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What Are Your Favorite Disney World Hotel Restaurants?

I love hearing from you about your favorite restaurants and experiences in Disney parks and resorts. So as I gear up for another trip to Walt Disney World in the very near future, I’m sharing with you a few of my favorite restaurants at Disney resorts (aka: hotels)…and hoping you’ll share right back!

Beaches and Cream

What are your favorite Disney World Hotel Restaurants, and why? What are the spots that keep you coming back, visit after visit?

I’ll tell you mine, and then I want to hear all about yours…

Beaches and Cream

If you know me, you know that Beaches and Cream Soda Shoppe is truly my go-to place (and it’s my parents’ go-to place…chances are you’ll see AJ’s Dad and AJ’s Mom there if you’re in Disney World at the same time they are)!

Nestled between the Yacht Club and Beach Club resorts, this table service restaurant — which does NOT accept reservations — is just like the soda fountains that you grew up going to (or hearing about)! This is THE place at Disney for burgers and ice cream treats, like my absolute favorite, the No Way Jose.

The ooey gooey peanut butter and hot fudge confection is pretty amazing, don’t you think?

No Way Jose

Flying Fish Cafe

The Flying Fish Cafe at Disney’s Boardwalk Inn consistently wows me every time I dine there. With unique decor, awesome service, and inventive food, this spot currently holds one of the top spots on my list of hotel restaurants…and never disappoints.

Whether you choose seafood or a land lover’s option, you will leave happy! And fun desserts, like this Trio of Concession Sweets (a nice tribute to their spot on the Boardwalk) are just the icing on the cake.

Trio of Concession Sweets: Popcorn Mousse, Cherry Limeade Popsicle, Crunchy Peanut Butter Whoopie Pie with Pound Cake Fries

Jiko…The Cooking Place

Romance, incredible food, and an upscale atmosphere are in store at Jiko. This place is a hidden gem, and serves consistently delicious and interesting food inspired by the flavors of Africa.

They also boast one of the largest collections of South African wines in the world along with one of the best filet mignons on property. (It used to come standard with their phenomenal mac and cheese, but can now be specially ordered with the side dish.)

Filet and Mac and Cheese at Jiko (Mac and Cheese by request)

‘Ohana

But have I saved the best for last? You’ll have to weigh in! ‘Ohana pretty much had me at Bananas Foster Bread Pudding! (Well, after the Lapu Lapu, of course!)

This restaurant is a guest favorite for both breakfast and dinner — and it’s a tough reservation to get — but it’s so worth it.

One of my favorite things about ‘Ohana is the gorgeous view. Head over during the day and feel instantly relaxed as you gaze out on Seven Seas Lagoon and Cinderella castle. Head over at night and get a grand view of the Magic Kingdom fireworks as they dim the lights and play the music right there in the restaurant.

But, hands down, my FAVORITE thing about ‘Ohana? The bread pudding. I’m pretty sure I could eat that whole thing every single day and never get tired of it. The best part? It’s all-you-can-eat! ;-)

Bananas Foster Bread Pudding

Now It’s Your Turn!

Let me know in the comments what YOUR favorite Disney World Hotel Restaurant is! Can’t get enough of California Grill and their Goat Cheese Ravioli? Or does Boatwright’s with its amazing Jambalaya get your vote?

Inspire me and other DFB readers by telling us your top pick for a Disney World hotel restaurant!

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63 Comments

  1. Ali Duggan says:

    Where to even start on favorite places to eat at WDW? My absolute favorite meal based solely on the food was the delicious family style meal from Liberty Tree Tavern. It was hands down our favorite meal from our honeymoon!

    The food from Big River was delicious and sitting outside on the boardwalk was just beautiful.

    We loved the sea food from Coral Reef Restaurant and what a fun view of the big tank! So awesome.

    Teppan Edo for Japanese food was another favorite. The food was so fresh and the service was wonderful! Hibachi is always fun and twice as fun at WDW!

    So many favorites, it’s hard to say!!!

  2. Amanda says:

    Sanaa! Some of the most delicious food I’ve ever eaten (Indian Style Bread Service… Tandoori Chicken, Veggie Sampler… I could go on and on!) beautiful atmosphere (you can’t beat that window seat!) wonderful service.. It was one of my favorite meals that I’ve ever had. My husband and I both have it on our top favorite places to eat – anywhere!

  3. Nicola says:

    We really love Whispering Canyon Cafe at Wilderness Lodge for its skillet, Kouzzina at the Boardwalk for its Lamb Shank and of course, California Grill in the Contemporary for well… everything.

  4. Joy says:

    Kona Cafe for any food! My husband and I are heading to Disneyworld for honeymoon in 9 days and have 4 reservations at Kona (1 breakfast, 3 dinner) and will probably do at least one more walk up for breakfast :-) top picks are: tonga toast, pinapple pancakes and the samoan! Also want to try the steak for dinner – can’t wait!

  5. Brenda says:

    Great idea :)
    1-Artist Point for most anything! Especially Cobbler!
    2-Narcoossee’s for Crab Cakes, yummy!
    3-Grand Floridian Cafe for Sunshine Pancakes
    And it used to be Sweet Potato Pancakes at Boatrights

  6. Stacy Campbell says:

    Just ate at O’Hana last week for the first time and totally agree…one of the best meals I’ve ever had at WDW. The bread pudding is quite possibly the best dessert I’ve ever tasted. I was disappointed, though that they won’t let you yake leftovers home…such a waste seeing as they probably throw it away. I will bring zip-locks next time.

  7. Ally says:

    I havent been to many in the hotels (family plans it, not me) but in 2010 we did the Supercalifragilisticexpealidocious breakfast at 1900 Park Fare. I loved the food and atmosphere.

  8. Chubby Goddess says:

    Personally, I would like to second the Flying Fish; anything they do with scallops is amazing. Also I’ll second Jiko-they have amazing desserts and sitting at the counter and watching the chefs make the appetizers is a lot of fun-they sell a lot of the bobotie, so it must be good!:)

    I’d like to add The Wave at the Contemporary. The food is amazing-I especially like their veggie dishes and they make a definite effort to use local flavors and sustainably raised meats.

    Can’t wait to hear about your new discoveries!

    CG

  9. Marcellina says:

    I know it’s a buffet but Boma is my husband’s and my favorite restaurant. We love trying new things and I personally could go just for the soups! The meat selection is really good too…. we always leave full and happy. We’ve skipped Boma on the last few trips so we could try other things but I think we’ve realized we should eat there on every trip now.

  10. Evan says:

    The best food I have ever had in or around a theme park is at California Grill. If anyone has never been there, you absolutely must go. Plus, the last time I was there, I saw a couple of the contestants from “The Next Food Network Star.”

  11. Nikki says:

    Hoop De Doo at Wildernes Cabins. So much fun!!!! And the best fried chicken and corn bread! An absolute must do on every trip for me!

  12. Alan says:

    We have always been drawn to the Grand Floridian Resort, for dining, since the day it opened. While some of the restaurants there, have changed over the years, all of them have always provideded us with a great meal. Something we do is to go over an hour or so earlier than our reservation, sit down in that fabulous lobby, have an aperitif and enjoy the pianist when he is playing, and just soak in the ambiance.

  13. Dana says:

    Sanaa, hands down. I’m a curry fanatic, and my husband is obsessed with the tandori lamb. And you can’t beat the view! :) We usually try to get to the restaurant early, so we can sit outside and relax and watch the animals before our meal. The food is always fantastic, and we’re always had great service.

  14. Andrea says:

    I second The Wave! Also, we thought Boma’s breakfast buffet was awesome as well.

  15. Niki M says:

    Coral Reef has won us over time and again for food and atmosphere. I get the catch of the day everytime over the scallop and mushroom risotto and it is excellent. My hubby loves the bailey’s mousse and raves about it every time.
    Boma is at the top of the list for our family also because of atmosphere and the wide variety of food choices – plus zebra domes!

  16. Bret says:

    I have to go with Jiko. It was my dinner on my second night last year on my first visit. The staff was so attentive and friendly. They brought around hot towels before the appitizer. And when I said I don’t eat red meat after the waiter suggested the filet mignon he ran back and quickly got their specialized vegi menu to make better suggestions for me.

    The food rocked too. The heirloom tomato and watermelon salad was perfect, the vegi curry had a near perfect spice blend, and my cheesecake came with a birthday candle and an African birthday seranade from the hostesses. I am still talking about that salad nearly a year later it was that good.

  17. Carolyn says:

    I have too many favorites! Sanaa, Boma, and Jiko at AK Lodge, Artist Point at Wilderness Lodge, Kouzzina and Flying Fish at the Boardwalk, the Wave and California Grill at the Contemporary, Kona at the Polynesian, and Citricos at the Grand Floridian.

  18. janet kobel says:

    have to agree ohana our families all time favorite we will be there in october and staying at the polynesian we are so looking foward to our trip

  19. Jason says:

    In no particular order:

    1) O’Hana. Duh.
    2) Boatwrights. Consistently one of the best meals we have and ADRs are not usually needed. Oh, and the Bananas Foster’s desert is a favorite.
    3) Captain’s Grille. Steaks are not that much below The Yachtsman in flavor or quality but well under the price! Last trip we also had the best service there of any meal we ate.
    4) Grand Floridian Cafe. Always delivers.

  20. Julie says:

    California Grill wins the top vote in my book! While I’ve had some so-so service on occasion, the food has never been anything short of sensational. Duck confit… *swoon*

    Sanaa was a new addition to the itinerary last year and will surely move up the ranks with its amazing green curry shrimp. I’m hungry just thinking about it! If you stick to themes/cuisine’s, I’d put it a close second to Jiko in its category- I feel like I’m giving out food Oscars here :)

    Major kudos also go to Artist Point. It was an old favorite of ours that we finally revisited last December after years away. With one meal it bounced back up to top ranks on our list!

    T-minus 19 days until I’m there again and I’m already craving Disney food! This doesn’t bode well for the next 2.5 weeks ;)

  21. Kathleen says:

    I love the Garden View Tea room!!!!! While not technically a restaurant, it is one of the best places to eat from the lovely tea, to the sandwiches and most importantly the service! But here is my list!:
    1.) Garden View Tea Room
    2.) Jiko
    3.) Everything Pop (Shrimp Lo Mein as my family says is the best thing to eat on Disney Property!)
    4.) California Grille

    And of course many others that are not part of the hotels :) (hint Crystal Palace, Raglan Road, Cosmic Rays, etc)

  22. Jeannette says:

    Don’t know if this counts but I do love the high tea in the Grand Floridian. I’m a sucker for that little spot of elegance (in my shorts and tshirt of course) with my girls.

    Gotta give another thumbs up to O’Hana and Boma too!

  23. Brandon says:

    Ohana is definitely my number one. I would also list Hoop Dee Doo Musical Review if that isn’t in a separate category. And Chef Mickey’s will always be fun!

  24. Patrick says:

    I just recently discovered Kouzzina. Their breakfast is amazing …. have to get the skillet every time I’m there. Dinner is also really good!

  25. Leslie says:

    I’m surprised no one has mentioned Victoria and Alberts. Maybe it’s too obvious or too expensive. As great as these other restaurants are, V&A is just in a category all by itself. It’s the difference between “wow that was a great meal” and being speechless. We can’t afford it every year, but it will always be at the top of my list.

  26. Great topic. Here we go…

    1. Grand Floridian Café. Quiet. Easy to get reservations. The Grand Sandwich with Boursin cheese sauce. ‘Nuff said.

    2. Boma. Two words. Zebra. Domes.

    3. Cali Grill and Flying Fish. Both have great atmospheres and amazing food. But they are on my list for those cheese plates (and that honey!!).

    4. Kona Café. Macadamia Nut Butter. (But I have yet to try breakfast (gasp!))

    5. In an upset, I’m choosing the Fountain in the Dolphin. Great soups, good sandwiches and that PB&J shake.

    77 days!!

  27. Tink says:

    I adore the breakfast at Boma! Those moist and luscious orange-cranberry muffins and all the exciting and exotic morning treats are to die for!

  28. CraigInPA says:

    ‘Ohana is hands down one of the best values at Disney. If the meal was the salad, pot stickers, and as much bread pudding as I could eat, I’d be happy. But, since they insist on putting beef, pork, shrimp, and chicken (or turkey) in front of me, I’ll be happy to eat it.

    Kona Cafe has some of the best food going. Until DFB and others started raving about it, it was an “in the know” spot.

    Narcoossee’s. What can you say about this place but fabulous food and a beautiful environment. My second choice for a romantic dinner.

    Artist Point. A spectacular room with unique food choices. My first choice for a romantic dinner.

  29. Janelle says:

    This is hard, but at least I just have to decide between resorts and not all WDW :)
    1. Kona Cafe – breakfast is our favorite (Tonga toast and Kona coffee, but also love the Kona salad for lunch)
    2. Any of the restaurants at Animal Kingdom Lodge, but we usually go for Boma to try a variety of African dishes. (Even the stew at the Mara is wonderful)
    3. California Grill is a favorite, but we do not go every time we visit.
    4. Hoop Dee Doo Musical Revue – It is impressive how long this show has been playing and the food is not bad either.
    5. Citricos – finally was able to try this restaurant on my last visit and it was wonderful. Could not get into CA Grill, so was happy we tried this venue.

    NOTE: for character meals, we found Cape May Cafe to be much better than Chef Mickey’s.

    Going to be trying Boatwrights and Kouzzina on our visit in September. We always try something new on each visit as well as tried and true.

  30. Janelle says:

    Can I add my favorite resort meals for Disneyland :) We are going end of August, so am really looking forward to a couple resort meals.

    1. White Water Snacks (Grand Californian Hotel)- I dream about their Chicken or Shredded Beef Nachos
    2. Storyteller’s Cafe (Grand Californian Hotel) – the Charred Nebraska Corn Chowder is fabulous.
    3. Tangaroa Terrace (Disneyland Hotel) – Great menu options as well as grab and go with a polynesian flair.
    4. Steakhouse 55 (Disneyland Hotel) – Breakfast – French Toast – Thick-cut French toast dipped in eggs, cream with vanilla and powdered sugar served with Warm Bananas Foster or Warm Berries. Dinner – Everything is fabulous
    5. PCH Grill (Paradise Pier Hotel) – Never been disappointed.

  31. Keith says:

    Ohana is my absolute favorite. Also love Boma for breakfast with the frunch/jungle juice (whatever they’re calling it this year). You hit the nail square on the head with Beaches & Cream and the No Way Jose! Best burgers there too. I like 1900 Park Fare and Whispering Canyon Cafe too. Still miss my breakfasts at Bonfamilles!

  32. JT says:

    Completely stumbled on Beaches n’ Cream on the last day of a trip in the 90s because we were looking for a quiet place to get a late lunch. If memory serves, it wasn’t too long after the YC and BC initially opened their doors. We had a late lunch and were virtually the only ones in the restaurant. I instantly fell in love. You’d be hard pressed now to ever be the only patrons in the place at a given time anymore, but man, it’s just so good.

    It’s obviously a priority for me during my upcoming September trip.

    That filet and mac and cheese from Jiko looks so incredibly good. I have ADRs at Cali Grill but I may need to add Jiko, too!

  33. Jackie says:

    I haven’t eaten at many hotel restaurants but my favorites are Beaches and Cream and Whispering Canyon Cafe. This year we’re going to get to try O’hana for breakfast and dinner and Artist Point.

  34. Wendy says:

    I love lists! Especially those that combine two great loves: food and WDW!

    1. Kona Cafe – for the ribeye and the bread/butter. We went there for lunch for the first time our last trip and they didn’t bring the bread/butter out. I asked the waitress if they just didn’t do that at lunch. And they don’t, but she brought us some out anyway! So great.

    2. Crystal Palace – simply for the puffed French toast!

    3. Beaches & Cream – best burgers and desserts!!

    4. Yachtsman – went for the first time in December and can’t wait to go back someday!! Everything was excellent – food, service, atmosphere… perfect.

    5. Earl of Sandwich – The Original! Earl is literally the only place we definitely visit every trip down. Mmmmmmm.

  35. Sarah says:

    We try to mix in some new restaurants every year, and this time we are trying Trail’s End instead of the Hoop Dee Doo (which we have done on every previous visit). I am hoping the food is as good and I can get some of that incredible cornbread. If not, I’ll be in the kitchens begging for scraps.

  36. JoAnn says:

    Up until now the only two resort restaurants I have eaten at are Chef Mickey’s and Kona Cafe. My favorite being Kona Cafe.

    This year I’m adding Whispering Canyon Cafe, Cape May Cafe, Sanaa and 1900 Park Fare. I may have a new favorite.

  37. chris says:

    So unfair, you list 4 but ask us for 1 top pick? ;)
    I try to work these into each trip: V&A, Flying Fish, Citricos and Bluezoo if the Dolphin counts as a WDW hotel.

  38. Laura says:

    OOOOhhh…this is a hard one, but here we go…

    1. The fam loves Everything Pop at Pop Century, never disappointed there, crave the Cheese Steak Wrap. The portions are huge and priced well. Also love the Mom’s Night Out Meals.

    2. O’hana! Haven’t been there for dinner yet. But the breakfast is amazing. Could drink the juice forever and be happy. As a bonus, my hubby gets to see Stitch!!

    3. Cape May…LOVE the desserts, especially the Oreo Bon Bons

    4. Chef Mickey’s at the Contemporary…drool over the Cornbread Covered Corned Beef Hash…YUM!!!

  39. Novi says:

    I don’t even eat meat and the Yachtsman Steakhouse is one of the best hotel restaurants in Disney! Their cheese plate had better accompaniments than any other in Disney – raisins on the vine, honeycomb, pine nut brittle… The sides almost outshone the cheese! And for a steakhouse, plenty of their sides and apps were veg friendly.

    I also love Jiko – it was never too loud or crowded when I went, and the AK Lodge and grounds are beautiful!

  40. Kelly says:

    There are so many great places, this is a tough one. 3 come to mind right away though. 1. Olivia’s cafe at the Old key west resort for lunch or dinner. (My family stays there a lot and we typically have lunch there when we arrive, so that’s when I know vacation has begun!) Their Key lime tart is amazing! (never had anything bad there actually…) 2. Kona cafe at the Polynesian for lunch. We love taking the monorail from the Magic Kingdom over to get a break from the park and have a great lunch.. again, never had anything bad there… 3. California Grill at the Contemporary. Love the service, the food and the view! Great for special occasions, had my 30th Birthday dinner there, it was perfect! (and my husband had the sushi that the waiter said, “would change his life”… and my husband agreed!! )

  41. Janna says:

    Our favorites are…

    Beaches & Cream at BC
    Boma at AKL
    Chef Mickey’s at Contemporary
    Whispering Canyon at WL

    Honestly, we love eating outside the parks more than in the parks. Of course, we love eating in the parks, too! Such a food conundrum…lol

  42. Caleb says:

    Hands down Yachtsman steakhouse is our favorite resort restaurant. We make sure to go for every trip.

  43. Andee says:

    The Spicy Kazan Roll at the California Grill is the stuff of DREAMS…. We’re going at the end of August and my dad is SO excited about about eating that again he can’t stop talking about it!

  44. Emily C says:

    My Mom and I have visit annually and usually plan our travel around the food! These are our go-to places:

    Narcoosee’s (GF) – salads with green goddess dressing and fresh seafood entrees

    CA Grill (Contemporary) – excellent wine selection, flatbreads, cheese plate and fireworks view

    Artists Point (Wilderness Lodge) – mushroom soup, cedar-plank salmon, Airline chicken

    Todd English’s bluezoo (Dolphin) – amazing service, “Dancing Fish” entree, tempura harot vert, and chocolate five-ways dessert

    Kouzzina (Boardwalk) – went for lunch for the first time last year. Wow! Great Greek Spread/Bread app and Cioppino.

    I can’t get convince her to check out more ethnic/exotic places like Jiko and Boma, but maybe someday.

    Favorite now gone – Palo at the Swan. Loved the fresh Italian food. Wondering if Disney Dream’s menu is similar.

  45. Essie says:

    I’m so glad that this is only hotels! We love Chef Mickey’s for breakfast. This year’s coming trip, however, is going to see us trying two new hotel spots that I think will become favorites immediately: Beaches & Cream and Cape May Cafe! We’re also doing 1900 Park Fare for the first time. I hear the entertainment is wonderful (my one friend loves Cinderella), but I’m not sure if the food is outstanding or or not; I’m sure we will at least find it enjoyable. It’s fun trying so many new places. I love the filet mignons at LeCellier, but with the DDP cost going up to 2 table credits I’m not too sure about that in 2013. Do you know if Jiko is one TS credit or two? I’d definitely go there and try their filet; your photo of it looks wonderful, plus I’d love to visit and see the AKL. Great article!

  46. Essie says:

    Darn, I should have said that we are going to 1900 for dinner, not breakfast; I’m hoping the ‘ugly stepsisters’ are in good form that night (it’s a surprise for my girlfriend the Cinderella fan and we’re hoping to ‘set her up’ with them!)!

  47. Donna says:

    Been to so many resort restaurants bit by far my favorites are:

    1. Kona Cafe love the poly have to go there every single visit! There food is amazing the shrimp and scallops a must have as is the teriyaki steak that they have been serving since way back in the day when it was still the Coral Isle Cafe!

    2. Flying Fish enough said about this fabulous restaurant already!

    3. Yachtsman steakhouse used to have an amazing surf and turf wish they would bring it back! But nonetheless their steaks r amazing!

  48. Galloping Gourmand says:

    I’m surprised I don’t see more love for Sanna than it’s getting. Maybe it’s because it’s in the most improbably out of the way place in all of Walt Disney World. Essentially, you have to drive to the hotel that’s farthest away from anything on property and doesn’t have much for those who aren’t staying at it. After that you get past the guard, you make your way to the back of the lobby, and down a flight of stairs. After that, walk three paces to the right and press on the third brick from the bottom of the wall. (Ok, I made that last part up.) Your average guest won’t know it’s there because it’s in a spot that gets less than zero foot traffic* and won’t want to make the trip even if they knew it existed. Rosted Beets don’t have mass appeal. Indian food in some places has become the new American Chinese. The same everywhere, and not something people on vacation think about. That makes me sad because they are missing out on the best food at Disney.

    *I think those who do pass it immediately forget and deny it’s existence, as if it was run by The Silence or something.

  49. Goldfish says:

    My family and I have been going to WDW for years now and I think at this point I’ve eaten at almost every restaurant in WDW that there is so maybe the best way to pick my favorites is by park.
    For Epcot I’d say my new favorite is Via Napoli in Italy. The food is light and refreshing and light on the wallet for those of us not on the dining plan who want to eat somewhere a little nicer. Their zeppoles are amazing and so is the chocolate sauce that came with i! I would’ve asked for a to-go cup for it if I thought the waitress would’ve brought one over!
    For the Magic Kingdom I’d have to say the Plaza Restaurant. Their shakes and floats are amazing as well as their sandwiches so a pretty good lunch option. I’d skip the Royal Table for dinner because the food isn’t always the greatest but if you have kids I’d def go their for breakfast.
    For Hollywood Studios or to me MGM the best option is the Prime Time cafe. I wouldn’t say it’s the best food in Disney but it has a great atmosphere. Two years ago our waiter had half the restaurant sign a birthday card for me lmao
    I gotta say as for the parks though, the Animal Kingdom is still kinda lacking. The Tusker House is pretty good but the Yak and Yeti is a must! I’d make surer have a wonton for desert even if you don’t eat anything else lol
    Now for the restaurants I can’t say I have a true favorite but I do make a point to go to the Kona Cafe for breakfast. The tonga toast there is a must and I heard that they serve it in their quick serve too so if your pressed for time that might be a better option.
    The best advice I can give? Book reservations 6 mo.s out. Dining plans are more popular nowadays and the prime time slots go fast!

  50. Twincess says:

    CALIFORNIA GRILL! My fave on all of Disney property! ALWAYS get a bottle of Conundrum, a flatbread, sushi, caesar salad and whatever I choose for dinner and it is ALWAYS amazing! PLus obvi you can’t beat the view and the ambience and if your there for the fireworks it’s just seriously an unforgettable dining experience.

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