Follow Taste Cook Sip and Top 5 Friday with Holiday Guide


Missing Taste Cook Sip? If you’ve subscribed (here) through, you need to relike and subscribe now that I’m self hosted on on’s interface. Just go to and click follow us and we’ll show up here on your reader again. 🙂 Like today, I’ll remind you from time to time, but you are missing out on some fun stuff since I won’t be posting here often.

Here is my Top 5 Friday list of great things happening in and around Central Florida…including a great Orlando Event & Holiday guide for fun, local events throughout the holiday season.

Cheers!  Lisa




Taste Cook Sip on update

I’ve finished migrating to a fully self hosted site, which means if you’ve liked my blog here on you may not be getting updates since I’m now publishing out of to a different server.  Over the next few weeks I’ll continue to make tweaks the site as I figure my way around the new software.

Our Gigi’s cupcake giveaway ends tomorrow, don’t miss a chance to win 1 dozen very fancy and tasty Gigi’s cupcakes of your choice.

Thanks for checking us out at and please continue to follow along as we Drink Life Up.

Cheers! Lisa

Gigi’s Cupcakes Orlando Introduces Holiday Cupcakes & A Gigi’s Cupcake GIVEAWAY!

Most area cupcake lovers have visited the Gigi’s Cupcakes located in the Colonialtown Marketplace off Colonial Drive. The shop opened in April of 2013 and has been serving and satifying Orlando’s sweet tooth with their large repertoire of cupcakes.  The Gigi’s Cupcakes website updates daily with the freshly baked in-store featured flavors, so a favorite is always on the menu. I’ve enjoyed several flavors recently, including the seasonal Pumpkin. Now, the best part of your favorite Thanksgiving pies has been added to Gigi’s wonderful cupcakes!


From Today, Monday November 25th to Wednesday November 27th Gigi’s Cupcakes will be offering Thanksgiving Pie Cupcakes in six and twelve packs. The Thanksgiving Pie Cupcakes are available for pre-order now on Gigi’s website:

The 6 pack will include 1 of each and the 12 pack will include 2 of each of the following flavors:

  • Praline Pecan Pie
  • Apple Pie
  • Coconut Cream Pie
  • Chocolate Cream Pie
  • Kentucky Bourbon
  • Pumpkin White Chocolate

The Thanksgiving Pies 6 pack are available for pre-order and in-store today through Wednesday November 27th for purchase at the price of $16.99 and the Thanksgiving Pies 12 pack are available for pre-order now and in-store, today through Wednesday November 27th for purchase at the price of $29.99.

GIVEAWAY! One person will receive one free dozen Gigi’s cupcakes of any design, including the new holiday cupcakes! ($33 value) This giveaway is open to U.S. residents 18 and older, and ends at 3:00PM Eastern Standard Time on Wednesday, November 27th. Winner must be able to pick up cupcakes at the Orlando location at 2562 East Colonial Drive. Scroll down to the widget below the store location information to enter. Like the Gigi’s Orlando Facebook page to be eligible and follow them on Twitter for a bonus entry!

Gigi’s Cupcakes
2562 E Colonial Dr
Orlando, FL 32803
(407) 893-9846

a Rafflecopter giveaway





More Than 25,000 Meals Anticipated To Be Served At the Salvation Army

Serving the Orlando community for more than 20 years, Golden Corral announces its 21st annual “Helpings from the Heart” Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday, November 28, 2013. Anticipated to serve more than 25,000 meals on Thanksgiving Day, Eric Holm president of Metro Corral Partners, founded the concept to give back to the community and return the favor to The Salvation Army, which provided a Thanksgiving meal to the Holm family many years ago when he was a child. “Year-round we are witness to what joy a hearty meal brings to people,” says Holm. “On one of the biggest eating holidays of the year, we feel blessed that we can not only share in the experience, but most importantly ensure our Central Florida community is fed.”

Last year more than 1,100 Salvation Army volunteers arrived throughout the day to help serve meals. This year, guests will be treated to an abundant buffet of turkey, ham and all the traditional fixings that comprise a Thanksgiving dinner. Fall-inspired desserts like pumpkin pie will be served with more playful sweets like cotton candy available for children. Prepared meals are also available to-go.

“On Thanksgiving day, we see the community at its best,” said Major Mark Woodcock of The Salvation Army, Orlando Area Command regarding last year’s the event. This year the need is just as great, if you would like to volunteer please call 407.423.8581 to help the Salvation Army feed even more of Orlando’s less fortunate.

Thursday, November 28, 2013
Salvation Army Gymnasium
440 W. Colonial Drive
Orlando, FL 32804

Meals start at 11 a.m. and will be served through 5:00 p.m. This event is complimentary and open-to-the-public.

For more information or to volunteer, please call 407.423.8581

New things coming on Taste Cook Sip

In just a few short months this blog has gone from a dabble, to a full time project! We are expanding and currently migrating over to a fully self-hosted site. (blah, blah, blah…techie stuff!)

Get ready for some fun things in the coming weeks! Check back here for updates, more great posts and in a few days– our first contest with tasty giveaway, you won’t want to miss it! Thanks for checking in, leaving comments here and on Facebook and while we wait for the hamsters to churn the wheels to get TasteCookSip switched over, I’m tweeting and on instagram at @winechix

Cheers! Lisa at Taste Cook Sip

Top 5 Friday- Foodie Edition With Bonus Weekend Events!

On my radar this week:

Tasty Chomps at the Sunday Supper at K Restaurant – for Edible Schoolyard and Give Back Garden

Exploring Orlando dines at Cask & Larder

Eat Local Orlando’s visit to the new East End Market

Foodbidden explores new bakery, One Sweet Sista, in Kissimmee

Orlando Connections: Taverna Opa Orlando Hosts Sweet Thanksgiving Carnival on Nov 17th

Looking for something to do this weekend?

Exploring Orlando has a great online calendar with many area events

Tonight! La Femme Du Fromage hosts first wine and cheese class at East End Market
with legendary Maître Fromager Max McCalman

Friday and Saturday: John Rivers Central Florida cookbook signings with Smoked turkey tasting

Daily City talks Disney Food trucks at this weekends Festival of the Masters

Sunday! 5th Annual Wine Fest at The Wine Room On Park

Central Florida listing of Veterans Day free meals and nice offers

Central Florida Restaurants and Retailers Honor Veterans With Appreciation Discounts

Veteran’s Day is Monday, November 11, 2013 and businesses across Central Florida and the nation are taking a moment to say thanks. Please check the dates and details listed with each offer, some offers are valid for more than one day or require a stop into the business for a promo card to be redeemed at a later date. Please note that links will take you to the website with full offer details. In most cases, Veteran’s form of ID or Active duty military ID is required to receive special offers.


A very special thank you to all veterans and active duty military for your service to our country!

Central Florida Restaurants with Veterans Day Free Meals and Offers (2013)

Free small Slurpee on Monday, Nov. 11, 2013 from 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. Offer good to all current and former military members. ID or proof of service required.

Applebees Free Meal
On Monday, November 11th, veterans and active duty military can choose from a free signature Thank You Meal menu that includes some of Applebee’s favorite items, including a 7 oz. House Sirloin, Bacon Cheddar Cheeseburger, Three-Cheese Chicken & Sundried Tomato Penne, Fiesta Lime Chicken, Double Crunch Shrimp, Chicken Tenders Platter or Oriental Chicken Salad. Must present valid Veteran’s form of identification or be in uniform.

Bar Louie Free Lunch or Dinner
From open to close Sunday, November 10th and Monday, November 11th every Bar Louie location across the country will offer veterans and military personnel a free meal up to a $12 value when they show valid military I.D. or other proof of service.

California Pizza Kitchen
On Monday, November 11, all veterans or active duty military personnel will be able to get any pizza from our menu for free (dine-in only). Please come in uniform or bring your military ID or other proof of service. Offer valid at participating CPK restaurants, excluding Guam, airport, stadium and university locations.

Carrabba’s Italian Grill
November 9 -11, 2013
Complimentary appetizer, no purchase necessary for military personnel in uniform or w/Military ID.

Denny’s Veterans Day Appreciation Event, Nov. 11, 2013. Free all you can eat pancakes from 6 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 11 for all active, retirees, and veterans with a valid military ID or proof of military service. Offer available in every Denny’s nationwide. Locations.

Einstein Bagels Free Bagel and Shmear
This Veterans Day from 5:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., all active, inactive and retired military personnel are invited to receive a Free Signature or Classic Bagel and Shmear, or any other topping, and no purchase is necessary.

Friendly’s Free Breakfast and Coffee
Get a free Big Two Do Breakfast and coffee on Veteran’s Day, 11/11/2013.

Golden Corral Free Meal
On November 11, from 4 to 9 p.m., all Golden Corral locations in Florida (and Atlanta) will offer a complimentary buffet meal and beverage to veterans and active duty military. Last year, Golden Corral served more than 30,000 veteran free meals. Please visit for more information.

Hooters Free Meal
Monday, Nov. 11, Hooters invites all veterans and current servicemen and women to a free meal, up to $10.99 in value with any drink purchase, by presenting a military ID or proof of service at any Hooters location across the country.

Jersey Mike’s Subs
Jersey Mike’s Subs is giving customers a free cookie when they make a donation to Wreaths Across America (WAA) Nov. 9 – Nov. 11.

Krispy Kreme Free Doughnut & Coffee
Offering a free doughnut and coffee to all those served or currently are serving. Proof of military service required or those in uniform. Only at participating locations.

Little Caesars Free Crazy Bread
All United States armed forces veterans and active military members get a free order of Crazy Bread® with proof of military status at participating stores nationwide this Veterans Day, 11/11/13.

Longhorn Steakhouse Free Appetizer
From Nov. 11 – Nov. 14, service members receive a complimentary appetizer from a list of 10 delicious options, including New! Crispy Fried Green Beans, Lobster-Crab-and-Seafood-Stuffed Mushrooms and Sweet Chili Shrimp. Includes veterans and current service members.

McCormick and Schmick’s Free Entree
Enjoy a complimentary entree from special menu on Sunday November 10th, 2013. All veterans must show official verification. Veterans Day entrees must be enjoyed at the restaurant. No to-go orders permitted. Choose from: Salmon Rigatoni, Buttermilk Fried Shrimp, Cedar Planked or Grilled Salmon, Blackened Chicken Fettuccine, Parmesan Crusted Chicken, Beer Battered Fish & Chips, Cashew Crusted Tilapia, Tender Beef Medallions, Romano Chicken Chopped Salad, or McCormick’s Cheeseburger.

Menchie’s Free Frozen Yogurt
On Veterans Day, Monday, November 11th, 2013 Veterans and active duty personnel get a a free 6 oz. frozen yogurt. Show a valid ID or be in uniform to receive.

Panera Bread Free You Pick Two Combo
On Veterans Day, Monday, November 11th, 2013 Veterans and active duty personnel get a a free “You Pick Two Combo”  Show a valid ID or be in uniform to receive.

O’Charley’s free meal
On Monday, November 11 all veterans and all active-duty military personnel will have their choice of one of nine meals on the O’Charley’s “$9.99er” menu. Options include O’Charley’s Famous Chicken Tenders & Twisted Chips, Cowboy Sirloin, Homestyle Chicken Pot Pie and Santa Fe Tilapia, among others.

Olive Garden Free Meal
All veterans and military active duty will receive a free meal from a special menu on Veterans Day. Also, all November current military service members and their families get 10% off in honor of Military Appreciation Month.

Outback Steakhouse Free Bloomin’ Onion® and a beverage
Military personnel and veterans get a Free Bloomin’ Onion® and a beverage. Must have valid identification. Plus, get 10% off all meals from Nov. 12 through Dec. 31.

Peterbrooke Chocolatier of Winter Park
All veterans and military active duty will receive 10% off their purchase on November 11, 2013, in honor of their service.

Red Lobster Free Appetizer & drink
From Nov. 11 – Nov. 14, service members receive a complimentary appetizer from a list of 10 delicious options, including New! Crispy Fried Green Beans, Lobster-Crab-and-Seafood-Stuffed Mushrooms and Sweet Chili Shrimp.

Starbucks Free Coffee
Veterans, active duty military and military spouses get a free tall (12 oz.) brewed coffee at Starbucks on Veterans Day.

Sweet Tomatoes Free Meal
Past and present military can receive a FREE meal this Sunday and Monday, November 11 and 12th with the purchase of another regular priced meal. Just show proof of military service or be in uniform.

Texas Roadhouse Free Lunch
Select from a free special veterans lunch menu including a beverage and sides no November 11th, 2013. Free Lunch (includes choice of Coca-Cola product, Iced Tea/Sweet Tea or coffee) Choose from: 6 oz. Sirloin Steak with two sides, Country Fried Chicken with two sides, Country Fried Sirloin with two sides, Pulled Pork Dinner with two sides, Grilled Pork Chop (Single) with two sides, All-American Cheeseburger with fries, BBQ Chicken Sandwich with fries, Pulled Pork Sandwich with fries, Grilled Chicken Salad, or Chicken Critter Salad.

TGI Fridays Free Lunch
Veterans and active duty military service members are invited have lunch on T.G.I Friday’s this Veterans Day, Monday, November 11, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Tony’s Roma’s Free Entree (Central FL: Lee Vista Location Only)
Please come in on Veteran’s Day, Monday, November 11, 2013 and receive a voucher for a FREE ENTRÉE ($20 Max. Value) to use on your next visit. Proof of Military Service required. Please show proper form of military ID to your server. Proper form of ID includes: Military ID Card (active/reserve/retired). Current leave and Earning Statement (LES), Driver’s License with Veterans Designation, Photograph in uniform, be wearing uniform (if your service permits), Veterans Organization Card (e.g. American Legion and VFW), discharge paperwork or other form of ID. Valid at our CA: Palm Desert| FL: Doral, I-Drive, Jensen Beach, Lee Vista, Sunny Isles| NV: Henderson, Summerlin | WI: Green Bay locations on 11/11/13 only. Not available with any other discounts, specials, coupons or offers. Does not include tax or gratuity. Not redeemable for cash. Limit one coupon per person, per visit.

Travel Centers of America Free Meal
On Veterans Day, November 11, all CDL drivers who are Military Veterans eat FREE at participating full-service restaurants with proof of service. Must present valid ID.

Village Inn Free Slice of Pie or Stack of Pancakes
Veterans Day, November 11, 2013 get a Free Slice of The Best Pie in America® or a free stack of buttermilk pancakes to veterans and active military. No coupon or purchase necessary; at participating locations.

Central Florida Retailers with Veterans Day Offers (2013) Veterans Day sale page AND valid now a free MP3 album download- “Veterans Day Honor.” This free downloadable album includes 12 songs as performed by the military bands and ensembles of the U.S. Armed Forces. Visit Amazon now through Veteran’s Day to download the album for free. The album will be full price again starting Nov. 11, 2013.

Bed Bath and Beyond – Bed Bath and Beyond is offering veterans 20% off their entire purchase on Nov. 9, 10, and 11. This is good for active duty, DoD, reserves, guard,
retirees, veterans, and military spouses.

Walt Disney World
Disney is offering new military discounts and deals for 2013 and beyond!

Free Car Washes around Central Florida (and nationwide) through many retailers for veterans. Visit Grace For Vet’s  for a full listing of participating locations, narrow the search to Florida or your preferred state.

Great Clips
Shears Salute: On Veterans Day, Monday, Nov. 11, 2013, customers who come in for a haircut at any U.S. Great Clips salon will receive a free haircut card to give to an active/inactive/retired military member of any branch, including the National Guard. Military members can also come in on Veterans Day for a free haircut or to pick up a free haircut card to use, with proof of service, any day before Dec. 31, 2013.

Home Depot Veteran’s Day Sale and Veteran’s Discount
The 10% military discount is available to: Active-duty military members, National Guard and Reserve members, retirees, honorably discharged veterans and immediate family members of all those groups are eligible. Discount not to exceed $500. Home Depot offers a 10% discount to all veterans during Veterans Day, Memorial Day and Independence Day. Home Depot offers the 10% discount year round to for active duty and retirees. Customers requesting a discount must be able to show a valid military ID card or other proof of military service (a DD Form 214 or VFW membership may qualify).

JC Penny 20% off with ID
Veterans and their family members can enjoy an extra 20% off on purchases in-store (some exclusions may apply) from November 6-11, 2013 by presenting a military ID or proof of service.

Jos. A. Bank Specials
Veterans Day Sale- 1 Day Only! All Suits On Sale- 2nd for $47 Mix ‘n Match. 40% Off All Dress Shirts, Sportshirts, Ties & Sportswear. Free Shipping on Orders $195+. Valid: November 11. JoS. A. Bank Veterans Day Sale Orders.

All veterans receive a 10% discount on Veterans Day, Memorial Day and the Fourth of July. The offer is available in stores only. The 10% military discount is available to: Active-duty military members, National Guard and Reserve members, retirees, honorably discharged veterans and immediate family members of all those groups are eligible. Customers requesting a discount must be able to show a valid military ID card or other proof of military service (a DD Form 214 or VFW membership may qualify).

Macy’s Veteran’s Day Savings Pass valid November 8-November 12th, 2013 or use code code: VETDAY for up to 20% off.

National and Florida Parks
The entry fees to United States national parks, including several in Florida, are waived for Veterans Day weekend, November 9 to November 11. The following National parks are in Florida- Dry Tortugas National Park in Key West, Everglades National Park in Homestead, Canaveral National Seashore in Titusville,  Castillo de San Marcos National Monument in St. Augustine,  Gulf Islands National Seashore in Gulf Breeze.

Seaworld Parks & Entertainment Veterans Discount
Waves of Honor: Veterans get 50% off tickets now through November 11th, 2013. Seaworld properties include Sea World, Aquatica, Busch Gardens, Sesame Place, Adventure Island, Water Country USA and Discovery Cove. Active Duty military members who already used their free admission for the year can also get 50% off tickets

Sport Clips
Haircuts for Heros 2013: Free haircuts to active-duty U.S. service members and veterans on Nov. 11 with valid proof of service. For a list of participating stores:

Universal Orlando
Universal Studios Offering New Military Discounts and Deals For 2013

Walgreens is offering 15% off eligible store items and 20% of Walgreens, Nice! And W brand products on Monday, Nov. 11. This discount is available to all veterans and active duty military personnel.

The above listing of 2013 offers has been compiled from various sites and sources, then cross checked for validity. Check  A Passion For Savings, Orlando on the Cheap, and for additional (nationwide) listings and for updated and additional information. Once again, thanks to all servicemen and women for their service. #HonoringVets