Our next offering in our Romantic Orlando series is one of the places we frequent on our weekly Monday date nights.
Antonio’s has been in business in the city of Maitland, since 1989. It has been one of our favorites for years. There is a casual cafe and market downstairs and a more formal restaurant upstairs.
Our recent visit was in the downstairs cafe – and were we pleasantly surprised; They have expanded their space in a way we would have never dreamed was possible.
They are surrounded on two sides by much coveted parking space and a four-lane highway on the other side. Yet with the help of professional designers, they have managed to completely rework the space giving an open feel but keeping the coziness. The walls are lined with wine racks with stacks of specialty wines from all over the world. The front of the restaurant has a full deli complete with meats, cheeses, produce and amazing desserts.
It would be fun to visit the deli on a Saturday afternoon, pick out some of your favorite meats, cheeses, homemade bread and dessert, then cross the street to beautiful Lake Lily Park for a romantic picnic by the lake. There are picnic tables lining the lake making it a perfect setting for al fresco dining.
The deli also contains shelves of condiments, olives, exotic vinegars, sauces, pastas and olive oils. The list could go on and on. Really. It is a fun place to browse and relax. But you won’t want to skip the food offered on the menu either.
When we visited we enjoyed their baked ziti and salad. It was delicious as usual. The staff is friendly, and makes you feel as if you are nestled in one of the squares of Rome enjoying a romantic evening on the piazza.
Tom’s family is from Sicily, so we have an affinity for authentic Italian food, and this restaurant is the real deal. Next time you’re in the area, be sure to check them out. And if you call Orlando home…this may become one of your new favorites.
Oh, we forgot to mention – the pizza is some of the best we’ve ever had too! Are you hungry now? 🙂