Food + Drink // 11 Local Things to Do in Orlando

Summer is upon us and it's time to have some fun! Orlando has a variety of recurring food and drink events that happen almost every day of the week. The neighborhoods and local businesses within them is what makes Orlando a fun place to live in. From community farmers markets to main street walks and crawls, these events have become embedded in the heart of the Central Florida community and in my routine.

Orlando Farmers Market (Website/Facebook)
Lake Eola Park, Downtown Orlando
Every Sunday, 10:00am - 4:00pm
Seasonal fresh produce, vast array of vendors, food, crafts, and entertainment. Outdoor dining area and Beer/Wine Garden from 12:00pm - 4:00pm with $12 bottomless mimosas.

Orlando Farmers Market

Orlando Farmers Market

Audubon Market (Website/Facebook)
Stardust Video + Coffee / 1842 East Winter Park Rd., Orlando, FL 32803
Every Monday, 5:00pm - 9:00pm
Weekly gathering of growers, ranchers, fishermen, chefs, artists, handcrafters, musicians and neighbors. The market is set up in the Stardust parking lot with a wide selection of local food, art, and live music.

Tasty Tuesdays in the Milk District (Facebook)
2424-2432 E. Robinson Street between Bumby & Primrose (Trucks are parked in the back lots)
Every Tuesday, 6:30pm - 10:00pm
Weekly local food truck meet-up with a solid rotation of 12 trucks, rain or shine. Regular features are vegetarian options and American gastropub plates. The Milk Bar, Spacebar, Sandwich Bar, and Etoile Boutique all open their doors to guests at the event.

Drink Around the Hood (Website/Facebook)
Ivanhoe Village Main Street District, visit website for check-in location
3rd Wednesday of every month, 7:00pm - 10:00pm
Tickets: $15/advance or $20/day of event include complimentary pedicab rides and drink samples from participating locations (while supplies last).
Sample sangria, beer, and cocktails throughout Orlando's most eclectic lakeside ‘hood.

1st Thursdays at Orlando Museum of Art (Website/Facebook)
Orlando Museum of Art / 2416 North Mills Ave., Orlando, FL 32803
1st Thursday of every month, 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Admission: $10 or free with an annual membership
Discover local artists, listen to live music and mingle with an eclectic mix of people at “Orlando’s original art party”. Cash bars and café offerings from area restaurants are available.

Thornton 2nd Thursday Wine + Art Walk (Website/Facebook)
Thornton Park, visit website for glass pick-up and check-in location
2nd Thursday of every month, 6:30pm - 9:30pm
Tickets: $15 (cash only) include complementary pour of wine from participating locations
An evening of sights, sounds, food, shopping, and some tastings all along the walk.

Orlando Conductor Crawl (Website/Facebook)
Visit website for check-in location and train schedule
2nd Friday of every month, 5:00pm - 9:00pm
Tickets: $5.00-$25.00 (purchase here)
A monthly meet-up to explore Central Florida neighborhoods and districts using SunRail.

Orlando Conductor Crawl / SunRail

Orlando Conductor Crawl / SunRail

East End Market #Dine2Nine (Website/Facebook)
East End Market / 3201 Corrine Dr. Orlando, FL 32803
Eat, drink, and socialize at East End Market until 9pm on Fridays and Saturdays. During extended hours, merchants are providing food and drink specials to spice up the evening.

Winter Park Farmers Market (Website)
200 West New England Ave., Winter Park, FL
Every Saturday, 7:00am - 1:00pm
Produce, plants, and baked goods held at the old train depot that has been restored into an historical landmark.

Winter Garden Farmers Market (Website/Facebook)
104 S Lakeview Ave, Winter Garden, FL 34787
Every Saturday, 9:00am - 2:00pm
Large selection of vendors from locally grown produce, baked goods, homemade soaps, fresh flowers, and live entertainment. If you're in the area, also check out Plant Street Market - Axum Coffee serves a delicious cup of coffee.

Food Truck Bazaar (Website/Facebook)
Visit website for the schedule of meet-ups all over Central Florida
Experience the Orlando food truck scene in one evening with delicious gourmet items, ethnic specialties, mouthwatering BBQ, desserts and more.

Market Monday // Audubon Park Community Market

In one of Orlando's vibrant bungalow neighborhoods, the Audubon Park Garden District is filled with boutiques, restaurants, bakeries, coffee shops, bars, and other services. Also home to The Audubon Park Community Market, a weekly gathering of growers, ranchers, fishermen, chefs, artists, handcrafters, musicians and neighbors. Every Monday, the market is set up in the Stardust parking lot with a wide selection of local food, art, and live music.

Audubon Park Community Market // http://audubonmarket.com/
Location: 1842 E Winter Park Road
Date: Every Monday (rain or shine)
Time: 5:00pm to 9:00pm
**Note** Be prepared for neighborhood/after work traffic and search for parking along the street.

The Daily City + Hunger Street Tacos // Some of my favorite things at the Audubon Park Community Market. #ORLANDOISWONDERFUL

The Daily City + Hunger Street Tacos // Some of my favorite things at the Audubon Park Community Market. #ORLANDOISWONDERFUL

Hunger Street Tacos // TACO de Suadero:  braised brisket with chorizo, onion, cilantro, lime, and house avocado salsa verde served on two freshly made soft corn tortillas.

Hunger Street Tacos // TACO de Suadero: braised brisket with chorizo, onion, cilantro, lime, and house avocado salsa verde served on two freshly made soft corn tortillas.

Full Vendor Lineup for 2/29/2016

Authentic Empanadas
Traditional empanadas made from scratch.  Vegan options available! (Facebook)

Buttermilk Bakery
Expertly-made sweet and savory treats, including homemade pop tarts, croissants and more. (Instagram)

Dixie Dharma
Southern-inspired vegan vittles from the Market on South. (Facebook/Instagram.)

Earth Movers Farm
This small Leesburg farm specializes pastured eggs, poultry and pork. (Facebook)

Enamored with Nature
No-nonsense, allergy-friendly foods and personal care items made with whole ingredients. (Facebook/Instagram)

Fleet Farming
A hyper-local, bike-powered urban farming program + A small-scale distributed agriculture system. (Facebook/Instagram)

Flour Life
Beautiful confections, cakes, French Macarons, and other baked goods made from scratch with love. (Facebook/Instagram)

Heart of Christmas Farms
Hydroponic veggies, raw milk and raw milk cheeses, local honey, and more. (Facebook)

JJ Juice
Locally- and Freshly-made aloe vitality drink, aloe plants, and more.  

Keely Farms Dairy
Raw Milk, Yogurt, and Cheeses; heritage pork, and farmstead goods from a pristine 100 acre farm in New Smyrna. (Facebook)

Living Vitalitea
A locally owned company specializing in raw, full flavored Kombucha. Each bottle is handcrafted from beginning to end. (Facebook/Instagram)

Masa
Handmade, GMO-free, Central American Tortillas and Pupas. (Facebook)

My Yard Farm
Locally grown goodies, featuring microgreen blends, local citrus, and Lake Meadow Naturals Eggs. (Facebook/Instagram)

Orlando Fresh Bread
Savory goods, including baguettes, Italian loaves, pizza crusts, and real NY-style Bagels. (website)

Orlando Meats
Grass-fed beef, pastured poultry and pork, and other humanely-raised meats from Florida. (Facebook/Instagram)

Ozark Dreams
Preservative free, locally grown and sourced ingredients, canned for use on their own or in your favorite recipes. (Facebook)

The Farm at Rockledge Gardens
Fresh-Pocked veggies from a small, sustainable hydroponic farm. (Facebook/Instagram)

Stardust Video & Coffee
Carrot Dogs, Brats, Chili, and craft beer out in the market.    

Tamale Co. *NEW
Handmade, frozen, gluten-free tamales made with fresh ingredients, along with signature salsas & sauces. (Facebook)

Wandering Wonton
Handmade wontons and other goods inspired by the chef's extensive travels and Cambodian, French and Thai heritage. (Facebook/Instagram)

Wild Ocean Seafood
Wild-caught seafood, fresh from Florida's waters. Pre-orders only this week.

{ Click Here to View the Vendor Lineup / Updated Weekly }

12 Valentine's Day Adventures in Orlando

Celebrate the month of February with some Valentine's day adventures. Here are romantic and fun local ideas that won't hurt the bank.

{ 2/5/16 } Leu Gardens Movie Date Night featuring “What If”
Enjoy an outdoor movie in a beautiful garden. Blankets or chairs are recommended. Picnic basket dinner and alcohol are permitted. Curbies and Peak Season Pops will be selling grilled items, desserts and drinks.
Admission: $6 adult / $3 child (K-12th grade) / Free for Leu members
Website: http://www.leugardens.org/date-night-movie-february-5-730-p-m/

{ 2/5/16 - 2/7/16 } Orlando Ballet: The Firebird & To Familiar Spaces In Dream
Enchantment, romance and the mysterious Firebird herself are the inspiration for Igor Stravinsky’s classic and masterful score based on Russian legend of an exotic bird’s magical protective feathers.
Tickets: $44 and up
Website: http://www.drphillipscenter.org/shows-and-events/Shows-Events/Orlando-Ballet/20920-orlando-ballet-the-firebird-and-to-familiar-spaces.stml

{ 2/6/16 - 2/7/16 } Mount Dora Arts Festival
Fine arts festival in Downtown Mount Dora with oil paintings, watercolors, acrylics, clay, sculpture and photography. The festival features local and regional musical entertainment at a main stage in Donnelly Park.
Admission: Free
Website: http://mountdoracenterforthearts.org/arts-festival/ 

{ 2/6/16 - 2/13/16 } Truffles & Bubbles: Valentine's Chocolate Tasting
Learn to hand dip and package an 8-piece gift box of specialty limited edition truffles with Peterbrooke Chocolatier of Winter Park. Choose from: Dark Chocolate Black Cherry Balsamic Dark Chocolate Popping Sriracha (made with popping crystals) Milk Chocolate Mü Coco Cappuccino Milk Chocolate Classic Truffle.
Ticket: $35
Website: https://squareup.com/store/PeterbrookeWP

{ 2/7/16 } Bach Festival Valentine Concert
Bach Festival Choir and Orchestra play an intimate concert in Winter Park’s Central Park. Bring a picnic basket, spread out a blanket and spend the afternoon on Park Avenue.
Admission: Free
Website: http://bachfestivalflorida.org/event/valentine/

{ 2/7/16 } Vintage Valentine
An afternoon of swapping and shopping with food trucks, vinyl, clothing, jewelry, household items, accessories, pop culture items and more.
Admission: Free
Website: http://audubonparkgardens.com/2016/01/29/vintage-valentine/

{ 2/9/16 } Orlando City Open Practice
Orlando City’s Open Practice provide supporters with an up close look at Head Coach Adrian Heath and the team’s preparation for their second season in the nation’s top-flight, as they begin working toward their mission of advancing into the playoffs in the 2016 MLS campaign.
Admission: Free
Website: http://www.orlandocitysc.com/openpractice

{ 2/11/16 } Thornton 2nd Thursday Wine & Art Walk
An evening of sights, sounds, food, shopping, and tastings with over 25 participating businesses.
Ticket: $15 cash only
Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/146202299090497/ 

{ 2/12/16 } Retro Game Night
Play treasured games from the past, including Parcheesi, Pictionary, Chinese checkers, Clue, Battleship, Candy Land, Mystery Date, Scrabble, Twister, and classic video games. New additions to Retro Game Night include GIANT games, and karaoke! Pizza, retro snacks, and a bar will be available. 
Admission: $5 advance / $7 non-members / Free for members
Website: http://www.thehistorycenter.org/event/retro-game-night/?event_date=2016-02-12

{ 2/13/16 } Paws in the Park
Orlando's largest dog walk to raise awareness and money to benefit homeless pets.
Registration: Donation varies
Website: http://www.pawsinthepark.org/

{ 2/13/16 } Indie-Folkfest
Love-fest brings together local artists, musicians, and food and drink specialties for a grand picnic in the Sculpture Garden that overlooks Lake Formosa in Loch Haven Cultural Park. Pack your blanket, and spend the afternoon enjoying a nonstop lineup of music. Bring a picnic or indulge in foodie-friendly small plates, and craft cocktails.
Admission: Free and food/drink cost varies
Website: https://orlandofolkfestival.wordpress.com/

{ 2/13/16 } The Dinner Party Project Love Feast
5-course meal with cocktails by Old Forester and beer selection by Redlight Redlight. Also celebrating 5 things to love about Orlando: Downtown Credo, The Human Experience, the Creative City Project, East End Market and Redlight Redlight
Ticket: $75
Website: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2016-2nd-annual-tdpp-love-feast-tickets-20817937010