Review: Maya Grill at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort

Hidden in Coronado Springs Resort’s El Centro, between the lobby and the Casitas section of the resort, Maya Grill offers a Latin American menu in the midst of Mayan architecture.

Atmosphere

You really do feel like you’re at the entrance to a Mayan pyramid when dining in this restaurant, and the decor — with soaring ceilings and moody lighting — is stunning. But many folks shy away from Maya Grill due to its distance from…well…just about everything.

Maya Grill sign

We arrived without a reservation, and although I could see many empty tables, we were told there would be a 45-minute wait. This was disturbing, since I think of Maya Grill to be one of the lesser-populated restaurants in Disney World. But since we were already staying at Coronado Springs (and since we had to eat here anyway so that we could cover it on the blog), we just told the hostess that we’d come back in 45 minutes, and spent the time catching up on work in our room.

When we returned, she’d [Read more…]

Disney World Margarita Gallery

This post was originally going to be a throwdown, but I had so many margaritas I wanted to share with you that it ended up being a curated gallery for heaven’s sake!

Also, I hope you guys are willing to share with me in the comments section your favorite margaritas (and maybe even your pictures of them to add to the gallery!).

Take a look through the reviews below and let me know what I’m missing! Let’s work together to make this comprehensive! :-)

Multiple Locations: Margarita Flight

Finally, if you just can’t make up your mind, head over to one of Disney World’s Mexican restaurants (they’re all run by the same company) and order a Margarita Flight! I’ve mentioned it a couple of times already here on DFB, but it’s really a great option if you’d like to try multiple different flavors.

Margarita Flight

As daily readers know, my favorites here are the Lime, Mango Blueberry, and Pineapple. Not so much with the veggies and the flowers. ;-)

You can get these at most of Disney’s Mexican food locations, including Maya Grill and Rix Lounge at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort and La Hacienda de San Angel in Epcot’s World Showcase.

If you’re very, very lucky, you can also get one in my favorite place in all of Disney World — La Cava del Tequila. They are only served on certain days here.

Paradiso 37: Twisted Margarita and Regular Margarita

Paradiso 37 in Downtown Disney offers this fabulous concoction that’s half frozen sangria and half frozen margarita. Yes please! They call it the Twisted Margarita…

Twisted Margarita -- half sangria half margarita

Their classic margarita is fantastic — and just about the farthest thing from watered down you can get. Boasted as their famous Souza margarita, the Paradiso 37 lived up to its accolades!

Paradiso 37 Margarita

High Octane Refreshments: Stoplight Margarita

Over in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, this little outdoor bar has quite a few offerings. Now I expected this Stoplight margarita to be the same high-alcohol, low-flavor type that we see at the Epcot Margarita kiosk (see below). But boy was I wrong!! After years of fiesta margaritas in Epcot, this was a breath of fresh air!

Mixer-mass-produced, yes — flavorless, no! I loved the mix of melon, strawberry, and lime flavors in this frozen drink. Kudos, High Octane Refreshments!

Stoplight Margarita

La Hacienda de San Angel: Orange Mango Fire Margarita

Margaritas are a specialty at La Hacienda de San Angel in Epcot, and you can’t go wrong with the classic margarita here.

But for something different, try the [Read more…]

Fancy Flights: Margaritas, Whiskey, and Beer, Oh My!

When most people hear the word “flight” when referring to a menu — they automatically think “wine flight.” Well, while Disney restaurants have some spectacular wine flights (Sanaa…yum!), there are also plenty of other kinds of flights that I can recommend you order up post haste on your next visit! :-)

Margarita Flight

This beautiful little tray of heaven (as I like to refer to it) sports five gorgeous mini-margaritas. On my last visit, we were treated to Lime, Pineapple, Hibiscus, Jalapeno, and Mango Blueberry flavors on the tray, but the tequila geniuses that have taken over the creation of the bar menus at Disney’s Mexican food joints are always dreaming up new and inventive options. My favorites? Lime, Mango Blueberry, and Pineapple. But that Jalapeno will definitely knock your socks off with flavor.

Margarita Flight

You can get these at most of Disney’s Mexican food locations, including Maya Grill and Rix Lounge at [Read more…]

2011 Disney Dining Plan Changes

It’s a new year, and we wanted to walk you through the ins and outs of what’s changed and what’s stayed the same when it comes to the Disney’s Dining Plan (DDP) in 2011! Fans and critics of the DDP will notice only a few changes this year:

Disney Dining Plan Snack Credit Logo

Standard Disney Dining Plan

  • The standard DDP was $41.99 per adult per night and has been bumped to $45.99 for the value and regular seasons. The rates for kids ages 3-9 remained the same at $11.99 per night.
  • Peak season 2011 rates will apply February 17-26, March 11-April 30, June 3-August 13 and December 21-31. Adult rates rose from $46.99 per night to $47.99. The nightly rate for children age 3-9 remained the same at $12.99 per night.
  • For Quick-Service, Table-Service and Private In-room meals, the option to order juice at breakfast in addition to a non-alcoholic beverage was deleted. Perhaps guests were [Read more…]

Disney Food Post Round-Up: January 9, 2010

Lady and the Tramp Cake Topper

Howdy, all! We are firmly ensconced in 2011, and I hope it’s treating you well. First up, as always, the news! But stay tuned — lots of great new sites in the round-up this week!

And now — on to the round-up!

A Wedding Cake Blog showcases some gorgeous and whimsical Disney Wedding Cake Toppers! Belle, Cinderella, Bride and Groom Ear Hats, even Lady and the Tramp!

WDW for Grownups has a fun primer on couponing in the Disney World area — check it out and save some cash on meals and entertainment the next time you’re in Orlando!

Two Boos Who Eat takes us to Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen and Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor in Disneyland!! YUM!

Jessica Loves Cupcakes gives us an overview of cupcakes in Disneyland — including a fun Minnie Mouse cupcake antenna topper I hadn’t even seen before!

Main Street Gazette takes us on a tantalizing tour of The Wave at Disney’s Contemporary Resort!

RoriTravel’s Florida takes us out to Rix Lounge at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort!

WDW Radio focuses on the UK pavilion with guest stars Mark and Emma (my new friends from the UK!)

A Taste of Wonderland covers a few of the new dining spots in WDW!

Review: Margaritas at Epcot’s La Cava del Tequila

You guys know how much I love Epcot’s new tequila bar, La Cava del Tequila. Located in the pyramid of Epcot’s Mexico pavilion, the Cava opened in August 2009 and has been a huge success!

The interior of this place is so cozy; it’s one of those hidden Walt Disney World gems that you just cherish once you find it. Heavy, painted furniture sits on large, rough tile. And the mural along the wall depicts [Read more…]

Review: San Angel Inn Restaurante

Well, we finally did it. After dreading a trip back to Epcot’s San Angel Inn in the Mexico pavilion due to a couple of bad meals there, we booked an ADR. It was more a “we have to go because I write a food blog” thing than an avid desire to give the restaurant another chance, but…as it turns out…we’d been missing out for far too long.

Atmosphere
Atmosphere has always been the main selling feature of San Angel Inn. Located inside the Epcot Mexico pyramid with seating along the Gran Fiesta Tour river, this restaurant offers a fun ambiance that you just won’t get anywhere else (besides Blue Bayou in Disneyland, maybe!).

Because the Mexico Pavilion’s pyramid is home to the set-up of a Mexican village in the evening, the restaurant is in a perpetual state [Read more…]

Disney Food Post Round-Up: July 4th, 2010

Happy July 4th

Happy Independence Day!

The big news this week is: Only 90 days until the 2010 Epcot International Food and Wine Festival begins!! I’ve re-vamped the 2010 Epcot Food and Wine Festival page to be even more useful for your planning. (Breaking news, including the new info on the Grand Marnier Tasting event, is at the top of the page.)

Also, don’t forget that the new Taste of Africa Street Party is slated to begin this week in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park. AND those Downtown Disney cooking classes are calling your name on July 10th!

Finally, stay tuned this week for more info about the WDW Foodie Fest meet-up on October 3rd, 2010!! Save the date!

Now, on to the round-up!

Food Finds With Robin showcases some delicious photography that captures some sweet treats in Disneyland.

Main Street Gazette takes us to Cafe Rix in Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort.

A Taste of Disney whips up a batch of Le Cellier’s Beer and Cheese Soup in this cool video. He also gives you the recipe if you’d like to make it at home.

The OC Register reports that Disneyland Resort’s liquor license has been updated to allow special bar set-ups for this summer’s Glow Fest in Disney California Adventure.

Chip and Co takes a look at casual dining options in the Magic Kingdom.

Disney Shawn checks out Surf Doggies in Typhoon Lagoon.

The Daily Disney shares the recipe for Sonoma Goat Cheese Ravioli from California Grill. Yum!

All Ears Net has a fun photo gallery of the Polynesian Resort’s Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show.

Theme Park Insider has announced the winners for the 9th Annual Theme Park Insider Awards. Bistro de Paris and Chefs de France have taken top spots in the running! See Orlando Restaurant Guru Scott Joseph’s take here.

The Disney Parks Blog posted some great stories this week, from the wonderful (Coffee With Walt) to the helpful (Top 5 Restaurants Where You Get the Most for Your Money) to the delicious (Sweet Treats for Summer)!

photo source: burgers

5 Best Quick-Service Dining Plan Values

Wolfgang Puck Express

You heard about our Five Best “One-Credit” Table-Service Values last week, so I wanted to share what I believe to be the five best quick-service values today! These are my picks based on what you get for one quick-service credit on the Disney Dining Plan; they may not stand up as the best when we consider paying out of pocket.

Hopefully this will be useful to those of you heading down to the World for free dining this fall!

Wolfgang Puck Express in Downtown Disney (West Side and Marketplace)

With the famous (and delicious) rotisserie chicken ringing up at over $14 plus tax, it costs more than some table service meals. Some of the salads and sandwiches alone will cost [Read more…]

Dining In Disney World With Kids: Part 1

Introducing the Disney Food Blog Dining in Disney World With Kids two-part series! Thanks to Zannaland for guest blogging Part 1, where she includes a few of her favorite family secrets. And stay tuned for tomorrow’s Part 2 in the series, where Disney World Moms Panelists determine the best dining locations for kids of certain ages. There are some very informative and surprising ideas that I think you’ll enjoy!

Parent or not, the wonderful dining options and experiences for kids at Disney World are no secret. But what if you don’t want to spend your entire vacation doing character meals? (Not that there’s anything wrong with those — they offer some of the best food on property!) What I’d like to share are some of the dining secrets we’ve discovered over the years as the best options for something different. They may just become regular favorites for your family!

Best Location For a Nap

    maya

  • Maya Grill - This restaurant became a favorite of ours during a stay at Coronado Springs Resort when we were unable to secure a breakfast reservation anywhere else. We had been to Maya Grill for dinner on its opening night, but hadn’t tried it for breakfast. We were so pleasantly surprised by the food as well as the fact that it was not crowded at all. It was nice to enjoy a peaceful, leisurely breakfast for a change. For that reason, it makes it a great location for a stroller-bound child to enjoy a nap without interruption. The location also makes for some lovely scenery as you walk off your meal.
  • Columbia Harbor House - Magic Kingdom’s hustle and bustle excitement is sometimes too much for the littlest guests, and all the over-stimulation leads to not wanting to nap at all. Columbia Harbor House is a respite from that stimulation. The dark paneling and dimly lit interior ensure no distractions for tired kids. Even on the hottest of days, it’s always cool and calm inside. Sometimes, the second floor is open for even more secluded dining. Once they wake up, there are some great kids’ favorites here like Mac & Cheese and Chicken Nuggets.

Best Entertainment

    sanaa

  • Sanaa - Animals are perhaps the most engaging entertainment for little kids. Young kids are just learning different animals’ names and habitats, but even older kids will be fascinated by the on-going show happening just outside the dining room windows at Sanaa, located in Disney’s Kidani Village in Animal Kingdom
    Lodge. The best part is the show is completely unpredictable and different each time you visit. Your server is also able to tell you more about the animals as well as the unique cooking options offered at Sanaa, making it a great learning experience for all.
  • Germany’s Biergarten - One of my fondest childhood memories at Disney World is seeing the German Ocktoberfest show in Epcot’s World Showcase for the first time. More than just the great music and singing, guests are invited onto the dance floor to show off their best polka moves. Wonderful memories and photo opportunities are to be had here watching kids dance with parents and grandparents. It’s also an easy-to-walk-in location if you don’t have reservations.

Best Kids’ Activities

  • Olivia’s - Disney Food Blog’s recent entry about Olivia’s reminded me of this favorite spot, located at Disney’s Old Key West Resort. Amazing food and scenery aside, Olivia’s offers a special treat for all children – Olivia’s Artist of the Day. Upon arrival, kids are given a coloring sheet and crayons to color however they wish. Then they turn in their masterpieces, and twice a day – morning and evening – cast members choose an Artist of the Day. The chosen artwork is displayed at the front hostess stand, and the winning child gets to ring a bell in celebration. Despite the sibling rivalry when my son was chosen first, both kids were chosen during our stay and it made for quite the memorable experience.
  • Whispering Canyon Cafe Warnings

    Whispering Canyon Cafe Warnings

    Whispering Canyon Cafe - This is perhaps not a real secret to many Disney World fans, but I couldn’t pass up talking about it. Whispering Canyon Cafe offers some of the best entertainment around, and there really isn’t a set show at all! Here, your servers are the entertainment, often yelling back and forth to each other and joking around. For even more fun, ask for ketchup. (If you’re shy, sit back and wait for someone else to ask for it; I’ve never been there when someone hasn’t asked for ketchup, and the fun ensues.) There are also several times when kids can engage in pony races using wooden hobby horses. There is definitely no shortage of entertainment for kids and adults here.