Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Where You Taste The Love

Christner’s Prime Steak & Lobster

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I’ve lived in Orlando for many years, and I had never visited this restaurant. Crazy right? Something so close yet so far.

Christner’s Prime Steak And Lobster, previously known as Del Frisco’s, has been a staple in the Orlando area for many years. The name change was just that, a contractual decision. The family-run business is still in place.  I like reading the history of restaurants, classic and new. The history of Christner’s, with owners David Christner, his mom, Carole, father Russ, I recommend reading. This is an amazing family, where mom and son continuously bring class and ambiance to the dining experience.

It’s April 18th and we are celebrating Steve’s birthday. I decided to take him to Christner’s for dinner. Christner’s offers professional service in an intimate setting. Let me tell you about our personal experience.

We arrived a little before our reservation that evening. As you can see, we wanted to take a few pictures for my blog. Entering the restaurant, we checked in at the host stand. The lobby was amazing.

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Even though we were early, for our 6:00 pm reservation, the hostess immediately escorted us to our table. As we walked through the dining area to our table, my eyes didn’t want to miss a single detail.

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We were seated at our table and the host explained that our server was not in yet, but that wasn’t going to interfere with our evening. They introduced us to Scott, who’d be filling in for David.

David was recommended to us through close family friends. When I made the reservations, I asked if it was possible to have a particular server, and they checked to see if he was scheduled that evening, and he was scheduled, so that was perfect.

Scott was so professional, hospitable and welcomed us graciously. He started out by getting us our cocktails and explaining in detail about the menu. I had a few questions about certain items they offered and his detailed knowledge of the menu was on point.

Scott introduced us to David as he passed the baton over without a hitch. We talked and got to know David. Friendly and knowledgable, David took us on a ride we’ll never forget.

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We started out with a crab cake as our appetizer. Can I tell you something, this crab cake was so luscious and sweet. It definitely was the best crab cake I’ve ever had.  Next, was our entrée and sides. A 22 ounce USDA Prime Strip for two, Chateau potatoes ( their signature potato dish), and sauteed mushrooms.

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The meal was served tableside.  Steve had never experienced tableside service. I loved watching the expressions on his face. I really think our choices on the side dishes paired well with the steak.

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Another surprise for us was when Dan, the sommelier, came by our table. Dan was told I was a food blogger. We talked about my passion for food and my love for cooking.  He asked me if I’d like to see where the wine was kept, I said, “yes I would, that would be amazing!”. Wines that needed to be stored at a certain temperature were kept in these large coolers.

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Two final and really awesome experiences. The first was dessert!  Orange Cake (their signature dessert) with a scoop of orange ice cream.  Small bits of mandarin oranges throughout a velvety luscious vanilla ice cream. The cake was so delicious it just melted in your mouth. SO YUMMY!

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A beautiful sight that brings out the inner child in all of us. Thank you so much to the staff giving Steve a birthday he’ll always remember. The last final surprise of the night was so unexpected. The owner (saloon keeper), David Christner came to our table. We talked about the restaurant and my food blog. Much to my surprise, he found the time, on this busy evening, to take me on a complete tour, with a little backstory about the addition to the restaurant. Here’s a peek of my tour.

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Well, that’s the end of a perfect birthday celebration. If you’re in the Orlando area, visit Christner’s Prime Steak And Seafood Restaurant. The 2018 Orlando Sentinel Foodie Award for best filet and cold water lobster tail.

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For more information visit http://www.christnersprimesteakandseafood.com

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Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza

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Another year has flown by and it’s Steve’s birthday once more. Deciding where to take him was easy. He loves pizza, ribs, wings, beer, and everything casual. This led me to only one conclusion, Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza.

Located in the Dr. Phillips Crossing off Sand Lake Rd, better known as “restaurant row”, the food here is all done in their coal-burning ovens. This lends a unique flavor to everything that comes out of their kitchen. From the ribs, which are marinated in a delicious vinaigrette, to the chicken wings covered with caramelized onions. The pizzas, like their sausage and broccoli rabe or mini meatball and ricotta with their thin crunchy crusts, are to die for.

The atmosphere is casual with an open dining room. The artwork on the walls lends for great conversation. The coal-burning ovens are the center of attention. You can see them from wherever you’re sitting. The elegant bar with its backdrop being a wall of wine is within view.

If you want more information or to check out their menu visit their website at http://www.anthonyscoalfiredpizza.com.

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Slow Cooker Citrus Spiced Chicken And Mushroom Stew

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After coming back from the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival, and visiting with Pam Smith of Spice Blends, I knew I needed to incorporate her wonderful new spice blend, Citrus Spice, into this dish. I thought what better way than with a delicious French-style stew with chicken and mushrooms. Usually, I do this dish in a Dutch oven, I thought I could test this dish with my new 7-quart Crock-pot.

Really the only major prep to this dish is just the browning of the chicken. This is my Slow Cooker Citrus Spiced Chicken And Mushroom Stew.



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Cremini Mushrooms

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Flat Leaf Italian Parsley



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Prep Time: 40 minutes (includes 30 minutes for browning chicken)
Cook Time: 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high
Total Time: 8 hours 20 minutes (4 hours 20 minutes)
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Equipment: 12-inch cast-iron skillet, 7-quart Crock-Pot, chef’s knife, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, 2 large mixing bowls, 3 medium-size bowls

4 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts, cut in half
1 1/2 cups of Canola oil (amount of oil may vary)
4 medium-size Yukon gold potatoes, scrubbed clean, dried, and halved
3 pints of whole cremini mushrooms, cleaned
2 large onions, quartered
3 ribs of celery, cut into 3-inch pieces, include leafy tops
6 whole cloves of garlic, peeled
1 tablespoon of Citrus Spice Blend
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons of freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup of good white wine
1 cup of chicken broth, unsalted
1 cup of cooking liquid
1 heaping tablespoon of all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons of fresh thyme leaves, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons of fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley for garnish

Seasoned Flour:
3 cups of all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) of Citrus Spice Blend
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper

Start by cutting all four chicken breasts in half as seen in the pictures. Using paper towels, pat each piece of chicken dry really well. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

Next, prep all the vegetables and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Set aside. Clean the mushrooms with a damp paper towel to remove any dirt and/or grit. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

Last, in a medium-size bowl, prepare the seasoned flour. To a bowl add the flour, 1 tablespoon of Kosher salt, 1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper, 3 tablespoons of Citrus Spice Blend, whisk to combine. Set aside.

To start, using 1 tablespoon of the Citrus Spice Blend, add a pinch of the spice blend underneath of the skin of each of the chicken pieces. Using 1 tablespoon of Kosher salt and 1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper, distribute evenly, season the tops of all the chicken pieces. Transfer the pieces to a rimmed baking sheet pan, set aside. Dredge each piece of chicken into the seasoned flour, shake off any excess, and set onto a separate rimmed baking sheet pan. Repeat the process until all the chicken pieces are coated in the seasoned flour.

In a cast-iron skillet heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add enough oil to cover the bottom of the skillet, about 1/2-inch deep. Heat the oil until it starts to shimmer. Place the chicken into the skillet, skin side down, in batches of three. Cook for 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium, continue cooking skin side down, occasionally rearranging the chicken pieces until the fat renders and the skin is golden brown, about 5 to 7 minutes. Using a pair of tongs flip each piece and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the finished golden brown chicken pieces back onto the rimmed baking sheet pan. Repeat the process until all the pieces are golden brown. The chicken will finish cooking in the slow cooker.

Into the Crock-pot place all of the potatoes, onion, celery, and garlic. Add 1 tablespoon of Kosher salt and 1/2 a teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper to the vegetables. Next, add the chicken broth and wine. Arrange all the chicken pieces on top, but make sure they are nestled in there really well.

Note: You want to set the temperature on high if cooking for 4 hours and low for 8 hours. Keep in mind that all the vegetables are going to release water as they cook, and this will cause the liquid to rise slowly as everything progresses. I cooked this version of high for 4 hours because I just happen to be home and I needed to watch the progression of the dish so I could post everything correctly.

Once everything has been cooking for 3 1/2 hours remove the chicken and transfer to a plate. Add the mushrooms and fresh thyme. If you left this to cook for 8 hours on low you’d pull the chicken out at 7 1/2 hours and do the same thing.

For a slightly thicker gravy, remove a ladle full of the cooking liquid and whisk in 1 heaping tablespoon of flour. Whisk until it becomes paste-like with a somewhat smooth consistency. Add it right back into the Crock-pot, stir to combine.

Carefully add all the chicken pieces back into the Crock-pot. Cover and continue to cook for another 30 minutes. The heat from the hot liquid and the chicken on the top will cook the mushrooms.

To go along with this dish I made my Semi-homemade Cheddar And Chive Drop Biscuits for dipping. The link for this recipe is at the bottom of this post.

To serve, ladle a good helping of the stew into a large porcelain bowl, making sure to get a little of everything. Garnish with Italian flat-leaf parsley. This is my Slow Cooker Citrus Chicken And Mushroom Stew.

Semi-Homemade Cheddar And Chive Drop Biscuits

Mocha Chili Spiced Roasted Asparagus

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