AC Sky Bar

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AC Sky Bar is not considered a restaurant. It should be obvious from the name. If it is AC Sky Cafe, AC Sky Bistro or AC Sky Cafe, it would sound more like an on-board food option.

Although it is not at cruising level, it does have a higher elevation than an aerie. It is located on the 18th Floor of the SunTrust Plaza Building at Garland Avenue, South Street. The bank occupies one of the lower floors, while the hotel occupies the eight highest. At the 18th floor, there is a lobby. It also houses a lounge, breakfast nook and Sky Bar. Unobstructed views are provided by the balcony seating and two-story windows that give you a view of Florida from every angle. You can see the attractions and beyond. Below is a top-down look at the Amway Center.

It’s possible to mistakenly believe that AC stands for Amway Center, but it’s just a coincidence. AC Hotels is a Marriott brand, and the initials refer to Antonio Catalan, its founder.

AC Sky Bar does not have a restaurant, but it does offer some food. The menu pays homage to the Spanish roots of the hotel. The menu includes four small plates, two of which are burgers, as well as four large plates, including a few toasts and salads.

After trying the bartender’s negroni skills (quite well), I ordered the meatballs Cazuela from the small plate menu.

Madrid tapas bars are known for their meatballs. The cazuela, an earthenware dish that they are served in, is where you’ll find them. These meatballs were not intended to look like Spanish ones. The meat was a mixture of beef and pork – the exact recipe is not listed on the menu. The milk-soaked bread gave the meat a looser texture. The romesco sauce, made with red peppers and tomatoes, added a bit of pulpy flavor. A crumbling of Manchego cheese also helped.

Another Spanish standard is the tortilla. It’s basically a country omelet made with potatoes and onions. AC’s was not topped with crumbled cheddar and could have been allowed more to set.My companion selected the AC burger “large plate”, a medium-sized patty on a brioche roll with thick slices, mozzarella, and crispy prosciutto. It won’t be on any “best-of” lists, but I thought it was an acceptable burger. It was served with potatoes that are more popular for breakfast.

Chipped cups, even those containing only ketchup should not be left a kitchen.

The lobby is large and includes an alabaster front desk at one end and lounge seating at the other. At the other end is a bar with a alabaster front and three-sided bar. The outside bar mirrors that on the inside, but was closed due to lightning concerns.

Parking garage in the building is confusing. You can wave or insert your credit card at entry. No tickets are issued. When you leave, you can then wave or insert the same card. It seems to remember how long you have been there. Parking is not validated at the bar.

It can also be confusing. A recorded message from AC Sky Bar advises callers that they should check the website to find details about the menu. Reservations are strongly recommended, but the voice message states that they are not accepted unless for Sunday brunch.

You can take an elevator to the lobby. However, please be aware of the dress code posted. Although it’s standard stuff, I wonder at what point ripped or holey clothing becomes unacceptable.

Although the AC Sky Bar is not a religious experience, it is nice to have an indoor venue that brings us closer to the stars.

AC Sky Bar can be found at 333 S. Garland Ave. in Orlando (map). The bar is open for lunch on Friday and Saturday, brunch Sunday, and dinner every day. Phone number: 407-635-2300

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