I remember it like it was yesterday. The family of four were at my station to check in at Disney’s Grand Floridian Beach Resort. Before I could even get the “Welcome,” out of my mouth the Dad asked, “What’s your favorite thing to do here?”
I didn’t even have to think about a ride, show or shop. I blurted out, “Eat!”
20 years later, fooding is still a major part of every trip to Walt Disney World Resort for me.
Here in no particular order (and IMHO) are my top five of what should be on your Disney World Restaurant Bucket List…
A Dinner Show must is the Hoop De Doo Musical Revue at Pioneer Hall in Disney’s Fort Wilderness Camp Grounds. It is the longest, continuously running dinner show at Walt Disney World. It’s lasted this long because it is a, “Rollicking, Western-themed,” good ‘ole time for kids of every age and their adult companions. And, the food, is well, sumptuous. Fried chicken, BBQ ribs, fresh-baked cornbread and strawberry shortcake for dessert. You’ll leave singing, “Hoop-De-Doo, Hoop-De-Doo…” Advance Reservations & Prepayment are Required. Two table service credits from your Disney Dining Plan (depending on your seating).
When you’re at Disney’s Hollywood Studios be sure to go visit Mom at the 50’s Prime Time Café. You’ll need to put away your electronic devices and get your elbows off the table. Don’t forget to eat all your vegetables or there will be no dessert for you. Just in case, order one of the best milkshakes anywhere (and I mean anywhere in the world—not just Disney) when your order your meal. I am partial to the Guest favorite the PB&J. Advance Reservations are Strongly Recommended. Restaurant is not available on Quick-Service Dining Plan.
For a quick service meal, accepted on all Disney Dining Plans and you can just drop by once it opens on June 30 is Woody’s Lunch Box at Toy Story Land. It will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The menu will feature lunchbox favorites like grilled cheese and smoked turkey. But, I can’t wait to try the Chocolate-Hazelnut Lunch Box Tart. Rumor has it they are lip-smacking yummy!
For the best character dining experience head over to Chef Mickey’s at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. It’s a character experience where you’re practically guaranteed to meet the Big Cheese himself, Mickey Mouse. The all you can eat dinner buffet is open for breakfast and dinner. It’s also one of the resort restaurants that’s relatively easy to get to, since it is right on the monorail line. Advance Reservations are Strongly Recommended. Restaurant is one exchange on the Disney Dining or Deluxe Dining Plans.
Caveat, if you want a full-fledged Princess Experience, this is not the best character dining for you. (Stay tuned for a full explanation of Princess Character Dining next week!)
My favorite restaurant for foodies is also located in Disney’s Contemporary Resort. It’s California Grill. (I’m sure you were expecting me to say the famous Victoria & Albert’s at the Grand Floridian. For sure, that should be on your Disney Dining Bucket List. But, the restaurant I will choose to go back to over and over again—anytime I can get reservations—is California Grill.)
You get to the restaurant via a private elevator which takes you the 15th floor and one of the best Disney Happily Ever After & Once Upon A Time fireworks views around.They will even pipe in the music. But, I digress.
It’s really all about the food. The menu changes with the season and always has a wine list of over 300 bottles for pairing. But, for me, the reason to go to any restaurant is for the dessert. California Grill excells in the dessert department. I honestly can’t pick a favorite: White Chocolate Crème Brulee, Yuzu Match Cake or the House-made Churros with toppings that include Spiced Choclate Ganache.
The restaurant has also recently started serving a bunch on Sunday only that includes mimosas, live musical entertainment and the chance to interact with the Disney Chefs through the open kitchen.You’ll see me crossing that off of my own Disney Dining Bucket List on my next trip.
If you’re ready to create your Disney Dining Bucket List for your next trip your goMagic Travel Advisors have lots of ideas to share.
Contact one of us right now to hear about the Free Disney Dining Packages that are available for certain dates and resorts.Do you have a favorite restaurant I should add to my list?I’d love to know.You can hit me up at Michele.Schwartz@gomagic.vacations. You can always follow along on my Disney Dining Adventures on Facebook.