Hello. My name is Melissa. I am 32 years old, and I love Disney World!! Yes, I said it. Laugh if you want, but oh how I love that place. On my first date with my husband, our mutual love of Disney World came up. How perfect is that? We even got engaged at Disneyland in front of the castle! Ok, I am making myself sound like an absolute nut.
This is going to be a series of posts of all my helpful hints and recommendations for Disney World. After going 12 times and now being a Disney Vacation Club member, I feel like I have plenty to share. So today’s topic is all about eating. Who doesn’t love eating while on vacation??
Disney Dining Plan: Several years ago Disney added a dining plan option to guests (everyone is a guest at Disney) staying on Disney properties. You can find an explanation of the different levels here. My husband and I have only ever used the traditional dining plan consisting of one quick service meal, one table service meal, and one snack per day.
Some of my favorite places to eat in Disney World:
Quick Service Locations:
Wolfgang Puck Express (Downtown Disney): This is quite possibly the best quick service meal I have ever eaten at Disney. There is a wide selection of pasta dishes, pizzas, and some sandwiches. Also, it is the best bang for your buck when using the dining plan. For a drink, entree and dessert for both of us the bill would have been close to $45!
Flame Tree Barbecue (Animal Kingdom): I like this restaurant because it offers something other than your typical burger or chicken fingers. The barbecue sauce is also really good!
Earl of Sandwich (Downtown Disney): They have delicious sandwiches, and I especially love that some are warm. My only complaint about this place is that chips count as a side item so you have to choose between chips or dessert. I LOVE dessert on vacation but also think chips really go with a sandwich.
Starring Rolls Cafe (Hollywood Studios): This past vacation was my first time ever eating here, and I think it may become part of our regular rotation. The ciabatta bread they use on the sandwiches is absolutely delicious. And, oh, the desserts! Cupcakes, cake, cheesecake, brownies, muffins…sugar, sugar everywhere!
Pinocchio Village Haus (Magic Kingdom): Here they have a true assortment of food- pizza, sandwiches, salads. What I love the most about it is the location. If you are lucky you can get a table that overlooks It’s a Small World, and if you really want to get into the Disney spirit you can wave to all the boats heading out on the ride.
Table Service Locations:
Le Cellier (Epcot): Ok, this is my favorite restaurant in all of Disney. It is also one of the most difficult restaurants to get a reservation for. From the pretzel breadsticks, to the cheese soup to the mushroom risotto to the star of the show (filet mignon) it is all so delicious. The only downside is that it counts as two table service credits on the dining plan, but it is worth it!
Paradiso 37 (Downtown Disney): This was a new place we tried this past trip, and we were definitely pleased! The concept is “taste of the Americas” so they have dishes from North, South and Central America and also the Caribbean Islands. The salsa was to die for, and I also really enjoyed the fried corn cakes with my surf and turf (BBQ shrimp and Argentinian skirt steak).
Yak and Yeti (Animal Kingdom): Yet another new place we tried in June, and again we loved it and will definitely go back. The dishes all have an Asian flair with foods such as lo mein, wok dishes, tempura shrimp, and hoisin sauce. My husband said the baby back ribs in hoisin barbecue sauce were some of the best ribs he has ever had, and the man loves his meat. I can’t wait to go back and have the fried wontons for dessert again!
’50s Prime Time Cafe (Hollywood Studios): This is such a fun restaurant decorated like my grandma’s kitchen. Everyone is family at the restaurant, and Uncle Johnny might be waiting on you. The menu consists of traditional homestyle meals (chicken pot pie – yum!), and you better eat all your vegetables or else you might wind up in the corner.
‘Ohana (Polynesian): This is one of the few buffet/family style restaurants we like at Disney. If you like meat go here! They come around with huge skewers of meat (beef, pork, turkey) and keep piling it on your plate. This is along with delicious chicken wings, shrimp, noodles and the most amazing bread pudding with bananas foster sauce drizzled over the top. Everyone is “cousins” for the night as Ohana means family in Hawaiian. It is also very kid friendly with parades the kids can join going on throughout dinner.
Raglan Road (Downtown Disney- Pleasure Island): This looks just like a traditional Irish pub and offers some traditional Irish foods such as shepherd’s pie and fish and chips. I think I’ve gotten the fish and chips each time we have been there. The other fun thing is they have live Irish music and dancing most nights so you almost feel like you are across the pond.
Rose and Crown Pub (Epcot): Since I mentioned fish and chips above, this place has excellent fish and chips also! It looks just like an English pub and serves beers from England. My time studying abroad in London really makes me appreciate the authenticity of this pub.
Flying Fish Cafe (Boardwalk): Seafood lovers, this place is for you! Like Le Cellier, this also requires two table service credits. The sourdough bread to start was a nice surprise instead of traditional Italian bread. I had delicious scallops, but I really enjoyed my husband’s potato wrapped red-snapper. I love the location of the restaurant overlooking the Boardwalk, which is such a fun place that not enough people go to. Since it is on the Boardwalk, my dessert even had a summery, boardwalk theme with a popcorn mousse, cherry-lime popsicle, and peanut butter moon pie! Yet another new restaurant we tried that we will return to.
We try to go to new restaurants each time we visit, but it is so difficult not to go to our favorite places either. I guess that means we have to keep going back until we try them all!
**This post is solely my opinion. I did not receive any compensation from Disney World in writing this.**