First Look and Review: BaseLine Tap House Opens in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Welcome to the new Grand Avenue in Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

This is where you’ll find BaseLine Tap House — the new lounge (as in, just opened TODAY!) located in what was formerly known as The Writer’s Stop. In fact, the Grand Avenue area is a portion of the park that once celebrated the architecture and culture of New York City and San Francisco — by way of posing as movie sets for both — when it was known as the Streets of America.

Grand Avenue, however, is a nod to Los Angeles, California. And BaseLine Tap House plays its part in the scene by offering California beers, cider and wine, along with specialty cocktails and a small bites menu.

So, as the song goes… California, here we come!

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

Let’s check it out!

Atmosphere

Aah, it’s good to see some life just around the corner from Sci-Fi Dine In Restaurant again…

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

And to spy plenty of life inside, too!

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

As our scene is set, the brick building that now stands as BaseLine Tap House once operated as the Figueroa Printing Company, an independent “mom-and-pop” print shop.

Figu

Figueroa Printing Company

Figueroa was linked to the Disney Studios in Burbank, CA, and Disney buffs will love the way the history is tucked throughout the decor, giving us a bit of Disneyland atmosphere right here in Disney World!

Disneyland!

Disneyland!

It's Friendlyable!

It’s So Friendlyable!

Vintage Disneyland

Vintage Disneyland

Some Disney WORLD history, though, is hidden in here, too… can you spot the old, familiar metallic letters that once — and still do — spell out Writer’s Stop :) ?

Writer's Stop Letters

Writer’s Stop Letters

Writer's Stop Letters

Writer’s Stop Letters

Writer's Stop Letters

Writer’s Stop Letters

Even the music is super fun, with acoustic covers of new and old tunes ranging from The Cure and Madonna to Imagine Dragons piping through the air.

Some of the indoor seating faces right outside.

Indoor Seating

Indoor Seating

"WINE a little..."

“WINE a little…”

"LAUGH a lot..."

“LAUGH a lot…”

Outdoor terrace seating is plentiful and cheerful with bright red and orange umbrellas offering shade. Fans provide a cooling element, as well.

Outdoor Seating

Outdoor Seating

Fans

Fans

I bet those hanging lights will look great at night!

BaseLine Tap House

BaseLine Tap House

Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor Lighting

No matter where you choose to sip and eat, all orders are taken inside at the bar. There are no tableside servers, though your items will be bussed once you wrap up your visit. If you’re taking your drinks outside, you’ll receive your beverages in plastic cups, while drinks staying indoors are served in glass.

Glasses

Glasses

It’s high time to get a few of those cups filled, don’t you think?

Eats and Drinks

The California vibe continues with the drink selections at BaseLine Tap House!

BaseLine Tap House sign

BaseLine Tap House sign

California craft ales, lagers, and a cider (Ace Space Bloody Orange Hard Cider!) are among the main offerings of the House, and Create Your Own Beer Flights allow you to mix and match.

BaseLine Tap House Menu

BaseLine Tap House Menu

By the way, you can grab the Cider option as part of your flight, too.

California wines are also represented with St. Francis Chardonnay and Line 39 Cabernet Sauvignon — both served on tap, a trend we’re starting to see around Disney World more and more these days.

BaseLine Tap House Menu

BaseLine Tap House Menu

Specialty cocktails include a Negroni (Hendrick’s Gin, Campari, and Carpano Antica Sweet Vermouth) and the California Sunset (Absolut Berri Açaí Vodka, Southern Comfort, orange juice, and sweet-and-sour with a float of pomegranate juice).

Not wanting (or not of age) to imbibe?

Notices on the Wall

Notices on the Wall

No problem! Wild Strawberry Lemonade and Blue Sky Black Cherry Soda make up the specialty non-alcoholic options. And though the stellar selection of beverages is definitely the focus of BaseLine Tap House, there is also a small food menu to go along with whatever drink — or drinks! — you choose.

BaseLine Tap House Menu

BaseLine Tap House Menu

From left to right, we made our Beer Flight out of the Golden Road 329 Lager, Green Flash Passion Fruit Kicker Wheat Ale, North Coast Scrimshaw Pilsner, and Anchor Meyer Lemon Lager.

Create Your Own Beer Flight

Create Your Own Beer Flight

Create Your Own Beer Flight

Create Your Own Beer Flight

The Golden Road is fairly basic, and good for fans of simple, non-complex flavors.

Golden Road

Golden Road

Golden Road

Golden Road

The Green Flash, meanwhile, presents just a hint of sour taste, while remaining very drinkable and refreshing.

Green Flash

Green Flash

It’s a great choice for fans of fruitier beers.

Green Flash

Green Flash

The North Coast is clean and a little hoppy with a mild bitterness.

North Coast

North Coast

North Coast

North Coast

But Anchor Meyer Lemon was the favorite, with its pronounced — but not overpowering — lemon flavor.

Anchor Meyer Lemon

Anchor Meyer Lemon

Even though we’re celebrating the L.A. life, this one’s still perfect for enjoying in Sunny Florida!

Anchor Meyer Lemon

Anchor Meyer Lemon

Speaking of citrus, the Ace Space Bloody Orange Hard Cider is especially delicious, with more of the orange flavor coming through the more you drink it.

Space Ace Bloody Orange Hard Cider

Ace Space Bloody Orange Hard Cider

It’s still really smooth, though, for a citrus cider. It also has a higher alcohol percentage than your typical ciders out there.

Ace Space Bloody Orange Hard Cider

Ace Space Bloody Orange Hard Cider

So that’s good to know ;) . Now, let’s soak up these suds, shall we?

Appetizers

Appetizers

The Bavarian Pretzel is served with spicy mustard and a beer cheese fondue.

Bavarian Pretzel with spicy mustard and beer cheese fondue

Bavarian Pretzel with spicy mustard and beer cheese fondue

The pretzel is exactly what you’d expect — the same deal as other gigantic Bavarian pretzels around Disney World.

Bavarian Pretzel

Bavarian Pretzel

But the beer cheese fondue is the highlight. It’s not quite as thick as you’d anticipate, but that works out well since you use less of it.

Beer Cheese Fondue

Beer Cheese Fondue

The Spiced Almonds are somewhat atypical than the cinnamon-glazed style you’ll usually find around the parks, as they are both sweet and spicy.

Spiced Almonds

Spiced Almonds

They’re nicely flavorful, and though the emphasis is still on the sweeter spices, a bit of heat does come through every couple of bites.

Spiced Almonds

Spiced Almonds

The Charcuterie Board has a bit of a unique twist as well in that it features a selection of California cheeses with Toma Farmstead Cheese, Point Reyes Original Blue Cheese, and Laura Chenel’s Sonoma Goat Cheese.

Charcuterie Board

Charcuterie Board

Chorizo and calabrese salami, cornichons, grapes and toasted baguettes complete the Board.

Charcuterie Board

Charcuterie Board

Charcuterie Board

Charcuterie Board

While the meats are fine, nothing really stands out. It’s those cheeses that really make the plate, starting with the strong and potent Blue, which also has a great texture.

Blue Cheese

Blue Cheese

The Toma Cheese, meanwhile, is also quite good — very mild and slightly dry.

Toma Cheese

Toma Cheese

And the goat cheese is creamy and salty, with a pumpkin and cranberry crust that adds a terrific sweetness — almost resembling a dessert cheese.

Goat Cheese

Goat Cheese

This one, by the way, also goes great with the Spiced Almonds.

Goat Cheese

Goat Cheese

And with that… it’s a WRAP at the TAP!!

Overall

How much fun is BaseLine Tap House?! You know, I wasn’t convinced that Hollywood Studios needed another watering hole, what with already having terrific spaces like Tune-In Lounge, The Hollywood Brown Derby Lounge, and a myriad of pop-up bars that… well, pop-up all over the place to celebrate various events and seasons. But I am totally digging BaseLine Tap House! First, it offers a crowd capacity that the other spots lack. More importantly, though, Disneyland touches within a grown-up vibe set a terrific scene for some great California brews. And I appreciate the fact that — even though we’ve seen all these particular food items before — even the limited food offerings have been given small, thoughtful makeovers.

Even though the new Grand Avenue area is a makeover of a previous are of the park, I have to say… this updated space and BaseLine Tap House really do give you a feel that things are really, truly, finally moving forward at a park in the midst of enormous transitions. Sure, there are growing pains (in the form of crazy amounts of construction walls), but additions like this along the way inspire confidence that this time of transition will be well worth the wait!

Are you planning to visit the new BaseLine Tap House? Please let us know with a comment!

Comments

  1. Mark says

    Noooooo! Buy the Book is a bar. Won’t print my wife’s comment. Looks like a nice bar, an American Tutto Gusto. Where do we get those great bakery items and a good cup of coffee now?

  2. Anna says

    Excited about this new addition to HS. Hope they eventually add more food items. Did you notice if they offer any gluten-free beers? We’re headed to Disney next week. Thanks!

  3. Sandra G says

    We were definitely not thrilled when they closed Writers Stop, one of our favorite places to take a break at WDW. And they sold books! They sure do need a book store at WDW, especially since Virgin Books and Records closed several years back at DTD. We do plan to try this new spot, and then head to Sweet Spells for coffee and a big old cookie (although I am going to miss those fantastic seasonal muffins, like cranberry orange).

  4. Karen says

    Love the review and looking forward to visiting BaseLine! Looks like a great spot to take a break and enjoy a drink and snack.

  5. Beth S says

    Loved the Writers Stop! It was a must-do both for the books and afternoon coffee/snack for our family on every visit and we miss it! However, I am glad to see a cider among all those beers, as hard cider of any kind is my preferred drink. Anna, you should look into this Ace Space Bloody Orange Hard Cider, as all the ciders I have ever had are gluten free naturally. I’ve never had this one– I look forward to it–but I suspect it is also gluten-free.

  6. Cheryl D says

    This looks great; we can’t wait to try it! I have two questions:
    First, will they let you substitute for the “bleah” cheese, which neither of us likes, and second, do they offer any sugar free sodas? Thank you for another great revue.

  7. says

    It once took us an entire hour to locate and procure a single alcoholic beverage in DHS. I was like: I JUST WANT A DRINK AND I WILL TRADE MONEY FOR IT AND DISNEY IS NOT ALLOWING THAT TO HAPPEN. So yes. I’m happy about this.

  8. DFB Sarah says

    Hi, Cheryl! The charcuterie board appears to be prepped ahead of time in the kitchen, because it comes out quickly. If that’s the case, a substitution may be unavailable. But it can’t hurt to ask! As for sugar free sodas, the Blue Sky they offer does not have a sugar free version of the Black Cherry that’s on tap here. But they do have a soda gun behind the bar, so we think Diet Coke is probably the only option. I hope this helps!

  9. DFB Sarah says

    Anna: The ACE Cider is gluten free (according to its Web site). And the Stone Delicious IPA is ‘reduced gluten’, according to its Web site. I hope this helps!

  10. Kelly M says

    On first glance it looks like it belongs at Disney Springs, over near Homecomin’.
    That California Sunset sounds pretty yummy, and the orange cider too. We’ll be back in a few weeks so will give it a try

  11. Hannah says

    Another bar with beer, pretzels and a cheese/charcuterie board. Could they please be more generic?

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