Photo via Visit Orlando

Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs launched a search for Orlando’s Signature Dish in April, 2017 looking to fill what she perceived as a gap in Orlando’s international marketing strategy; a unique dish that sums up the City Beautiful.

Click HERE to see that first announcement, complete with promotional video.

At some point in the process though (August to be exact), the task force spearheading the dish-hunt scaled down the search to look for Orlando’s Signature Honey Dish, instead of an overarching main course or street food that represented the region like deep dish pizza, clam chowder, or spam – coincidentally, Mayor Jacobs is a backyard beekeeper and bee enthusiast.

The process to find the new honey dish was limited to a curated list of participating award-winning restaurants and Visit Orlando partners to submit recipes which were then sampled and voted on culminating in the recent naming of our official dish; the Honey Nougat Glace from Mon Petit Cheri Cafe in Winter Park. The dish was selected from roughly 30 submissions.

So even though the focus was reset towards a honey dessert dish mid-year, the announcement seems to have shifted back to an over-arching Orlando Signature Dish, as seen HERE on the Visit Orlando website.

Maybe we should have paid more attention.

Check out this list of “50 Foods That Represent Every State in the US” by Spoon University for an example of how street-level/accessible most regional dishes are. In that context, what do you think Orlando’s Signature Dish should be?


Editor’s Note: Mon Petiti Cheri Cafe is located at 333 S. Park Avenue and was formerly known both as Palmono’s Trattoria and Wine Bar and later Chez Palmano’s. We hear the dessert is indeed delicious.



Brendan O'Connor

Editor in Chief of

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