Guest Review: Flying Fish Cafe at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn Resort

With an open kitchen and whimsical decor, Flying Fish Café boasts an impressive menu where diners enjoy a relaxing, “seaside” setting at the BoardWalk Resort in Walt Disney World.

Join us in welcoming back Guest Author Paul Kuconis! His latest review features a steak dinner (that’s right, landlubbers!!) at this restaurant.

The Epcot Resorts provide a very nice respite from the hustle and bustle of Future World and World Showcase, not to mention awesome restaurants and watering holes.

My travel agent’s favorite restaurant is Flying Fish Café. Every time they visit Walt Disney World they book an Advance Dining Reservation (ADR). So, I figured, why not, let’s try it. This trip we decided to give it a whirl!

Using the My Disney Experience app I made a 4:30PM dinner reservation for two. Rather early, but given the temperature, humidity, and heat index, it turned out be a good move.

The Long, Hot Walk

The Long, Hot Walk

We decided to walk over rather than take the boat. Either way, both involved no air conditioning!

We Hit the Boardwalk

We Hit the Boardwalk

We reached the Boardwalk and stepped back in time. After a quick stop at the ESPN Club for a soft drink, to cool off, and to kill some time, we ventured on.

Flying Fish

Flying Fish

Atmosphere

There it is! Nicely tucked away. The setback pulls the restaurant away from the hustle and bustle of the Boardwalk and provides a little quiet. Depending on your approach, the Café can be easily missed. After checking the posted menu we headed inside.

Flying Fish Door Pulls

Flying Fish Door Pulls

The flying fish theme begins right at the front door.

But, before we head inside, a question; why the name ‘Flying Fish’? It fits with the Boardwalk theme and evokes the roller coaster ride of yesteryear at Coney Island called Flying Turns.

While we waited to be seated I took in the décor.

Ferris Wheel

Ferris Wheel

Fish Hook Light Fixture

Fish Hook Light Fixture

Murals of Yesteryear Fun

Murals of Yesteryear Fun

Roller Coaster Motif

Roller Coaster Motif

Seating Area

Seating Area

The Bar

The Bar

Flying Fish Light Fixture

Flying Fish Light Fixture

It was at this point I started to think of the name ‘café’ and how it contrasted to the structure itself (I don’t want to call it a ‘restaurant’). Dictionary.com defines café as: 1) a restaurant, often with an enclosed or outdoor section extending onto the sidewalk (nope, didn’t see that), 2) a restaurant, usually small and unpretentious (not from my view), and 3) a barroom, cabaret, or nightclub (not really). Maybe more of an oxymoron? Or just a play on words? Something to ponder.

As we waited by the reception desk I scoped out the seating area and determined where I wanted to sit.

Kitchen

Kitchen

This spot looks good to me. Now, can I convince the Cast Member to seat us here?

Reception Desk

Reception Desk

I asked, and was granted, seating at the Chef’s Counter, the closest thing to the Chef’s Table you can get. (Editor’s Note: Flying Fish does do a “Chef’s Counter” meal, but outside of that seating, other guests are able to have their meals here at the Chef’s Counter.)

My View From the Chef's Counter

My View From the Chef’s Counter

My Place Setting

My Place Setting

Disney does it up well. Granite counter top and linen napkin with the Flying Fish motif embroidered. Nice touch!

Eats

First off, we looked over the wine list.

Black Stallion Chardonnay Menu Item

Black Stallion Chardonnay Menu Item

We selected the Black Stallion Chardonnay.

Black Stallion 2012 Chardonnay

Black Stallion 2012 Chardonnay

We enjoyed it very much, noting a lovely nose of green apple, lemon zest, and vanilla followed by flavors of citrus, brown butter, pear, and flint. The 2012 Chardonnay is soft and round on the palate with bright fruit and creamy notes that lead into a long, elegant finish.

Now we get down to the business of the menu and what to order.

The Menu

The Menu

During my visits to Walt Disney World, I always check out Cast Member name tags. I want to know their name and am curious as to where they moved from. Tim, our server for the evening, grew up in the city next to where we live. In fact, he is familiar with our neighborhood. How cool is that!

Potato Bread

Potato Bread

Tim brought us Potato Bread to munch on while we perused the menu. A very interesting bread with a nice, airy texture with pieces of potato throughout. That’s the cool thing with many Disney restaurants. They do not serve just ‘bread’ or ‘rolls’; at least at the restaurants I have visited.

Choosing the appetizer was rather easy. I like to try different offerings where possible to enjoy the Chef’s take and development of the ingredients. So I selected the crab cake.

Flying Fish Café Crispy Crab Cake Menu Item

Flying Fish Café Crispy Crab Cake Menu Item

Wow! Look at the plating! We eat with our eyes as we ‘see’ the food before we taste it. If it is visually appealing it enhances the experience.

My Crab Cake Appetizer

My Crab Cake Appetizer

Almost too pretty to eat. Nah! Because of the extreme heat, humidity, and heat index I wanted to eat light tonight. This was not a heavy appetizer.

No Filler Here

No Filler Here

The slaw was made with cabbage, red and yellow peppers, carrots, and finely shredded cucumber and the light vinaigrette provided a nice amount of acidity to balance the crab cake. Mix that with the dots of roasted tomato coulis (adding a little sweetness) along with the slight hint of heat from the ancho chile remoulade (WOW!), that makes for a nice, balanced bite, with no single flavor overpowering the other — especially the crab cake — the star of the dish. Topped with micro basil, it brings the whole thing together. Nicely done! Oh, and there was more crab than filler in the cake — can’t beat that!

Now for the entrée. A tough choice. All offerings looked sooooo good. What they need to do is offer a ‘menu sampler’. Tiny bites of everything. Why not, they do it with beer! Where is the suggestion box?

Char-Crusted Angus New York Strip Steak Menu Item and more!

Char-Crusted Angus New York Strip Steak Menu Item and more!

Well, this is a first! This was supposed to be a picture of the daily quote. I neglected to take a full, clean shot of my menu item. But you can get the general idea of the entree. I settled on the steak over Panzanella Salad.

One of Those Steaks is Mine

One of Those Steaks is Mine

One of the advantages of sitting at the Chef’s Counter is [Read more…]

Review: Dinner at the Flying Fish Cafe on Disney’s BoardWalk

Welcome back to the Flying Fish Cafe!

While all the dining talk on Disney’s BoardWalk has centered around the opening of the brand new Trattoria al Forno as of late, I wanted to bring you back to the Flying Fish, which is not only my favorite restaurant on BoardWalk, but also one of my very favorites in all of Disney World. Period.

During the interim between the closing of Kouzzina and the opening of Trattoria al Forno, the Flying Fish served a stint as a breakfast location, previewing some of the dishes that are now on the breakfast menu at Trattoria al Forno.

But this signature restaurant is now back to its regular dinner-only schedule, and if you haven’t enjoyed dinner at Flying Fish before, I’ve gotta say it: it’s practically a must-do.

Flying Fish

Flying Fish

Come see what I mean…

Atmosphere

The decor of the Flying Fish pays tribute to two things: first, the atmosphere honors its place on Disney’s BoardWalk through some insanely fun murals depicting things like turn-of-the-century roller coasters, those old school parachute swing rides, and other carnival-style attractions.

Boardwalk murals

Boardwalk murals

Boardwalk murals

Boardwalk murals

The theme is continued as you move further into the restaurant with a gorgeous backlit ferris wheel, and the most enviable seating space of all right underneath the circus tent.

Backlit Ferris Wheel

Backlit Ferris Wheel

Circus Tent seating

Circus Tent seating

The second design element plays on the star of the culinary scene here: seafood. And nowhere is that theme more evident than in the parachuting fish “flying” above as you dine!

Flying Fish!

Flying Fish!

Notice the bait hooks mixed in with some of the underwater themed lighting fixtures.

Lighting fixtures

Lighting fixtures

With everything going on, you may not notice the open kitchen (unless you’re seated at the Chef’s Counter directly in front of the show), but try to take a moment to observe, since what happens in this kitchen is some of the best of Disney culinary feats in action.

Bar seating in front of the kitchen

Chef’s Counter in front of the kitchen

Of course, if you’re just looking for a quick dinner, the bar area is very comfortable, too.

Bar seating in front of the kitchen

Bar area

I have no idea if “upscale-whimsy” is an interior design term, but if it is, that pretty much sums up the Flying Fish. It manages to be both sophisticated and super fun at the same time.

Eats

The name of this restaurant gives guests an idea that there is a focus on seafood at the Flying Fish, but don’t let that scare you or anyone in your party off who isn’t a seafood fan. Remember, I said this was one of my favorite restaurants, and seafood isn’t exactly my ultimate choice in cuisine. There’s plenty of meat and pasta to go around, too.

But I’m getting ahead of myself… let’s start with the complimentary bread served with butter, which was hard to hold back on thanks to the unique touches of herbs and cheese tucked inside the nooks of the rustic bread.

Bread

Bread

My friends and I enjoyed some the bread while scoping out the [Read more…]

Dinner Review: The NEW Trattoria al Forno at Disney World’s BoardWalk Inn

We’ve been waiting and the day is finally here! We have had our first dinner at the brand new Trattoria al Forno, and we’re excited to share it with you!

Trattoria Stone Medallion at the Hostess Station

Trattoria Stone Medallion at the Hostess Station

Trattoria al Forno replaces Kouzzina by Cat Cora, which closed in September after a 5-year run on the BoardWalk. While we have heard from some readers that they’ll miss the Greek restaurant, we are interested in seeing just how Disney goes forward bringing an Italian offering to this space.

It is true that there are many Italian restaurants on Disney World property — several within walking distance of Trattoria al Forno. So it will be interesting to see how this one compares. Speaking of, let’s head in and explore a bit before we turn our attention to the food.

Atmosphere

We gave you the full tour of the new restaurant last week, but we’ll show you around just a little here as well. You’ll find Trattoria al Forno tucked into Disney’s BoarkWalk, right between Seashore Sweets and the BoardWalk Pizza Window.

Trattoria Entrance

Trattoria Entrance

Step inside, and rich, earthy finishes of stone and wood greet you. Directly ahead, the bank of wine coolers hints to you the large role that vino plays in the menu.

Entrata

Entrata

As was the case in the restaurant’s previous lives — before it was Kouzzina, the Mediterranean-leaning Spoodles occupied the spot — the exhibition kitchen has always been the main focus of the dining room. That continues with Trattoria al Forno.

Wide Shot of the Trattoria Kitchen

Wide Shot of the Trattoria Kitchen

And it is this detail that makes the backstory of the space a little thin. As it goes, Trattoria al Forno is a family-owned restaurant that has been on the BoardWalk for years. Originally, the family owned a boardinghouse and a restaurant, but over time, the restaurant has grown.

Kitchen

Kitchen

With its growth, it has expanded down the BoardWalk, taking in one room after another — but they all face the beautiful exhibition kitchen. Perhaps the kitchen grew, too. :-)

This is one of the most extensive “on stage” kitchens that you’ll find at Disney World. It seems that just about everything takes place in front of guests, and finishes and equipment are part of the decor. Check out the bright red meat slicer, which will be used to slice some paper-thin charcuterie a little later on in our story.

(By the way, in the background of this picture you’ll see Chef Dee Foundoukis, who arrived here to head the kitchen for Cat Cora at Kouzzina and has apparently stayed on with Trattoria al Forno. So for those who are chef-watchers at Disney World, that may be an interesting tidbit.)

Meat Slicer and Chef Dee!

Meat Slicer and Chef Dee!

But let’s get back to the theme. To convey the progression, you see slight changes throughout the space from “room” to “room.” The restaurant’s original dining room is the Cucina, a warm, casual spot that has the feel of an eat-in kitchen.

Kitchen from the Cucina, the Restaurant's First Dining Room

Kitchen from the Cucina, the Restaurant’s First Dining Room

At some point, the family must have decided to glam things up a bit and build a more upscale dining room, and the Sala de Pranzo came into being. You know you’ve arrived in the formal dining room from cues like the crystal chandeliers overhead and the large display of silver and glassware along the back wall.

Sala da Pranzo

Sala da Pranzo

Still, business continued to boom, so a living room area, the Salotto, was converted to the restaurant’s third dining room.

Seating in the Salotto

Seating in the Salotto

Finally, guests may also find themselves in the Taverna. According to the story, this secluded area represents the restaurant’s origins and still retains the feel of a cozy inn restaurant. (Guests who dined at Kouzzina will recognize this as the former “Coranation” Room, an area used for Chef’s Table dining.)

The Taverna

The Taverna

Throughout the space, the seating is comfortable, and finishes are rich and refined. There is a mismatched sense to the furnishings, but it doesn’t really intrude on your consciousness. Overall, the theme here is conveyed in subtle fashion.

Seating -- Looking Back Across the Rooms

Seating — Looking Back Across the Rooms

We had dinner at Trattoria al Forno on opening night, and the restaurant was full throughout our time there. Even at capacity, however, it never seemed loud or uncomfortable. Shocking, since the previous restaurants in this space — Kouzzina and Spoodles — were well known for sound carrying and bouncing off the walls.

A Full House on Opening Night!

A Full House on Opening Night!

Speaking of dinner, let’s get to it.

Eats

When we sat down to order at Trattoria al Forno, we found the menu to be a curious mix. Based on pricing alone, you quickly understand that [Read more…]

First Look! Photo Tour: Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn

Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn is officially open for business, and we’ve enjoyed our first dinner there!

Trattoria al Forno at Disney's Boardwalk

Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s Boardwalk

The restaurant began serving breakfast and dinner yesterday to a packed house (see our Trattoria breakfast menu review here). When we left late last night, the waiting area was standing room only!

We’ll have a review of all of the dishes we tried this first time out on Monday; but in the meantime, we wanted to give you a look around the newly remodeled space. Thanks to our friend Mealtrip for bringing his fabulous photography back to the blog in this post!

Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk

Trattoria al Forno occupies the space that was previously Spoodles, and most recently the home of Kouzzina by Cat Cora. Many Disney food fans were sorry to see the Greek-themed restaurant close.

Trattoria Entrance

Trattoria al Forno Entrance

Now, Disney takes the space back to its original roots with a “family Italian restaurant” that has grown in its physical space and has evolved in its culinary approach over time.

Trattoria Sign at the Hostess Station

Trattoria Sign at the Hostess Station

While the dining room of Kouzzina was open, basically occupying one large room, the Trattoria designers claim you’ll see smaller rooms as you travel the length of Trattoria al Forno, with subtle differences in decor signaling your progression from one room to the other.

The backstory of the restaurant holds that an Italian family ran a modest tavern and boarding house on the boardwalk, which expanded over the years into a popular restaurant. As the restaurant was growing, boardinghouse rooms were converted into additional dining spaces — each family generation adding their own touches to the menu and the restaurant’s design.

Now, in all honesty, the overall space is pretty much the same general area that it was when the restaurant was Kouzzina. There’s an entryway and waiting room, a big dining room (which Trattoria has outfitted with brick columns to indicate said “rooms”), and an open kitchen. The room used in the past as a private dining room has been included as a general dining area, but that’s pretty much the only completely separate dining room in the place. But we can chat more about that later. Let’s get inside!

Beginning in the Entrata, or entrance, the space has been overhauled to create a warm but open area with minimal detail. No more Cat Cora cookbooks or merchandise. Just a wine “wall,” very little seating, and a hostess podium.

Entrata

Entrata

Stone, wood, and warm lighting accent the space. Framed wall hangings give it that “family Italian” restaurant feel. You know the deal.

Seating While You Wait

Seating While You Wait

It’s very comfortable when it’s not crowded. While we didn’t have to wait long for our 5 PM advance dining reservation, the seating area was inviting.

Waiting Area

Waiting Area

Once your party is called, you’ll travel through frosted glass doors to your table.

The open kitchen remains the restaurant’s main focal point.

Wide Shot of the Trattoria Kitchen

Wide Shot of the Trattoria Kitchen

Kitchen

Kitchen

Here, you can see the open oven, which serves to anchor the Cucina portion of the restaurant. This is Trattoria’s first dining area, and offers a casual, “eat-in kitchen” vibe.

Forno Up Close

Forno Up Close

Kitchen from the Cucina, the Restaurant's First Dining Room

Kitchen from the Cucina, the Restaurant’s First Dining Room

Beyond the more casual Cucina, you travel into the slightly more opulent

[Read more…]

Review: Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake from Disney World’s BoardWalk Bakery

I had so much fun during my recent visit to Walt Disney World.

What’s not to love about Disney at the Holidays? It was such a gorgeous — and delicious! — trip.

Today, I had to share with you a great Cupcake that I waited day after day for at one of my favorite snack stops, BoardWalk Bakery.

Let’s take a look and then I want to hear what you think!

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake at BoardWalk Bakery

See, the “seasonal cupcake” at the beginning of my visit was a pumpkin spice version, and I just KNEW it would switch over to a holiday option during my trip. Sure enough, about two days before I left property this lovely treat showed up.

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake from Disney's BoardWalk Bakery

Specialty Cupcake? C’mon BoardWalk Bakery — Give Us Some Deets!

Upon chatting up one of the awesome Cast Members, I learned that the cupcake was Dark Chocolate Cake with a Strawberry Cheesecake Filling.

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake from the BoardWalk Bakery

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake from the BoardWalk Bakery

For some reason I was super impressed by the crunchy chocolate toppers that were all glittery. Why? Who can say? I just thought they were cool. And that adorable white chocolate star was perfect on top.

Crazy Cute Christmas Tree Decorations!

Crazy Cute Christmas Tree Decorations!

But enough about Chocolate Pearls that double as ornaments and White Chocolate Gold Stars. At the end of the day, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. (See? That works for people and cupcakes.)

Under a crown of super light and fluffy Whipped Cream (belch, blech, blech), you’ll find Super Dark Chocolate Cake.

And hidden inside — yep, there it is — a thick Strawberry Cheesecake Filling.

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake -- Cross Section

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake — Cross Section

The filling itself was only slightly less dense than actual cheesecake. I was really impressed with its consistency.

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake -- Filling Up Close

Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake — Filling Up Close

And the flavor? Well, non-traditional holiday-ness aside — it was good! I’m a big fan of fruit and chocolate combos, and a filling inside a cupcake is always a welcome addition.

Besides, have I mentioned how utterly adorable it is? Really, you can’t not.

What do you think of the Strawberry Cheesecake Holiday Cupcake? Leave a comment and tell us if it makes your “must have” list!

Snack Series: The Mickey Oreo Cupcake at BoardWalk Bakery

It’s time to pop in and see what’s what at one of the best Disney spots for treats, BoardWalk Bakery!

The Bakery has always been one of our favorite spots for sweet treats, but it’s a can’t-miss every trip since it reopened after a major overhaul last year!

The Cheesecake Brownie and Peanut Butter, Banana, and Candied Bacon Pie are some of our favorites! And their Lemon Meringue Tart is probably my favorite pastry treat in all of Walt Disney World.

But Boardwalk Bakery is also one of our favorite stops to find those amazing Disney World Cupcakes.

The Mickey Oreo Cupcake

The Mickey Oreo Cupcake captivated me at first glance because it’s just so darn cute. Underneath all of the fun trimmings, it’s a very simple cupcake — Chocolate Cake and Vanilla Icing, with a little surprise inside — and trimmed with Red Candies. But the garnish, though simple, adds something pretty special. It also bears a striking resemblance to another BoardWalk Bakery Mickey Oreo Cupcake from the past — the Oreo Bon Bon Cupcake.

Mickey Oreo Cupcake

Mickey Oreo Cupcake

Sitting on top is an Oreo Cookie, half-dipped in Red-Colored White Chocolate to resemble Mickey himself! Add a couple of Chocolate Discs for ears and Yellow Candies for buttons, and voila!

Mickey Oreo Cupcake -- Up Close

Mickey Oreo Cupcake — Up Close

But tucked inside, there’s another item of interest — a thick, mousse-like [Read more…]

2014 Gingerbread House Displays at Walt Disney World

Once again, visions of gingerbread houses will become reality at select Walt Disney World resort hotels!

Gingerbread Mickey Cookie

Gingerbread Mickey Cookie

The holiday season is underway as Mickey and his elves (and some talented chefs!) get busy filling the resorts and parks with seasonal decor, merchandise, and treats. Plan to stop by the resorts to see the displays, purchase a pin, and/or meet one of the fabulous chefs!

Contemporary Resort

And how cool is it that the Contemporary’s NEW gingerbread display showcases characters from Disney’s popular film, “Frozen” in the artistic style of Disney Legend Mary Blair! We reported on all the details last week. Check out all the details (including festive treats!!) on the Frozen Gingerbread Display here.

Frozen Gingerbread Display

Frozen Gingerbread Display

Grand Floridian Resort

The impressive gingerbread house churns out baked goods made from a classic Austrian recipe. Holiday treats for sale include cookies, shingles,ornaments, and houses — all made from gingerbread. Other freshly made items include Stollen Bread, chocolate peppermint bark, and truffles. Gingerbread decorating tips are given in free demonstrations! Opening date: November 23, 2014.

Life-size!

After 400 hours of baking, the chefs spent 160 hours decorating the house. This unique 80 square feet of retail space is 16 feet high by 17 feet wide and constructed with 1,000 board feet of trim, 60 sheets of plywood, 40 window panes, 100 square feet of display, and 10,000 pieces of gingerbread used.

Looking Down on the Grand Floridian Gingerbread House

Looking Down on the Grand Floridian Gingerbread House

The immense amount of gingerbread was made with 700 lbs. of chocolate, 1,050 lbs. honey, 600 lbs. powdered sugar, 35 lbs. spices, 800 lbs. flour, 140 pints egg whites. and 180 lbs. apricot glaze. Wow!

BoardWalk Inn

Inside the gorgeous lobby of the BoardWalk Inn, the Sweet Treats gingerbread display conjures visions of a Jersey Shore concession stand. We love the whimsical decor!

Gingerbread Shingle from Disney's BoardWalk

Gingerbread Shingle from Disney’s BoardWalk

Beach Club

Once again, a life-size carousel will be the centerpiece of the Beach Club’s lobby. Look for the seven Hidden Mickeys! Take home treats including small gingerbread kits will be available for purchase at the Beach Club Marketplace. Watch for inspiring demonstrations by pastry chefs. Opening date: November 25, 2014.

Carousel Horse at Disney's Beach Club

Carousel Horse at Disney’s Beach Club

Think your holiday baking list is long? It took [Read more…]

Disney Food Pics of the Week: Gingerbread at Disney!

Today, we have another great edition of Disney Food Pics of the Week! We love to head over to our Flickr page — Disney Food Blog Photo Extravaganza — where DFB readers share all of their Disney Food Photos. Wanna get in on the fun? Just head over and post your pics for a chance to have them featured in our Disney Food Pics of the Week Series!

There’s no better way to get into the holiday spirit than a tour of the extravagant Gingerbread Displays at Walt Disney World. The treats that pop up during this time of year are extra special, too! Today, let’s look at a few of the photos that you’ve taken capturing the magic of Disney World Gingerbread!

Gingerbread Mickey Cookie

Gingerbread Mickey Cookie

Gingerbread House at Disney’s Grand Floridian

Photographer: Scott Sanders

It just wouldn’t be Christmas at Walt Disney World without a trip to see the huge Gingerbread House at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. I love this shot, which shows you the scale of the house and captures some of the beautiful lobby interior of the hotel as well! (Keep an eye on the chimney — you may just see smoke rising from the house when you’re there!)

Gingerbread House at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

Gingerbread House at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

Gingerbread Shingle

Photographer: Riniel Calaelen

After a day of touring all of the beautiful gingerbread displays at Walt Disney World, it’s pretty normal to start craving those spicy cookies! That’s when a shingle from Disney’s BoardWalk will come in handy for takeaway holiday noshing!

Gingerbread Shingle from Disney's BoardWalk

Gingerbread Shingle from Disney’s BoardWalk

Gingerbread Carousel Horse at Disney’s Beach Club

Photographer: [Read more…]

What’s New Around Disney World: October 28, 2014

Happy Fall! Autumnal treats have been appearing all over Disney World for a while now, but with Halloween just days away, we thought we’d give you one last glimpse of the season’s snacks.

But that’s not the only food news ’round these parts… not by a long shot. Take a trip with us around all four Disney World parks to check out What’s New!

Hollywood Studios

October is probably my favorite time for the candy apples that hit the scene, like these at Sweet Spells.

Halloween Candy Apples

Halloween Candy Apples

"Poisoned" Candy Apple

“Poisoned” Candy Apple

Minnie Witch Candy Apple

Minnie Witch Candy Apple

Min & Bill’s Dockside Diner currently features a Caramel Apple Shake as its tribute to fall. The featured shakes here change frequently, so be sure to pop by to see what’s available on your visit!

Min and Bill's Dockside Diner

Min and Bill’s Dockside Diner

Caramel Apple Shake

Caramel Apple Shake

Joffrey’s Coffee Carts all over Disney World have changed their seasonal offerings to include a Pumpkin Pie Latte and a Pumpkin Pie Frozen Cappuccino.

Joffrey's Coffee Kiosk at Pixar Place

Joffrey’s Coffee Kiosk at Pixar Place

Seasonal Coffee beverages

Seasonal Coffee beverages

Speaking of those Joffrey’s Carts… remember the Big ‘Ol Donut? We spotted a few topped with massive amounts of cookie crumble for a change [Read more…]

Sneak Peek and Review: Trattoria al Forno Breakfast at Disney’s BoardWalk

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!

Trattoria al Forno Logo

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!

Flying Fish, is a DFB Favorite!

Flying Fish Cafe in the Morning Hours

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.

Trattoria al Forno Breakfast Menu -- Click to Enlarge

Trattoria al Forno Breakfast Menu — Click to Enlarge

And here’s the menu from the last time I enjoyed breakfast at Kouzzina.

Breakfast Menu -- Click to Enlarge

Breakfast Menu — Click to Enlarge

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.

So Far, No Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll at Trattoria al Forno

So Far, No Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll at Trattoria al Forno

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.

Eats

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 [Read more…]