The dining remains unchanged but once the kitchen closes, the bar stays open and its new night life stirs. Will Walker (of Will's Pub) has completely revamped the side room into a legitimate concert hall with stage, lights and PA, and it looks and sounds great. Regular weeknight themes-some musical, some visual arts-are popular. It's an effective synthesis of live venue and lounge. 
"/>
Orlando Weekly home.

directions

If this is your place, contact editor to make changes or updates

photos

  • Share the fantasy: At Taste in College Park, the idea is to order up a stylish variety of tapas-style specialties and then spread the joy  (photo: Gregg Matthews)

Upload a Photo


Share the fantasy: At Taste in College Park, the idea is to order up a stylish variety of tapas-style specialties and then spread the joy (photo: Gregg Matthews)

Taste Restaurant

  The dining remains unchanged but once the kitchen closes, the bar stays open and its new night life stirs. Will Walker (of Will's Pub) has completely revamped the side room into a legitimate concert hall with stage, lights and PA, and it looks and sounds great. Regular weeknight themes-some musical, some visual arts-are popular. It's an effective synthesis of live venue and lounge. 

 

Neighborhood: Central

717 W. Smith St.
Orlando
Phone: (407) 835-0646
 

Attributes

Alcohol:
Beer Liquor
 
Entertainment:
DJ Live Music
 
Facility Features:
Outdoor Dining Smoking Prohibited Wheelchair Access
 
Meals:
Catering Dinner Food Lunch Take Out
 
Payment Methods:
Discover MasterCard Visa
 
Reservations:
Reservations recommended
 
Ambience:
Kid Friendly
 
Price Range:
$$
 
Featured Venue Lists:
Featured Bar - Website
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Review

Imagine a place where food is served on little plates, and just when you think you've eaten enough of one exciting gem, another plate appears with an even more enticing item.

The land of the endless lilliputian meal may exist only in dreams, but a similar vision, and your appetite, can be fed while you're awake at Taste, the restaurant that moved in hard on the heels of Chapters Bread & Books Cafe's exodus to Winter Park.

Owners Paul Daniel and Tracy Reinstein -- from New York and San Francisco, respectively -- have revamped the place with backlit paintings and big swatches of color for a new urban, contemporary feel. It's amazing how much space was added by removing the walls of bookcases. Be careful coming in; the new expanse is so captivating that many people don't see the step up into the dining room -- including me.

"California cuisine in tapas style" is how Dennis describes the menu, share-a-bite-sized portions conjured up by Chef "Brooks," formerly of Antonio's La Fiamma and Trastevere. Touches of Asia, Italy and the West Coast appear in these bites, and it's difficult to know how to categorize a meal made up of appetizers. The tapenade trio of pepper, olive and roasted garlic spreads ($5.95) are a good warm-up, but ask for extra bread.

The plates roll in as they leave the kitchen, so even though the service is exceptional, plan on a leisurely experience. A tangy and so-fresh ceviche ($5.95) of shrimp, teeny calamari and spectacular chunks of fish, "cooked" in lime juice and cilantro, was polished off in time for the entrance of seared scallops ($6.95), tender without being underdone, with hints of basil and chipotle peppers.

There's not a bad plate in the place, with high points going to slender grilled asparagus drizzled with pale-green garlic and wasabi dressing ($4.95), and a "Southwest cornbread souffle" ($3.95) that combined hot, sweet and creamy to best advantage.

There are too many great items to mention, and with every plate under 10 bucks, it's easy to think you'll get away cheap at Taste, and you can. A quick meal of cannellini and green-bean salad, along with a surprisingly large serving of green mussels in a fragrantly exotic lemongrass/coconut broth, comes in at under $12. But, like the lure of sushi when it's time to order, one more amuse-bouche calls out and the bill can add up. Still, the value is in sharing, and the portions are large enough that everyone leaves the table satisfied.

Impressive is too pedestrian a word for Taste, a unique experience that will require many return visits.

 

event list

No events found

 

Comments

Comments powered by Disqus
Login to Orlando Weekly
  1. forget password?
Don't have an account?
Create A New Account
Connect with Facebook

Have a Facebook account? Login using your Facebook account to share your activities with friends.

Create Account
  1. Clicking GO means you agree to our terms
Connect with Facebook

Have a Facebook account? Login using your Facebook account to share your activities with friends.

Connecting to Facebook...

Share this

Share via Email
Share on Facebook
Share