Of COURSE, there are hundreds of places to eat when you are inside the theme parks of Central Florida, but what about if you stay outside the parks and choose to drive in from several miles away? Well, don’t worry. Between historic downtown Kissimmee (which has 26 eateries), the outskirts of Kissimmee, the charming community of Celebration and the huge Disney Springs complex, you will NOT go hungry.
Allow me to mention just a few that I got to sample personally during a recent visit to the area.
Such a pretty town. You can definitely tell it is a “Disney-planned community.” Featuring a large lake, there are shops and restaurants radiating from it. I had lunch at Imperium Food and Wine at 606 Market Street. Large, mouthwatering entrees are served for dinner, while at lunch time, you can find tempting fresh salads, wraps and sandwiches. Check out the huge hunks of beef in my steak salad!!
Afterwards, as I wandered the quaint streets, I noticed several other attractive options, along with a macaron shop (yummy sweets) and even a doggy bakery. 🙂
HISTORIC DOWNTOWN KISSIMMEE
I was surprised to learn that Kissimmee has strong cowboy/cattle-ranching roots. From the horseshoe at the Visitors Center to the colorful statues and figurines around town and even to the street signs, with each block having a different Wild West-type of symbol, you’ll see how the town organizers have woven that theme into the town’s decor.
Even though there are 26 different eateries, representing a surprisingly broad range of cultures, I was not there at meal time. I did, however, pop into to a colorful new ice cream shop — LimbHelados (“helado” is the Spanish word for ice cream)– and enjoyed some delicious samples of fruity, handmade sorbets, sherbets and ice creams.
ON THE OUTSKIRTS OF KISSIMMEE
A huge Margaritaville Resort Orlando is under construction at 8000 Finns Up Circle in Kissimmee. Inside the resort will be what is billed as “the most technologically-advanced water park in the world!” Wow! That’s a mighty bold claim!
Directly across from one of the main entrances to this resort, you’ll find Formosa Gardens, and, in turn, Island Grove Wine Company at Formosa Gardens. The gift shop is filled with wonderful decor/food/jewelry items. The bistro here is a great place for a salad, sandwich, charcuterie, baked treat or what proved to be MY favorite — baked brie. So good.
I had a fabulous dinner at the newly-opened Jaleo by Jose Andres in Disney Springs. You’ll read my full story about Jaleo very soon. In the meantime, here’s a photo of the seafood paella, just to tease you. 🙂