The revival of Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney) has seen upgrades that were unheard of for amusement park-affiliated properties. While this area has plenty of gift shops and safe, family-friendly restaurants – Disney Springs has thought outside the touristy box. This progressive thinking has led to the opening of many luxury shops and high-quality restaurants. (Any by “high quality”, I mean that people would flock here to eat even if the venues were along a dirt road.) Luckily for us, these new eateries are in the beautifully re-imagined Disney Springs. Several are worth at least one park-free evening to visit. Today, we’re going to tout the excellence of Morimoto Asia. Orlando has fallen in love with this Asian fusion locale, and for good reason. Let us explain in delicious detail.
A Culinary Genius
Many restaurants can boast of celebrity chefs, but few have ones as fascinating as Masaharu Morimoto. The now-famous Iron Chef originally planned to be a professional baseball player, but after an unexpected injury, he redirected his life. Morimoto turned his focus to the world of cooking – specifically blending techniques and ingredients found in western and eastern cultures. After immigrating to the United States, Morimoto found great success and started to open restaurants around the world. Now, he is responsible for the Pan-Asian Orlando-based restaurant, Morimoto Asia. And lucky diners may even get to meet the man himself! He is a frequent visitor. So, if you’ve ever wanted to shake the hand of a cooking demi-god, you might want to snag a reservation here.
Grand staircases. Long, glimmering chandeliers. Sophisticated lighting that’s meant to transport you to a swanky nightclub in Shanghai. All of these things make the Morimoto Asia ambiance almost … otherworldly. This sleek atmosphere is a far cry from chain restaurants and encourages diners to think of their meal as a complete experience. Take the opportunity to not simply fuel up at dinner, but enjoy a restaurant that aims to satisfy more than taste buds. Drink in the unique grandeur. It isn’t bested by any other on-property restaurants, and you will feel the difference.
Cool atmospheres and interesting backstories are great, but it all comes down to the menu. And this menu is unbelievable. Thanks to Morimoto’s vision, this restaurant features cuisine from Japan, China, and Korea. You’ll want to conserve your appetite because you’ll have a lot to sample! From sashimi to sticky pork ribs to steamed bao buns – there is a satisfying choice for every craving. Some of the most beloved specialties include crispy Peking Duck (for 2), the succulent spare ribs, and the signature yellowtail “Buri-Bop” dish. (This inventive rice-bowl dish takes a twist on the classic Bibimbap meal and is prepared at your table.) And if you have any room afterward, the Oreo tempura, mochi, or churro fondue desserts are all ideal finales.