I’d go for the Churrasco a lo Pobre and they’re right. Hold the fried egg (sorry, chef), and that sizzling Black Angus skirt steak served with crisp French fries just made me smile. The white rice was a nice addition due to the flavors of the steak, and the sweet plantains took me back to my travels across both Central and South America. I could have that dish every visit.

Their eight chicken dishes might be chosen based on their accompaniments. 

Have a taste for French fries, but still white wine? Try the Pollo Saltado. 

In the mood for a shredded chicken with the traditional Peruvian yellow creamy sauce? Order the Aji de Gallina. 

A straightforward, power dish? I’d recommend the Tallarines Verdes con Pollo a la Parilla with chicken breast and linguine, it’s the perfect delivery mechanism for a perfect Peruvian pesto sauce. 

Little ones around us enjoyed just saying the name “Cau Cau de Pollo” over and over again. It was like wandering into a childcare center when “Frozen” was on and someone whispered, “Do you want to build a snowman?” It was just plain fun, in this area between Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando, to witness families maybe from the area, but probably not, enjoying their time together.

And for the kiddos, they do offer a Kid’s Menu: baby Churrasco, chicken tenders, or chicken breast. But if you want to help them get over food fear or develop their palates early, have them try your ceviche. You won’t be sorry.

And now, for those of you so patiently waiting, the dessert menu. While we visited, they offered two ice cream dishes, both blends of Peruvian fruit, and two custards that are gluten-free. 

El Inka Grill Picarones

The most popular dessert we saw was the Picarones – traditional warm Peruvian donut-like pastry smothered in their house-made brown sugar cinnamon clove syrup with a touch of orange. If you spent any part of your holidays as a child sticking cloves into oranges to hang from the Christmas tree, you’ve already got an idea why this is such a powerful memory for the adults in the group.

In addition to that indulgence, they served a decadent chocolate cake served with either ice cream or a rich and fudgy icing and alfajores, cookies stuffed with a creamy caramel filling and dusted with powdered sugar that made a glorious mess and, based on the appearance of the kids and adults “wearing” the sugar after the first bite, was totally worth it.

Lisbon Portuguese Cuisine

7000 Dr. Phillips Blvd, Suite 12 //+14076350002

Favorite daughter made it to Portugal before me, with a missed connection on her way to a Senegal summer internship, so had already experienced the flavors of Lisbon. It’s something I’m looking forward to, but in the meantime, I have this great restaurant just a half hour from where I live that reminds me of my mother’s kitchen when I walk in the door with shiny brass molds hanging from the wall.

They tell us their authentic flavors are from traditional Bacalhau dishes (I learn this is cod) to the world famous Pasteis de Belem. While some say Pasteis de nata is the northern version of Pasteis de Belem appears to be the equivalent of “fighting words” according to some of my International Living expat friends living in Portugal. Trust me, though, when I tell you, if you enjoy custard tarts, among all Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find them.

The server tells me that “Back in the old days” the Jeronimos Monastery made the custard tarts, and they became so popular, that they’re sold throughout the country of Portugal to this day. And now, with Lisbon in Dr. Phillips, outside the country as well. They bake it daily here which can only lead me to say “Obrigada.”

The owner and chef, Rui Borges, born in the Azores and now a Florida resident after more than 20 years in snowy Massachusetts, says his goal is to serve “authentic cuisine at its very best.”

This food seems simple, but I think that’s why the perfection of each meal, and the importance of the entire experience, shines through. The colors of the restaurant, the wine pairings, the scent of fine food wafting across the restaurant, even the choice of flatware and table settings (maybe it’s the tablecloth?), all combine to make Lisbon a place you’ll want to linger over a meal and return often.

One great thing about Pasteis de Belem? You could, if you so chose, have it both before and after your meal. It’d make a fine appetizer, but many we’ll start with the Pasteis de Bacalhau to get the flavor profile of Portugal with this traditional dish. In addition, on another visit, favorite daughter would likely try their shrimp, codfish, squid, or octopus appetizers. We’ll need to bring some friends along to tell us what they think of the sausage or cheese platter. 

Their soups and salad selection are perfect in their simplicity. The soup of the day or a Caesar or house salad. When we were there, Mahi Mahi stew or grille and Octopus in Casserole were the specials of the day.

Lisbon Portuguese Cuisine Mahi Mahi Stew

I like that they shared the kid’s menu right up front. It’s so much easier to enjoy your meal when the little ones are happy and the children around us seemed well started with mac & cheese, chicken fingers and occasionally a little steak with French fries. Most still enjoyed the custard and several enjoyed portions from their parent’s plate.

The land choices include beef, lamb, pork, and chicken. You could even choose a surf and turf, or “Mar e Terra” with grilled steak and lobster tail. I think the most festive was the Bife na Pedra, or steak on a stone. It’s quite a production watching your steak cooked on a stone at your table.

Three different sauces provide the scent that entice your tastebuds to water long before you’re able to actually take a bite. But that’s what we have the Pasteis de Belem for, right? Served with mashed potatoes and assorted vegetables, the Bife certainly doesn’t require an appetizer or a dessert to fill all of your appetite needs, but taking a box home makes a wonderful option to allow you to try more dishes and extend the feelings from your visit that much longer. Among all Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find the biggest portions.

Their sea options include Bacalhau a Ze Do Pipo, an oven-baked dish consisting of layers of shredded salted codfish, mashed potatoes, and mayonnaise. Honest to goodness, it looked like lasagna at first. Additional codfish casseroles and preparations fill the menu before broiled octopus, octopus rice stew, sauteed shrimp, sardines, salmon, and seafood rice tempt your taste buds.

The servers are well-versed on your wine pairings and Coca Cola products are offered. They also carry Sumol, which, I understand, in Orange, Pineapple, or Passion Fruit, is a favorite among the Portuguese. There’s also a Portuguese sparkling water, beer (Super Bock is the Portuguese option), coffee, cappuccino, espresso, Galao (Portuguese Latte), and tea.

If you’ve tried the Pasteis de Belem and still have room for more, other desserts offered include Doce da Avo or “Grandma’s Sweet,” almost a trifle of Maria biscuits and sweet cream with an egg yolk (rather than egg white meringue) topping; the Serradura is a “sawdust pudding” with shredded Maria biscuits, based on the appearance, flan, or my second favorite dessert offered, their chocolate mousse. I could have that every visit, too. Fortunately, the Marketplace is a nice long stretch so you can work off some of these calories both before and after your meal.

Slate Restaurant

8322 W Sand Lake, Doc Phillips Orlando //+14075007528

We caught the tail end of happy hour so had the option to choose a mushroom popover, crispy pork belly, beef tartar, daily soup selection, or Margarita pizza to go along with the Florida beers, which included Mill Pond Blonde Ale from Apalachicola or Proof Lagar from Tallahassee or a Skyway Hazy Double IPA from Claremont. They sold wine by the glass, both red and white, and cocktails included Aperol spritz, cosmopolitan, Tom Collins, or whiskey highball. The bartender’s choice was the cocktail of the month and he didn’t mistake. From all of Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find the best beverages.

The dinner menu included pumpkin ravioli, mushroom popover, foie gras toast, Cajun crab cake, gnocchi carbonara, crispy pork belly, beef tartare, soup, or, from the hearth, they served pizzas as they were ready with options including bone marrow, hearth roasted Brie, Margherita, Papa Chuck (julienned pepperoni), roasted mushroom, pulled pork, or the pizza of the week.

I asked favorite daughter if she wanted Pumpkin Ravioli and Cajun crab cakes or a spicy Thai noodle salad or spinach risotto and seared scallops?

She was on the road and made it difficult to converse. It’s definitely better to get there together.

Their main entrees include the SLATE Brisket (roasted acorn squash, black eye pea bisque, biscuit gremolata, and black garlic with crispy shallot), smoked lamb rack, Wagyu burger, seared scallops, pork tenderloin, and heirloom stuffed chicken breast. 

The wood-grilled filet mignon and herb-crusted halibut are even better when you’re able to enjoy them in the restaurant than having to wait (if you’ve ordered take away) until you get home. 

Slate Restaurant Grill Filet Mignon

During brunch, they offer the choice of salads and grilled romaine Caesar or roasted beet, or a spicy Thai noodle. For sandwiches, they have a Wagyu burger, grilled chicken BLT, French dip, grilled Portobello, or crispy chicken breast. 

A la carte, they offer a brioche French toast, seasonal pancakes, pancetta and pepper jack, hush puppies, Croak Madame croissant, or Brisket Benedict. Not to be outdone by the broccolini omelet or Cajun shrimp and grits, steak and eggs are always a safe option for the less adventurous eaters (yes, like me!).

Desserts include an olive oil ganache with cherry mousse, a pumpkin cheesecake, carrot cake canelé, smores, and a sorbet duo. Dessert cocktails like the Lady Finger or the Chai Harder are easy to substitute to assuage your sweet tooth. And fun to laugh over the names. Their carrot cake is the most fantastic among all Dr. Phillips Restaurants.

Eddie V’s Prime Seafood

7488 W Sand Lake Rd //+14073553011

The first thing we learned here, though the restaurant’s location is free-standing at the end of a strip mall, it shares a parking lot with Rocco’s Tacos, is the value of their Free Valet parking. Don’t risk getting aggravated trying to find a spot yourself if it’s busy, let them park your car for you.

Eddie V’s, another weekday evening-only restaurant, They offer brunch on Saturdays but are closed Sundays Think of it as the elegant neighbor that highly recommends reservations. Don’t worry, you can make them online. Theirs is a “polite” dress code, with no gym attire or clothing with offensive language or images allowed.

Interested in excellent seafood or steak, this is a great place to go with your party. As always, I checked out, desserts, first, and was pleased to learn that they are baked fresh daily in their specialty pastry kitchen. They offer a bananas Foster butter cake, flambéed tableside and served with butter pecan ice cream, a classic crème brûlée, a Meyer lemon tarte, hot chocolate Godiva cake, or berries and creme. While tempted by the Meyer lemon, I resisted and turned my focus to the dinner menu. One thing you’ll notice right away, is that the staff is very well informed about cocktails with attitude. They’ll make recommendations that you may never have considered.

Favorite daughter, in seventh heaven, with the seafood choices, started with the East Coast oysters served on ice with both cocktail and mignonette sauces. She still trying to educate me on the differences between the oysters collected from a variety of areas. These East Coast oysters work, we’re told, from Prince Edward Island and Rhode Island. She tells me if she had more room, i.e. was hungry her, she might go for the shellfish tower, which included the main lobster, six shrimp, six oysters and a colossal crab.

They’re Petrossan caviar was enjoyed by many of the diners around us, as was “the big Eddie” which included king crab, Maine lobsters, tuna poke, eight shrimp, and eight oysters. 

Appetizers included a steak, tartare, yellowtail, sashimi, Maine, lobster tacos, jumbo lump, crab cake, Kung Pao calamari, and an Ahi tuna tartare. For a second course, they recommend the Maine lobster bisque or classic Caesar salad, I went with the iceberg wedge BLT without the blue cheese. The warm goat cheese, salad, or Burrata and beet salad rounded out that section of their menu.

Their prime seafood choices include a Chilean Seabass, Georges Bank, scallops, Mediterranean Bronzino, roasted with artichokes, Norwegian salmon, Parmesan sole, jumbo gulf shrimp, South African, lobster, and ahi tuna.

Eddie V's Prime Seafood Chilean Seabass

My favorite items at Eddie’s though, were in the premium hand-cut steak section. My choice of center-cut filet was easily handled, as were the New York strip and ribeye orders. Someone at the next table ordered the 8-ounce center-cut filet mignon and premium South African lobster tail. At $100, this turned out to be about the average price per person at Eddie V’s.

Many of the people that we witnessed eating and enjoying the shrimp or oysters, as appetizers really enjoyed their bacon-wrapped filet medallions Oscar style. I was interested to find that you can get a snake River Farms gold grade Wagyu strip here, as well as a bone in fillet with morel mushroom crust and fig. Balsamic glaze. This is where you really get to see the expertise of the chef. The tomahawk prime long bone ribeye is an enormous dish, one that I would either have to share with several other people or plan to take home for a few additional meals.

As you might expect, enhancements are available with scallops, shrimp, lobster tail, king, crab legs, Parmesan, and horseradish crust or cave-age blue cheese crust available for your entrée. Among all Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find the best-grilled asparagus.

My favorite of the sides is their grilled asparagus served simply seared with a bit of lemon and sea salt. It’s the most refreshing vegetable with the steak, I think. They also offer a butter poached lobster mashed potato, truffled macaroni and cheese, sautéed spinach, with garlic, and a little Parmesan cheese, Au Groton cheddar potatoes, crab fried rice with mushrooms and scallions, and crispy brussels sprouts with a Korean glaze. It does have nuts for anyone with peanut allergies, so be aware. 

I’ve already discussed the desserts, so it seems like the best thing to mention in closing are the interesting names, chosen for the “cocktails with attitude.” They are divided by an attitude you might have at the moment, whether fortitude or idealism or decadence, and are quite fun to look at or comment upon with your friends and family. The smoked old fashioned and perfect patron margarita, and even the maverick are well-suited to fortitude as the red dragon and mango mule are for idealism. 

Decadence does seem to be the name of the day, though, especially if you’re here for a romantic dinner. With options like 24 karat, the Hope diamond, and even the espresso martini, you could have a jewel of a night here at Eddie V’s.

Burntwood Tavern

5078 Dr. Phillips Blvd. //+14077769991

Established in 2010, they’ve had more than a decade to perfect their dishes and done just that. With quick service at an off-hours time (mid-afternoon Sunday), we were able to sit in the bar and people-watch as our server made thoughtful recommendations, helped with our drink orders (they make their own “Mountain Dew” concoction). Try the Arnold Palmer with pink lemonade and either sweet or unsweet tea (I went for the unsweetened and was grateful) or a Virgin margarita and take your time over the extensive menu.

It’s impossible to bypass their soft pretzel sticks, four sticks served with specialty mustards, my daughter couldn’t resist. Among all Dr. Phillips Restaurants, here you will find definitely the best pretzel.

Their menu, solidly in my comfort zone, offered crispy shrimp tacos, Angus beef sliders, Tavern Tater Tots served with barbecue sauce and buttermilk ranch, firecracker shrimp, chicken sliders, calamari, crispy Thai chicken, or flatbreads as starters. Favorite daughter always loves a good shrimp taco. While waiting for their arrival, she deliberated over drinks and the unsuccessful attempt to avoid ordering the pretzels. I’ll be sure to try the tater tots on my next visit.

Soups and salads include a lobster bisque with shrimp and extra virgin olive oil, a Caesar salad, and a salmon salad served with roasted chickpeas, feta, tomato, pickled red onions in a balsamic vinaigrette.

They serve their Mahi tacos with a wire basket of sweet potato fries. I’ve always enjoyed this presentation, the wire basket, I mean, but still don’t understand the need for fries with tacos. The two perfectly cooked mahi accompanied by a small warm tortilla with pickled red onions, shredded cabbage, and pico de gallo (hold the feta for me) was a great choice that afternoon. Next visit, I’ll have the Faroe Island Salmon with those tater tots.

Burntwood Tavern Mahi Tacos

Favorite daughter enjoyed her shrimp tacos, calamari, and firecracker shrimp. It impressed me that there wasn’t more to take home. She highly recommends their seafood so feel confident when you order either meat or seafood. You’ll likely enjoy it.

My only regret? I don’t drink Bloody Marys. They had quite the decadent Bloody Mary bar, something outside my experience. Even thinking back to the elaborate brunches we used to attend when I lived in Houston, I’ve never seen so many options to “spruce up” this drink … or side dishes to enhance the flavor profile.

Leave it to the Burntwood Tavern to spin their twist into a delightful new experience for you and your party at one of these Dr. Phillips Restaurants.

Chatham’s Place Restaurant

7575 Dr. Phillips Blvd //+14073452992

Recommended highly by a Facebook friend who had experienced multiple celebrity sightings at this understandably pricy restaurant, we had to check it out.

When you’re interested in romantic fine dining, Chatham’s remains my top of all Dr. Phillips Restaurants. Make reservations, though. Owner and Chef Tony Lopez takes it as a point of pride that your table is not “reseated,” it’s yours for the evening. This one item makes this American restaurant feel very European. People aren’t rushing off to attend a movie or a show, they’re settling in for good conversation and reconnecting. It’s surprising how this one fact changes the entire experience. The live music with an excellent pianist helps as well.

After a warm welcome, you’re invited to peruse the menu or allow for the chef’s tasting menu. 

Their soups include a cream of portobello mushroom and lobster bisque; this is one of the best soup I ever tried at Dr. Phillips Restaurants. Salads and appetizers range from beef or smoked salmon carpaccio, a Caprese salad, special house salad, to Chef Tony’s brie jalapeño. Escargot in parsley butter and served in a wonton was popular amongst those around me.

Chatham's Place Restaurant Salmon Carpaccio

While Chef Tony’s Instagram feed may be filled with gorgeous photos of duck breast and Florida black grouper (he’s a true artist), the spicy chicken Louisiana seemed to be one of the most popular choices of the evening. The chicken à la Bruce was also popular with the explanation that chef Tony’s homemade mozzarella, which came from his nearby organic farm, elevated the flavors.

As always, I remain a fan of the filet mignon, a Center cut Angus beef tenderloin that Chef serves with the Madeira demi-glace. 

Things seem to slow down at this restaurant… to an easier time and a better place, one that you’d like to stay and visit for quite a while.

Side dishes available, include cauliflower, gratin, steamed, asparagus, mashed potatoes, potatoes, au gratin, artichokes, sautéed, spinach, steamed, broccoli, with asparagus, my choice for the evening. Their menu does make it easy to identify what items are gluten-free, and it was simplified for me, since all of their sides are gluten-free. 

Those of you, that know me will appreciate how much I enjoyed their dessert menu. I couldn’t resist the dark chocolate mousse, though I received resistance about having it before my meal was served. They round out their offerings with a pecan macadamia pie, key lime, pie, crème brûlée, berries sorbet, chocolate cake, or bananas foster. 

After my delicious steak, had it not been for the mousse, I likely would have tried the berry sorbet. The chef’s passion for food shows through each bite of every dish.

Good to know, though, Chatham’s will be there when I am ready for another excellent evening meal.

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