By Anna Walton
Beginning early this September, guests at The Ritz Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes are invited to join in a rustic dining experience at the new Highball & Harvest (“H&H”) restaurant.
Highball & Harvest will bring a new casual-dining concept to the Ritz-Carlton. With a communal cocktail table, wide open lounges, and a terrace, guests will enjoy luxurious comfort while enjoying flavorful cuisine. Inspired by Cajun cuisine and local Floridian citrus, Chef de Cuisine Mark Jeffers has crafted a menu of signature dishes that reflect the hotel’s sustainable cuisine philosophy. Several dishes on the H&H menu will be infused with fresh fruits and vegetables from the resort’s 2-year-old 7,000-square-foot garden, Whisper Creek Farm.
The innovative menu will feature authentic Southern and Low Country dishes with a modern twist, as well as cocktails crafted with seasonal fruits and herbs. Signature dishes at the rustic restaurant have been created by Chef Jeffers to bring a sense of culinary nostalgia to guests. Specialties will include the Pig-n-Potatoes, an all-day breakfast dish with house-made beef jerky and dips with pickled veggies arranged in a tackle box. Other H&H specialties will include a hot sauce made from Whisper Creek Farm peppers, and Parker House rolls made out of old-world Khorason wheat and served warm and moist. Delicious and also healthy, Parker House rolls contain significantly less gluten than regular bread.
In addition to its exceptional food offerings, H&H will feature an interactive cocktail table, where bar experts will mix ingredients while instructing personalized cocktail classes. The restaurant’s hand-crafted, seasonal cocktail menu will include signature drinks like the Moonshine Whistle-Stop, Green Acres with house ginger beer and jasmine tea, and a Cranberry Cobbler mixed with honey from the resort’s apiaries. Several cocktails on the menu will be served with hand-carved ice, sculpted with a Japanese ice saw, and infused with herbs and citrus from Whisper Creek Farm. Additionally, H&H plans to feature Central Florida’s largest selection of wines from the cask, selected by Advanced Sommelier Kris Soto.