Food & Drink - Staff Picks
Published: July 18, 2012
Anzac biscuits at Drunken Monkey Coffee Bar
444 N. Bumby Ave.
ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, and the biscuit of the same name was popularized in Australia during World War I, presumably because simple ingredients like rolled oats, flour and desiccated coconut could stay relatively tasty after a long transit. Selling Anzac biscuits takes verve, though, since Australian law protects the name and original recipe. In 2008 Subway restaurants abandoned plans to sell their own version of the cookie, since they were prohibited from using cheap substitute ingredients. Drunken Monkey Coffee Bar, always up for a challenge, began offering an original-recipe version ($1.50) a little over two years ago. Recently they began including flavored varieties like peanut butter, lemon ginger and a gluten-free version (all for $2 each). The soft, not-too-sweet cookies may not make you nostalgic for the days of trench warfare, but the taste will leave you shell-shocked.
Best place to drink from a boot
Hollerbach's Willow Tree Café
205 E. First St., Sanford
Proffering real German gemütlichkeit (bless you), which is basically a sense of euphoric and drunken camaraderie, Hollerbach's brings the sleepy downtown Sanford strip to raucous life nightly in a way that stands in stark relief to what Sanford has now unfortunately become known for. All sorts of meaty German fare is offered in a family-style, long-bench setting as the lederhosen, yodeling and folk instruments come out periodically to send the assembled masses – the place gets packed – into a "schunkeling" mess of arm-locked, swaying (so as not to fall over) audience participation. At the dinner service's peak, a giant plastic boot of beer is passed around a table, with each participant basically forced to swig the joyful backwash of their nearest neighbor. It's German! It's fun! It's totally not what you expect in Sanford.
Best foodie trend to hit Orlando last
216 N. Park Ave., Winter Park
Just another foodie trend that's gone yawningly mainstream in bigger cities before it pops up here (or eye-rollingly "ugh so OVER" to the real cool kids), macarons are nevertheless so freaking pretty and sweet and delicious and delicate that they get a wide-spectrum late pass from us. (Le Macaron's gelato is also pretty good.) They may be 2012's cupcake, but given the choice between a cupcake and a macaron, we say bring on the macaron truck.
Chocolate-banana-sea salt pop
We love most of Yum-Yum's flavors – blueberry-hibiscus is a close runner-up – but this particular pop is a frozen chunk of joy. It's packed with deep, rich, creamy cocoa; the banana taste/texture is present in a backgroundy way, like a hint of tropicalia; the salt is barely perceptible except for the way it sharpens the other flavors. ■