Restaurant review: Winter Park's Circa 1926

Full story: Orlando Sentinel

Grilled artichoke hearts, dirty martini with pickled asparagus created at Circa 1926 in Winter Park on Tuesday, Jan.
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1 - 16 of 16 Comments Last updated Jan 31, 2012
ParkAveGirl

Lake Mary, FL

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#1
Feb 2, 2009
 

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I have been to Circa a dozen times since the opening, my girl friends and I love meeting for dinner there! The upstairs lounge is the new Sexy Spot in town!
Atomic Ant

Boise, ID

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#2
Feb 2, 2009
 
i am addicted to their fresh made potato chips!
FHBD

AOL

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#3
Feb 3, 2009
 

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Atomic Ant wrote:
i am addicted to their fresh made potato chips!
The same potato chips that come FREE at Capital Grill and Flemmings.

Circa 1926 will not last through the summer
Rick

Melbourne, FL

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#4
Feb 14, 2009
 

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Please don't compare Circa to Capital Grill and Flemmings. First of all Circa has a reputable Chef who can actually make unique, creative dishes. Who are the chefs at Capital Grill and Flemmings anyway? Oh that's right we don't know, because one is not needed just to throw steaks on a plate.
Sheri Richardson

United States

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#5
Jun 19, 2009
 

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I always respect your reviews, but I can't tell you how disappointed I was in Circa 1926. Our friends were visiting from Boca, and we wanted to treat them to somewhere special. We made the HUGE mistake of going to Circa. I don't think I've ever written a negative review of a restaurant, but I implore you with all of my heart, not to go here. It was a horrible experience. My fish was raw. I never return entrees because I'm hesitant to eat them after, but it was so bad. They just reheated it. The waiter even said what happened to the other half of the fish? I didn't eat the reheated version. Then, he charged us for the full entree. We asked to speak to the manager. The manager just stood there and listened to our complaints with a big smile on his face. He said thanks for sharing. We said you aren't going to make any concessions? He said no. We don't give things away for free here. He was so rude, and eventually he called the police! We are straight laced yuppies. It was a joke. The police asked us what he shouldn't order. He was laughing. It was unbelievable. We've never had anything like this happen. All I can say is don't complain about the food! Honestly, everyone's entree was unedible, but thank goodness we didn't complain about that as well! The Thai Peanut shrimp was just sweet and sour noodles. Our guest took a few bights. The salads were terrible. How do you mess up on a salad? My husband ordered the prime rib, and he (who eats anything) said it was the worst prime rib he's ever had! Our friend ordered the chicken breast which came wtih bones and skin. It was disgusting... and we didn't even complain about all that! I would guess that this place is going down, and they can't afford to comp a dinner. There were only a few couples there on a Friday night. It was a cold, dreary atmosphere. I regret eating there because our initial reaction was to leave. It was so quiet and dead. Nobody was there. Sincerely, I wouldn't want anyone to experience what we did. It was a very disappointing evening. I am so embarrassed to bring our friends here especially with all of the wonderful offerings that we have in Winter Park. To top it off, the owner, Lester's, response was unacceptable. No wonder your restaurant has no customers. After the way you treated us, I wouldn't expect any differently.
next table

Oviedo, FL

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#6
Jun 27, 2009
 

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I was there and these people were intoxicated and rude. They badgered the server about the menu and obviously can't read descriptions very well. I had the same prime rib and it was perfectly cooked and presented. I could not see the "raw" fish very well from my seat but after they left the server told us that he saw the fish in the kitchen and it was properly cooked. It just goes to show you what alcohol can do to people. so rude.
Winter Park Local

Lake Mary, FL

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#7
Jul 2, 2009
 
I have eaten at Circa DOZENS of times, it is hands down my favorite place to take my wife out to a romantic dinner and it never fails to WOW my clients when I take them to Circa for lunch or after work drinks. In all my visits to Circa, I had one VERY VERY minor issue with my steak being a little to pink. The waiter was incredibly gracious and immediately had it re-made. NO QUESTIONS asked! The owner Lester is one of the most caring and charismatic people I know. Anyone who says otherwise is simply put, a jerk.
Lee

United States

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#8
Jul 20, 2009
 

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I couldn't agree with this review more. The owner is undoubtably the rudest person I've ever met.
This weekend there was a children's festival on Park Avenue and he pruposely turned up the tacky steel drum music he had playing on his outdoor sound system to drown out the sound of the children's drum circle in the park. Then he smirked and laughed when his neighbors asked him to turn his music down. Also, Circa's bathroom was leaking sewage through a neighboring merchant's ceiling and he said it "wasn't his problem". He's vile and I've told everyone I know not to eat at Circa.
WP Foodie

United States

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#9
Jul 20, 2009
 

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I have only eaten at Circa once and I was not impressed. I really want Circa to make it on Park Avenue and think that it could work with a little more attention to detail. My burger was cold and my beer was warm. Lester can be friendly, but only if he thinks that you are a "somebody".
laughing at you

Oviedo, FL

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#10
Jul 20, 2009
 

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Sheri Richardson wrote:
I always respect your reviews, but I can't tell you how disappointed I was in Circa 1926. Our friends were visiting from Boca, and we wanted to treat them to somewhere special. We made the HUGE mistake of going to Circa. I don't think I've ever written a negative review of a restaurant, but I implore you with all of my heart, not to go here. It was a horrible experience. My fish was raw. I never return entrees because I'm hesitant to eat them after, but it was so bad. They just reheated it. The waiter even said what happened to the other half of the fish? I didn't eat the reheated version. Then, he charged us for the full entree. We asked to speak to the manager. The manager just stood there and listened to our complaints with a big smile on his face. He said thanks for sharing. We said you aren't going to make any concessions? He said no. We don't give things away for free here. He was so rude, and eventually he called the police! We are straight laced yuppies. It was a joke. The police asked us what he shouldn't order. He was laughing. It was unbelievable. We've never had anything like this happen. All I can say is don't complain about the food! Honestly, everyone's entree was unedible, but thank goodness we didn't complain about that as well! The Thai Peanut shrimp was just sweet and sour noodles. Our guest took a few bights. The salads were terrible. How do you mess up on a salad? My husband ordered the prime rib, and he (who eats anything) said it was the worst prime rib he's ever had! Our friend ordered the chicken breast which came wtih bones and skin. It was disgusting... and we didn't even complain about all that! I would guess that this place is going down, and they can't afford to comp a dinner. There were only a few couples there on a Friday night. It was a cold, dreary atmosphere. I regret eating there because our initial reaction was to leave. It was so quiet and dead. Nobody was there. Sincerely, I wouldn't want anyone to experience what we did. It was a very disappointing evening. I am so embarrassed to bring our friends here especially with all of the wonderful offerings that we have in Winter Park. To top it off, the owner, Lester's, response was unacceptable. No wonder your restaurant has no customers. After the way you treated us, I wouldn't expect any differently.
Imagine that.being tossed out of a restaurant by the police.I can only imagine the other side of this story.you should be ashamed of yourselves.
laughing at you

Oviedo, FL

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#11
Jul 20, 2009
 
Imagine being tossed out of a restaurant by the Police.I can only imagine the other side of this story.you should be ashamed of yourselves
PJB567

Eustis, FL

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#12
Oct 25, 2010
 
I have dined at Circa at various times for lunch, dinner and brunch. The atmosphere is nice and in cool weather a table on the outside around corner is a good place to sit. The food has been fair some meals good and others okay. Todays burger was nothing great, dry, bun burned and tomato soggy for ten bucks.

My major complaint when I arrived at 11am the place was emtpy, hostess was folding napkins at bar table not at door. I asked if my favorite waiter was working and she said " Yes he is in the back" I asked if she could go and get him? A blonde girl jumps off barstool and RUDELY barks at me " You are very demanding, that is a very demanding way to speak to my hostess" Thinking she was kidding I asked her if she was " the big boss"? She snapped " I am the manager" and marched off to the back, Wow talk about a PMS moment what a rude nasty witch. She then returned and mumbled he was busy. The young hostess the entire time stood there stoned face as she always does while on duty.

The waiter finally came to the front and after being seated I informed him of her nasty attitude and he was not surprised in the least. Regardless I ate my not so good lunch. This was not his fault so I did not take it out on him. However I will NOT return to this establishment. There are plenty of other great restaurants on Park Avenue and throughout Orlando for that matter that will like my money.

The owner needs to address this blonde bimbo's attitude and her power trip as a so called "manager" before he loses more customers in this economy, also she is NOT the floor manager. Other sites have noted problems with managment as well for this joint. So Beware of the blonde witch!
anon

Kissimmee, FL

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#13
Oct 25, 2010
 

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HAHA! I find it funny that I ran across this review; I was at Circa this morning and witnessed this situation. You failed to mention you are the jilted ex-lover (or whatever) of the server you were asking for, and were catty and bitchy towards the hostess. The manager did nothing but defend her employee from a hostile guest. The fact you would breathe such poison about an establishment without prefacing your own conflict of interest shows just what an immature and petty person you are. By the way, my panini and soup for lunch today were amazing. Seeing you be asked to leave only made it that much more tasty.
PJB567 wrote:
I have dined at Circa at various times for lunch, dinner and brunch. The atmosphere is nice and in cool weather a table on the outside around corner is a good place to sit. The food has been fair some meals good and others okay. Todays burger was nothing great, dry, bun burned and tomato soggy for ten bucks.
My major complaint when I arrived at 11am the place was emtpy, hostess was folding napkins at bar table not at door. I asked if my favorite waiter was working and she said " Yes he is in the back" I asked if she could go and get him? A blonde girl jumps off barstool and RUDELY barks at me " You are very demanding, that is a very demanding way to speak to my hostess" Thinking she was kidding I asked her if she was " the big boss"? She snapped " I am the manager" and marched off to the back, Wow talk about a PMS moment what a rude nasty witch. She then returned and mumbled he was busy. The young hostess the entire time stood there stoned face as she always does while on duty.
The waiter finally came to the front and after being seated I informed him of her nasty attitude and he was not surprised in the least. Regardless I ate my not so good lunch. This was not his fault so I did not take it out on him. However I will NOT return to this establishment. There are plenty of other great restaurants on Park Avenue and throughout Orlando for that matter that will like my money.
The owner needs to address this blonde bimbo's attitude and her power trip as a so called "manager" before he loses more customers in this economy, also she is NOT the floor manager. Other sites have noted problems with managment as well for this joint. So Beware of the blonde witch!
PJB567

Tavares, FL

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#14
Oct 27, 2010
 

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Well it seems the so called "manager" Miss Morgan the witch has responded, asked to leave? No Mike the real Floor Manager offered to seat me until My waiter came into the roomn and seated me. Regardless of the ignorant treatment by you, Morgan, I dined and spent my money there regardless of your stupidity and pure bitch attitude. Or perhaps it was a PMS day? Somehow with this response it is evident this is bitch attitude is your regular personality.

Breathe poison? Petty comments? No Morgan I speak the truth of my exeperience of the day and of my not so great lunch I ate. In case your intelligence level cannot comnprehend, that is what these review blogs are for. Obviously the one with maturity issue is yourself spewing defensive venom as an anomymous person, again no one else was in the restaurant besides YOU, Morgan and the stoned face hostess at my time of arrival.

As far as the "Jilted Lover" comment, lets see Morgan after your nasty attack on me I jokingly pointed out to you that I was the waiters "ex", so you see this anonymous name you created for another attack response shows that you have written this response. Quite pathetic wouldn't you say? Intelligent people will see the truth, Morgan.

Your sterotypical blonde, blue eyed bimbo look probably is what landed you the job in the first place because it certainly was not for any sense of professionalism or intelligence level. Yes just another blonde Winter Park Floozy who's only able to keep her job by laying on her back.

I am finished with you now Morgan and will not return to listen to anymore of your dingbat rantings. Bitter Bitch women such as yourself make me so glad I am gay. You have a wonderful day sugar plum!
Mr Edwards

Orlando, FL

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#15
Jan 25, 2012
 
Do yourself a favor and stay way clear of this nightmare. Bad service, nasty confrontational waiter, manager so busy he or she couldn't attend to the customer, us. What more is she to do at 8pm at night than take care of the customers??? They lie and then won't honor valid Groupon coupons they contracted for. This is no place to have dinner with so many other nice places to eat in the area. Let's show this place and others that we the public vote with our wallets/pocketbooks. We drove 43 miles roundtrip through heavy downtown traffic and spent nearly 3 hours doing it just to be treated the way we were. Please stand up and not give this bad restaurant your patronage.
Candy

Mclean, VA

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#16
Jan 31, 2012
 
Is the food really great in Circa? Or maybe Id rather just grill food at home using my new grill which I got here http://charbroilpatiogrills.com/

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