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6 New Things You’ve Gotta Try in Disney World!

So we all have our Disney food favorites.

You know them — the ones that would result in tears, anger, and staged protests if they ever disappear from menus. It’s okay. You can admit it.

Because I’d totally be leading the charge if they ever stop serving Dole Whip Floats.

But even with all the amazing favorites that give us warm fuzzies (and, in my case, cause me to go back to Disney parks over and over again), I still love Disney’s mission to surprise and delight guests with new offerings. It seems like every week, there’s something they’re debuting that I go nutso over — and off I go to add it to the next trip’s “must-eat” list.

Today, I’m offering a run down of the latest things that are on the list for my next trip. I’ve tried a few already, and others are completely new to me. And even though I’ll be in the ‘World smack dab in the middle of the holiday season, I’m saving room for these treats!

Gourmet Cake Cups at Magic Kingdom’s Cheshire Cafe

You Guys. I have a new FAVORITE obsession. And this time, it starts with Cake. And ends with Cup. Instead of the other way around.

We brought you the first look at the new Gourmet Cake Cups at Magic Kingdom’s Cheshire Cafe just recently. This spot in Fantasyland, formerly known as Enchanted Grove, has always been cute, but it’s never numbered among our “must-visits.”

But that has changed completely since they introduced these amazing treats.

Cheshire Cake Cup. The Stuff That My Cake Dreams Are Made Of. (Namely, Frosting.)

I mean seriously, you would think they picked up the phone, called me, and said, “AJ, we’re making a new treat, and you’re in charge of R&D.”

The parfaits are a topsy-turvy, whimsical take on a cupcake, turning the über popular treat into what it should be: a vehicle for frosting. I mean really, when was the last time you ate a cupcake and said, “Gee, that was pretty good, but I really could have used more cake.”

Um. Never.

And this cake cup got it RIGHT.

Look at All. Of. This. Frosting!

So it was a given that I made a beeline for Cheshire Cafe about five minutes after I checked in on my recent trip. And then I proceeded to think about this snack for the rest of the trip. And will I be right back here to have another on my next visit? You betcha!

Starbucks at Disney World!

We all know that Disney coffee used to be the stuff of legends. Bad legends. Scary ones. Like horror movies.

That is to say that the vast majority of guests, as much as they love Disney, have never been very happy with the coffee served there.

Well, Disney heard and responded. Whether they were tired of people bringing pre-purchased Starbucks cups into the parks, or they just saw an option for some good revenue, many guests are very excited that Starbucks has moved into the Disney Parks. You’ll find Starbucks stores located at the Main Street Bakery in Magic Kingdom and at Epcot’s Fountain View.

Starbucks at Main Street Bakery is Right in the Middle of the Magic

More park locations are planned for the future. (We’re guessing Writer’s Stop is next.)

Even though some fans of Magic Kingdom’s Main Street Bakery aren’t happy with the absence of their cherished favorites, many have chimed in that the opportunity to get good — and oftentimes, their favorite — coffee is a huge plus within the Happiest Place on Earth.

Pumpkin Spice at Fountain View!

I think it will be a long time before Starbucks lovers get over the novelty of strolling down Main Street USA with their favorite seasonal latte in hand, or peering at Spaceship Earth with through a window emblazoned with the familiar siren.

View of Spaceshp Earth from Fountain View Starbucks

L’Artisan des Glaces Ice Cream and Sorbet

I knew that we were in for a special treat when Disney announced that the très popular Patisserie Boulangerie would be getting a larger space within Epcot’s France Pavilion. And Les Halles, the new bakery, is seldom without long lines and pleased patrons.

But who knew when they opened the new ice cream shop in the former boulangerie location that it would be super charming?

L'Artisan des Glaces

L’Artisan des Glaces Ice Cream and Sorbet has quickly won fans with its 16 varieties of French-style ice creams and sorbets, which are made right on the premises (believe me — I’ve seen the ice cream machines in the back!).

With unique rotating flavors like Profiterole, Caramel Fleur de Sel, and Pomegranate, this is definitely not your neighborhood ice cream chain.

Scooping the Ice Cream Into a Waffle Cone

Rich and creamy with fresh flavors, I can’t wait to have a scoop (or two). But it doesn’t stop there — you can also choose from some fun ice cream options. A must-try is the ice cream sandwich with a twist — made with French macarons! This thing is out of this world!

Chocolate Macaron Sandwiches As Far As the Eye Can See!

OR — if brioche is your weakness, try the brand new Brioche Pressed Ice Cream Sandwich. I love how France is expanding the definition of home-made ice cream sandwich — already a favorite of mine! Just imagine, it’s like a brioche and ice cream panini! Hot and fresh right out of the press. Pretty amazing.

Brioche Ice Cream Sandwich

And if you’re looking for a creamy option to add to the Drinking Around the World tour, check out the Ice Cream Martini — your choice of two scoops, topped with Grand Marnier, Rum, or Whipped Cream Vodka! (!!!!!!!)

Ice Cream Martini

Just About Everything at the All-New BoardWalk Bakery

The BoardWalk Bakery has been a food lover’s destination at Walt Disney World for quite a long time. So many of the bakery’s specialties have places in our hearts. I so love their Cheesecake Brownies that they’ve become a permanent fixture at Disney Food Blog Snack Attack dessert parties!

Fruit Tart and Cheesecake Brownie

But the space here was incredibly small. Barely a handful of people could fit inside, even though it served breakfast and counter service lunch items, and also hosted one of the BoardWalk Inn’s refillable mug stations. It was big news when the space closed for an upgrade.

When it reopened, many of the most-loved sweets were re-imagined, and the pastry chefs introduced some truly outstanding additions.

On the morning the bakery re-opened, I headed over and surrounded myself with boxes of baked goods — check out our full review of the newly-opened bakery for the proof — and found lots of brand new favorites among the old ones. The Salted Caramel Ganache marries rich caramel and fleur de sel for one of today’s hottest flavor combos.

Salted Caramel Ganache at the BoardWalk Bakery!

I also absolutely adore the brand new Peanut Butter, Banana, and Candied Bacon Pie. Candied Bacon, you guys!

Peanut Butter, Banana, and Candied Bacon Pie

Top prize, believe it or not, goes to what might just be my very favorite pastry in all of Walt Disney World. And those are seriously big shoes to fill.

But the Lemon Merigue Tart is equal to the task. With a lemon curd that has enough sour to stand up to the rich and sweet, the staff here have truly achieved perfection!

Lemon Meringue Tart

Lunch at Be Our Guest Restaurant

One of the most highly anticipated features of the New Fantasyland expansion was Be Our Guest Restaurant. Situated in Beast’s Castle, the setting — both inside and out — are truly enchanted.

Be Our Guest Restaurant!

If you’ve ever wanted to escape into a film, here’s your chance!

Dancing Snow Outside of Be Our Guest Ballroom

Enchanted Rose in Be Our Guest's West Wing

While dinner is a table service, sit-down affair requiring tough-to-score advance dining reservations, lunch is counter service, and a little easier to get to. Granted, you may face some long lines, but I think they’re worth it!

If you aren’t interested in waiting, take heart: fast passes for Be Our Guest lunch are being tested, and look like they’re going to be an awesome option for guests who like to avoid waiting whenever possible.

With house specialties like Braised Pork that’s slow roasted for eight hours, how can you resist?

Braised Pork

When it comes time for dessert, you MUST try the Grey Stuff Cupcake! It’s delicious!

The Grey Stuff Cupcake

And when the fabulous food is served on real plates with silverware instead of plastic forks, you hardly feel like you’re eating fast food.

All American Sundae at Plaza Ice Cream Parlor

When the mood strikes for an old-fashioned sundae while I’m in Magic Kingdom, only a visit to Main Street Ice Cream Parlor will do!

Main Street Plaza Ice Cream Parlor

I’ve always loved this spot on Main Street USA for its cozy charm. But when they recently introduced the All-American Sundae, I was smitten all over again!

Generous helpings of hot fudge AND hot peanut butter topping melt the ice cream ever-so-slightly, mingling the flavors gloriously. It’s instantly become one of my favorites!

All-American Sundae

What’s my favorite thing about this indulgent treat? It’s another great way to show off my peanut butter devotion!

So there you have it — my top picks for the 6 new things you MUST try if you’re heading to Walt Disney World for the first time in 2013. I know, I know, it’s hard to venture away from your sentimental favorites, but trust me on this. I have a feeling you’ll find a few new loves on this list like I did.

Pencil in an extra workout or two to offset the calories. Or just run your first lap around the parks each morning! Whatever it takes.

Now I want to hear from you! Will you be trying any of these 6 New Things? Or do you have a New Things List of your very own to tackle? Leave a comment and let’s hear all about it!

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55 Comments

  1. Pinky Lady says:

    I am leaving for WDW on wednesday. I will be staying at the boardwalk, so you know I will be hiiting the board walk bakery. When you mentioned that the writer’s stop in the studios may be the next starbucks, I think and hope you might be wrong about that one. All the other ones have been in main locations and the WS id kind of hard to find and easily missed. Hoping that my carrot cake cookie will never go away. Thank you for all your reviews.

  2. Frank Stefanec says:

    Gourmet Cake Cups are fabulous.
    Lunch at BOG is great too… I took the bullet for the group and got in line at 930…. it was worth it.
    Boardwalk Bakery is amazing too.
    Frank

  3. AJ says:

    Pink Lady — Have so much fun at WDW this week! :-) I’m not sure where the Starbucks will be at the Studios. They may build an entirely new location in order to get a large enough foot print! It’s all speculation…

    Frank Stefanec — I’m SO excited you’ve had the Cake Cups!!! They’re so new, so it’s always fun to find someone else who’s experienced the awesomeness. Well done getting in line at 930 for BoG! What did you have?

  4. Kaz says:

    While it is great that they have better coffee available in Disney World, I am not sure why Starbucks is listed as something I have to try… is it somehow different than the Starbucks everywhere else?

    Now the cupcakes… those I gotta try!

  5. Rune says:

    We’ve already tried several of these and thought they were spectacular. The salted caramel ganache from Boardwalk bakery really hit the spot on a cool damp evening, as did the All American Sundae from the Plaza Cafe. on a warm afternoon and yep, you get a generous portion tof ice cream and sauces there so we were both stuffed! A rum martini with coconut ice cream from France was our tipple of choice (de-lish but whoa, it nearly blew my ‘only drinks occasionally’ head off.)

    Recently tried the mocha (Mad Hatter) cake cup from Cheshire Cafe and you’ve hit the nail right on the head with the ““Gee, that was pretty good, but I really could have used more cake” line. I thought the Monsters Uni (birthday) cake cupcake I’d had up at the Contempo had a lot of frosting, but the Cheshire’s cake cups take it to a whole new level. I had mine with an iced coffee and it was still way too rich for me to finish off, its definitely one to share, sooooo good, but soooo sweet! =D

    And hmmm … is it just my paranoia or does the thought of Starbucks in the Writer’s Stop give any any one else the ‘they better not lose the carrot cake cookie’ heebeegeebees? I can live with it moving elsewhere on property, just please lets not lose it altogether. =P

  6. Rune says:

    (edit) btw I realise Writer’s Stop was just a guess on your part and at this stage nobody knows the truth. It would seem kind of a logical choice though wouldn’t it?

  7. Catherine says:

    SO many of these are on my list for November !! Here I come Main Street USA with my Pumpkin Spiced Latte in hand ! And when I get too warm from that – the All American Sundae will cool me off sufficiently. LOL

  8. Resident_hippie says:

    Had the braised pork at BOG on Sunday & it was hands down the best thing I ate all week! DH had the tuna Niçoise salad & liked it quite a lot, but said after trying the pork that he got it, too. Dd had the roasted turkey sandwich & quite liked it. The strawberry, & lemon meringue cupcakes were tasty, and the one with grey stuff was too!

  9. Paris Anderson says:

    We are leaving for Disney World this week!!!! We will definitely be trying the Cake Cups, ice cream at L’Artisan des Glaces Ice Cream and Sorbet and the Master’s Cupcake at BOG lunch along with our old standbys like the carrot cake cookie :) And of course eating our way around Epcot for Food and Wine. Thanks for all your reviews!

  10. Katie says:

    My family is going next week, 5 days until we leave! I can’t wait to eat at Be Our Guest and especially to try the Master’s Cupcake with the Grey Stuff. I am also eyeing up the Chocolate Macaroon Ice Cream Sandwich, it looks really good! Of course, the Ice Cream Martinis would be a great treat for the adults, too ;) I think the Gourmet Cake Cups would be too much frosting for me, but some of the other people in my group might be up for trying it.

  11. Cheryl Donofrio says:

    Please don’t hate me for saying this, but I actually have said “gee I wish this cupcake had less frosting and more cake.” And while I love coffee, I’ve always thought the coffee at WDW was fine. I really don’t like Starbucks; I much prefer Dunkin’ Donuts coffee. I would rather they had kept the old coffee and the Disney pastries. Or, OK, sell the Starbucks coffee, but keep the Disney pastries. Yes, I agree with Rune that the loss of the carrot cake cookie would be a really bad thing. Lets hope they’re smart enough to realize that.

    I do agree with you about everything else. LOVE the new ice cream shop in France, the new Boardwalk bakery menu, and lunch at BOG. I’ll take your word for the ice cream sundae at the Plaza. Next time I go I’ll definately try the sundae. Sounds great!

  12. Sue says:

    My list of new Disney foods to try was already too long! Out of these, I’m adding the Cheshire Cat cupcake, the BOG master’s cupcake, and the macaron ice cream sandwich. I think we need a DFB food checklist app to keep our running lists up to date on all the wonderful things to try.

  13. Michele says:

    Thanks to your amazing reviews, I already have 5 out of the 6 things on my must-eat list for January! Glad to know I chose well!

  14. Steph says:

    The American Sundae. Um yes. Can’t get it off my mind and I LOVE the new ice cream – profiterole, please! – at Epcot, but I would pass that up for one of those sundaes. It’s just awesome.

  15. Lori says:

    I like Sue’s idea of a DFB food checklist app ;-) I am leaving in 12 days OMG! And I have a verrrry long list of foods that I want to try on my two week long disneymoon. I dont know how I will fit it all in!

  16. Tricia says:

    I also agree with Sue’s idea. I know my check lists get alot of work and we still have things on the must try list after a ten day trip. It was too hot to be hungry.

  17. Joy O says:

    I don’t know how “new” things need to be to be considered here – but the waffle sandwiches at Sleepy Hollow should be on lists! Different and big enough to share! I agree with the other posters on having a running list when you go – also handy when you get to Food and Wine. (An app called CLEAR works well for this I think) All I know is if someone could plop me in the World tomorrow – I may never leave Paris in Epcot with all the new stuff they have there! Except of course to hop the boat quickly to Boardwalk Bakery:)

  18. Louise says:

    At the risk of being flamed, the All-American Sundae, at the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor was just meh for me. I think the waxy, fake chips threw me off. While I love the combo of chocolate and peanut butter on a sundae, it’s been done before, and I think something more imaginative is in order. At the very least, can the chips and put some roasted peanuts on top!

  19. Essie says:

    Well, the PB and hot fudge sundae is certainly on for my next trip as is the Boardwalk Bakery. I’d really have to think about it in order to give a list of just 6 favorites snacks or treats; that’s a difficult task that you undertook, A.J.

  20. Sam says:

    Why so many desert centric posts? It’s not all candy and cupcakes. Some people can’t or don’t want to eat high sugar things all day.

    Okay, I’ll go:

    1) The Charcuterie plate at the Territory lounge in the Wilderness lodge.
    2) Sushi at Kimodo’s at the Swan.
    3) Crisp breads and Dip at the Tambu Lounge at the Polynesian.
    4) Scotch Eggs at Epcot UK.
    5) Fish and Chips at the counter service “Yorkshire County fish shop” at Epcot.
    6) The Turkey legs at the MK…just because.

    /bonus for the Cobb Salad at Brown Derby…but frankly from recent pics, it looks like a stomped on possum. Instead of previous glory and service.

  21. Frank Stefanec says:

    My new favorite Cobb is at the Grand Floridian Cafe…
    Still like the one at the Derby, but the one at the Grand is my fav.
    Frank

  22. Bill says:

    Um… the Pork Shank at Gaston’s is NOT TO BE MISSED!

    Was it wrong that I had it for breakfast… In my book, no… after all we do eat bacon, ham and sausage for breakfast… why not another part of a pig.

  23. AJ says:

    Sue — I LOVE the app idea!

    Joy O — I totally agree! We are huge fans of those waffle sandwiches. It’s hard to pass Sleepy Hollow without stopping for one!

    Louise — Wow, roasted peanuts would be an awesome salty addition there — good point!

    Sam — Great suggestions! I have a bit of a sweet tooth :-), and I was looking to feature items that were introduced in the last few months or so. But you’ve definitely captured some of my faves on that list, like the Territory Lounge and the Rose and Crown Pub!

  24. cathie says:

    When I was at Disneyworld in August I ate at Prime Time and had a chocoate peanut butter milkshake….mmmm delish. Had never heard of a peanut butter milkshake before but the chocolate addition made it the best milkshake ever.

  25. patrick says:

    try the pink banana smoothie

  26. betsey says:

    BOG for lunch was amazing. the food was perfect and yes the grey stuff a huge hit too. great value for a qs credit one of the best on property imho

  27. Ellen Conti says:

    They all sound great but since none are listed as gluten free I won’t be able to try any of them! :( With Celiac Disease I need gluten free foods. I’m beginning to wonder if WDW is a place I can still enjoy. The last time I went was before I was diagnosed. Now I must be very careful of cross contamination.

  28. Laura says:

    I love Disney World! Every time I’m there, I got to Epcot and buy a turkey drum leg. It is amazing!

  29. Sheena says:

    Oh my goodness roll on July because after reading this I will be visiting the Boardwalk bakery and it would also be very rude if I didn’t at least try one Whipped Cream Vodka Martini Great blog. Thanks

  30. Bob Bloom says:

    Love the list there is so much there but PLEASE dont list Starbucks!! Im from the Pacific Northwest we have a Starbucks every 10 feet when i go to the Happiest place on earth i want the things that scream Disney. Not a coffee shop from home..

  31. Megan Parks says:

    I was just at Disneyworld 2 weeks ago, and saw there are plans for a Starbucks in Downtown Disney!

  32. Lori says:

    Love the list and agree with MOST of them. I even love Starbucks coffee, normally.

    But I have to say that the fact that despite assurances that it would still be the Main Street Bakery, it is in actuality just a Starbucks with a deceptive employee uniform. Because of that I personally have no need to even bother stopping in, and didn’t on my trip last August after seeing the “new” menu and would anticipate that were they to install them in any other locations any favorite treats that can currently be found there would also disappear. Cinnamon rolls anyone? (and please don’t tell me that shlepping all the way to the back of the MK for the maple one, is a good alternative. It’s just not the same) Install a kiosk in every area of every park and you’ll have my support, but to just scrap the wonderful treats that could only be found at Disney in favor of the run of the mill fare that can be found anywhere in the country. Nah, that just makes me part of what I guess is the sad minority.

  33. Nik says:

    Caseys Corner needs to be on this list. At the age of 10 I discovered the best hotdog in the world, and 26 years later it’s still the best!

  34. Betsy Roesch says:

    Just returned from WDW. I was hoping for The Main Street Bakery… serving Starbucks Coffee. What I found was a Starbucks (the same one I pass every day in the northeast) with a sign that read “Main Street Bakery”

  35. Moira :D says:

    I love Disney worlds food!!! Its always so amazing and incredibly good! I went 2 Disney last year 4 the first tinw and loved it so much!!! I loved the rides, the castle, the characters, the decorations and of course the food. Now im a Disney fanatic! I ♡ everything & anything Disney! Thank u 4 everything Disney! :D

  36. Allison says:

    I was at WDW two weeks ago, and checked out the new Werther’s caramel kitchen. The salted caramel brownie was amazing!! I highly recommend it to chocolate lovers strolling around World Showcase Lagoon.

  37. Shelby says:

    My boyfriend and I went to Disney World in October for a week and received the free dining plan with our package. Be Our Guest was a long wait, about 30-40 minutes, but the food was well worth it! Unfortunately, we decided to go on our last day in Disney so we didn’t get to go more than once, but we have decided that next time we go we will have to go there more than once. Our favorite place for lunch, by far, was Les Halles Boulangerie & Pâtisserie, they have the most delicious sandwiches and we also were able to choose a french dessert included with the dining plan!

  38. Mike says:

    I agree with Lori (February 9, 2014 at 1:34 pm) … I am more than disappointed that Starbucks dislodged The Main Street Bakery. We used to love stopping at the Bakery to take treats back to the resort. Starbucks can not even hope to live up to this lost tradition. Though the loss of Edy’s at Epcot is less tragic, I hope to God that they Never take over the Writers Stop. As Lori expressed, Starbucks Kiosks throughout (like when McDonald’s had fry carts) would be much more agreeable to me.

  39. Amy A says:

    You made my heart happy with this. I’ll be in the MK Friday and I will be making a beeline for the cake cups. That sounds like the BEST. THING. EVER.

  40. donna c says:

    I agree on most but I am one of the few that is Extremely not happy w star bucks on main street .it doesnt fit and what of us who doesnt like star buck coffee. I dont think walt would be loving it either .but the present king of disney doesnt seem to care.

  41. Amanda says:

    Ellen Conti, don’t be worried about eating at WDW with food allergies. My son has Celiac disease and is exceptionally sensitive; the folks at WDW go out of their way to help him eat like the rest of us. When you get to your first restaurant, let the server or the counter-service folks know that you have food allergies (even though we know it’s not an allergy ;) ) and they will connect you with a chef who will walk you through the ordering process. I absolutely love eating at WDW with my son because it’s one of the only times he feels like a normal eater! In fact, he had fried rice for the first time at Animal Kingdom!

  42. Emma Ginley-Allcock says:

    I am so excited!! Cannot wait to try the Cheshire Cupcake! I’m traveling to WDW for my birthday in December from the uk and already counting down the days-293 days(or192 working days!) until I’m there!! Hopefully will b able to burn off enough of the calories before we get there to eat everything on this list and more!! Also just told my wife that I need to eat at BOG otherwise my life will be over hope she gets the idea!! Xx

  43. JB says:

    Would so love to have prices listed although I am sure they’d be subject to change, but it would help me plan which ones we want to venture to if we knew how much it would cost for our large family. They all look so delicious!

  44. Michelle Weedon says:

    We have just returned from WDW. Always sad to leave. We had lunch at BOG and it was great sandwiches and the actual experience of the castle.
    Try the BLT cheeseburger macaroni and cheese at Friar Nook’s it’s really good and unique. Was sad that Pinnochios was closed and all the construction goin on at one of the most busiest times of the year during spring break. Think that should be done off season.

    I am a Starbucks fan so was thrilled to see the 2 new spots at MK and Epcot. Experienced my coffee at both was not let down. Now the great thing is that they offer more desserts at WDW Starbucks then at the normal ones in your town. Had huge cupcakes -red velvet and peanut butter one plus chocolate and vanilla. These you do not find at Starbucks. Maybe it’s their way of making up for taking the bakery pasteries out. Enjoyed all our meals and snacks. Love the Dole Whip too!

  45. Tiffany says:

    We recently moved from Cincinnati to Orlando to be closer to beaches and theme parks. I am thrilled to death that Starbucks is there!! The franchise is everywhere for the northern or Midwestern people but it’s more difficult to find a decent Starbucks down here (the ones in target do not count!!)

  46. Joe says:

    I agree with everything except Starbucks. I really don’t Care for their coffee and think the Joffrey brand is better. I would put Via Napoli’s Prosciutto e melon and the carrot cake cookie from writer’s stop on my list. I don’t visit without enjoying either one of them.

  47. Holly says:

    I had the gourmet cake cup on my last visit- looking forward to my next visit and another cake cup, it was soooooo good

  48. Joe says:

    Oops! I spaced that this was new things, sorry! I still don’t Cate for the Starbucks but just had the new Belgian Ale at Big River Grill and it was fantastic

  49. Ashley says:

    I’m all for Starbucks coffee, I love it and frequent it here in ohio… BUT if it has ANYTHING to do with the loss of my coveted carrot cake cookie… The thing I once shoved through a crowd of people to finally get back to, I will forever boycott it and find a new place for a cup of joe. So please Disney, save the carrot cake cookie!!

  50. Paul says:

    What about the pork shanks at Gaston’s Tavern? Had one a few weeks ago – almost as good as turkey let!

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