About The MoonCricket Grille
History - The building was constructed in 1912, originally housing Cappleman Brothers Grocery Store. The heart pine floors, pressed tin ceiling & plaster over brick walls are all original. The skylight and the transom lights (the small squares of glass over the front windows) are also original; those two features brought in enough natural light in the daytime so artificial lighting wasn’t necessary. They were going “Green” 100 years before their time! Hanging from the ceiling is a twenty five foot diameter propeller that came from a prototype blimp. Over the front windows hang hundred year old gothic stained glass windows from the old Oakland Presbyterian Church which was rebuilt in 1971. The bar and booth tops are hard maple, made from bowling alley lanes salvaged from the decommissioned Orlando Naval Training Center (now the location of Baldwin Park). All the heavy oak throughout the building and exterior came from native oak trees cut down here in Winter Garden. The trunks were taken to a saw mill in Eustis. The rough lumber was then brought back to Winter Garden and milled into decorative moldings and trim. Light fixtures as well as brass railings and the bathroom doors all came from Church Street’s famous Rosie O’Grady’s.
Awards - We are proud to boast MoonCricket has been voted one of Orlando’s “Best Beer Selections” by "Orlando Magazine" three times, and "Best Restaurant in Winter Garden in "Orlando Magazine's" Best of 2018 edition.
HOW - “99 Beers Get Your Name on the Wall” - Click link under brews to learn more.
Our customers supply the good times!
In the Beginning
The building was acquired in 1995 by the present owners, four years before the opening of the now renowned West Orange Trail. In those days the downtown district had many vacant store fronts including our building. When purchased the roof leaked, floors were covered with asbestos tiles and rotting in places. It was infested with termites, had drop ceilings throughout and was divided into offices.
The restoration was a labor of love with the vision of taking the building back to it's original turn of the century beauty. it took over a year to complete. Work started in early 2002 and was completed in the fall of 2003, just as the City of Winter Garden completed the beautiful street scape project we all enjoy today
In search of a name - While the restaurant was being built, we were in search of a name. At the time there were absolutely no places in downtown Winter Garden to go at night offering: Food, Drink and Live Music. We wanted a name that was catchy, whimsical and unique, and conveying the message of being a fun inviting place to enjoy great food and entertainment. After months of brainstorming came up with the name "The MoonCricket Grille." That was it, a fun hoppin' place. In that same happy whimsical spirit, designed a fun corporate logo with a big smiling Crescent MOON and a CRICKET jumping off the smiling moon's head.
The sign on the face of the building depicting our smiling moon logo was hand made of copper and sculpted by the owner.
The interior was designed to capture the feeling of a 1920's environment, and furnished with an eclectic assortments of relics and curiosity items many from the owner's collection.