No trip to Universal Studios is complete without a stroll along City Walk, Orlando. In addition to fun shops and shows, this location offers an assortment of restaurants where you can enjoy everything from a quick lunch to a relaxing dinner. With all of the captions available, it can be difficult to decide where to eat. Here are the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando.
Before You Go
If you’re new to the Universal Studios experience, you may have some questions about City Walk, Orlando. Here are some things you need to consider before you go.
Do You Need A Theme Park Ticket To Enter?
What makes City Walk stand out is that no tickets are required; admission is complimentary all day, every day.
The fact that you can enjoy access to great food, shops, and entertainment at no additional cost makes City Walk a popular place to visit for tourists.
How Much Is Parking?
Typically, the cost of parking at City Walk, Orlando is about $26. However, if you go during the evening (after 6 pm), you can enjoy free parking for your vehicle.
Parking fees have been known to change, so you may want to call to confirm the prices before you go.
Universal City Walk Orlando Restaurant Reviews and Rankings
Now that you’ve prepared yourself for your trip to City Walk, it’s time to decide where you’re going to eat. Here are some of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando.
Top 6 Best
6) Bob Marley – A Tribute to Freedom
If you’re a fan of Bob Marley’s music, then the Bob Marley – A Tribute to Freedom restaurant is an absolute must-see.
It offers a replica of Bob Marley’s home from Jamaica, complete with photos and icons that represent this musician’s prosperous career. And don’t forget about the food–you can relish in the taste of Jamaican favorites, including delicious jerk wings and crispy yucca fries.
The Bob Marley – A Tribute to Freedom location has made it on lists of the top 10 eateries offered in Universal Studios City Walk. It also has customer testimonials to back it up. Here’s one of the top Yelp reviews:
“We arrived just before the live music was scheduled and had a great table for 2. We were able to hear each other talk and still enjoy the wonderful Reggae band. Our server… was fabulous… She was so cheery, offered prompt service and great suggestions… Our dining experience was perfect from start to finish and we would return on our next trip to the area.”
5) Hard Rock Café
You’ve probably heard of the Hard Rock Café before–after all, this popular franchise boasts 185 locations. So what makes this one stand out? The Hard Rock Café in City Walk, Orlando, is actually the largest one of these restaurants in the world. Of course, this franchise wouldn’t have been able to succeed if it didn’t offer great food. Enjoy salads, sandwiches, and more in a fun, rock & roll atmosphere.
This Hard Rock Café comes especially recommended because of its size, and also has great reviews to back it up. Here’s a Yelp review from a satisfied customer:
“This is probably the best Hard Rock Cafe ever… they have the best decoration ever. It’s very eye-catching on our way on and out, from the cook pink car in the middle on top of the bar to the guitar on the wall and much more. For the service, they’re amazing and fast. Super good and friendly with kids… the flavor of the food is just as rich and great…”
4) NBC Sports Grill & Brew
If you enjoy sports, then you have to spend an evening at the NBC Sports Grill & Brew, one of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando. The high-def televisions that coat the walls allow you to enjoy games from every angle possible. The best part is that you can watch the game with some delicious food; this grill offers classic bar fare, from loaded burgers to nachos. And don’t forget the brewery part–there are tons of delicious draft beers and local brews to choose from.
People love that the NBC Sports Grill & Brew offers elevated versions of bar-time food at affordable prices. One reviewer writes:
“I was truly so surprised by how much I liked this place. Usually theme park restaurants are pricey and not worth it, but not the Grill and Brew! I could not decide what to get but ended up going for the nachos. I will be back for the flatbread and mac and cheese, and probably a lot more… It’s a big place and a great place to watch sports and eat food. It wasn’t too expensive for the food either, which again is surprising for the location. I’ll be back!”
3) Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Chicken
As the name suggests this restaurant offers both savory and sweet options, satisfying all of your taste bud needs. You can enjoy a wide range of dinner options, from steak to seafood. This restaurant also doubles as a confectionary, so be sure to save room for some great dessert after your meal; the unique ice-cream sundaes are a must-try.
Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feat Chicken truly has options for everyone, making it one of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando. It is a pretty popular location, so it’s advisable to make reservations ahead of time.
Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Chicken boasts a 4-star review on Yelp and has great reviews to testify to its high-quality dining experience. One reviewer writes:
“Here’s a great place to come in the evening for a great dessert after a day at the parks or just for an evening out…. The dessert menu is mouth-watering. That’s why you have to come back several times in order to try everything on it.”
2) The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar
While sushi and burgers may sound like an odd combination, there’s a reason that this eatery has earned a full 4 stars on Yelp.
This casual, lively bar combines two delicious meals into one. You can enjoy a burger made up of sushi or sushi made with traditional burger ingredients–whatever you want! Of course, since it’s a bar, you also have several options when it comes to drinks, including the popular spiked milkshakes. Its unique blend of different cuisines and fun atmosphere makes The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar one of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando.
People enjoy the delicious food and quality service at this location, with one reviewer writing:
“We were seated right away and our server was chill and was able to answer our questions…. The inside of this restaurant is really vibrant and lively. The colors, artwork, and the showstopper glass fishbowl were a refreshing change to boring restaurant interiors. They had music playing in the background, but it wasn’t so loud that you couldn’t enjoy good conversation. We didn’t wait too long for our food. Everything was really tasty, and the sushi was fresh. I can’t even remember the names of everything we had, but trust: they were making our tongues dance with pleasure!”
You’ve made it all the way to Orlando, so why not try something totally new when it comes to dinner? BigFire offers a unique open flame concept, in which all meals are cooked over an open fire; you can enjoy some great char on your steaks and burgers, then round it off with delicious tableside s’mores. You’ll also love the casual atmosphere, which gives off the impression of a lakeside cabin.
With over 4 stars on Yelp, customers rave about BigFire, and one even laments that there isn’t a location in their home state:
“This spot is pretty cool with their wood fire pizzas… they are super busy BUT have adequate staffing and are pretty organized with the way they do things. They also are super clean… the pizza tastes so darn good I’m sad there isn’t one here in Ohio.”
Best City Walk Restaurant for Italian Food
Sometimes you’re in the mood for a specific type of cuisine, and, let’s be honest–a lot of the time, that cuisine is probably Italian. Who doesn’t enjoy a hearty bowl of pasta or risotto? Fortunately, City Walk offers some great options when it comes to Italian food.
If you’re looking for a unique experience, then VIVO Italian Kitchen is a must. What makes this restaurant stand out is the fact that you can actually watch your meal being prepared, offering some entertainment while you’re waiting for your food. VIVO provides an open concept so that you can watch the chefs create homemade pizzas and sauces.
Best City Walk Restaurant for Mexican Food
You can never go wrong with Mexican food; there’s a reason why the cuisine is beloved on a world-wide scale. If you’re looking for one of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando, to offer a Mexican-themed menu, then we’ve got you covered.
Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food transports you across the border and into the heart of Mexico. Enjoy delicious homemade Mexican staples, from fajitas and tacos to empanadas and stew, amongst a cozy, comfortable atmosphere. On certain nights, you can even bop along to the music of a live Mariachi band.
If you’re more of a drinks person, Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville is another great option for enjoying a Mexican meal.
It offers a mix of Mexican and American food, so if you’re traveling with picky eaters there’s sure to be something on the menu for everyone. While you’re chowing down on a burger or enjoying some fish tacos, you can listen to some of Jimmy Buffet’s greatest hits.
Best City Walk Restaurant for Seafood
Florida is known for its seafood, so no trip to City Walk would be complete without a visit to a seafood restaurant. The Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. is one of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando, offering a delicious menu straight from the ocean.
As the name suggests you can sample some great shrimp dishes, as well as a range of Southern classics. If you’re traveling with someone that isn’t a seafood fan, don’t worry; this restaurant has plenty of non-seafood offerings to satisfy everyone, such as baby back ribs.
If you’re a movie buff, you may have recognized that the name of the restaurant comes from Forrest Gump; you can check out souvenirs and items from the movie while you’re waiting for your meal.
If you want classic New Orleans seafood, then a trip to Pat O’Brien’s is essential. This Bayou Bar offers a wide assortment of Cajun dishes, from shrimp-filled Po’Boys to blackened fish and crawfish. Along with great seafood, you’ll enjoy the fun, party-like New Orleans environment.
Best City Walk Bars
Some of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando, offer great drink options that you can enjoy with your food. For example, Margaritaville lets you enjoy some classic cocktails with your Mexican-fare, while the NBC Sports Grill & Brew lets you sample tons of unique, home-crafted beers.
Don’t forget about the highest-ranking option in our top 6 list–The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar offers a range of cocktails and beers that you can enjoy along with your sushi burger hybrids.
If you’re looking for a truly unique experience, then consider a dive into City Walk’s Rising Star, a lively glimpse into the nightlife that Orlando has to offer. You can enjoy drinks along with living performances; the open stage allows anyone to go up and belt out a karaoke song, all set to the backdrop of a live band. Who knows–maybe after a few drinks, you’ll be climbing on-stage too!
Another unique option is the Lone Palm Airport. This bar is coated in deep purple hues and offers a tiki theme, throwing you straight into the heart of Polynesia. Along with great drinks and a fun environment, you’ll enjoy full views of City Walk.
Best City Walk Fast Food
In-house dining isn’t for everyone. Maybe you’re looking for something quick to eat so you can get back to the parks, or maybe you’re traveling on a budget. Either way, you may not be interested in a full, sit-down dining experience.
Fortunately, City Walk fast food options so that you can enjoy a quick meal on the go. These include:
- Burger King (Whopper Bar)
- Panda Express
- Moe’s Southwest Grill
If you’re in the mood for some quick burgers and fries, but someone else in your party is craving Chinese food, then no worries; all of these fast food options are conveniently located in the City Walk food court. You can bounce from one fast-food option to the other if you’d like to.
Worst Places At City Walk To Eat
We’ve gone over the best restaurants in City Walk, Universal Studios; now how about some of the worst places?
When it comes to reviews, fast food options tend to have the lowest rankings. For example, the Burger King Whopper Bar currently has 2.5 stars on Yelp. Of course, these options are designed for speed and convenience–so if you’re looking for quality, you’ll probably want to go somewhere else.
Another lower-ranking option is the Fusion Bistro Sushi & Sake Bar. With mediocre reviews, this sushi bar ranks average and doesn’t offer the fun kind of atmosphere you want during your vacation.
Another option we would probably recommend you skip is Breadbox Handcrafted Sandwiches. While there’s nothing particularly wrong with this location, it simply doesn’t stand out enough to justify carving out a time slot for it during your trip. The deli sandwiches and casual outdoor atmosphere can be found virtually anywhere.
Now that you’ve read up on the different options available to you on City Walk, you’re ready for your trip. Enjoy some delicious food and fun atmospheres as you check out some of the best restaurants in City Walk, Orlando!