Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Napa at Peabody: Great for Special Occassions

Photo Courtesy of Peabody Orlando
Although it has been open for awhile, I just recently had the opportunity to try the beautiful, upscale Napa restaurant in the new Peabody Orlando hotel tower. Napa, featuring cuisine and wine inspired by California's wine region, has a great vibe and impeccable food,  particularly for special occasions. While we were there, several guests were celebrating birthdays and special events, or were out for a date.

I was impressed by the extensive selection of appetizers and entrees - including vegan and vegetarian options - at the restaurant. I was even happier after tasting the food, since it exceeded my expectations. We started with the "Taste of the Valley" appetizer sampler ($17) which includes tastings of popular appetizers including Orlando Brewing Red Ale Steamed Canaveral Clams, Pan Roasted East Coast Mussels, and Festival of Tomatoes. Each one was scrumptious. Our entrees - Meyer Ranch Natural Beef Filet ($42) and Whole Fried Yellowtail Snapper ($37) - were cooked perfectly. 
Whole Yellowtail Snapper

The filet was accompanied by a Maderia wine reduction and a Roasted Plum and Cherry Compote, and served with creme fraiche potatoes and broccolini. We could not get over how perfectly cooked the steak was and thought the wine reduction was the best part. The Starmont Cabernet, suggested by our knowledgeable waiter, paired perfectly with the filet. The flash-fried snapper was moist on the inside, but crispy on the outside, exactly as this style of preparation should be. It was accompanied by a delicious Cherry Tomato Escabeche Rice and Crispy Fried Plantains. Other house specialties include Cioppino, Florida Rock Shrimp and Crab Linguini and Focaccia Crusted Veal Chop.

The service was flawless, which is one of the reasons I suggest Napa for a special night out. Our waiter was very attentive and talked to the chef about my food allergies and they figured out how to alter dishes so I could still eat them. You can be assured that the servers will go above and beyond to make you feel special. 

Meyer Ranch Natural Beef Filet
I was also impressed to find out that Napa is a "Farm to Fork" restaurant: the majority of the produce, seafood, and meat used in its dishes is sourced locally or regionally. The items that are not sourced locally are purchased from sustainable companies, such as grass-feed beef from Meyer Ranch in Montana. The restaurant is also environmentally friendly with automatic lights in its restrooms, in-house water filtration system, a composting program, and several other efforts.

Where: 9801 International Drive, Orlando, Fla.

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