New Year’s Eve Dining and Other Fun Food Events for Dec 31-Jan 6


Here are some quick tips for fun food events around Orlando this week, including New Year’s Eve dining, king cake and a new mocktail menu.

We look forward to New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day because they’re an opportunity to eat or cook some of the traditional holiday foods from around the world. That might be hoppin’ John, the black-eyed peas and rice that bring good luck in the South – or Japanese soba noodles (like up top) which also bring good fortune. We’ll take all the help we can get.

As we head into 2023, maybe resolve to get out and enjoy all the food culture that Orlando and Central Florida have to offer. Edible Orlando writer John Graham has checked out the week, Saturday to Friday, and has the best local fun food events ahead.

New Year’s Eve Dining, Cheez-it Recipes

Lots of bars are doing big New Year’s Eve bashes on Saturday, but maybe you’re looking for more of a sit-down meal. From big buffets to prix fixe menus to just being open, a lot of Orlando restaurants are taking care of hungry party people. Check out the Edible Orlando rundown of what’s open for NYE with a sprinkle of New Year’s Day specials thrown in there, too.

LSU and Purdue face off Monday, 1 p.m., at Camping World Stadium for the Citrus Bowl, but the reason it made our list is because, for 2023, it’s officially the Cheez-It Citrus Bowl. (Don’t get confused. The Cheez-It Bowl with no “Citrus” was last Friday.) If you’re watching at home, here’s a couple recipes straight from Kellogg’s, the Cheez-It maker and baker. Cheez-It party mix includes honey-roasted peanuts and garlic powder. No-Bake macaroni and cheese with crunchy Cheez-It gratin uses Parmesan, cheddar and Gruyère.

Three Kings Day, Pickling Class, Mocktail Menu

Epiphany, also known as Three Kings Day, is Friday. In the Christian faith, that’s the day the Magi (or the Three Wise Men) visited the baby Jesus. In Spain, Epiphany is celebrated by eating roscón de Reyes or “king cake.” Jaleo at Disney Springs will have their take on king cake as a one-day dessert special on Friday, flavored with orange blossom, caramelized cherries, oranges, melon and almonds. Each cake has a “Rey” (king) baked inside. If you get a piece with the king, you get good luck through 2023.

Seaworld Orlando is also celebrating Three Kings Day on Friday. A storyteller and the Three Wise Men will share their tale and the tradition along with a photo opportunity. Special food for the day includes empanadas (beef/cheese or chicken/cheese), tostones and coquito. SeaWorld Orlando tickets are required for all guests ages three and older.

Spring is a good time to grow cucumbers in Florida, so right now is a good time to learn how to make pickles. Friday, 2 – 4 p.m., University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is teaching an in-person class for home water bath canning and pickling. For $15, you’ll make pickled green beans and learn the equipment, food safety tips, and step-by-step instructions. The class is at the UF IFAS extension office on S. Conway Rd. near Belle Isle.

If your New Year’s resolution involves a “dry January,” we’ve got a couple tips for you. First, check out the current print edition of Edible Orlando for a wrap-up of spots for mocktails, non-alcohol beers and CBD tipples. One location not in the article is the just-announced dry January mocktail menu at The Wilson inside Meliá Orlando Celebration. The Wilson’s signature mocktail is the Take It Slow, Kokomo with zero-proof rum, banana, passion fruit and lemon.

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