With Disneyland’s Family Fun Weekends in full swing, it’s time for a Mardi Gras celebration. Surprisingly, after years and years of being an annual passholder, I had never once been to The French Market. When I eat in that area it’s usually for a Monte Cristo at Cafe Orleans. Because of the special Mardi Gras menu, I decided to branch out and try something new.
The fun thing about today’s lunch was that it was sans kids, with a friend. Therefore, no kids’ meals to deal with and we could try some things without listening to complaints that they didn’t have corn dogs at this establishment.
The French Market is counter service restaurant, but with their festive dinnerware, lovely seating area, and busers to clean up after you, you’d never know it. There’s even live jazz music performed by the Royal Street Bachelors. The entrees are French Creole inspired. And although we didn’t try them, the dessert choices are aplenty.
After paying for our feast we sat down at a lovely spot with a view of the Mardi Gras festivities that were happening at the waterfront of the Rivers of America. We saw a King Mickey and Minnie pass us by with their court Jester, Goofy; and also Donald accompanied by a festive marching band.
We ordered three entrees, the Muffaletta Po Boy Sandwich, the Four Cheese Pasta & Vegetable Gratin, & the Dixieland Cajun Chicken Salad.
Our favorite by far was the Four Cheese Pasta & Vegetable Gratin. A creamy dream combination of cheeses that includes cheddar, smoked gouda, provelone, and asiago. Mixed in are small bits of Shiitake Mushrooms and cauliflower, which I was worried about at first as I’m not a big fan of either. Neither ingredient was too strong in flavor; I really did not notice them at all. The dish is topped with bread crumbs and oven baked, then served with a side of fresh veggies and delicious cheddar corn bread.
The next best dish? The Dixieland Cajun Chicken Salad. I love when I find a good salad at the parks and this one might just be my new favorite. The salad is made up of arugula and frisee topped with Cajun (not at all too spicy) chicken breast, roasted corn, avocado, peppers, onions, black eyed peas & tomato. The vinaigrette dressing is the perfect topper to this dish, which is also served with a mini loaf of cheddar cornbread.
I really loved the combination of veggies in this salad and the chicken was very fresh, not at all too chewy, which I sometimes notice in salads that contain chicken. Everything about this dish was crisp and fresh.
Speaking of cheddar cornbread, it alone is worth a trip to The French Market just to try it! Moist and delicious, it’s served up warm. The condiment bar even has butter and honey to make your corn bread experience even more fantastic.
Our third dish was from the special Mardi Gras Family Fun Weekends Menu: the Muffaletta Po Boy Sandwich. The sandwich was good, but a bit much for me. Lots of meat and lots of bread. I actually took off the top layer of bread and tried it open faced. The meat combination was ham, turkey & salami with provolone and a traditional olive spread. A little on the salty side, this was not my favorite dish. I really didn’t eat much of it. I do think, though, that if you enjoy olives and ham, this is the sandwich for you. My favorite part of this meal was the yummy side of grapes that was served with it!
While we didn’t try the desserts at French Market, they were plentiful.
The French Market also had a special Mardi Gras Mickey Brioche in celebration of Family Fun Weekends. Super cute and colorful, the Mickey shaped sweet bread was covered in green, gold and purple sugar crystals. A very fun snack! I actually took this one home to share with my boys. It was an instant hit; soft and spongy and not too sweet, this brioche is definitely worth a try.
While we were there, we also decided that we should have a mint julep. Bad idea. In all of my years at Disneyland I’d never tried one. I’ve seen people drinking them — they’re so pretty! That lovely green hue with the pretty lemon and cherry spear garnish? It looks heavenly. Well, unless you like to drink mouthwash, stay away. I had one sip and decided to stick with my water.
Overall, I am extremely happy I’ve found a yummy new place to eat. I can’t believe I’ve been missing out on The French Market all of these years. Can’t wait to go back for more of that corn bread!
Disneyland’s Family Fun Weekends
Want to check out the festivities and menu at Disneyland’s Mardi Gras Family Fun Weekend? Head over to Disneyland this weekend, February 25-27 & again next weekend March 4-6. In addition to special food and the Jambalaya Jazz Cavalcade, Princess Tiana has a waterfront Mardi Gras Celebration featuring Prince Naveen, Louis and colorful dancers.
You can also shop at the Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen cart for beignet mix and French Market Coffee from New Orleans.
Photo opps with specially dressed characters are available in the beautifully decorated (I’ve never seen more beads in my life!) Court of Angels.
We ran into Chip and Dale (see pic above)!