My husband and I had to meet an associate of his for a celebratory drink. They had just closed a fairly large deal during one of the many meetings they had attended in Orlando together. We decided to keep it to a minimum since we were having a formal celebration the next evening, so after a few drinks together with the others, my husband and I decided we would just nibble a little while there. We all met at Paradiso 37-Taste of the Americas, a Latin American waterfront restaurant inside Downtown Disney’s Pleasure Island.
It was after dark by the time my husband and I caught up with his associate and his wife and children. They had the right idea…have meetings in Orlando….have the family enjoy themselves in the parks and other offerings Mickey has to offer while you’re in said meetings all day. Smart. Being in an off-resort hotel a few minutes away, this excursion was a refreshing venture and even brought the kid out in both of us a little.
Our waiter told us that Paradiso 37 got its name from the one-of-a-kind tequila tower bar above, which encases 37 different varieties of tequila. From our outside table, the view of the tower bar was intriguing and colorful to admire. Not a huge lover of tequila, I do find myself indulging once in a while in a great margarita…
Signature Paradiso 37 Margarita
The above libation was not only vibrant in color, but also as amazing a margarita I had ever remembered experiencing in my life. Our server convinced me that this Signature Paradiso 37 Margarita with a pear nectar enhancement would be a definite winner. I concurred and was delighted by the result placed before me. In fact, I had two of these stunning libations!
Hmmm…what to have…what to have. My husband and I just wanted a little something to nibble on since we were enjoying Paradiso 37′s margaritas and we wound up being very bad. We ordered fried food! But delicious it was indeed. Below, the Caribbean Crab & Fish Fritters…
Caribbean Crab and Fish Fritters
Loving the presentation of this succulent treat, we also appreciated the tender combination of crab meat, shrimp, fish, peppers and cilantro inside the crunchy fried-to-perfection exterior of each one of these delectable morsels. Served with a chilled coconut-lime dipping sauce ($8.99), these savory and scrumptious bites were satisfying and filling at the same time.
Somehow a third margarita appeared in front of me, so my husband and I just decided to order a couple of light entrees since we had been drinking more than we planned. (It was a pre-celebratory occasion anyway, right?)
We ordered two of Paradiso 37′s signature specials recommended by our server…the Baha Fish Taco entree and the Paradiso 37 Burrito Plate…
Baha Fish Taco Entree
The above beautifully-arranged items composed the Baha Fish Taco entree. My husband ordered this dish, and devoured it happily. The sectioned dinner plate it was served on showed off the soft flour tortilla-encased taco ingredients of lightly-fried seasonal fish, roasted corn salsa, lime crema (a rich, slightly sour, lightly-thickened cream used in Mexican cooking resembling a thin sour cream), spicy slaw and a tortilla salad ($14.99).
I love a great burrito! Therefore, I chose the Paradiso 37 Burrito Plate with succulent beef in a flour tortilla joined by sauteed peppers, squash, red onions, imported cheeses, sweet chipotle BBQ sauce, then added in a generous portion was a pile of cilantro rice and black beans beside it ($14.99). I LOVED the cilantro rice. It was light, had a great taste, and the light green hue was impressive and distinct. The burrito itself was juicy, full of sensational flavor and I seemed to be in some sort of complacent heaven once I finished it.
Paradiso 37 Burrito Plate
After our ‘only drinks’ theory turned into a lovely meal with our dinner companions, the only thing left to do was drive back to our hotel and prepare for our next evening out. But Paradiso 37 was a real treat for us. Upscale Latin fare for extremely reasonable prices right on the waterfront. And we were even serenaded by a vocalist playing a guitar off to one side of the patio!
- ESTABLISHMENT / DECOR: Colorful and intriguing use of space both indoors and outside on the expansive patio. Live entertainment and refreshing breezes are a welcoming experience when dining out of doors, while the Tower Bar, both inside and outside of the restaurant develops conversation among dining patrons.
- FOOD / DRINK: Delicious, fresh and vibrantly-colorful presentations are appreciated at this establishment. Stunning flavorful cocktails…especially their margaritas…are prepared with care and proudly served.
- LOCATION: Paradiso 37 is located within Downtown Disney’s Pleasure Island at 1590 East Buena Vista Drive in Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830.
- HOURS: Sunday through Thursday from 11:30AM – 12AM, then on Friday and Saturday from 11:30AM – 1AM.
- SERVICE / STAFF: Our server was friendly, efficient, kept us laughing and gave us reliable suggestions about what we should try on the menu.
- PRICE / VALUE: Slightly higher than if off the Disney property, but hey, it’s Disney…there’s always a premium at the park. But we were fine with paying a little more for the service and quality food, service and atmosphere we enjoyed.
- CORKAGE FEE: $15 per bottle.
- CONTACT INFO: Phone: (407) 934-3702, Website: www.paradiso37.com
- PARKING: We experienced complimentary parking in the spacious lot in front of Pleasure Island, which allows easy access to the main entrance of this particular section of Disney World. Valet parking is also available for a small fee.
- TOTAL BILL: For two entrees, four margaritas and an appetizer, our total bill came in a bit over $60 (including tax), which was fine considering what a great time we had, what terrific cuisine we enjoyed, what exceptional service we were rendered and the great location of the restaurant on the waterfront.