Orlando’s Magical Dining Month is Back This September!

Once again, if you’re planning to visit Walt Disney World during the month of September, you can take advantage of Orlando Magical Dining Month! And this year, the discounts actually start six days early during a brand-new Preview Week!

Magical Dining Month 2014 Logo-001

Mark your calendars for August 25 — September 30. During that time, guests can enjoy prix-fixe menus at more than 75 Orlando Area Restaurants — including a few at Disney-area spots!

Dinners at all of the restaurants will feature three courses from a set menu for $33. And even better — $1 from each dinner will go to benefit the Foundation for Foster Children!

La Luce Butterscotch Pudding - YUM!

La Luce Butterscotch Pudding – YUM!

If you’re Disney-bound during this time and would like to take advantage of the savings while dining on property, check out the offerings from these participating restaurants!

Il Mulino

Il Mulino, located at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin, offers some of the best Italian fare that we’ve enjoyed in Walt Disney World. Check out a review of our recent visit!

Il Mulino Magical Dining Menu -- Click to Enlarge

Il Mulino Magical Dining Menu

La Luce by Donna Scala

You’ll find La Luce by Donna Scala at Hilton Bonnet Creek Resort. The menu features [Read more…]

News! Magical Dining Month in Orlando Returns September 2013

We’re so excited to see Magical Dining Month return to the Orlando area in September! This is always SUCH a great deal, and combining awesome food with an option to support a worthy charity is a win.

In its eighth year, this month-long event sponsored by Visit Orlando offers diners a culinary celebration at more than 60 restaurants offering three-course, prix fixe dinner for just $33. The dinners include an appetizer, entrée, and dessert.

This year’s event benefits the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Florida, and $1 from each meal will be donated.

This celebration takes place September 1-30, 2013, at top-rated Orlando restaurants including:

Disney World Area Restaurants:

Disney Food Blog Challenge: The Disney World Milkshake Crawl

Sweet, dreamy, creamy milkshakes. When you are craving one, nothing else will quite do. In honor of National Ice Cream month, it’s time to do another Disney Food Blog food crawl: MILKSHAKES!

Not surprisingly, some of my favorite milkshakes can be found right in Walt Disney World. If milkshakes are a favorite of yours, too, allow me to tempt you with a brand new food challenge — the Disney Food Blog Milkshake Crawl!

This one is a doozy! So if you break it up over a couple of days, we totally understand.

And be sure to let us know in the comments which milkshake is your favorite and which ones you highly recommend!

Cookies and Cream Milkshake at Plaza Restaurant

The Plaza Restaurant is one of my favorite table service spots in Magic Kingdom. It’s rarely super busy, and the prices are reasonable. As a bonus, there are some pretty amazing ice cream dessert options on the menu, thanks to the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor right next door.

My favorite beverage-meets-dessert options here are the Hand-Dipped Milkshakes.

Milkshake at Magic Kingdom

Served in old-fashioned glasses, and topped with [Read more…]

56 Must-Read Disney Dining Secrets from Disney Food Blog

Disney may be the Happiest Place on Earth, but nothing can wreck the happy faster than poor planning.

This is especially true when it comes to one of the most important parts of your trip — eating!

After decades of Disney dining, we’ve perfected some expert tips and advice to get the most out of  your Disney World visit.

Today, we’re sharing our 56 Must-Read Disney Dining Secrets to ensure that you have the magical visit of your dreams!

Top Disney Dining Secrets

Let’s get started!

1. Make dining reservations. Even if you don’t follow any other piece of advice, we can’t say this emphatically enough. To fully appreciate the truly entertaining and delicious array of Disney Dining offerings, you must make advanced dining reservations. If you wait until you arrive at Disney to make table service arrangements, you may miss out on many of your top picks because they will be booked.

Book Dinner at Be Our Guest Restaurant 180 Days in Advance to Guarantee a Table

2. BYOP (Bring  Your Own Pepsi). Yep. Those of you who are die-hard Pepsi drinkers will be sad to note that any and all Disney establishments will not carry Pepsi products. It’s a Coke-only zone here! So either bring your own Pepsi, or plan to take a trip to a nearby gas station, convenience store, grocery store, or drug store to pick up your stash. You can also order it and have it delivered directly to your hotel from Garden Grocer.

No Pepsi Here.

3. Don’t miss the must-eat items! After years of eating Disney goodies, we here at Disney Food Blog have amassed quite a list of “must-eat” treats in Disney parks and resorts. Cult favorites like Dole Whip Floats, Zebra Domes, School Bread, and Mickey Bars are high priority when you’re visiting the Happiest Place on Earth. To read up on our favorites, head over to our Best Disney World Restaurants Page for some great “Best Of” posts like Best Cookie Snacks in Disney World, favorite Disney ice cold snacks, Disney’s best grilled cheese, and more! And if you’re headed to Disney World for the first time, you must read our Best Disney Restaurants for First-Timers article — very helpful!

Dole Whip Float! A Must-Eat snack for every Disney guest.

4. Make your reservations 180 days prior to your visit whenever possible. Nope — it’s not enough to just make reservations; you need to make them as early as possible. For most restaurants, that’s 180 days prior to the date you’re seeking. If you’re staying in a Disney hotel, you can book all of your reservations for up to 10 days beginning exactly 180 days before the first day of your trip.

5. Don’t pay for food you don’t want. One of my favorite Disney Dining tips is to be a squeaky wheel when you need to be. Disney is very good at customizing meals, and at counter-service restaurants, your customized meal might even save you some money! For example, [Read more…]

Review: Beech Pool Bar and Grill at Hilton Bonnet Creek Resort in Walt Disney World

We’re just getting into Springtime in Orlando, and now is the perfect time to sit by the pool with a cocktail (or mocktail!).

So for your Friday Zen-ness today, I’ve got the perfect destination…

Aaaaahh...that's better, isn't it?

Beech Pool Bar at the Hilton Bonnet Creek Resort is one of the most relaxing spots I’ve visited within the gates of Walt Disney World.

A massive lazy river and pool complex is the perfect addition to a sunny Orlando afternoon…and the frozen hot chocolate doesn’t hurt either. But more on that later…

Beech Pool Bar

Let’s dive in!

Atmosphere

Beech is more than your standard pool bar. There are plenty of tables and chairs for eating a full meal, but if relaxation is on the docket, consider curling up with a cocktail by one of the [Read more…]

Valentine’s Day Menu: La Luce by Donna Scala at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek Resort

One of our favorite Italian eateries in Walt Disney World, La Luce by Donna Scala, has thrown its hat into the Valentine’s Day ring with a special menu!

Seating at La Luce

The restaurant, located within the maingate of Disney World at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek, offers fresh and imaginative takes on Italian cuisine. You can read my review of a wonderful dinner here!

If you’re in town and don’t want to battle Disney crowds for Valentine’s Day, take advantage of this incredible menu. They’ll actually be serving the special menu February 14, 15, and 16.

La Luce Offers a Special Menu for Valentine's Weekend

My suggestion? [Read more…]

Details! Food & Wine Weekends at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando and Hilton Bonnet Creek

We mentioned in August the exciting news that Food & Wine Weekends at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando and Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek would be returning in 2012 for the second year in a row!

Today? We’ve got a little more info for ya!

Billed as “the perfect complement to the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival“, Orlando Food & Wine Weekends will be held over all six weekends during the Epcot Food and Wine Festival.

The Waldorf Astoria Orlando and Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek aim to “fill the gaps” around the Festival by offering visitors to Walt Disney World a delicious “home base” as they [Read more…]

Guest Review and Preview: BBQ Weekend at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek

Courtesy of Andy Jackson from Eating (and Drinking) Around the World, we have a review of last year’s Barbecue Weekends at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek. This year’s BBQ weekend begins August 10th! Get details here!

The Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek resort, located in the middle of Disney World property, offered up a couple of food-related events during the summer of 2011. As part of their “SummerBlast!” promotion the hotel hosted a weekend devoted to Cupcakes, and followed that up with two weekends of Barbecue festivities.

So with the 2012 BBQ Weekend about to begin, I thought it was time to look back at the events from 2011.

Atmosphere

I’d heard a lot of positive things about this resort (as well as the adjoining Waldorf Astoria), and especially its restaurants (I believe a certain Ms. Wolfe is a big fan…), so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to check it out. The resort is located smack-dab inside of Disney property, even though it is not a Disney-owned or run hotel.

The weekend was advertised as featuring cooking demos, cook-offs between the chefs of the various restaurants on the property, a Barbecue buffet, and a beer sampling. Most of the restaurants at the Hilton were also featuring special BBQ items on their menus while all the bars were offering themed drinks during the weekend. In addition there were to be BBQ-themed kids activities such as the [Read more…]

News! Orlando Magical Dining Month Details

September is the month for savings for visitors and locals to Orlando!

Magical Dining Month presented by Visit Orlando invites everyone to enjoy this annual event now in its seventh year. Celebrate Central Florida’s culinary delights when over sixty restaurants offer three-course prix-fixe dinners for $30.

Expand your palate and help benefit Edgewood Children’s Ranch during this month-long event as $1 of every meal is donated to this wonderful organization.

Visit Orlando will offer this exceptional value from September 1 – 30, 2012 at top-rated Orlando restaurants, including:

Disney World Area Restaurants

Other Orlando-Area Restaurants

New Dessert and Cocktails at La Luce, Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek

A few weeks ago I had the superb luck to head over to La Luce at the Hilton Bonnet Creek Resort (inside the gates of Walt Disney World) to sample a brand new dessert and some innovative cocktails they’ve just added to the menu!

La Luce

New Cocktails on the Menu

Mixology is a passion for the bartenders at La Luce, and their seasonal cocktail menu clearly shows that. This season’s list includes three infusion-based drinks, which basically means that the drinks are made with alcohol that’s been flavored with fruits, vegetables, or other foods. For example, in one La Luce drink, you’ll encounter a Cocoa and Chipotle-infused Vodka while in another, you’ll find a Cranberry-infused Tequila.

Infusions -- citrus, tomato, and Buddha's Hand

If you think those jars of infusions are beautiful; wait until you see the drinks.

Infusions and Drinks

First up, a drink made with a tomato-infused Gin, along with Campari (a bitters flavored with a bitter/sour Italian citrus fruit) and a honey truffle syrup. There’s a bacon rim on this one to give a [Read more…]