Bull & Bear located inside of Waldorf Astoria Orlando, is where Robin and I had dinner during our second night at the hotel. The restaurant is spacious yet cozy, inviting and luxurious, all at once. Voted one of the top 100 restaurants in the United States as well as the best restaurant, best food, and the best service in Orlando by Trip Advisor reviewers, it’s clear why we wanted to check it out for ourselves!
Bull & Bear
Location: Orlando, Florida
Address: 14200 Bonnet Creek Resort Lane
Inside Waldorf Astoria Orlando
Food Type: New York Style Restaurant
Dining Experience: Indoor
Price: $120+ per Person
Dress Code: Business Casual +
Reservations: Highly Recommended
Special Diets: Pescatarian, Gluten Free (not GF dedicated)
Bull & Bear’s Ambience
The restaurant had an upscale, old world feel to it, and reminded me of a winery we dined at in the Italian countryside. With warm brown wood furniture and elegant pops of red around the restaurant, as well as the very minimal lighting, the restaurant felt more like dining inside someone’s home than being out in public, particularly with the gracious spacing between tables.
The restaurant’s atmosphere was peaceful and relaxing, and the servers that visited our table were perfectly attentive without being overbearing. Despite that being a very fine line to walk, the servers did it gracefully and with total ease. I never had to sit with my glass empty, or without cutlery, as the moment my glass began to look empty, a server wordlessly refilled it, only to retreat away just as quickly as he appeared. Normally I don’t mind chatting with servers, but in an intimate restaurant such as this, the discrete service was very much appreciated.
The view from Bull & Bear overlooks the hotel’s lovely swimming pool, Aquamarine poolside restaurant, and the hotel’s golf course. If you’re able to get a coveted sunset reservation, you’ll be able to watch the sun sink over one of the most beautiful hotel grounds in the United States as you enjoy your meal.
Our Meals at Bull & Bear
At the behest of our server, we tried the Florida Farms Corn Soup, which was a lovely way to begin our meal. Our server was very helpful in guiding us to food choices that were gluten free and suitable for our pescatarian diets, which we were very thankful for. We also had the Colossal Chilled Golf Shrimp, which were served with a lemon thyme marinade and cocktail sauce. These shrimp really were colossal, they were the same size as the palm of my hand!
As our main course, we ordered the Dover Sole, which was deboned table side by our skillful server. I couldn’t believe how easy he made it look as he split the perfectly cooked fish between two plates for us, ensuring not even a single bone was left inside. He plated the fish over top of French green beans, and covered it with a delightful beurre blanc sauce (if you’re not sure what a beurre blanc sauce is, read my list of essential culinary terms – they’ll make you hungry!).
After deboning and plating our fish, the server then took the fish bones back into the kitchen and had the cook deep fry them. He brought the fish bones back to us and said the bones were now safe to eat and tasted exactly like potato chips, which they did! I never would have thought I’d enjoy eating a piece of fish bone, but it was quite good, even though we were too full at this point to have more than a taste of the fried fishbones each.
Along with our meal, between the fish plating and the return of the crispy fishbones, we also had the Lobster Macaroni & Cheese (which was not GF so I couldn’t try it) as well as the Seasonal Wild Mushroom Melange. I am a sucker for great mushroom based dishes, and if I’d only had these delicious mushrooms as my dinner, I would have been ecstatic. Robin said that the Lobster Mac was absolutely excellent as well.
The servings of our food were so huge, that we couldn’t have fit dessert into our meal if we’d tried (and we don’t enjoy over eating or wasting food), so we decided to skip it. Other tables nearby had desserts and they all looked excellent.
Final Thoughts on Bull & Bear
Everything at Bull & Bear lived up to the hype. The food, servers, atmosphere & ambience were all exceptional, and I would love to visit again one day. There’s a reason the culinary expertise of Bull & Bear is so revered, and I hope you are able to experience it for yourself one day!