Best Restaurants for Thanksgiving and Christmas in Walt Disney World

Will you be celebrating Thanksgiving or Christmas in Walt Disney World?

mickey-christmas-holiday-santa-krispy-treat-2016-1

Lucky you! What a fun way to spend the holiday season — with so much to be thankful for in such a cool place!

As you can imagine, the crowds tend to swell at Disney during holiday weeks like Thanksgiving and Christmas as lots of Disney fans choose to celebrate their holiday there. And Disney answers the call with tons of Thanksgiving spirit throughout many of their restaurants.

Whether you’re looking for a traditional meal, a gourmet twist on familiar favorites, or something that’s a complete departure from established customs, you’ll find lots of options for celebrating these special food days. Let’s check out a few of our favorites.

The Traditional: Liberty Tree Tavern in Magic Kingdom

We all know it’s true. When you’re craving Thanksgiving dinner at Disney, there’s one spot you can always count on to deliver: Liberty Tree Tavern in Magic Kingdom’s Liberty Square.

Liberty Tree Tavern Entrance

Liberty Tree Tavern Entrance

And we’re not just talking about on Thanksgiving Day, or merely around Thanksgiving. You’ll find the traditional feast on the lunch and dinner menu, every day of the year. [Read more…]

Review and Preview: The Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic Beer Garden, Chinatown, and More!

We’re back today with another review from last year’s Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic — and a preview of what you can expect this year!

Last week, we shared a look at all of the delicious food and drink that you can enjoy on The Causeway. Today, we’re back for a look at the fun “extras” the Classic offers. We’ll also share what’s new for 2016!

The Causeway

The Causeway

Now in its seventh year, the Classic continues to up its game with new experiences and seminars. This year’s event will offer more than 40 food dishes, over 60 beverages, 10 interactive seminars, and three live bands! [Read more…]

Review and Preview: The Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic Causeway Booths

We’re gearing up for one of our favorite weekends of the year — the Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic!

The Causeway

The Causeway

The event is in its seventh consecutive year, and promises to be bigger and better than ever. In 2016, the Food and Wine Classic will include 50 food and wine stations, 10 seminars, fun themed areas, and opportunities to meet some of the award-winning chefs who bring their artistry to life in the resort’s 17 restaurants! [Read more…]

News: Adventures By Disney Debuts Rhine River Food & Wine Cruise

OK, I MUST DO THIS!!!

If food, wine, travel, and Disney top the list of things you love, then this is the trip for you!

©Disney

©Disney

Disney has announced that their luxury travel brand, Adventures by Disney, is teaming with AmaWaterways to offer a special Rhine Food & Wine River Cruise. [Read more…]

Review: Jiko — A Cooking Place at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

On a recent trip to Walt Disney World, I made it a mission to revisit one of my favorite restaurants, Jiko.

The restaurant is your top-of-the-line, signature dining option at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Resort, and I’ve been a big fan of the spot since my very first visit.

With a combination of wonderful ambiance, exotic flavors, and a killer wine list, it’s sure to please any adventurous food lover, and it always surprises me that it tends to fly a little under the radar. This may be because the food is a bit less mainstream, or because the restaurant is a hike to get to.

As regular readers know, though — no matter how much I like a restaurant, I insist on visiting and reviewing them time and again to make sure that I can still recommend them. Fortunately, that’s nearly always a pleasure to do.

Come with me as we take a look around and see what’s new at Jiko.

Atmosphere

If you’re looking for Jiko, head down from the main lobby of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, past Victoria Falls Lounge, until you get to the bottom floor. Boma is below Victoria Falls, and then you can access The Mara and the resort’s pool here as well. Jiko is to the right.

Jiko Sign

Jiko Sign

Enter the refined space, and you see immediately that wine is given a place of prominence here. Jiko boasts the largest collection of African wines outside of the African continent. If you’re a wine lover, you’ll want to check out their suggested pairings. [Read more…]

News: New Tea Flavors at the Garden View Tea Room in Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort

If the Grand Floridian Resort is your cup of tea, you won’t want to miss the Garden View Tea Room‘s Afternoon Tea offerings!

Every day the resort serves a spread fit for the Queen with a beautiful garden view to match.

Garden View Tea Room from Disney Parks Blog

[Read more…]

Review: California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

On my recent visit to Walt Disney World, my husband and I made it a goal to carve out time for a date night at California Grill.

If you love signature dining at Disney World, then you probably know the Grill well. Perched atop Disney’s Contemporary Resort, the spot has Disney history on its side. After all, Top of the World, which originally occupied the fifteenth floor, dated all the way back to Disney World’s opening. California Grill opened as its replacement in 1995, and brought with it a new emphasis on market fresh ingredients and California fusion flavors.

It was more than just another new Disney restaurant. It, along with Victoria and Albert’s, paved the way for a more refined dining experience at Walt Disney World.

My recent experiences have been a little uneven, however. (Even California Grill isn’t immune to the Disney restaurant curse of inconsistency.) So it’s always good to check in on an old favorite. After all, this was our first visit after the departure of Chef Brian Piasecki, so we had to see what was happening in the kitchen. And that view makes it easy to take a chance with the Grill.

Let’s head to the second floor.

Atmosphere

Why the second floor you ask? Because if you want to go California Grill, your journey begins here. You’ll check in at the podium before you’re escorted to the elevator that takes you to the fifteenth floor.

Second Floor Check In Desk for California Grill

Second Floor Check In Desk for California Grill

Once you arrive, you’ll step into California Grill’s sleek environment. [Read more…]

Review and Photo Tour: The New Flying Fish at Disney World’s BoardWalk

We have a real treat for you as we head into the newly refurbished Flying Fish for our very first visit to this beloved spot!

More than most, Flying Fish has had a passionate fan base. And it’s funny, because at the same time, it tends to fly a bit under the radar. Even prior to its recent closure for refurbishment, you were much more likely to get a last minute advance dining reservation here than at some other signature spots, like California Grill. (Maybe that’s why the locals love it so much — they’re not fighting the tourists for a table.)

But we heard from you in large numbers during the reno. Passionate Fish fans continually asked us two questions: when will Flying Fish reopen? And will our favorite dishes (so many!) return?

Opening day turned out to be last week. As for the answer to the other question, you’ll have to read on to find out.

Join me as we have a look around the completely transformed Flying Fish, and then stick around to see all the details on the dishes that we enjoyed. Let’s go!

Atmosphere

While I love the charm and allure of the BoardWalk as night falls, we made our ADR early so that we could take full advantage of the good light for photos. And if you love the nostalgia of the super cool neon sign over the Flying Fish — good news. It remains nearly unchanged.

Flying Fish -- Outside View

Flying Fish — Outside View

Super fans will quickly note one major difference. With the refurbishment, the Flying Fish underwent a slight change to its name. Previously, it was known as Flying Fish Cafe. Now it’s just Flying Fish, and the sign has been updated to reflect that — complete with extra fish added. As you can see from the above photo, the front doors have been updated slightly as well. The window muntins are now diagonal and echo some of the same motifs that you’ll see inside. [Read more…]

Epcot Food and Wine Festival Review: Party for the Senses

Today, we have a big treat for you!

You know that we love to talk about the Epcot Food and Wine Festival here at DFB. It’s like the Super Bowl and Olympics and Christmas all rolled into one!

Party for the Senses Sign

Party for the Senses Sign

And while there’s tons to do and see and eat throughout the event, some of the most highly anticipated premium events are the Parties for the Senses. (See the review of our last time attending the event here.) In 2016, you can choose from parties held on October 1, 8, 15, 22, 28, and 29, featuring different themes. Read all about it on our Special Events Page! [Read more…]

News! 2016 Disney World Candlelight Processional NARRATORS Announced and Booking Available!

Great news for fans who love the Epcot Candlelight Processional at Disney World during the holidays!

We been watching and waiting for news about the popular event. Today we’re happy to share the list of narrators, and that booking for Candlelight Processional Packages is now officially open!

Neil Patrick Harris Narrating the Candlelight Processional

Neil Patrick Harris Narrating the Candlelight Processional

You can only make your Advance Dining Reservation by booking online at disneyworld.com, or by phone by calling (407) WDW-DINE (939-3463).

The Candlelight Processional features the retelling of the Christmas story by a celebrity narrator. The reading is accompanied by a robed choir and a full orchestra performing Christmas carols. [Read more…]