Much like the classic dinner and a movie pairing, steak houses and date night just go together. So, while we were sad to see Norman's at The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes close after such a long run, we were excited to learn of the new steak and seafood concept, Knife & Spoon, taking its place.
And, just last week, we got a sneak peek during a hosted dining experience ahead of the grand opening this Wednesday, October 7. The bright, open space invites you in for a date-worthy experience at one of Orlando's most luxurious resort properties.
Opening a restaurant in the midst of a pandemic is no small feat, but the team has risen to the challenge. It feels good to have something to celebrate. And, judging by the enthusiastic energy shared amongst the entire staff, we aren't alone in our excitement.
The kitchen is helmed by award-winning Chef John Tesar (also a two-time contestant on Top Chef) and Chef de Cuisine Gerald Sombright (also a Top Chef contestant).
This is no ordinary steakhouse; the menu is comprised of a selection of mouthwatering seafood dishes and premium cuts of steak, each dry aged in house.
Speaking of the steaks, they're portioned for sharing at 32 oz. each. Meat lovers will be in heaven savoring the 45-day dry aged bone-in ribeye or New York strip. Additionally, couples can choose from 60, 90, 150 and 240-day dry aged cuts. There's a classic filet on the menu, too.
Other menu highlights include:
- Raw selections including oysters by the 1/2 dozen
- Savory salads (we loved the Knife Wedge)
- Lightly cooked seafood including scallops and Maine lobster
- Hearty pastas
- Indulgent sides like the Johnny mac & cheese made with Vermont cheddar and Cabot cheddar, and charred cauliflower
- Decadent desserts including the caramel (dulcey mousse, mango crémeux, hazelnut crunch, caramel popcorn and bourbon caramel ice cream) and lychee (white chocolate and vanilla mousse, lychee panna cotta, strawberry mint sorbet)
Browse the menu here (subject to change).
The cocktail program is equally impressive, offering everything from the restaurant's spin on an Old Fashioned to the light and refreshing The Highland 2.0. The former is made with The Ritz Carlton's Barrel Select 1792 full-proof Bourbon and the latter is a sangria-esque concoction made with mastiha (a Greek liqueur), lemon juice, sangria syrup and ginger beer.
The sommelier-curated wine menu features an extensive selection of wines available by the glass and bottle.
Upon entering the Knife & Spoon, you'll be greeted with a lively bar and lounge area, perfect for pre-dinner drinks.
The dining room features an open kitchen, light colors and an inviting but upscale vibe unique from the sultry and dark atmosphere of typical steak houses.
Most of all, we loved the creative touches throughout the entire dining experience.
For example, if you order coffee at the end of your meal, it comes accompanied by a mini dessert platter of bite-sized treats. And for gin lovers, the cocktail cart will be making its rounds inviting guests to craft their own Gin & Tonic. Desserts dusted with gold flecks add a taste of luxury to the meal's end.
Overall, this is a must-add to your date night rotation, perfect for special occasions or just because.
DETAILS + RESERVATIONS
Knife & Spoon
Located inside of The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes
4012 Central Florida Pkwy
Orlando, FL 32837
Open for dinner Wednesday – Saturday 5:30-10pm
Reservations are available now via Open Table.
Disclosure: Grande Lakes Orlando is one of our valued advertising partners. This meal was provided at no cost to the writer.