Restaurants on the Radar: Florida Flavors

LeeAnn Huntoon

LeeAnn Huntoon

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LeeAnn Huntoon

On this episode of “Restaurants on the Radar,” host Brendan O’Connor takes you on a full-flavored tour of noteworthy restaurants in Orlando. An avid foodie and lover of all things Orlando, he shares his favorite spots in the “city beautiful” for grabbing a bite. 

From handheld creations to soul food packed with Florida flavor, here are a few restaurants in Orlando that should be on your radar.

Orlando restaurants featured in this episode:  

Pom Pom’s Teahouse & Sandwicheria

The first stop is Pom Pom’s Teahouse. Owner and operator Pom Moongauklang creates some of the most unique and delicious gourmet sandwiches in Orlando. Born and raised in Thailand she has honed her talent for melding the flavors of Eastern and Western cultures. The sandwich shop in the Milk District also offers authentic salads, a curated tea selection, sweet treats and innovative sake cocktails. 

Watch magic happen at the sandwich station as Brendan and Pom craft a new handheld creation together. A combination of smoked brisket, blue cheese crumbles, cranberry ginger chutney, spicy aioli, red onions and scallions cover the large slices of sourdough before it heads to the press. Did Brendan put together flavor combinations worthy of a Pom Pom’s signature sandwich? You be the judge.

Want to read more on Pom Pom’s? Check out this article.

Stop by Pom Pom’s and give “The Bungalower” a try.

Pom Pom's Teahouse & Sandwicheria
Getting there
67 N Bumby Ave, Orlando, FL 32803, USA
Mon 11am–4pm
Tue 11am–8pm
Wed-Thu 11am–10pm
Fri-Sat 11am–2am
Sun 11am–5pm
More Info


Craving a home-cooked meal? Next stop, Seana’s. The local restaurant is known for serving authentic Caribbean soul food in Orlando. A family-owned business model turned restaurateur, Joshua Johnson opened Seana’s after he noticed a lack of made to order Caribbean cuisine in Orlando. At Seana’s, you can dine on Caribbean soul food, made fresh to order. 

Brendan heads to the kitchen with chef Corey Johnson to make some slow-smoked oxtail from scratch. Watch as Brendan gets hands-on, mixing the marinade and spices into the signature dish. After slowly simmering, the oxtail is ready to plate. Tender pieces of fall-off-the-bone oxtail are plated with flavorful sides such as collard greens, plantains, rice and peas, and of course, the legendary “liquid gold” macaroni and cheese.

Seana's Caribbean | Soul Food
Getting there
719 Good Homes Rd, Orlando, FL 32818, USA
Mon-Thu 11am–8pm
Fri-Sat 11am–9pm
Sun 11am–7pm
More Info

Orlando Cat Cafe

Who doesn’t love canoodling with cats while sipping on a handcrafted coffee? The coziest cat cafe in Clermont is tucked right behind the Orlando theme parks. The cat cafe is a partnership between the SPCA of Florida and Minch Coffee. A lifelong lover of cats, owner Sandra Cagan wanted to make a difference in the world. That’s how the quiet and cozy coffeehouse came to be. 

The Orlando Cat Cafe is not only the first cafe in Florida to offer cats and kittens available for adoption, but they also offer cat-themed beverages. Suzanne Bernal, owner of Minch Coffee, one of the city’s most popular coffee shops in Orlando teaches Brendan how to make a purrrfect cat-faced latte.

Orlando Cat Café
Getting there
532 Cagan Park Ave Suite 201-203, Clermont, FL 34714, USA
Mon 12–6pm
Tue-Sun 10am–6pm
More Info

The Pinery

The Pinery is known for having the boldest Floridian cuisine in the city. Located in Ivanhoe Village, the restaurant has been tickling taste buds with its flavors since 2021. Owner Carol Holladay wanted to bring a sense of self to the community and celebrate the many flavors of Florida. 

The rich history within the four walls of the Orlando restaurant is breathtaking, but the true star of the show is the food. Most of the ingredients used are locally sourced. Steve Mattix, head chef of the Pinery, produces an amazing meal starting with alligator bites marinated in a mixture of local orange juice and buttermilk. You have to try their signature boiled peanut hummus. 

The Pinery
Getting there
295 NE Ivanhoe Blvd Suite A, Orlando, FL 32804, USA
Mon-Thu 4–10pm
Fri-Sat 4–11pm
Sun 4–9pm
More Info

Hungry for more local food content?

You can watch new episodes of “Restaurants on the Radar” and more original shows for FREE on the Very Local app. Dig into more culinary content from all across the nation including What’s on the Menu and Plate It Pittsburgh exclusively streaming on Very Local.

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