We have a treat for you today — a sneak peek at some of the food that will be served at Disney’s soon-to-be newest restaurant, Trattoria al Forno!
Recently, we shared with you a first look at some of the menu items that are planned when the restaurant opens later this year at Disney’s BoardWalk (all subject to change, of course). But I was excited to find on my trip to Walt Disney World last week that the restaurant is already serving breakfast!
Well. Sort of.
As expected, the closing of Kouzzina left a breakfast vacuum (and a really, really devastating one at that). I was super bummed to see that the Mascarpone Waffles and other unique offerings might be nixed when Cat Cora’s Disney restaurant would be shuttered. Breakfast at Kouzzina regularly topped our list for best ways to start the day in the World.
So while I was intrigued to see that Trattoria al Forno’s breakfast menu was being served already — at its closest neighbor, Flying Fish Cafe, I was skeptical that it would even come close to Kouzzina’s breakfast. But I was eager to try it out and see what would be offered!
Now, I’m accustomed to meeting friends for dinner at Flying Fish, so it’s a little strange to arrive here for a 9:00 AM advance dining reservation!
Let’s take a look at what I found — focusing on the food, rather than the atmosphere.
Menu Comparison: Trattoria al Forno Breakfast Versus Kouzzina
So here’s the good news for all of your who were super sad to hear that Kouzzina was closing. The Trattoria al Forno menu — for breakfast, at least — definitely has some of the same “feel” as the Kouzzina menu. While there are enough standard items to keep breakfast purists happy, you’ll definitely see the influence of the restaurant’s themeing in some of the dishes.
To make easy work of comparing the two, let’s take a look at both new and old.
Here is the menu that I received during my recent breakfast at Flying Fish.
And here’s the menu from the last time I enjoyed breakfast at Kouzzina.
Press Pot Coffee will continue to be offered, something that Kouzzina fans often raved about.
While many of the exact items from Kouzzina don’t appear, there are definitely similarities. You’ll notice, for instance, that Trattoria will continue to serve Chicken Sausage as a side item. We’ve seen it on a few other breakfast menus though, at spots like The Wave (here’s a peek at their breakfast) at Disney’s Contemporary Resort and Carnation Cafe (see a breakfast review here) in Disneyland Park.
Flavors shift in the Mediterranean spectrum from Greek to Italian. Pequillo Peppers give way to Roasted Red Peppers, and Feta and other Cheeses disappear in favor of Pecorino Romano and Fresh Mozzarella.
We did notice that the Waffles seemed to make the trip over with a “tiramisu” type flavor — the addition of a coffee accent to the mascarpone. Yay!
I was pretty sad to see the demise of one of my Kouzzina favorites, the Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll.
I’m still holding out hope that something similar will show up when Trattoria al Forno opens its doors! It was awesome.
In chatting with the staff, we do know of a few other items that will appear on the menu later that weren’t available when we visited. These include Caramel Apple Pancakes with Streusel-Like Topping, and a Fontina Fondue-Type dish with Prosciutto, Eggs, Vine Tomatoes, and several different types of Cheese.
Now that we’ve talked about the menu at length, it’s high time I showed you what I actually enjoyed!
I decided to go with a couple of polar opposites for variety’s sake — one savory item, and one super sweet choice.
To begin, I settled on the Poached Eggs, Fennel Sausage, Parmesan, and Tomato Gravy.
Served over Soft Polenta, I thought the presentation here was excellent — a breakfast worthy of being served at Flying Fish.
The dish hit all the right notes. The Fennel Sausage answered to both traditional breakfast flavors as well as those I associate with Italian food. And the Soft Polenta was actually a really good base for all of this. I’m not a big poached egg fan, nor did I think I was a big polenta fan, but together they worked very well.
The Poached Eggs were cooked perfectly, the Tomato Gravy was minimal enough that it provided a touch of flavor and acidity without being overwhelming. It unified all of the components of the dish.
But I’ve saved my favorite for last! I just had to try the Waffle with Whipped Vanilla Coffee Mascarpone. As I mentioned before, this one bears a striking resemblance to Kouzzina’s Waffle that featured Whipped Mascarpone, Honey, and Chopped Pecans.
The faintest dusting of Cocoa Powder here tells me that they’re going for a Tiramisu-type experience, as I mentioned.
In this close shot, you can see the Vanilla Bean Specks and the slight color that the Coffee has lent to the Mascarpone. The topping is smooth and rich, tangy but wickedly sweet. Since Mascarpone is so beautifully high in butterfat, it melted atop the warm Waffles perfectly.
I thought I’d need syrup or a compote of some sort to “sauce it up” a bit — but I didn’t. That generous scoop of Mascarpone was more than ample to cover every bite.
The Waffles themselves were crisp on the outside and tender inside, and the Bacon provided the perfect salty counter point.
Kudos to Disney’s BoardWalk to start serving Trattoria al Forno’s breakfast in advance of the restaurant’s opening. First, the meal was delicious. They’ve struck the right balance between providing standard favorites, bringing along some Kouzzina classics, and staying true to the Italian theme of the new spot.
Second, I think this gives the Trattoria chef and staff a chance to practice their new menu and see what resonates with guests.
I know that many readers have expressed their doubts about Trattoria al Forno, but after this experience, I’m a little more hopeful that, at least for breakfast, we’ll still be able to count this spot as an eatery we’d recommend.
Now that you’ve seen pictures of real dishes, what do you think of Trattoria al Forno’s foray into breakfast? Leave a comment and tell us your thoughts about the new menu and the dishes we sampled!