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Best breakfasts: Orlando

Mornings before an Atlanta Braves spring training game at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex—or a date with Mickey and Minnie—call for a substantial meal.
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Red Mug Diner's Chicken Fried Chicken

Red Mug Diner’s Chicken Fried Chicken


A mad-scientist cold-brew machine works early till late, seven days a week, which probably helps spark owner and chef Scott Copeland’s kitchen creations. Copeland has a keen touch with flavor; try the Japanese Bowl—eggs over sticky rice with bacon, sweet chili sauce and spicy togarashi. You’ll find egg sandwiches, quiche and seasonal specials, as well as Copeland’s brunch items like Short Rib Poutine and Eggs. While Vietnamese iced coffee will wake you up, Tampa Bay Brewing’s Reef Donkey A.P.A. on tap (along with other brews) will keep you morning-mellow. 22 E. Pine St.,


Orlando’s barbecue king John Rivers opened his first 4Rivers Smokehouse in 2009, and now there are 14 across Florida and Atlanta. Having a hankering for fried chicken, he opened The Coop, helmed by celebrity chef Whitney Miller. The Coop serves up breakfasts with southern flair: Tamale Pancakes topped with pulled pork; The King French Toast with peanut butter, banana and honey; the Low Country Omelet with Gulf Coast shrimp and smoked Andouille sausage over Anson Mills grits; and Dad’s Idea of Breakfast, a giant slice of chocolate cake with a tall glass of milk. 610 West Morse Blvd.,


Local baker Trina Gregory- Propst believes in butter, local eggs and filling your pie hole. The bake shop/cafe’s chalkboard menu is filled with substantial offerings like Breakfast Bread Pudding stuffed with asparagus, mushrooms and ham, and the Se7en Benedict, poached eggs on a buttermilk garlic biscuit topped with a fried green tomato, smoked bacon, cheddar chive grits and peppercorn Hollandaise sauce. Add a slice of salted dark chocolate pudding stout cake, which actually does count as breakfast. 617 N. Primrose Dr.,

Late-Night Bite: Downtown Orlando’s only 24-hour diner, Red Mug is far enough from the downtown bar scene that it feels like your own private refuge. Yes, it’s a retro diner; yes, it offers waffles and omelettes, but there’s also a full dinner menu, including burgers and Chicken Fried Chicken (served all day) to go with Irish coffee and Stoli mules when the urge strikes. 63 E. Pine St., 


Kate Bernot is DRAFT’s beer editor. Reach her at kate.bernot[at]

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