We had one of the finest steakhouse experiences of all time recently at Bull & Bear Steakhouse at the Waldorf Astoria in Orlando, Florida. Before we begin, we must mention that this new Waldorf in Orlando is spectacular. The hotel has more than six restaurants. If you have the opportunity to take the ~2 and 1/2 hour drive from Jacksonville to the Disney area then we highly recommend the Waldorf. For any fan of great food, you simply must try the Waldorf salad…after all this is the Waldorf Astoria. The salad consists entirely of thinly cut apples and has no lettuce. Other ingredients include chopped grapes, and a slightly tangy dressing that balances the sweetness of the apples. This is just one of many signature dishes that the original Waldorf in New York created. Other noteworthy creations that started at the Waldorf include the Filet Oscar and, believe it or not, the Red Velvet Cake.
Now back to the Bull & Bear. This restaurant is dark and moody, so it’s nice for a significant occasion like birthday or anniversary or just a really nice date. When we dined on Friday, the restaurant was completely booked ahead of time so make sure you make reservations in advance. Seating consists of various chairs overlooking the resort grounds and a wall-length couch. The restaurant provides 2-3 servers per table but it was still at bit slow on the night of our visit. Despite the lack of speed and attentiveness, the waiter provided excellent recommendations.
Despite all these positives, the main draw to the Bull & Bear is the food and wine. Bull & Bear features a massive wine list with various glasses and half bottles. For food, the obvious choice is the steak. They offer a variety of sauces to go with the steak…but the delicious filet doesn’t really doesn’t need sauce. Why would you want to cover up the delicious taste of top-notch USDA prime beef? The restaurant also serves a massive t-bone steak called the Tomahawk that looks like it comes from the Stoneage. The accompaniments are very important and at Bull & Bear, the one we STRONGLY recommend is the creamed corn. This is not any creamed corn, Bull & Bear hand cuts the kernals from the ears of corn and creates a fresh and delicious side item. To finish, the begneits are good and come with three sauces (caramel, chocolate, and vanilla bean). No doubt, the Waldorf Astoria and Bull & Bear has elevated the fine dining scene in Orlando, Florida to new heights.