By Julie Landry Laviolette

Home to theme parks and a thriving arts scene, farm-to-table dining is an unexpected pleasure when visiting Central Florida.

Beyond the sprawling metropolitan area, you’ll find U Pick strawberry, peach and blueberry farms, a Michelin-starred restaurant with its own fruit and vegetable farm and chef-driven eateries partnering with local farmers.

Here’s a sample of where you’ll find farm-to-fork dining.

 - The Osprey, Orlando



Grande Lakes Orlando – Site of The Ritz-Carlton and a JW Marriott, which house several upscale eateries sourcing produce from its onsite Whisper Creek Farm. Among them are The Ritz-Carlton’s Michelin star recipient Knife & Spoon, celebrated Chef John Tesar’s luxurious steak and seafood restaurant highlighting local farmers and producers. The JW Marriott has Primo, a fine dining Italian and Mediterranean-inspired restaurant in partnership with acclaimed Chef Melissa Kelly, and Whisper Creek Farm: The Kitchen a counter-serve option for farm-to-table sandwiches and small plates.

Norman’s, Orlando – Prominent Chef Norman Van Aken’s New World cuisine, a fusion of Latin, Asian, American and African flavors, features local ingredients and a fusion of cultures, textures and colors. Cosmopolitan dining room with a covered outdoor patio and a glass-enclosed wine cellar.

Artisan’s Table, Orlando – Mindfully sourced fare from local small businesses are highlighted in a changing seasonal menu of American favorites. This downtown mainstay offers casual dining in a smart setting.

East End Market, Orlando – Neighborhood market, culinary hub and food hall showcasing Central Florida makers, artisans and chefs. The two-story locale is home to a dozen merchants and has an outdoor courtyard.

The Osprey, Orlando – Contemporary coastal cuisine and oyster bar in an upmarket setting. The seafood-focused menu changes often and focuses on local seafood and produce when possible.

The Monroe, Orlando – Adventurous, playful takes on Southern favorites is offered at this hip, mid-century styled fixture. The sprawling 8,000-square-foot eatery and gathering place is on the ground floor of The Julian Apartments at Creative Village. Its menu highlights Florida sourced ingredients.

Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’, Orlando – Nestled in Disney Springs, this Walt Disney World restaurant pays homage to Florida’s rich agricultural heritage by highlighting local ingredients and farm-to-table cooking. There’s handcrafted moonshine and old-fashioned Southern specialties like fried chicken. A “Fabulous Florida Farmers” photo wall celebrates local growers.

Chatham’s Place, Orlando – Refined special-occasion option sourcing many of its herbs, vegetables and fruit from Chef/owner Tony’s Lopez’s organic farm. The white-tablecloth dining room has live piano music nightly and features elevated American entrees.

Charley’s Steak House, Orlando and Celebration - Prime, hand-cut dry-aged steaks and a menu of not-so-typical steakhouse fare in this high-end outpost, which sources seafood and some of its produce locally. There’s also an 800-bottle wine cellar. The restaurant family includes Fishbones in Lake Mary, Texas Cattle Company in Lakeland and Vito’s Chop House in Orlando.

Nutwood, Winter Haven – Folksy choice with outdoor seating and a simple dining area turning out creative takes on American fare. The menu changes weekly, sometimes daily, with a reliance on seasonal ingredients.

The Ravenous Pig, Winter Park – Husband-and-wife culinary team and award-winning chefs James and Julie Petrakis support local and sustainable ingredients in their central Florida eateries. The Ravenous Pig is a rustic-chic American Gastropub and beer garden; Cask & Larder is a Southern public house in Orlando International Airport and The Polite Pig is a fast-casual barbecue spot in Disney Springs

Prato, Winter Park – Lively destination for Italian classics with a modern twist and a seasonally changing menu. Communal bar seating and year-round patio tables.

Briarpatch, Winter Park – Contemporary American cuisine in a warm and inviting atmosphere. It showcases seasonal Florida flavors through local ingredients, and offers housemade baked goods and a popular brunch on its outdoor patio.

Nic & Luc Scratch Kitchen and Commissary, Longwood – Health-conscious American breakfast and lunch light fare and housemade preserves served in a bright, simple space. The menu is sourced from local farms when possible and from suppliers, growers and producers promoting sustainability.

Root and Branch Bistro and Bar, Clermont – Easygoing spot for hearty American plates, with proteins and greens sourced locally when possible. Offers a seasonally changing menu and cocktails in an informal atmosphere.

 - Great Scott Farms - Mount Dora


Great Scott Farms, Mount Dora – U Pick strawberry farm with a corn maze and play area, offering corn chowder, sandwiches, produce and local goods.

Deer Park Peaches, St. Cloud – U Pick farm with Valencia oranges, peaches and blueberries, fresh eggs and produce.

Double C Bar Ranch, south of St. Cloud – Family-owned U Pick blueberry farm and cattle ranch for local beef and grilled burgers.

Chapman’s Berries, St. Cloud – Family-owned U Pick farm for blueberries and blackberries.

Mick Farms, St. Cloud – Small, family U Pick strawberry and pumpkin farm and farm stand.

4Roots Farm, Orlando – Nonprofit with a focus on sustainable agriculture, produce boxes and cooking classes. Partners with Orlando Science Center to offer 4Roots Café, which serves casual counter-serve eats highlighting produce from local growers.


Localharvest – Lists local farms and produce buying clubs offering Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) produce boxes.

Fresh from Florida – Showcases seasonal produce and seafood.