Think back to spending summer evenings by the lake with friends and family, along with the smell of a wood fire, great food, and memories to last a lifetime! Well, Universal Orlando Resort wants to bring back all the nostalgia of summertime fun with their new restaurant concept at BigFire, opening to the public on June 26, 2019!🏕🔥 We were lucky to be able to preview this new addition to Universal’s CityWalk at their media event on June 10th! Described as a “Grand lakeside lodge, creating an atmosphere reminiscent of summers spent by the water.”, we were able to get first look at the interior design and got to enjoy a taste of all the amazing smoke-infused dishes and cocktails. We also listened in to the creative team, at Universal Orlando Resort, as they explained the luxury lakeside concept and also chatted with the chefs behind their farm to table menu! Read more as we dish about this hot new restaurant at Universal Orlando!
📍6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819
Located at Universal CityWalk Orlando (Between VIVO Italian Kitchen & Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville)
Wednesday, June 26th – Saturday, June29th Only
Weds & Thurs 3pm-11pm, Fri & Sat 3pm-12am
Sunday – Saturday 10:30am-Midnight
As we stepped into the restaurant for the first time, what stood out to us was the ambiance and overall look of the restaurant. Blending a rustic theme and natural wood elements with industrial modern design, it really feels like a luxury lakeside vacation home. We noticed the booth seating has a mix-match fabric and a large plaid wall with a window display of different colored camp lanterns. Look above to admire the wooden framed canoe draped with glistening lights that’s suspended from the overhead rafters to complete the outdoor ambience inside the restaurant. 🤩🛶
At the media event, we were able to listen to the story behind the concept and get a closer look at their campfire-inspired menu. We first heard about the luxury lakeside concept from Ric Florell, the Executive Vice President and Revenue Operations of Universal Orlando Resort, as he described to the audience that he wants guests to feel like they’re on a family summer vacation by the water.
Bigfire has two stories. On the top level of the restaurant are additional seats with views of CityWalk right above the downstairs main bar.
To start off the evening, we enjoyed a few of their signature cocktails which are all infused with smoky elements. We were able to taste their Lakeside Punch, White Old Fashioned, and Classic Old Fashioned. Their Classic Old Fashioned is prepared with a special Woodford Reserve specifically made for Bigfire restaurant! As for the White Old Fashioned, which is a lighter take on the classic, Bigfire’s mixologists prepare the cocktail with a black cherry vodka, finished with a freshly smoked fig.
While Universal Orlando Resort has a great list of restaurants, Bigfire’s two story venue is bringing the heat with open-fire cooking on their custom wood-fire grill right in the heart of the restaurant. This allows every guest to watch their meal being cooked! One of the big draw’s is a special type of wood, whether it be Cherrywood, Pecanwood or Oakwood, that is used to compliment every dish on the menu so that the smoked flavor is always just right for an elevated American fare.😋
As you take a look through the menu, you’ll notice that the dishes are inspired by foods that are prepared on an open campfire! From delicious higher end comfort foods like the Signature Bison Burger, Colorado Lamb Chops, cocoa rubbed Top Sirloin, delectable freshwater Brook Trout, smoked salads to fireside treats, the options will make your mouth water!
You won’t want to skip dessert at Bigfire! Something that everyone will love is their Tableside S’mores that guests can prepare themselves at the table! Their twist on the campfire classic comes with handmade marshmallows, graham crackers, chocolate, and peanut butter cups.
They also offer a Dutch Apple Pie topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. But another great option is the flourless Skillet Baked Chocolate Cake complete with cherries and a scoop of bourbon ice cream. Yes, you’ve read that right, bourbon ice cream! It has a pretty strong taste too! And of course, a restaurant that loves to put foods on fire has to offer a Baked Alaska that’s flamed tableside!
Even if you’re popping in just for cocktail, you can enjoy their various lawn games and get cozy by the fire pit with their oversized plaid blankets!
We ended the evening chatting with Vice President and Corporate Executive Chef for Universal Parks and Resorts, Steve Jayson, about the ideas behind the menu!
If you’re looking for the perfect way to unwind after a fun-filled day at the theme parks, Bigfire will make you feel right at home as you step into their lakeside camp-inspired restaurant. There is always something new coming to Universal Orlando Resort and we’re so excited for the opportunity to share this new restaurant! We can’t wait to dine in when it’s open to the public. If you’re in the mood for great American wood-fire steak and comfort foods, you have to make a stop by BigFire!
Get a sneak peek of Universal CityWalk’s Bigfire restaurant in our YouTube video before it officially opens this summer!🏕🔥👇🏼