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BOO 2011


Photo by Jason Greene

Food and Drink - Staff Picks


Best late, late night Mexican that isn’t Taco Bell

California Burrito Express
3922 E. Colonial Drive, 407-894-8250

We know the feeling, East Siders – after a night of drinking downtown, you’re meandering home on State Road 50, and suddenly, the urge for warm carbohydrates strikes you. The Taco Bell near Bennett Road is your typical stopping point, but don’t do it. Just before the Bell is a far more authentic Mexican experience called California Burrito Express, a drive-through open 24 hours a day. Everything from the beef tostadas to fish tacos are deftly crafted, considering the circumstances – we’ve only seen two people working at any one time, one taking orders, one cooking. If you’re focused purely on quantity, go inside and help yourself to shovel after shovel of tortilla chips near the salsa bar, which includes pickled carrots.


Best local cooking blog

Honest Fare

We’ll admit that our metrics for judging a cooking blog may vary from yours: aesthetics count as much as recipes. Hey, it’s a visual medium, and we look at a lot more recipes than we actually prepare. But when we found Honest Fare, we found the best of both worlds. Gabrielle Arnold is a home chef with a background in advertising – obvious in the site’s smart branding and layout, clean design and typography, and utterly gorgeous photographs. Her interest in eating healthfully but not ascetically means you won’t find a lot of recipes involving bacon, but neither is there a shortage of sweets. Honest Fare is a lovely compendium of easy-to-achieve dishes that showcase the best of the Florida landscape.


Best hacksaw-wielding

Chef Tony Adams in “The Butcher’s Charge”

In this Protein University video, Matt Addington’s camera captures Adams as he strides across the grass with a side of local pork, swathed in white gauze like a bride and slung over his shoulder, and then sets about turning that half-pig into food. Unlike many of the other ProteinU videos, “The Butcher’s Charge” isn’t an instructional video. Watching Adams break down the animal is almost like watching a good carpenter at work – the same reverent care for his tools; the same rapt attention to the materials; the same abstracted middle-distance gaze as he seems almost to listen to the product under his hands, not look at it. It’s three minutes of mesmerizingly beautiful carnage, though: rough viewing if you haven’t reconciled the fact that this is what eating meat means.


Best food fight

“Food Truck Heaven” drama

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