Tag Archives: Confisco Grille

Check Out the New Menu at Confisco Grille in Universal’s Islands of Adventure

From the Universal Orlando Resort Blog:

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

There is a new menu at Confisco Grille in Universal’s Islands of Adventure, full of spices and bold flavors. Located near the front of the park, Confisco Grille is the perfect place to escape the crowds and enjoy lunch or dinner. It features an eclectic menu, ripe with a variety of dishes inspired from across the globe.

Pork Belly Banh-Mi Sandwich at Confisco Grille

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

This hearty sandwich comes with thick cuts of perfectly cooked pork belly and a blend of fresh veggies. I also have a feeling that chile aioli sauce can make anything taste good.

Roasted pork belly, pickled carrots, daikon radish and cucumber topped with a chile aioli on a French baguette.

Chilled Tuna Noodle Bowl at Confisco Grille

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

This light and refreshing dish is for you if you’re feeling a bit guilty from fried food and ice cream. I can see this becoming a signature dish and it happens to be one of Chef Glus’s favorites.

“The Chilled Tuna Noodle Bowl is a good one, with the fresh ingredients yellowfin tuna and buckwheat soba noodles,” says Chef Glus. “You can’t find anything else like this park-wide except for at Confisco.”

Sesame seared yellowfin tuna, soba noodles, green onion, avocado, edamame, cucumber and a wasabi-ponzu dressing.

Hearthstone Baked Chicken Sandwich

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

This isn’t your typical chicken sandwich. It’s baked in a wood oven with melted mozzarella cheese and have I mentioned Universal bakes its bread on property? Delicious!

Mozzarella cheese, Roma tomatoes, leaf lettuce, basil aioli, aged balsamic and focaccia baked in a wood oven.


Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

“It’s that same flavorful hummus you could get before but with an elevated presentation,” says Chef Glus. “It makes it more shareable and a more immersive experience for the guest.”

Middle Eastern flavored hummus, kalamata olives, olive oil and charred pita and lavosh for dipping.

Grilled Lamb Meatballs at Confisco Grille

grilled lamb meatballs from Confisco Grille
Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

Didn’t think you could find lamb in a theme park, did you? These are perfect to share and packed with flavor.

Grilled spiced lamb meatballs with tzatziki sauce, tomato-cucumber relish, feta cheese and mint chimichurri.

Sweet and Sour Sticky Ribs at Confisco Grille

sweet and sour sticky ribs from Confisco Grille
Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

“We wanted to keep the ribs, but we changed it up a bit going with the sticky pork ribs with the sweet and sour sauce,” he says.

Perfectly cooked with meat falling off the bone and smothered in a sweet and sour sauce that left me licking it off my fingers. AND I can’t forget to mention the bed of creamy and cheesy polenta goodness the ribs are nestled on. The flavors combine to create a tangy party for your taste buds that will leave you wanting more with every bite. Can you tell this was my favorite?

Philippine-inspired smoked pork ribs tossed in a sweet and sour sauce, goat cheese polenta and topped with toasted sesame seeds.

If you’re more of a traditionalist then an adventurer, you can still find classics like the juicy Confisco Burger, sizzling Port of Entry Fajitas, and Trader Wings.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

But even the dishes that you’ve seen before have a new twist, Chef Glus explains. “The menu items we did keep, we changed up the presentation. If you’re going to elevate the food, you need to elevate the overall experience.”

Now, let’s focus on dietary needs for a hot minute. The Universal Orlando Food & Beverage team goes above and beyond to accommodate any request. At Confisco Grille, you’ll find plant-based dishes, gluten-free options, and more.

Want tofu on that Chilled Tuna Noodle Bowl? Done. Got a question about if the noodles on the Pad Thai are gluten-free? You can ask your waiter to speak with a chef, who will literally come to your table and answer any questions you may have. Oh, and yes. Those rice noodles on the Pad Thai are gluten-free.

You can find the Confisco Grille full menu online and call (407) 224-FOOD to inquire about dietary accommodations ahead of your visit.

Serving Up Adventure for 20 Years

Confisco Grille
Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

First time hearing of Confisco Grille? Then you’ve been missing out. This hidden gem has been hiding out in plain sight since Islands of Adventure opened in 1999. This restaurant has served as a resting spot for all explorers coming through Port of Entry. Their worldwide travels have served as the main inspiration for the menu.

“The story behind Confisco connects to Port of Entry, which is exciting because it gives us a mixture of global cuisines to work with,” says Chef Glus. “There’s Asian influence, Turkish, Mediterranean, Greek, Russian, Polish and more.”

It’s no cakewalk to bring these dishes to life. It takes time for the team to research and bring the concepts to life.

“It took us months of researching all these different flavors and spices,” Chef Glus explains. “Even looking back to the 17th and 18th centuries and seeing how dishes were cooked then — in wood ovens and cazuela pots, which we use to cook here in the restaurant.”

And while you’re enjoying your meal, you can discover the mysterious artifacts and treasures the explorers have left behind in Confisco. You may recognize some of the “confiscated” goods.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

Elevating Your Dining Experience

One of the common themes I hooked into while speaking with Chef Glus was “elevating” Universal’s dining experience. So, my big question. Why now?

“Our guests are asking for this. They want more than just the pretzels and fried food. We’re bringing different dishes and ingredients to the parks that you can’t find anywhere else throughout Universal,” Chef Glus explains.

“We’re looking at ways to elevate the kids menu so there are more diverse and healthy options,” says Chef Glus. “Nowadays we see kids eating what their parents are eating, so why not throw sushi on the kids menu. We’re also focusing on the food carts and bringing in new and healthier options there, too.”

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

With 10 years of experience at Universal Orlando Resort (and a short hiatus in local Orlando restaurants), Chef Glus brings both a seasoned and fresh perspective to Universal’s dining. “I love working here and being able to play around the park and do new and different things for our guests to enjoy.”

Keep your eye out for new things to come from Chef Jason Glus and his team in Islands of Adventure.

What Confisco dishes do you recommend or are looking forward to trying? Share in the comments below.

Confisco Grille

There are lots of exciting things planned for Universal Orlando Resort in 2020! Check them out here!

Explore Unique Dishes and Delicious Drinks at Confisco Grille at Islands of Adventure

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Behind every dining destination at Universal Orlando Resort is a gem of a story lurking in the background. As you walk into Universal’s Islands of Adventure, Confisco Grille and Backwater Bar is one of the first restaurants in sight. But fable has it was the first structure completed on the corner of the Inland Sea, built by Mugahal Explorers into what was once an old watchtower….

The Story of Confisco Grille

After its time as a watchtower, Confisco Grille was a trading base where ships would be cleared to dock at the Port of Entry. Rumor has the words “Custom House” can still be seen above the main entrance as an indication of its prior use. Years later, it was seized by a strange sea cook named Noli-Man, who turned it into a restaurant.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

When Noli-Man’s life was through, the restaurant was passed down to his children. Eventually, a Malaysian Tunku (prince) won the building in a not-so-honorable game of cards. He expanded it, using remains from ships to create rooms for his family to stay in. The rooms would later be converted into more dining space for the rapidly growing restaurant.

But the Tunku was not the last person to own Confisco’s. It was finally taken over by a Tibetan pirate captain who captured it in an intense battle. The captain would go on to build a tiered tower called a pagoda on the top of the structure.

Today, Confisco Grille is the restaurant we know and love. But simply look up, and you’ll be transported back to the past as artifacts left behind by the many sailors, merchants and pirates can be seen scattered across the makeshift walls and ancient ceilings.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

The Story of the Backwater Bar

The founding of the Backwater Bar is but another tale. It begins with a crated French boutique from Victorian times. This abandoned structure was found at the dock of the Centre Sea. Polynesians looking to make a profit placed the soon-to-be bar next to the watchtower, completing their business with a straw roof and false front. Walls were eventually added and it became an expansion of the restaurant. Now, the bar is a great place to kick back and relax on your vacation.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Food and Drinks to Fuel Your Adventure

The Backwater Bar serves up a variety of tropical beverages to quench your thirst. Drinks like the Lynchburg Lemonde, Confisco’s Magarita, or the Navigator’s Bloody Mary will have you thanking the long gone Polynesian founders.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Confisco Grille takes inspiration from the many explorers to cross its path. The tales and tastes of all the adventurers who owned the restaurant are transcribed with dishes like Chicken Curry Chakra, the “Walk the Plank” Burger or the House Specialty Pad Thai.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Confisco Grille and Backwater Bar is one of my favorite places at Universal Orlando Resort because of its creative story and all around amazing dining options. I love finding new treasures left behind while I sit and eat.

Comment below and tell me what your favorite artifact at Confisco Grille’s is!

Must be 21 years and older with valid identification to purchase or drink alcoholic beverages.

Siera is a travel agent with Destinations in Florida, Universal Studios Travel Agency of the Year 2010, 2011, & 2012. She would love to help you plan your next Universal Orlando vacation at no cost to you. Contact Siera today at siera@destinationsinflorida.com or at 734-771-1290 for more information or your free, no obligation quote.