Celebrating its third anniversary on May 9, Bean & Grape is a cozy coffee and wine bar featuring mellow jazz, blues, and rock music alongside a palate-pleasing iPad menu of assorted organic cheeses, meats, flatbreads, and a sweet-tooth-teasing chocolate mousse (prices range from $4 to $10). Sip specialty coffee drinks ($1–$4), imported beers ($3.50–$4.25 a bottle), or one of more than 300 internationally sourced wines, including Dr. Loosen riesling, Ghost Pines chardonnay, and Yalumba shiraz ($5–$17 per glass).
Carolina Burger Company sates handheld cravings with its selection of hamburgers, sandwiches, wings, and more, all in cozy atmosphere. Sponge up salivating hunger glands with bunned foodstuffs, such as the McDaddy, which dresses three beef patties in a figure-flattering frock of chili, cheese, and slaw ($6.29), or quell winged cravings with a homemade chicken-salad sandwich ($4.59) or an order of hot wings ($6.59 for 10). Carolina Burger Company also serves up generous slurps of frosty milkshakes ($2.79) to keep fervid sweet teeth from brawling with their bicuspid neighbors.
This hammery slices up a classic recipe. Inside the savory-scented digs of HoneyBaked Ham – Winter Haven, spools of hardwood-smoked, spiral-sliced ham entice carnivorous palates. Here, chefs uphold the same traditions that Harry J. Hoenselaar created more than 40 years ago. Back then, he chose individual hams, cured them in his secret marinade, and smoked them over hardwood chips before offsetting the earthy flavor with a crisp, sweet glaze. To this day, the staff still makes the signature bone-in hams one at a time and glazes them in the shop. In addition to the eponymous victuals, the ham denizens turn their braising prowess on similarly delightful platter toppers, including turkey, barbecued pork, and 2-pound beef roasts smothered in gravy.
The hammery's kitchens also whip up classic side dishes and desserts, such as the sweet-potato soufflé. For less formal feasting, party trays and packed lunch boxes fuel business meetings, backyard grad parties, and lengthy end-zone celebrations.
Woody's Bar-B-Q smokes and grills the finest cuts of pork and beef before slathering proteins with tangy secret-recipe barbecue sauces. Fulfill contract clauses to consume fried cuisine by noshing appetizers such as the fried okra ($3.29) and sweet-potato fries (3.29). Woody's menu sates meat savants with a colossal offering of meats including ham chops ($9.49) and loaded mesquite-grilled chicken breasts ($8.99). The signature baby back ribs ($14.99 for full rack) come slow roasted in a secret marinade before being basted and grilled to seal in flavor and text revealing the marinade's ingredients.
Smokin' Jim's House of Barbecue smokes ribs, pork, beef, and chicken and dishes out its menu alongside breads and comfort food side dishes. Juicy ribs celebrate elongated barbecue arts ($11.50 for four ribs), and all-you-can-eat pork ($12.55) tests the limits of human stomachs and the world's supply of cumin. Beef brisket plates ($12.55) and half-chicken plates ($10.45) arrive with a fleet of bread and two sides, such as potato salad, lima beans, or mac 'n' cheese. Partner a tangy entree with sips of a soft drink ($2.25) or beer ($2.75 per glass or $14 for a five-person bucket), which liquidly counterpoint the savory cuisine onslaught. Diners may carry their barbecue bounties away with them, nibble fresh air on the outdoor patio, or park posteriors in the wood-paneled dining room.
Neon blue lights curve across The Blue Room’s covered patio, echoing the curve of archways that line the perimeter. Inside, a wraparound granite bar reflects the same amethyst glow, and votive candles flicker behind blue glass at high-top tables and in lounges filled with leather chairs. Chefs craft modern small-plate fare that complements the sleek interior, drizzling lobster and crab cakes with dill cream and pairing grilled portobello mushrooms with warm brie. Additionally, live bands take to the stage each week as an alternative to the metronome that traditionally moderates mealtime chewing.
Winners of Polk County News Chief's 2007 People's Choice award, Auburndale Pizza Company’s pie flingers toss together eclectic specialty-pizza combinations from a choice of four sauce bases and more than 20 meat and vegetable toppings. Sweet barbecue sauce swathes beef and bacon, welded by mozzarella and cheddar cheese in the BBQ Pizza Feast ($5.75 per slice for all specialty pizzas). Annette's Favorite Veggie binds garden denizens including green pepper, spinach, and tomato with enough ricotta and mozzarella to ensure the veggies don't grow up, run away, and join the salad. Customers tap into alchemical aspirations with a personally designed make-your-own pizza ($10.55+, $1.50 per topping), or boycott bread with Annette's No-Crust Pizza ($5.75 for up to 5 toppings), a 7-inch tin-baked amalgamation that forgoes dough for sauce and toppings lashed together with mozzarella latticework.