Welcome DFB Reader Megan Figuly today with a guest review of Pasta in the Park at Disneyland!
On Friday, Nov. 13 I attended the Pasta in the Park Party for the Avengers Half Marathon weekend. The event was held at Big Thunder Ranch in the Disneyland Park.
Beginning at 7 p.m., guests with pre-purchased tickets were allowed in. The area was tented and had long rows of tables set
up. A DJ played music and asked Avengers trivia questions. In the back were two lines for character meet and greets: in one line was Hawkeye and Black Widow; in the other — Thor and Captain America.
On both sides of the room were buffet tables set up with the evening’s food offerings. A cursory attempt was made at themed names for the food to add to the ambiance. Whether the draw of the super heroes, the option for face painting, the “Which Avenger are You?” quizzes at the table or the fact that the number of tickets sold was just right for the event size, the lines to get food were nonexistent the whole night.
Spinach and lettuce salad with feta was offered with “Black Widow” balsamic vinaigrette on the side. The salad was a very mild mix of leaves and the feta a nice touch of salty creaminess. The vinaigrette was tangy with a touch of sweetness.
For those wanting more veggies with their carb loading, there were steamed vegetables. The steamed veggies were spiced with herbs, which added a bit a flavor, but it would be a lie to say that I did not dunk them in the vinaigrette.
The pasta option was “Bruce Banner Bowtie” with “Incredible Hulk” creamy pesto or marinara (sorry, no cutesy name for you, red sauce!). The pasta was in the sweet spot of not being too dry or too gummy, which for a buffet serving is about what you could hope for. The pesto sauce was not too strong with basil flavor, which made it less intense for the non-adventurous eaters.
The only meat offered was chicken with ribbons of carrots and other vegetables. While the boneless chicken wasn’t dry, it was quite a way from being juicy. A dollop of the Hulk pesto sauce made a tasty addition to the chicken.
At the end of the buffet line were breadsticks. Nothing too fancy here — just a small notch above the kind you would get at the national Italian restaurant chain in terms of flavor and texture.
There were three separate dessert tables all offering the same mini-sized dishes- cheesecake, pumpkin pie, fruit tarts, éclairs, and vanilla panna cotta.
The drinks that were included with the meal were water (runners need to hydrate!) and Green Hulk lemonade. There was also a cash bar available. The lemonade was simply a tart lemonade that was colored green as there was no lime or green apple flavor added to it.
So the big question: is it worth it? The cost is $135 for ages 10 and up and $115 for ages 3-9 including a twilight theme park ticket, or $89 for adults and $69 for kids without a ticket. If I had been paying for everyone in my family to go, it would have been a really expensive evening. But since this race weekend was my mom getaway, it was only for myself.
The food is just okay, but not amazing. However, it is currently the only Marvel “character dining” experience Disney has in the country and if these characters are important to you, this pasta party is the only option to meet most of them outside of the races themselves. Thor is the only one of the four currently doing theme park meet and greets.
I do several runDisney races each year and Avengers is the only one I shell out the money for the pasta party because of the characters who are present. Just know that if you go, it’s really for the chance to high five Steve Rogers, not because the chicken will blow your mind.
Have you done any of Disney’s specialty meal events? Let us know your experience with a comment below!