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Walt Disney World Wrap-Up: News and Photos From My WDW Weekend

UPDATE: Read about the Opening Date for Be Our Guest Restaurant and Reservations Info!

As you know, I spent this past weekend exploring and enjoying Disney food along with some fellow bloggers and writers at a Disney-sponsored culinary event called “From 5 Stars to Mickey Bars!”

All in all, we nibbled, tasted, sampled, noshed, and all-out devoured our way through some of my favorite Disney restaurants, including Flying Fish Cafe, Hoop Dee Doo Revue, Cape May Cafe, and Kouzzina! I had the chance to meet and chat with some Cast Members charged with not only developing concepts for new Disney restaurants, but also with ensuring that Disney Food and Beverage is running smoothly day-to-day.

For some people, a Disney “Dream Come True” trip includes a stay in the castle or special VIP time with Mickey. All of that is nice, but this past weekend was a Dream Come True trip for a Disney- and Food-lover like me!

I posted a few of the highlights last week, but wanted to share a few more with you as well — including some tidbits of info I picked up along the way!

We began the weekend with a cocktail and appetizers party in The Attic of Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, a small, cozy event space. We were joined by some true Disney elite, including Mickey and Minnie themselves, but the appetizer spread was what truly caught my eye…

Eats in the Attic

While chatting with some in-the-know Disney cast members at this event, I heard a few interesting tidbits. Apparently, the second table-service restaurant at Disney’s Aulani Resort in Oahu will be a buffet, and both the buffet restaurant and the ocean-side restaurant will focus on “true Hawai’i” flavors and local fare — including line-caught, instead of net-caught, fish. This won’t be stereotypical Hawai’i, but the real deal — no mocked up Tiki gods around here.

I also heard a bit more about the counter-service-to-table-service plans for a couple of Disney World’s upcoming restaurants. Both Cantina de San Angel (re-opening this Fall) and the Be Our Guest Restaurant (opening as part of the Fantasyland renovation) will likely operate primarily as counter service locations during the day and switch over to table service for the dinner hours. Disney is still working on the details, but this is an exciting new development in restaurant management — I’m interested to see how it will work!

Of course, all of this is still in planning stages, so anything could change at any time.

From The Attic, a few of us headed down to Flying Fish Cafe on the Boardwalk for dinner. You’ll remember I reported on the Cafe hosting the Dine With an Imagineer opportunity as well as a new Chef’s Counter option — here’s a pic of the latter!

Flying Fish Chef's Counter

After a delicious dinner (which shall be reported in full in a different post), one of my table mates, WDW Moms Panelist Kathie F., ordered an absolutely incredible dessert. This rich, dense, flourless chocolate cake was just about the best thing I tried all evening — and it came with a gelatin cube made of Riesling wine. A Riesling jello cube. How do you beat that?! (Thanks again to Kathie, who pretty much let me taste just about everything she ordered all weekend.)

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Now, while the fantastic Disney public relations folks kept us very busy, they did let us run around and explore a bit on our own as well. During one of these times, I snagged what must be the biggest counter service meal on property. Weighing in at over $13, this meal could feed any family — and then some! I’ll be doing a full post about Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe in the next few weeks, but I really thought you guys should see this in the meantime…

Cosmic Ray's Ribs and Chicken

Our final morning was spent noshing on breakfast at Kouzzina, Cat Cora’s new signature restaurant on Disney’s Boardwalk. I ordered the blueberry-orange granola pancake with chicken sausage. What I received was this — a griddle cake about twice the size of my head! Delicious alone, the thing was even better when paired with warm maple syrup and a bit of butter — that tang of the blueberries with the bulk of the granola made the cake just the “something different” you’re looking for in a Disney breakfast.

Blueberry-orange Granola Pancake with Chicken Sausage at Kouzzina

As usual, I’ll be putting together full blog posts on our meals at Kouzzina, Flying Fish, and Hoop Dee Doo, but I couldn’t resist sharing a few pics — and a few tidbits of information, which I know many of you restaurant-watchers will be happy to hear!

I’m never happier than when I’m eating in Walt Disney World, so this trip was the perfect marriage of passions for me. Thanks to Laura, Rick, and the rest of the Disney PR team for putting together a weekend filled with information, a variety of food experiences, and, of course, Disney Magic.

In accordance with FTC guidelines, please note that my transportation, lodging, and food have been provided by the Walt Disney Company for this Media event.

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8 Comments

  1. Holly says:

    Wow! It looks like you really did have a “dream come true” Disney visit! I can’t wait to hear about breakfast at Kouzzina – that is one of our favorite spots for dinner, but we have never been there for breakfast.

  2. Sarah says:

    Can’t wait to hear more of the reviews, especially Flying Fish Chef’s Counter. The Riesling gelatin looks interesting.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Looks great! I am interested in your Hoop De Doo experience, I have booked it for the first time in September. I can’t wait to hear about the rest of your adventure!

  4. Marcomboy says:

    Keep up the great work! Thank you.

  5. Tanya says:

    I can’t tell you how much these blogs mean to me! I live in Australia and had my first visit to WDW last Sept/Oct for 2 weeks. This was definitely not enough time to sample all those fantastic food spots. I thank you immensely for all those pics, updates and info – it keeps me going until the next I visit.

  6. Erin says:

    I was wondering, since you’re fresh off a trip to the world and you love Disney food have you ever written about about your favorite places to eat that are maybe not so popular with the masses? I’ve been to Disney a million times (and even work there ocassionally) but I know there are places I’ve never been to and foods I’ve probably never tried, and since I may be doing some wandering around alone next week I’m open to suggestions.

  7. Heather I. says:

    Jealous! The Boardwalk is my favorite resort and your pancake from Kouzzina looks delish! Glad you had a great time!

  8. chris says:

    Oh lovely. I can’t wait to read more about this.

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