Recently, I had the opportunity to get a sneak peek at the new dining opportunities coming to Disney Springs from the Patina Group. The restaurants: The Edison, Maria and Enzo’s, Enzo’s Hideaway and Pizza Ponte are separate entities but all physically joined in one huge location with a central theme. While photos were not allowed, several were provided and used in this blog.
Nick Valenti, CEO of Patina Restaurant Group, said: “I’m delighted to announce that we will be opening a trattoria named Maria & Enzo’s, as well as Enzo’s Hideaway, a separate restaurant in what were said to be rum-running tunnels, which is destined to become a local favorite. They are inspired by the cuisines of Sicily and Rome, the Italian family, and the best of Italian modern cooking.”
Theo Schoenegger, the executive chef, comes to Orlando from Las Vegas where he most recently was executive chef at Sinatra, an Italian fine dining restaurant located at Wynn Las Vegas. “The new restaurants will bring a casual elegance to Disney Springs with a blend of star ingredients embedded in elaborate, multipart compositions while keeping the simplicity they demand. Presentation and service will include varieties of amuse bouche upon being seated, a vast selection of fine Italian wines, table-side preparation and service.”
The complex of Maria and Enzo’s, Enzo’s Hideaway and Pizza Ponte is set in an old air terminal circa 1930s. As the backstory goes, at the time, Maria and Enzo owned a bakery at the terminal.
When the terminal eventually closed, Maria and Enzo decided to purchase the building and create these Italian inspired experiences.
An Italian trattoria located in the original terminal area, this open and airy dining room has 50-foot ceilings and artifacts that will transport guests back to the golden age of travel. In keeping with the theming, there is even a First Class Lounge area off the main dining room that offers a more intimate experience for guests who are randomly selected (or request) to dine there.
The menu is inspired by Sicily, with a range of family-friendly dishes — such as Arancini di Carne (rice balls stuffed with meat) and Melanzane Parmigiana (eggplant Parmesan) — and handmade pastas, such as Busiate con Granchio (spiral pasta with crab) and ‘Ncasciata al Forno (Sicilian baked pasta), served tableside. Other highlights include fresh fish, richly flavored steaks and chops.
Travel back in time to the era of speakeasies in this unique setting in the former rum running bootlegger tunnels! Enzo had no idea when he purchased the building that the tunnels existed. He repurposed the space into an area where he would entertain his friends around large tables.
Just imagine being inside a tunnel smelling the aroma of Roman-inspired dishes and enjoying a Sunday supper while exploring the stories on the huge wall of graffiti. This special dining experience includes a bring-your-own-wine option. I am most excited about this offering.
Enzo’s Hideaway will pour Prohibition-era cocktails at its Tunnel Bar and serve a casual menu of hearty Roman dishes, such as the city’s legendary Bucatini alla Carbonara (hollow spaghetti with creamy egg and pancetta sauce) and Tonnarelli Cacio e Pepe (square-cut spaghetti with pecorino and black pepper).
Pizza Ponte is fast-casual concept serving pastries, pizza, Italian sandwiches, and espresso. It’s the perfect place for a quick bite! Pastry specialties include Bomboloni (Italian doughnuts), Sfoglia di Riso (pastry with rice cream) and Tiramisu. Savory items include signature Triangolo (stuffed pizza bread) sandwiches, Porchetta (roast pork) and Pizza al Taglio, Sicilian-style pizza by the slice.
We were unable to visit Pizza Ponte during our tour.
Officially opening on New Year’s Eve with a grand gala, the much-anticipated Edison will have two levels of multi-themed areas to explore, such as the Lab performance space, The Ember Parlour, Telegraph Lounge, The Patent Office, The Tesla Lounge, The Radio Room, and the Waterfront Patio. The restaurant is family dining until 10 p.m. when it becomes an adult-only venue with live entertainment (and a cover charge). The Edison occupies what used to be an industrial power plant, according to its backstory.
A lavish “Industrial Gothic” style restaurant, bar and nighttime destination, The Edison will feature exceptional classic American food, craft cocktails and live entertainment including cabaret and music. With multiple levels and a performance space, The Edison will be open for lunch and dinner. The menu is executed by Chef PJ Finneran, and consists of contemporary American fare such as Pork Belly Pops with a chile-brown sugar glaze, Crispy Fried Chicken with cast iron buttermilk biscuits, and its signature The Edison Burger, a juicy combination of house-ground sirloin, shortrib and brisket, topped with Cabot cloth-bound cheddar, onion rings, smoked bacon, house pickles, lettuce, tomato, special sauce and served with hand-cut fries.
The only official opening date that has been announced is for The Edison, but look for the other dining establishments to open in the near future.