Review: Breakfast at Flo’s V-8 Cafe in Disney California Adventure

“Eat at Flo’s and Get Gas!”

Yep — It’s time to head to Radiator Springs in Carburetor County, for a tasty breakfast along Route 66 at Flo’s V-8 Cafe!

Flo's Sign

Flo’s Sign

Since it opened a couple of years back, Flo’s has quickly garnered a great reputation for delicious table service-style breakfast with counter service convenience and prices. It even makes our list of favorite fast food joints in Disneyland!

Let’s head over for an early morning visit to Cars Land in Disney California Adventure!

Atmosphere

As you quickly see from Flo’s Sign out front, the restaurant is superbly themed. If you’re a fan of the film Cars, you are gonna love this place. With the backdrop of desert rock formations (a.k.a. Radiator Springs Racers!!), Imagineers have outdone themselves here. You truly feel as though you’ve stepped through the silver screen.

Flo's Sign

Flo’s Sign

And while it’s all stunning in the daytime, you should definitely make a point to visit at night, when the glow from pastel fluorescent lights brings every inch of this place to life!

Flo's V-8 Cafe at night

Flo’s V-8 Cafe at night

Flo’s V-8 in the movie is, of course, the only gas filling station in Radiator Springs…which, of course, equates to food for us humans. :-)

Outside View

Outside View

Flo’s roof is famously patterned after an oil filter. Get it?

Oil Filter Roof -- Up Close

Oil Filter Roof — Up Close

Directly in front of the restaurant’s entrance, you’ll find one of the outdoor seating areas. These are the filling stations in the film, so naturally, you’ll find gas pumps and stacks of oil cans nearby.

Motor Oil and Gas Pumps on the Patio

Motor Oil and Gas Pumps on the Patio

As you go into Flo’s, you realize the seating area is enormous. It looks much larger inside than it does outside! It’s more than just Disney magic, though; one of the seating areas is themed both inside and outside as the Ornament Valley Mechanical Clinic.

Ornament Valley Mechanical Clinic

Ornament Valley Mechanical Clinic

Head inside, and step further back in time. The round-room entrance is crowned by this [Read more…]

News!: Disney World and Disneyland to Offer Braille Menus at Select Locations Starting March 1st

Today we get to share with you one more way that Disney parks on  both coasts are becoming more user-friendly for all of us!

Both Disney World and Disneyland Resort are preparing to offer a new service for guests with visual disabilities. Starting March 1, 2014, guests may request Braille menus at select food locations across the Parks.

Kouzzina by Cat Cora Menu Cover

Kouzzina by Cat Cora Menu Cover

As always, guests may continue to request menu reading assistance from Cast Members at any location in order to interpret the menu if a Braille version is not yet available at their chosen location, or to meet the preference of the individual.

Cast Members at Flo's

Cast Members at Flo’s

Prior to visiting, more information for guests with visual disabilities ranging from restaurant and [Read more…]

Top 10 Disneyland Fast Food Joints

Most of the time when I visit Disney, I indulge in a mix of meals. I may book a table service advance dining reservation for one part of the day, and leave the rest to chance — looking to discover new things at the parks’ kiosks and counter service spots.

Top 10 Disneyland Fast Food Restaurants

Today, I’m counting down my favorite places in Disneyland Resort to grab a quick meal!

Disneyland is second to none (yep — even compared to Disney World) at putting together truly outstanding counter service, quick service, and fast food meals. And the one consistent theme that you’ll find in Disneyland counter service spots — a lot of the time, the food and venues feel like table service quality (right down to real plates!)

Let’s get started!

Plaza Inn

The Plaza Inn is legendary for its beautiful atmosphere. Located where Main Street and Tomorrowland intersect, this charming spot has been open forever — and it’s been pleasing guests in search of a good meal all the while.

Even Walt was a fan!

Walt Disney enjoying a cup of coffee at Plaza Inn in 1966

Walt Disney enjoying a cup of coffee at Plaza Inn in 1966

A character meal table service location for breakfast, it morphs into a counter service buffet (sans characters) for lunch and dinnertime.

The Roast Beef and Pasta dishes here are both good choices. But ask most Disneyland food fans what the must-have dish here is, and you’ll get a resounding response: the Fried Chicken! The huge — and I mean HUGE — platter comes with three pieces of Fried Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, a Vegetable, and a Biscuit. I shared this with a friend the last time I got it, and we still couldn’t finish!

Plaza Inn Fried Chicken

Plaza Inn Fried Chicken

Incidentally, you should try and save room for dessert, too. (I know…I know.) When strawberries are in season, I’d definitely recommend the luscious Strawberry Shortcake!

Strawberry Shortcake at Plaza Inn in Disneyland

Strawberry Shortcake

But the Carrot Cake is pretty awesome, too.

Flo’s V-8 Cafe

Dining at Flo’s V-8 Cafe within Cars Land at Disney California Adventure is an immersive experience. As with the rest of the spots in this newest Disneyland Resort section, you feel like you’ve wandered right into the animation!

But step inside the enormous restaurant, and you see all kinds of kitschy fun, inspired by the roadside diners that once peppered legendary Route 66.

Flo's V-8 Cafe

Flo’s V-8 Cafe

The name of the game at Flo’s is the kind of comfort food that you’d expect to find in such spots, with spit-fired meats dominating the dinner menu. There’s also an inventive vegetarian option here — the Veggie Tater Bake!

But it’s Flo’s breakfast that we love love LOVE the most!

For a super sweet start to your day, you’ve gotta try the Brioche French Toast with Salted Caramel Sauce and Bananas. (Dessert for breakfast? you ask? Well, yeah; pretty much! But…bananas!!!)

Brioche French Toast with  Salted Caramel Sauce and Bananas

Brioche French Toast with Salted Caramel Sauce and Bananas

Or, try the option that serves up a delicious Mexican food-inspired twist — the Chicken Tamale Breakfast with Scrambled Eggs and Salsa Verde.

Chicken Tamale Breakfast with Scrambled Eggs and Salsa Verde

Chicken Tamale Breakfast with Scrambled Eggs and Salsa Verde

And be sure to stop back by later in the day for dessert — Flo’s Signature Apple-Cheddar Pie-O-Rama is spectacular!

Apple Pie at Flo's

Pie at Flo’s

Rancho del Zocalo

The beautifully themed Rancho del Zocalo, located in Disneyland Park’s Frontierland, is a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach!

Gorgeous murals and lighting fixtures dominate the walls inside, while a beautiful patio covered with gauzy awnings wins our vote for best place to sit here.

Outdoor seating at Rancho del Zocalo

Outdoor seating at Rancho del Zocalo

Following the pattern of many Disneyland counter service spots, Rancho del Zocalo is counter service with the feel of a cafeteria. Guests order their main entree, and then visit stations to pick up extra courses, like salads and desserts.

The Mexican influenced menu is small, but the ingredients and preparation are always high quality, and a cut above what we think of as fast food. One of my favorite options here is the Soft Tacos Monterrey with Fajita Chicken. (You can also get them with beef.)

Soft Tacos Monterrey with Fajita Chicken

Soft Tacos Monterrey with Fajita Chicken

The addition of Peppers as well as Sour Cream and Guacamole on the side makes this a winner for me. I look forward to having it whenever I have a chance to visit Rancho del Zocalo!

Hungry Bear Restaurant

If you like eating in a treehouse, then I have just the Disneyland spot for you! Hungry Bear Restaurant in Disneyland’s Critter Country recently underwent some renovations and [Read more…]

Disney Food Pics of the Week: Pub Grub!

We just shared our favorite Disney Pub Grub with you on Tuesday, and I thought it would be fun to check in with our DFB reader/photographers to see what they’re snapping these days!

It’s always so fun to flip through the fantastic photos that our members post on the Disney Food Blog Photo Extravaganza, our Flickr group. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out, head over there! We think a virtual trip to Disney is a great way to take a break from your busy day. :-)

Let’s take a trip to some of our favorite Disney watering holes today for our latest installment in our Disney Food Pics of the Week Series!

Tri-Tip Sliders from Cove Bar in California Adventure Park

Cove Bar in Disney California Adventure is a great place to take a load off while you enjoy water views and a spot of shade. And while you quench your thirst with specialty cocktails or craft beers, you can also answer your hunger with some fancy apps, like Tri-Tip Sliders. Yum!

Photographer: Hilary_JW

Tri-Tip Sliders from Cove Bar

Tri-Tip Sliders from Cove Bar

Breads and Dips from Tambu Lounge in Disney’s Polynesian Resort

Who can resist ducking into Tambu Lounge at Disney’s Polynesian Resort? This open airy lounge is a terrific spot to wait for your table at nearby ‘Ohana while you nurse a world-famous Lapu Lapu! It’s one of my favorite First Day Traditions.

And don’t forget — it’s just a monorail ride away from Magic Kingdom, so it’s a great place to relax with a basket of Breads and Dips with your island-inspired drinks.

Photographer: DVC Mom

Breads and Dips from Tambu Lounge

Breads and Dips from Tambu Lounge

Chips and Queso Blanco at La Cava Del Tequila in Epcot

But no Disney pub crawl is complete without [Read more…]

News! Valentine’s Day Menus and Treats at Disneyland

Will you be spending February 14th with someone special at Disneyland Resort? If so, you may want to check out some of the special treats and menu options to celebrate the day!

Disneyland

Carnation Café will offer a Surf and Turf dish for $19.99 (Sirloin Steak, Shrimp Skewer, Mashed Potatoes, Sautéed Broccoli, Sun-dried Tomato Butter and Herb Beurre Blanc Sauce).

If you’re visiting in the morning, you can enjoy Strawberry and Chocolate Chip Pancakes ($10.49).

Carnation Cafe in Disneyland

Carnation Cafe in Disneyland

Plaza Inn will be adding a Spicy Glazed Salmon with Chipotle Pineapple Glaze, Mixed Vegetables and Mushroom Quinoa for $16.99. (But why would you NOT get the fried chicken? That’s romantic, right?)

Plaza Inn entrance

Plaza Inn entrance

Café Orléans  will offer a “Bouchee of Love” :) . What’s a “Bouchee of Love,” exactly? It’s a puff pastry filled with shrimp, chicken, spinach, and tomato concasse in a creamy diable sauce with a drizzle of roasted cauliflower couli. ($19.49)

If you’ve already scored your Blue Bayou reservation, you’ll be able to enjoy Pan-Seared Hawaiian Hamachi, Spaghetti Squash, and Array of Roasted Potatoes (Sweet Potato, Yukon, Purple Potato), with Persimmon burr blanc ($36.99).

Blue Bayou

Blue Bayou View

Club 33 will also be [Read more…]

Disney Food Pics of the Week: Pie!

Happy Day After National Pie Day, Everyone!!

Seriously, even though we celebrated yesterday, this is SUCH a cool holiday, we think it deserves to be extended through the weekend, don’t you? Well, clearly you agree! Because today, we are showcasing your gorgeous pie pics, courtesy of our Flickr Group, Disney Food Blog Photo Extravaganza!

Care to join in the comfort food fun? I knew you would!

Mango Pie at Yak n Yeti Restaurant

One of our favorites — in fact, it made our Top 3 Disney Pie List! — is the Mango Pie at Yak & Yeti Restaurant in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. I could seriously go for a slice of this on my next visit!

Photographer: Roger Weeks

Mango Pie at Yak n Yeti Restaurant

Mango Pie at Yak n Yeti Restaurant

Apple and Cheddar Pie from Flo’s V8 Cafe

I love all things apple + dessert, but adding cheese is a fun next step!

Flaky Pastry, Apples, and Cheddar Cheese ftw! If you think so, too, be sure to try this yummo combo the next time you’re at Flo’s V8 Cafe in Disney California Adventure.

Photographer: Jingorokitty

Apple Cheddar Pie at Flo's V8 Cafe

Apple Cheddar Pie at Flo’s V8 Cafe

Beef and Lamb Pie from Cookes of Dublin

But pie aficionados know that there’s more to this delightful food genre than [Read more…]

Disney Food Pics of the Week: Soup!

It’s freezing…well, just about everywhere. AND, it’s National Soup Month! So I thought it was time to add some brand new bowls of comfort to our Disney Food Pics of the Week Series.

It’s always so fun to flip through the fantastic photos that our members post on the Disney Food Blog Photo Extravaganza, our Flickr group. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out, head over there! It’s great for a virtual trip to Disney, or even some fun inspiration for planning your next trip — or your next meal!

Cheddar Cheese Soup from Le Cellier

Ah, we couldn’t kick off a soup post without sharing a photo of one of your favorites and mine — Cheddar Cheese Soup from Le Cellier! It’s such a luxury to have a whole bowl of it! But it’s also nice to get a taste at the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival each Fall. Only ten months to go! Woo!!

Photographer: Nancy RK

Cheddar Cheese Soup at Le Cellier

Cheddar Cheese Soup at Le Cellier

French Onion Soup from Les Chefs de France

There is nothing better than [Read more…]

The Year in Review: Top 10 Disney Food News Items of 2013!

If you’re a Disney Food Fan, then 2013 has been an exciting year!

Disney food news stories of 2013

We’ve had lots of  change, new announcements, and brand new experiences.

So today, we thought we’d take a look back at this year, and review the Top 10 Disney Food News Items of 2013!

From new coffee to new restaurants, new technology to new ice cream, we have a ton to cover!

Let’s get started!

1. COFFEE!

When Starbucks and Disney announced in 2012 that the coffee giant would be coming to Disney Parks, the news was huge! And when the first Walt Disney World locations began opening in 2013, the story once again topped the list of Disney food headlines.

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

The first location to open was Main Street Bakery on Magic Kingdom’s Main Street USA. While some loyal fans of the historic spot decried the chain store intrusion, many coffee lovers were thrilled that they could now enjoy their favorite brew in the shadow of Cinderella’s Castle.

And with the Main Street cinnamon rolls available at Gaston’s Tavern (at least they claim they’re the same…you can see our cinnamon roll throw down here!), well — at least not all of our favorite goodies are lost.

A Busy Morning at Main Street Bakery

The reopening of Fountain View Cafe in Epcot as the second WDW Starbucks location seemed to ruffle fewer feathers, since the themeing for the futuristic ice cream parlor wasn’t as beloved as Main Street Bakery. Still, patrons were irked with the lack of seating, even if the many, many bays for ordering mean that your java arrives fresh and fast.

Have Your Starbucks in Epcot with a View of Spaceship Earth

But Starbucks wasn’t the only coffee news we debated in 2013. Disney also announced that Joffrey’s Coffee and Tea Company, headquartered in Tampa, would become the official specialty coffee provider for Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and Disney Vacation Club resorts.

Joffrey’s is Named the Official Coffee Brand of Disney Parks

We’ve been enjoying Joffrey’s products for ages at the kiosks throughout the parks, so this was welcome news to many. So far, we are hearing that you seem pleased with the switch from Nescafe to Joffrey’s.

2. RESTAURANT FASTPASS TESTING — AND MORE TECH UPDATES!

Waaaaayyyyy back in January of this year, we first wrote about how we thought My Magic+ would affect Disney Dining.

mymagic+

And before the year was out, we had the opportunity to see just how some of the new technology would work.

One of the most intriguing uses of MyMagic+ technology was the Touch to Pay System. We had an opportunity to put our Magic Bands to work with the new system, and Erin, our Disney Food For Families columnist, documented the process so our readers could be in the know!

Erin Paying with Her Magic Band at Artist Point!

Erin Paying with Her Magic Band at Artist Point!

And while we love the Magic Band concept, even cooler is all the Disney food bling that you can get to individualize your bracelet! I’m a sucker for the cupcake!

Magic Band Food Bling

Magic Band Food Bling

 

Another rumor that came to fruition was that [Read more…]

News: New Gourmet Chocolate Peanut Butter Caramel Apple Coming to Disneyland in January

Gourmet Caramel and Candy Apples are legendary at Disney. And come January, guests at Disneyland (and possibly Disney World, too!) are going to have a brand new apple to add to the list!

But seriously, this is one of the most gargantuan caramel apples I’ve ever seen!

A Brand New, Over-the-Top Apple Debuts in January at Disneyland!

Since Disney hasn’t released a name, we’ll go with the [Read more…]

Disney Food Pics of the Week: Cookies!

We are back with another fun series of food photos, courtesy of YOU!

That’s right, we love to show off the talents of our DFB readers who post their gorgeous photos on Disney Food Blog Photo Extravaganza, our Flickr group! And today we’re back to one of my favorite topics: Disney Cookies!!!

Let’s take a look at some of the yummo — and beautiful — Cookie Creations that you’ve captured on film at Walt Disney World and Disneyland.

Macarons from Boulangerie Patisserie Les Halles

If you haven’t stopped into the new Boulangerie Patisserie Les Halles to check out all of the délicieux eats there, you’ve got to get it onto your schedule. When I saw this little box of beautiful Macarons, I knew I knew I had to try them!

Photographer: Hilary_JW

Macarons at Boulangerie Patisserie Les Halles

Mickey Cookie at Disney California Adventure

I love that you can get this cute little Mickey Cookie on both coasts! But it’s pretty spectacular to be chomping off his little ears with a view of Carthay Circle behind you! Gorgeous pic!

Photographer: PadresFan619

Mickey Cookie and Carthay Circle!

Mickey Mousse!

Sometimes, the kiddos get the best desserts, you know? For example, this little guy, known as Mickey Mousse at Epcot’s Garden Grill, is the sweet ending on the menu for the younger set.

But Angela thinks it was just as good, if not better, than the grown ups’ dessert! Cookies and cream mousse, topped with not one but two Oreo Mickey ears? I’d have to [Read more…]