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FNN Good News & Reviews: Sloppy Joe’s Brings Fun, Unexpected Flavor to Orlando’s Tourist District

ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN) – FNN Good News & Reviews had the chance to visit Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando at ICON Park on International Drive, which combines the timeless brand born in the Florida Keys and Orlando’s effervescent flair with a splash of tropical chill.

<i>FNN Good News & Reviews</i> co-hosts Mellissa Thomas (left) and Kathleen Michelle interview Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando Senior Manager DJ Mariello. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

FNN Good News & Reviews co-hosts Mellissa Thomas (left) and Kathleen Michelle interview Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando Senior Manager DJ Mariello. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

The vibrant colors meet you at the gate, with high-top tables and chairs that look they were pulled straight off the beach. As you enter the gates, the lower tables offer comfy seats and (thankfully) wide white umbrellas to beat the high noon heat. That tropical chill comes through the music, with reggae legend Bob Marley’s biggest hits, mixed in with other American classics, inviting you inside.

Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando at ICON Park exterior. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando at ICON Park. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

 

The Same…But Different

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando, which opened in December last year, is a slight diversion from its classic Key West counterpart. The original Sloppy Joe’s Key West, which just celebrated its 85th anniversary in early May, got its name as a suggestion. Acclaimed author Ernest Hemingway, who frequented the establishment, noticed that Joe Russell’s saloon always looked, well, sloppy–and recommended that he change name the place Sloppy Joe’s.

The name stuck…and the rest is history.

By contrast, Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando is quite neat and looks more like a tropical sports bar than a saloon. The restaurant also encourages families to come and have a blast together.

Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando's interior bar. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando’s interior bar. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando interior. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando interior. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando has an interior stage and offers live entertainment on the weekends. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando has an interior stage and offers live entertainment on the weekends. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

 

Fun fact: Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando has welcoming and courteous staff ready to help newcomers pick the best choices from their massive menu.

Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando Senior Manager DJ Mariello welcomes guests and families for a great and delicious experience. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando Senior Manager DJ Mariello welcomes guests and families for a great and delicious experience. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

 

Want a way to remember the experience? Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando has its own merchandise shop.

Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando merchandise shop. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando merchandise shop. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

 

Surprising Flavors

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando offers an exotic menu with foods and flavors that surprise many who try it. Unlike its Florida Keys predecessor, Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando offers an array of vibrant seafood options, and is currently the only seafood restaurant at ICON Park.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

“Sloppy Joe’s is known for its parties, but the reason people keep coming back is because of the food,” said David Manuchia, president of Restaurant Partners, Inc. “Our Orlando and Daytona Beach locations bring all the same fun as the original concept, but in a family-friendly atmosphere that focuses on the great eats.”

Some seafood options include the Firecracker Shrimp and Conch Fritter appetizers which totally bring the heat. The hand battered conch nuggets come served with spicy remoulade and the crispy shrimp are tossed in a spicy firecracker sauce.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

For those who like strong (and tasty) drinks, Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando offers some fun originals as well as bar staples, like the 7 Day Vacation, a fruity drink mixed with several different spirits, and the Sloppy Rita, respectively.

Sloppy Joe's Restaurant & Bar Orlando's 7 Day Vacation (left) and the Sloppy Rita. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando’s 7 Day Vacation (left) and the Sloppy Rita. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

 

Prefer beer? There’s plenty where that came from.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

“Delicious, fun, and a great atmosphere!” praised Kathleen Michelle, co-host of FNN Good News & Reviews. “If you’re looking for tasty appetizers, refreshing drinks and a large menu selection, check out Sloppy Joe’s.”

All in all, Sloppy Joe’s Restaurant & Bar Orlando is fusion done right. We give it a 5 out 5. Learn more and check out their menu here.

Know a business that we should spotlight or a book or movie we should review? Email social@floridanationalnews.com.

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Mellissa Thomas is Editor for Florida National News. | mellissa.thomas@floridanationalnews.com

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