If you’re planning a voyage aboard the Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Dream, you’re going to want to make a trip to Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats.
Scratch that. You’re going to want to make so many trips to Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats that they name a gelato after you. (This isn’t a thing, but we wouldn’t object if it was!)
We first told you about Vanellope’s Go Kart Sundae back in July of last year, but that gorgeousness is only the beginning! Vanellope’s is so jam-packed with sweets and treats that it’s basically insane. I’ve never been in a place so full of stuff I wanted to eat that I didn’t know where to look first.
I spent THREE HOURS IN HERE to make sure I could do it justice for all of you. So fingers crossed I was able to touch on everything. But, let’s be honest, even if you were in here YOURSELF you wouldn’t see EVERYthing. There’s just too much!
Now, let’s get one thing straight. Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats come at an additional cost above and beyond what you paid for your cruise. These aren’t free with admission. But the cost is relatively low (cheaper than what you’d be paying in Disney World for similar stuff), and while the extra cost might be a bit of a turn-off on a cruise where you can eat as many Mickey Premium Bars as you want with your dinner (and after dinner…and from room service…and for breakfast…), once you see the specialties Vanellope has in store, you might just decide that it’s worth the extra splurge.
The shop itself is bright, owing to these clear glass entry doors. And your eyeballs will start burning from all of the colors and awesomeness in here from the get-go. Check out that peppermint door handle! (Please, don’t lick the handle.)
Once inside, you’ll see that the themeing at Vanellope’s is right to left and top to bottom! Peppermint lights and poles cozy up to massive globes full of gumballs. A cheerful race track curves around the room, breaking up the red and white peppermint theme a bit.
There are also some cute (and kookydooks) photo opps — like this winners podium and tasty looking go kart.
And Vanellope is keeping tabs on the action from her spot dangling upside down.
To the far left is a wall of candy. Here, guests can dispense a little or a lot of their favorite sweets!
Sweets and treats are on display, as are the cast members hard at work in the background. And above the cases are electronic menu boards.
Location-specific sundaes are described, along with the size and pricing info.
Additional signage is available with the sundae descriptions. And these are some surrrriously amazing combinations. You want to click the pic to dig into them a little.
There’s also a “Racers” screen which keeps an up-to-date ranking of the best selling sundaes at Vanellope’s. How cool is that? The Go-Kart Sundae was in the lead during my visit, and when we show it to you, you’ll understand why. (Shout out to John Frost at the Disney Blog for the heads up on this fun feature!)
Below the menu boards are bright cases full of some of the wildest and funnest ice cream and gelato I’ve ever seen. The attention to detail and the epic variety are just mindblowing!
There are also tons of toppings from which to choose!
Naturally, I had to get a Go-Kart Sundae. This one is fun for a number of reasons. For starters, you get to choose three scoops of whatever ice cream or gelato you fancy, plus five toppings! If you play it right, this could totally be shared between a couple people. Or me, myself, and I. 😉
Oh, and how fabulous was Enrique, there? He was the best cast member I encountered during the whole cruise. He was patient, excited about my food adventure, and…did I say patient. Cause he was patient.
Once you’ve made your selections, the sundae is topped off with whipped cream, cherries, and squares of Vanellope’s chocolate (you get to choose milk chocolate or white chocolate). And did I mention it’s served in this incredible souvenir go-kart WITH WHEELS THAT ACTUALLY TURN (this is very important if you have a 4-year-old boy at home)?! Yes! (They’ll even wash this baby out for you when you’re done, so you can take your clean bowl home and, say, finish each day with a go-kart sundae of your own design!)
It’s a sizable sundae, but whether you attack it alone or with a friend, it’s awesome. (Oh, and just an FYI — that blue background — yeah that’s the Caribbean water around Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island. AMAZING, RIGHT?!?)
Vanellope churns up other ice cream treats, too. Like this Peanut Butter Tower. You had me at Peanut Butter, Vanellope, but if it’s a tower of peanut butter, there’s no way to resist.
Okay, this one is slightly crazy and completely crazy good. It’s a super thick peanut butter cup and vanilla ice cream shake, topped with whipped cream, smashed peanut butter cups, a drizzle of thick peanut butter, a Vanellope’s white chocolate square, and… a glazed donut. Words fail me except this one: yum. (There’s also a straw but get a spoon. Trust me.)
Oh, and that Family Challenge Sundae? You can absolutely order one and have it delivered to your table at dinner! I did this to celebrate my mom’s birthday and it was a blast!
When you place your order, you simply request to have it delivered to your evening’s dinner service, and — voila! — you’ve got some serious dessert and some serious fun!
Happy birthday to my mom (and to me since I got to jump into this, too)!
Beyond ice cream treats, Vanellope also has a fabulous selection of dessert treats. They’re displayed neatly in several other bright cases.
Everything sounds terrific, including these Oreo Rice Krispy Bars. Which, if you’re going to improve on a Krispie treat, you might as well do it with Oreos.
Mickey Cookies are just as adorable here as they are in the Disney Parks!
As are these Mickey Tarts. But with so many things to try, I had to pass this time. But these are very well done.
If you prefer a dainty macaron, there are many, many from which to choose. They’re colorful and fun — and definitely don’t look like your average macaron. But they still have that flaky exterior and chewy interior.
For sophisticated treats, Vanellope featured Lemon Coconut Slices on my visit. And even though a Chocolate Twinkie with fluffy frosting on top isn’t exactly fancy, we think these are pretty.
Some lovely Ganache Chocolates are on display, too.
If you’re jonesing for a caramel fix, you could go for the Milk Chocolate Salted Caramel square.
But maybe the most exciting things in the dessert case are these mind-bendingly creative truffles. Shiny, colorful exteriors hide creative flavors within like Chocolate Gummy Bear, Chocolate Covered Popcorn, and Strawberry Milkshake. They’re so gosh-darn pretty, and they’re packaged well, so you can make these a take-home souvenir.
Of course, it’s not Disney-anything without cupcakes, and Vanellope’s had several varieties on display during my visit — and they were all packed with character.
Like these Beauty and the Beast Cookies and Cream cupcakes, topped with intricate roses.
Lightning McQueen holds court on a Cars Strawberry Cupcake, while Minnie adorns the Red Velvet.
Coco gets some love with a Peanut Butter Cupcake, while Captain Jack would definitely plunder these Chocolate Cupcakes with Raspberry Filling.
There are several varieties of fudge in the case: Cherry Almond, Chocolate Mint Fudge, and Chocolate Peanut Butter.
Classic Chocolate Peanut Butter was calling my name (when does it not?)!
So I had one of those…and a few other things. Just, you know, for research purposes. In front are the colorful truffles, packaged sweetly.
And then there’s the Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge. It’s super rich, and the portion is large enough to share unless you have the grandest of appetites.
The cross-section shows you how dense this is, with swirls of peanut butter fudge mostly incorporated into the very top, and chocolate fudge reigning throughout.
Coco’s Peanut Butter Cupcake WAS. AWESOME. It’s topped with curls of red and white chocolate and a Dia de Los Muertos-style mask. The frosting is thick peanut butter!
And the interior of moist peanut butter cake is jam — yummy, slightly tart jam. It’s a terrific balance and a good bet for the kiddos!
Then there’s this beautiful beast: the Unicorn Cupcake. There’s a lot going on here, but it’s got fun coming out of its tiny fondant ears.
The horn is also fondant, and there are several shades of icing at play here, plus two kinds of sprinkles.
The base buttercream is lavender colored but simple vanilla (though a really, really good buttercream), while the cake is confetti! So fun! The center of this one is more “smooth jelly-donut” versus the jam in the Coco cupcake, and paired with the confetti cake, it works!
The Mickey Oreo Cookie Pop is stinking adorable — I love the details in his face! This cookie pop is all about that dark chocolate Mickey shell…
Well, not all about it because inside is a crispy, frosting-filled, chocolate and vanilla oreo. So much fun to look at and to eat.
The last treat I tried was the Peanut Butter Blondie, which is so much more than a typical blondie. The base is an incredibly rich peanut butter round, thick and slightly salty. Then there are layers of chocolate: buttercream and discs.
The cross-section is something of a culinary construction site, but it’s another winner when you get a little of everything in a single bite.
Whew!! OK this is just a sampling of what’s available at Vanellope’s! There are also Mickey chocolate chip cookies and shortbread cookies, chocolate covered strawberries, Mickey tarts, caramel apples, and MORE! I’m definitely going to do a video on our youtube channel about it soon since there’s SO much more to share!
And, I’m not saying that Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats is the only reason to book a Disney Dream cruise, but it sure is a compelling one! Honestly, between the vast offerings and the high quality, it’s a can’t-miss for me. I can’t wait to sail away and try more of these sweet treats!
Have you wheeled into Vanellope’s? Let us know what you thought in the comments!
Disclosure: I was a guest of Disney Cruise Line on this cruise, but I did pay out of pocket for all items purchased at Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats. In nearly all circumstances, Disney Food Blog writers and photographers pay full price for their own travel, hotel, food, beverage, and event tickets. We do this because it’s important to us as journalists to ensure not only that we give you unbiased opinions, but also that you can trust us to do so since we’re paying our own way. On rare occasions, when we are invited by a company to attend an event as media, and when we choose to accept that invitation, we will always make you, our readers, aware of that situation. Note that when we attend events as media we are 1) Not required to review that event/food on any of our channels, and 2) Not required to review that event/food favorably. You can always count on DFB to give you a 100% unbiased and honest review of any event that we attend, food that we eat, or beverage that we drink. You can see more in our Disclosure Policy. Thank you for reading. — AJ