Orlando Gifts

ORLANDO WEEKLY: Mills 50 is a great example of the ‘real Orlando’ (City Guide 2017)

Posted on Updated on

SOURCE: www.orlandoweekly.com/orlando/mills-50-is-a-great-example-of-the-real-orlando

Mills 50 may get its name from the intersection of Mills Avenue and Colonial Drive (aka State Road 50), but it’s earned its reputation by appealing to a broad cross-section of musicians, artists, foodies and drinkers of disparate tastes and backgrounds. Whether it’s all the young punks who pack out tiny Uncle Lou’s, or the epicurean yuppies quaffing craft cocktails at the Guesthouse, the third-shifters hitting Wally’s just as it opens, or just folks who know where to get a good pho, Mills 50 is the go-to neighborhood for a whole swath of different purposes. Even though the northern end has attracted some big-money developers looking to cash in on the cultural cachet of the neighborhood, its distinction as the “intersection of creativity and culture” persists, and it’s often one of the first places Orlandoans will bring out-of-towners who want to learn something about the “real Orlando.”


Anh Hong

1124 E. Colonial Drive, 407-999-2656, anhhongorlando.com

The banh mí at this popular corner Vietnamese spot are almost as much of an institution as its distinct neon signage.

Chuan Lu Garden

1101 E. Colonial Drive; 407-896-8966; chuanluorlando.com

Frequently topping locals’ lists of favorite Chinese restaurants, Chuan Lu specializes in mouth-numbing Sichuan entrees.

King Bao

710 N. Mills Ave., 407-237-0013, facebook.com/kingbaoorlando

This no-frills fast-casual spot offers up a wide variety of bao – steamed bun sandwiches – for a price that won’t break the bank.

Black Rooster Taqueria

1323 N. Mills Ave., 407-601-0994, blackroostertaqueria.com

A labor of love from chef John Calloway, Black Rooster offers a variety of delicious fresh-Mex-style tacos made with high-quality ingredients.

Mamak Asian Street Food

1231 E. Colonial Drive, 407-270-4688, mamakasianorlando.com

Serving tapas-style Asian plates, Mamak is best enjoyed in a group. The roti and fish with black bean sauce are not to be missed, but order extra or risk starting a fight at the table.

The Strand

807 N. Mills Ave., 407-920-7744, strandorlando.com

The bright retro atmosphere of the Strand is a perfect accompaniment to the updated takes on American classics that populate the menu.


St. Matthew’s Tavern

1300 N. Mills Ave., orlandobeergarden.com

With cheap drinks, a diverse crowd and a variety of events, St. Matthew’s Tavern has become one of the best neighborhood hangouts in Mills 50.


1205 N. Mills Ave., 407-796-2522, bartcade.com

Festooned with a rotating selection of classic arcade and pinball machines, BART pairs modern craft beer with retro good times.

The Guesthouse

1321 N. Mills Ave., 407-630-6574

Great lighting, crisp decor and a dedication to the art of craft cocktails makes the Guesthouse one of Mills 50’s best date-night spots.

Will’s Pub / Lil Indies

1042/1036 N. Mills Ave., willspub.org

Mills 50 pioneer Will Walker’s one-two punch in the middle of Mills Avenue combines one of the busiest live music schedules in town with craft beer and cocktails, dance nights, community markets and more, making it basically Orlando’s living room.

Uncle Lou’s Entertainment Hall

1016 N. Mills Ave., 407-898-0009

Not so much an “entertainment hall” as an “entertainment hallway,” Uncle Lou’s is still the best spot in town to catch the bleeding edge of underground music with a tallboy in hand.

Wally’s Mills Avenue Liquor

1001 N. Mills Ave., 407-896-6975, wallysonmills.com

An Orlando landmark since 1954, Wally’s is possibly the best dive bar on the planet. With notoriously heavy pours and an attached package store, each and every visit has the potential to turn into an adventure.


The District at Mills 50

1221 N. Mills Ave., 407-601-3363, facebook.com/districtatmills

This new indoor market offers goods from a variety of local vendors. Everything from vintage clothing, books, coffee, soap, stationery and more line the shelves and walls. Keep an eye out for special events like local author readings as well.

Retromended Vintage

930 N. Mills Ave., 407-674-8190, retromended.com

Stylist and seamstress Brandy Tezak’s Mills 50 space is inviting and warm, full of vintage clothing curated by color, killer accessories, art and workshops.

Dong-A Supermarket

816 N. Mills Ave., 407-898-9227, dongacorporation.com

This sprawling supermarket offers an extensive selection of Asian food and ingredients, from noodles to sauces to rice varietals to fresh seafood and produce.


1211 Hillcrest St., 407-895-7439, avalonbeyond.com

Whether you’re looking for incense, essential oils, candles, crystals, herbs or books on spells and charms, Avalon has your New Age-y witchcraft needs covered.


The Center

946 N. Mills Ave., 407-228-8272, thecenterorlando.org

Offering free counseling, educational and legal services, and HIV testing to the LGBT community, the Center is one of the oldest organizations of its kind in the country.

Downtown Orlando YMCA

433 N. Mills Ave., 407-896-9220, ymcacentralflorida.com

The flagship outpost of the YMCA in Orlando, the Mills location offers comprehensive fitness equipment and classes, sports leagues, swimming, youth programs and more.

Orlando Urban Trail

Near the intersection of Virginia Drive and Brookhaven Drive, cityoforlando.net

The new-ish Orlando Urban Trail cuts through the residential area of Mills 50 to connect bicyclists to downtown, Loch Haven Park and Winter Park.

SOURCE: www.orlandoweekly.com/orlando/mills-50-is-a-great-example-of-the-real-orlando


EDIBLE ORLANDO: Gift Ideas For Mom

Posted on Updated on

SOURCE: www.edibleorlando.com/gifts-ideas-mom


What to get for the mom who has everything? Here are a few affordable ideas from Orlando-area merchants that are sure to bring a smile to her face.

Porch Therapy at East End Market has a selection of succulents, air plants and other house-beautifying items that she can enjoy much longer than traditional cut flowers. That said, they carry those too.

4 Rivers Smokehouse is celebrating Mom all week long with strawberry Champagne cupcakes topped with Swiss buttercream frosting ($3.25), and a beautiful 12-pack of assorted cake balls ($8.99). Available May 8 – May 13.

Magpie’s Modern General in Sanford carries a carefully curated selection of small batch items from the useful (handcrafted soaps, from) to the utterly whimsical (Sky Candy Cotton Candy). What mom could resist a Florida tea towel?

Fig & Julep boasts specialty items for the foodie. Also on the “menu” soy  candles, spirits, and more.

Want to make mom’s day extra special? How about an #OrlandoMade card made from a local artist? Stop by SOS Art Gallery at The District at Mills 50.

SOURCE: www.edibleorlando.com/gifts-ideas-mom

ORLANDO SENTINEL: Grab A Snack While You Shop Local

Posted on Updated on

SOURCE: orlandosentinel.com/entertainment/restaurants/foodie/os-et-shop-eat-orlando-20170502-story.html

Grab a snack while you shop local

These stores and hubs offer meals and snacks to re-energize — without pausing your spree.

The District

Expect to get lost exploring each area of this shop, which stocks its shelves with goods from local vendors. Think jewelry, cards, artwork, clothing, plants and toiletries.

Sustain yourself with vegan food from a variety of local culinarians. This bodega offers grab-and-go eats and irie cream (dairy-free ice cream) from personal chef DaJen Eats, deli items (macaroni salad) from food truck Leguminati and sauces from specialty shop The Cookery.

Keep an eye on The District’s Facebook page for foodie events, too. The store hosts cooking classes, food trucks and more.

Go: 1221 N. Mills Ave. in Orlando; 407-601-3363; facebook.com/DistrictAtMills.

East End Market

Snag a number of items at this local hub. Grab everything from toiletries to groceries at Florida & Co. Market & Eatery; homemade goods such as T-shirts and wallets at Freehand Goods; or plants from Porch Therapy.

Where do I begin on the dining options at East End? Order up a pimento-cheese sandwich from Houndstooth Sauce Co., macaroni and cheese from La Femme Du Fromage and juice from Skyebird Juice Bar and Experimental Kitchen. Come with an empty belly.

Go:3201 Corrine Drive in Orlando; 321-236-3316; eastendmkt.com

New General

Asits name suggests, this shop has a general-store feel. Wares range from clogs by New York brand Nina Z to furniture from Makr, a design studio based in Winter Park.

New General’s in-store cafe brews up coffees roasted by Orlando-based Lineage Coffee. You will find some other local names, too: Sugar Rush Marshmallows dot the top of hot chocolate, pastries from Buttermilk Bakery sit in a case and bottles of kombucha from Humble Bumble are by the register.

The cafe also offers to-go meals such as chicken Caesar salad, poke bowls and tuna white bean salad. Gluten-free and vegetarian items are available.

Diners can also order creatively smeared toasts with toppings that range from green-pea hummus to Nutella. Bonus: Toasts are $5 on Tuesdays.

Go: 155 New England Ave. in Winter Park; 321-972-2819; newgeneral.us

Plant Street Market

Pick up some essential oils from Roxan Spa, candles from Collective Kindness or clothing from Our Nation’s Creations from this hub.

Plant Street Market is another spot that skews more toward the foodstuffs than the goods — not that I’m complaining. How about some sweets from David Ramirez Chocolates? Or a burger from Five Thymes Five? Wash it all down with a beer from Crooked Can Brewing Co.

Go: 426 W Plant St. in Winter Garden; plantstmarket.com

POSTMEDIA NETWORK: 4 reasons to visit Orlando that have nothing to do with theme parks (A Local Tour of Central Florida)

Posted on Updated on

SOURCE: torontosun.com/2017/03/27/4-reasons-to-visit-orlando-that-have-nothing-to-do-with-theme-parks

By , Special to Postmedia Network

First posted: Monday, March 27, 2017 12:28 PM EDT | Updated: Monday, March 27, 2017 12:45 PM EDT

TRENDING: Mills 50 District featured in January 2017 Delta Sky Magazine and Destinations Orlando Section

Posted on Updated on

SOURCE: Delta Sky Magazine January 2017 Edition


Why Now: Like many cities across the country, Orlando is experiencing a renaissance of its urban core’s districts and neighborhoods. Mills 50, just northeast of downtown, is the “intersection of creativity and culture,” anchored by the city’s Vietnamese community (one of the largest in Florida) and complemented by artists, specialty shops and so much more.

Where to Go: Start the day with a stop at The District @ Mills 50 for a terrific introduction to the neighborhood. This community co-op highlights 36 local makers and their crafts, from soaps and candles to jewelry and kombucha, and serves coffee and tea. Afterward, lace up your running shoes at Track Shack, which has been keeping Orlando runners geared up and ready to hit the streets for nearly 40 years. Art is seemingly everywhere in Mills 50, from wall murals to artistic expressions on canvases in the forms of utility boxes and even trash dumpsters. Curated photography and art exhibits can be found at Snap! Space in the restored historic Cameo Theatre, and botanical beauty awaits in the 50-acre outdoor oasis found on the district’s edge at Leu Gardens. When it’s time to eat, there are plenty of options in this highly sought-after neighborhood, from BBQ at Pig Floyd’s Urban Barbakoa to Mexican at Black Rooster Taqueria (don’t miss the from-scratch tortillas); vegetarians can enjoy organic, local and fair-trade dishes at Dandelion Communitea Cafe.


Remix At this new record store with vintage décor, you can listen before you buy.

Quantum Leap Winery Tour Central Florida’s only sustainable winery Thursday through Saturday. →

Vietnam Cuisine The steamed rice noodle rolls here are highly recommended by Orlando food blogger Ricky Ly.



* FACEBOOK: facebook.com/DistrictAtMills

* INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/DistrictAtMills

* TWITTER: twitter.com/DistrictAtMills



* FACEBOOK: facebook.com/Mills50

* INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/Mills50District

* TWITTER: twitter.com/Mills50



* FACEBOOK: facebook.com/SOSArtGallery

* INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/SOSArtGallery

* TWITTER: twitter.com/SOSArtGallery

* LINKEDIN: linkedin.com/in/SOSArtGallery

%d bloggers like this: