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Review: Cape May Cafe at Disney’s Beach Club Resort

We are heading to the quaint New England shore today for a breakfast buffet at Cape May Cafe!

The expansive restaurant, located at Disney’s Beach Club Resort, is a favorite among guests for a couple of reasons: 1.) You get to see Minnie, Donald, and Goofy in their BATHING SUITS! SO FUN! (OK, that sounds weird as I read it over, but you know what I mean, right?), 2.) It’s slightly easier to get an advance dining reservation here than at one of the other, more well-known character breakfasts, like Chef Mickey’s or Crystal Palace.

We hadn’t been back to Cape May for breakfast in quite a while, so on a recent trip, we headed over one morning pre-park with AJ’s Mom and AJ’s Dad to see what was new.

Atmosphere

You enjoy the same open, airy feeling at Cape May that you sense throughout the rest of the Beach Club Resort. The stick-style architecture (I totally learned that from Samantha Brown back when she was doing “Great Hotels” on the Travel Channel…remember?) brings to mind Victorian beach house themes.

Entrance

Check in at the podium, and soon you’ll be making your way to one of two dining rooms — a large main room, or a smaller one adjacent to the restaurant’s entrance. I much prefer the large main dining room since it has a lot more to look at and has slightly easier access to the buffet. ;-)

Check In Area

The palette is pastel, and vintage-style beach umbrellas and chairs adorn the space to drive home the seaside feeling. The colorful carpet depicts beach umbrellas, too.

Seating

Seating is comfortable, with a mixture of roomy chairs, booths, and banquette and chair combos.

Seating in the main dining room

Since this is a buffet, the space is busy with foot traffic as guests help themselves to the eats.

Smaller dining room

On the morning we visited, it was pretty quiet, as you can see! That can translate to lots of extra time with your favorite characters, and is another reason why Cape May Cafe is a gem of a character meal!

Seating and Character Interaction

The buffet is the traditional set up. I love the colorful tile surround, which echoes the pattern of the carpet and ties the decor together nicely. (I’d never noticed that until this trip! There’s always something more to learn, eh?)

Buffet

One of the best features of breakfast at Cape May is fun interaction with characters! Let’s take a look.

Characters

Character meals are a great option for interacting with your favorite Disney friends in a comfortable, air-conditioned setting. And one of the best features of trying different character meals is that you’ll run into your favorite Disney pals wearing a wide range of attire!

At Cape May, you’ll find characters dressed to hit the beach after breakfast is over! Be aware, however, that characters only appear here for breakfast. So if it’s a character dining experience you’re after, book the morning meal. Also, the character number here is somewhat limited, and you won’t see Mickey. He must already be riding the waves!

Isn’t Minnie cute in her straw hat?

Minnie Mouse

And Donald’s sporting a new version of his no-pants sailor suit, complete with waves and an anchor on his hat.

Donald Duck

But Goofy may be my favorite (and he’s definitely AJ’s Mom’s favorite). With colorful swim trunks and a life vest, he’s ready to hit the sand!

Goofy

Hanging out with the characters was fun, but I was ready to dig into some Disney yums.

Eats

Cape May works much the same as other Disney buffets: once you’re seated and your server takes your drink order, you’re free to visit the buffet as many times as you’d like. Pace yourself, however. There’s a lot to take in!

To make it easier to organize, I’ve broken the food up into major categories.

Breads, Cereal, and Fruit

To start, you’ll find a large assortment of Breads, Cereal, and Fruit. Miniature Muffins are just the right size to sample a variety of flavors.

Assorted Mini Muffins

Croissants and Danish are flakey and fresh. You’ll find Cinnamon Rolls here as well.

Croissants

Danish and Cinnamon Rolls

The Chocolate Cheese Pastries were especially tempting! (Don’t worry — you’ll walk off the calories in the parks!)

Chocolate Cheese pastries

Fresh Orange Cranberry and Banana Bread were also options the morning I visited.

Orange Cranberry Bread

Banana Bread

White and Wheat Bread, English Muffins, and Bagels are located conveniently by the toaster if you’d prefer toast to pastries.

White Bread, Wheat Bread, and English Muffins

Bagels and Toaster Station

And of course, you’ll find Butter and an assortment of Jams and Jellies nearby as well.

Butter Balls

Jams and Preserves

Would you prefer cereal? No problem — handy dispensers house varieties of Kellogg’s Cereals, and your server provides the milk.

Cereal Dispensers

If you’d like hot cereal, you’ll find that as well. But in addition to the familiar Oatmeal, Cape May also offers some healthy and trendy tastes, like Apple Cranberry Quinoa.

Oatmeal

It’s a healthy and substantial way to start your day!

Apple Cranberry Quinoa

There’s also a fantastic selection of Fruit, all fresh and ready to eat! This is something that Disney usually excels at, but I thought this spread was particularly bountiful.

Fresh Pineapple, Grapes, Oranges, Grapefruit, and Watermelon

Fresh Grapes -- Up Close

Fresh Pineapple -- Up Close

Fresh Watermelon and Cantaloupe

You could easily make a meal from fruits and breads! But don’t fill up — there’s more to come!

Salads and Other Cold Items

Before you move onto the hot foods, there are lots of other cold selections to sample. Start with a couple of interesting salads. First up is an Apple Spinach Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette. Mmmm — bacon on my salad! Yesss!

Apple Spinach Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette

Quinoa and other whole grains show up in the other salad offering, Healthy Grains Fruit Salad, which features a mix of Quinoa, Barley, Dried Fruits, and Almonds, garnished with Citrus Ginger Dressing. I’m guessing the pineapple in there was attributable to some “fresh fruit overboard” from someone else’s helping themselves.

Healthy Grains Fruit Salad -- Quinoa, Barley, Dried Fruits, Almonds, Tossed with Citrus Ginger Dressing

You’ll find Hard Boiled Eggs on the cold bar too, along with Cottage Cheese, Applesauce, and Granola.

Lemons, Cottage Cheese, Hard Boiled Eggs, Applesauce, Granola

Mixed Berries and whole fresh Strawberries are the perfect accompaniment to Yogurt. We could choose from Strawberry or Vanilla in low fat versions.

Macerated Mixed Berries, Fresh Strawberries, Low Fat Strawberry and Vanilla Yogurts

Pastrami-style Smoked Salmon with traditional garnishes were also available.

Pastrami-Style Smoked Salmon with Capers, Tomatoes, and Onions

A selection of Charcuterie and Cheeses lends a continental feel to the spread.

Sliced Salami, Capacola, and a Selection of Cheeses

The cold meats and cheese offer a nice contrast to fruits and sweet breads that you find on this side of the buffet.

Entrees and Sides

Next, be sure to explore the hot bar. Interestingly, Cape May doesn’t offer any customizable breakfast items, like Create-Your-Own Omelets. However, there is a wide array of traditional favorites, so you’ll probably find something that pleases you.

Scrambled Eggs come in two varieties. There is the traditional plain version.

Scrambled Eggs

But you can also spice things up a bit with Chorizo and Four Cheese Scrambled Eggs.

There was an ample supply of fresh Sausage and Bacon to complement the eggs, as well as crispy Breakfast Potatoes.

Chorizo and Four Cheese Scrambled Eggs and Pork Sausage

Smoked Bacon and Breakfast Potatoes

Cape May also offers a Frittata daily. During our visit, the popular dish was made with Spinach, Bacon, and White Cheddar Cheese.

Spinach, Bacon, and White Cheddar Cheese Frittata

Salsa and Ketchup stand by for garnish and dipping.

Salsa and Ketchup

There’s also normally a seasonal veggie on stand by. But since this is vacation, you can count on having your Asparagus with a hearty side of rich Hollandaise. :-)

Asparagus and Hollandaise

Even though this is supposed to be New England, a little southern flavor creeps in with the addition of Cheddar Cheese Grits.

Creamy Cheddar Grits

And you can’t have vacay breakfast without Biscuits and Gravy! At least my husband can’t!

Biscuits and Gravy

Next, there’s a good selection of warm, sweet options. Thick-cut French Toast is always a good option, especially when there are Caramelized Bananas close by! Make your own bananas foster french toast!! (I did!)

French Toast

Caramelized Bananas

And hooray for mini-Mickey Waffles! I know they’re on every single Disney breakfast buffet, but I seriously never get tired of them!

Miniature Mickey Waffles

They’re just so cute! And I swear, they taste better than regular old waffles.

Mickey Waffles -- Up Close

You have lots to choose from when it comes to smothering your waffles. Maple Syrup, Chocolate Chips, Strawberry Melba, and a big bowl of Whipped Cream are right there waiting for you!

Maple Syrup

Chocolate Chips

Strawberry Melba

Whipped Cream

And just in case that’s not enough sweet stuff for you, go ahead, have some Bread Pudding!

Bread Pudding

For my part, I decided to go with some healthier options and small portions of a couple of my favorites.

With all of that beautiful fresh fruit, making a tasty bowl of yogurt and granola was a snap. Isn’t it pretty? This is one of my favorite breakfast dishes at Disney.

Granola, Yogurt, and Fresh Fruit

But after I got my healthy fix, I had to indulge just a bit. First, I tried a small portion of french toast with caramelized bananas.

French Toast with Caramelized Bananas

Although it was very sweet, the toast was fresh and the banana topping was delicious. This was definitely a winning combination for me.

French Toast with Caramelized Bananas -- Up Close

But of course, I wasn’t leaving without a Mickey waffle!

Mickey Waffle Double Take

And while all of those fun garnishes were awesome, I went the classic — maple syrup.

Mickey Waffle and Syrup on the Side

It’s just perfect to dunk those little ears in before nibbling them right off.

Overall

Cape May Breakfast continues to be one of our favorite buffets at Walt Disney World for a number of reasons. To begin, the food here is some of the best buffet food you’ll find on property, so even if you aren’t all that interested in characters, you’re likely to appreciate the spread. Second, even though it’s grown a bit in popularity, it’s still less crazy busy than the most popular character dining spots. Finally, because it’s located so close to both Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, it’s a pretty convenient starting point for your day, even if you’re not staying at Beach Club.

With good food, a breezy atmosphere, and cute characters, I think Cape May is definitely worth a spot on your meal calendar.

Is Cape May Cafe one of your favorite Disney dining destinations? Let us know in comments!

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14 Comments

  1. Jeff says:

    I notice from the condiments you showed us, anyone doing the DFB Waffle Crawl can make their own Bananas Foster Waffle and Chocolate Lover’s Waffle right here instead of going to Roaring Fork. So if you planned on getting these waffles AND you have a reservation for breakfast at Cape May Cafe, all the condiments necessary are right here. I guarantee that your personal creation will taste just as good as the ones made by Disney CMs.

  2. Cheryl Donofrio says:

    It all looks wonderful, but there’s something missing. Whatever happened to Breakfast Pizza? Does anybody have that anymore? MMMMMMMMMMMM.

  3. Lou says:

    My last few times here it seems like the character experience has really gone down hill. They seemed to just rush from one table to the next. A few years back I remember Minnie sitting down and coloring with my son for what seemed like 10 minutes (although it was probably 5). On our most recent trip it was very routine: wave, take a picture, wave again and move on… What was weird was that during our time there, which probably wasn’t much more than 1 hour, each character came by twice for the same “limited time magic” experience. I wish that they would have only been by once for twice as long so that some real interaction could take place.

  4. AJ says:

    Jeff — Great point!!

    Cheryl — Yes; Chef Mickey’s always has breakfast pizza, as do several other breakfast buffets at Disney World and Disneyland.

    Lou — Thanks for your opinion! I think it really depends on how busy the restaurant is as well as who the characters are that day. :-)

  5. Jeffrey Thomas says:

    Great review. Really enjoy all of the photos and descriptions. My Disney fix until I can take my family again some year.

  6. Claire says:

    Does Cape May have pancakes on the breakfast buffet?

  7. Joey Price says:

    Do they have a chef’s station for fried eggs or omelets?

  8. Colette Stanton says:

    I really liked breakfast at Cape May! The character interaction is great (Goofy, Minnie and Donald sat with me haha), the food is really good and by reading this review it looks like they’ve added more food options. IMO the Yacht & Beach Club have 2 of the best breakfasts on property!

  9. CanadiansLoveWDW says:

    went there 2 weeks ago.. had a great time characters were great food was good.. only complaint was the baked ham was at the end when we got there and they didnt replace it.. its my fav breakfast food.. also try mixing a little maple syrup in with the holandase sauce.. tastes amazing…

  10. Kelly says:

    This is our favorite breakfast character meal. Dorothy is the best waitress there.

  11. AJ says:

    Jeffrey — So glad we could help!

    Claire — There were no pancakes the day that I visited, and they’re not listed on the menu, but you never know! They definitely have plenty of those wonderful Mickey waffles, though.

    Joey — There are no customizable option stations that I’ve seen. But you never know when that might change!

    CanadiansLoveWDW — Thanks for the tip!

  12. Johnny D says:

    I’d love to read a review of the clam bake dinner at Beach Club. I’m going to stay there in May of 2014.

  13. Brianna says:

    We have a lunch ADR at CP but I’m thinking of canceling that & scheduling breakfast here!

  14. Kelsey says:

    How many can sit in the smaller dining room. If I make a reservation for my whole family (40 people) would/can they reserve that room for us?

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