A HUGE thanks to guest author Sarah Orr! Today, she’s highlighting The Artist’s Palette at the Saratoga Springs Resort in Walt Disney World. Take it away, Sarah!
Hello everyone! Get out your crayons and color me happy today…because like most of you, I love talking about Disney Parks restaurants. So grab your paintbrush (or tip sheets?) and please join me as I step foot inside The Artist’s Palette for the first time.
The Artist’s Palette is inside the Carriage House at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa in Walt Disney World and is one of our choices in the “trifecta” of eateries at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa. (The other two are Turf Club Bar and Grill, a table-service restaurant, and The Paddock Grill, a quick-service dining venue located at the Paddock Pool.)
The Artist’s Palette is a quick-service restaurant, market, and gift shop in one. It is connected to Turf Club Bar and Grill on one side, and the lobby and reception area of the resort on the other.
Forget any “muddy track” visions. A few tables, chairs and rocking chairs are waiting for you outside on the patio, and overlook the beautiful High Rock Spring Pool.
Classic, pastoral music sets a serene tone as your eyes are drawn up to the canvasses painted by New York artist Laura Fayer hanging from the ceiling. (No monorails whooshing overhead here!) This is a fairly peaceful place when it’s not too busy.
The glow from the bold colors of the modern light fixtures (some resembling jellyfish and amoebas) tints the indoor seating area warmly.
In 2003, Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort commissioned New York artist Laura Fayer to paint a large-scale, 9-piece installation for The Artist’s Palette.
Guests hungry for breakfast, lunch, or dinner can safely bet on The Artist’s Palette across the board. Just trot up to the deli counter to order.
Menus are displayed on video screens overhead, but Cast Members are quick to hand you a menu so you can read it up close.
After ordering, you are given a numbered table stand (if dining in) or a pager (if you ordered your food to go). Receipt in hand, get any self serve bakery items and drinks you need and head to one of three cashiers. Cast members will direct guests to open registers.
After gathering utensils and condiments near the drink station, you head to a table, where your food will be promptly delivered — even during peak “post times” when betting windows are busy.
The market section is stocked with milk, juice, and many other items for resort guests to purchase and take back to their villas.
I found my souvenir favorites in the small gift shop located inside The Artist’s Palette. The “sure bets” here include Disney pins, lanyards, autograph books, shirts, jackets, hats, beach towels, purses, etc.
Here are our “long-shots”: The Artist’s Palette sells jars of salsa and bottles of other gourmet condiments from Saratoga Salsa and Spice Company, Saratoga, New York. Who knew these “mudders” would show up in Florida?
Small artist easels with crayons and plain paper are set up on many of the tables. My kids used these, and it was fun to see their drawings displayed with other guests’ colorings at the official “Artist of the Day” display.
Mickey waffles, breakfast potatoes, omelets, and biscuits and gravy are on the breakfast menu.
Soups, Saratoga Chili, salads, gourmet sandwiches, and flatbreads grace the lunch and dinner menu. There are Chef’s Dinner specials offered in the evenings.
The flatbreads are made after you order, then baked as you watch (if you want to) inside the in-wall brick oven.
The Saratoga Lobster Club Sandwich wins by a length over Columbia Harbour House’s Lobster Roll.
While my New England friends may sneer at my favorite, and even though it has been years since my last trip to the Northeast, I’d bet on this one again.
This sandwich is made with a refreshing yet hearty lobster salad, with tomato and just the right amount of lemon mayonnaise on thickly sliced and grilled multigrain bread.
Ok. It is true that Linda Bean’s Perfect Maine Lobster Roll from the Hops and Barley Marketplace at Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival has got this one by a nose, but the Saratoga Lobster Club was my favorite out of everything I saw and tried at The Artist’s Palette.
Oh wait…did I mention that it is topped with smoked bacon? No need to go back to the drawing board on this one.
Next, this huge Saratoga Salad with Chicken is full of field greens plus all the good stuff — Ocean Spray Craisins, dried blueberries, apples, honey roasted walnuts, and lemon poppy seed dressing. The lemon poppy seed dressing was a wonderful blend of sweet and tangy. (Don’t hesitate to ask for a little extra after you try it. I did!)
The oversized crispy ciabatta croutons were perfectly seasoned and fresh. It was a great salad and some of it went back to my villa’s refrigerator for later.
Next up was my husband’s favorite. It is sliced roast beef with au jus and horseradish (the real horseradish — not sauce) on a Kimmelweck roll (pretzel salt and caraway). The Beef on “Weck” reminded me of some of the fabulous deli sandwiches I’ve had in New York City, and is an upstate New York specialty.
My 13 year old daughter’s favorite, this flatbread has fresh spinach, grilled chicken, and artichoke hearts with rich Alfredo sauce and mozzarella. We loved the crispy crust. No these aren’t from the ovens of Via Napoli, but this flatbread was my daughter’s “sure bet” for refueling during our week at the resort.
If you are staying at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort, I’d bet on The Artist’s Palette for the “Win,” based on price, selection, taste, and service.
Staying in the Springs section of the resort? Even better. The Artist’s Palette is less than a furlong away, so I wouldn’t hesitate to buy a refillable mug, as it is very easy to grab a refill of your favorite drink. The restaurant is open from 7:00 am – 11:00 pm.
Now that I’ve discovered a whole new corner of Walt Disney World, if I found myself in need of an escape from my shopping trip in Downtown Disney (or the soon-to-be Disney Springs in the next few years) I’d hop on a boat at Paradiso 37 Pier and take the tranquil ride to Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa. The boat lets you off at the Carriage House, so just head inside past Turf Club Bar and Grill and turn left into The Artist’s Palette.
Thanks for letting me share about my first trip to The Artist’s Palette. I know many of you (any Disney Vacation Club/DVC members out there?) have probably eaten here many times, so please share your thoughts, agreements, disagreements…or any good jokes
Sarah lives in Missouri with her husband and two daughters, ages 13 and 3. She’s been visiting Walt Disney World since her parents took her for the first time in 1972. Thanks again, Sarah!
What are your “sure bets” at The Artist’s Palette? Share in the comments below!