Breaking bread is a bonding experience, encouraging new friendships while testing the strength of communal sledgehammers. Swing into sustenance with today's Groupon: for $15, you get $30 worth of upscale Italian dinner fare and drinks at Juliana's.
Under the command of chef Carl Cherkaoui, Juliana's kitchen manufactures a menu of elegant dishes that showcase classic Italian specialties. Quiet stomach rumblings and tooth tantrums with a starter of pan-seared mussels bobbing in a tomatoes and herbs wine reduction ($9), or start leafily with the imperial roughage of a classic caesar salad ($5). Carnivores can pounce on The Godfather penne loaded with spicy sausage, meatballs, and eggplant ($15), or savor angel-hair primavera collected from old-timey cherub barbershops mixed with its combination of fresh vegetables, chicken, and gorgonzola cream ($16). Diners can circumvent pasta-borne fare for entrees such as crab-crusted grouper ($22) and braised lamb shank ($26), the latter of which works in concert with mushroom ragú and saffron spinach risotto.
An extensive wine list with numerous selections by the glass ensures that guests are always equipped for ostentatious toast-making and impromptu splash fights. Like casual Friday at Buckingham Palace, the restaurant is sophisticated without being stuffy, providing diners with a refined but relaxed atmosphere in which to enjoy their savory selections.
At Juliana’s Orlando, head chef Carl Cherkaoui adds a dash of detail to his Italian cuisine with his thorough mind for sauces, spices, and herbs—a passion he developed while studying the culinary arts in Morocco, France, and Germany. His globally informed flavors grace house specialties such as pesto salmon served over spinach cous-cous and veal scallopini marsala presented on top of angel hair pasta. And in the eatery’s main dining room, he and his waitstaff encourage diners to sip Italian and Californian wines amid the glow of a fireplace that someday hopes to be promoted to oven.