Photo Tour and Specialty Eats: Halloween Time at Disneyland Resort

BOO!! Halloween is one of the most FUN-derful times of the year at Disneyland, and our Disneyland Correspondent Heather Sievers has gathered pictures of some of the spooky happenings! We’ve also got the scoop on where you can find all of the season’s special treats around the Resort. So if you’re ready to scare up some fun with a few of our best Disney pals…

Skeleton Goofy!

Skeleton Goofy!

… or perhaps your favorite Villain, then please join us! [Read more…]

News: Festival of Fantasy Parade Dining Package Coming to Tony’s Town Square in Magic Kingdom

So, here’s a question…

What happens to the Main Street Electrical Parade Lunch Package when the Main Street Electrical Parade ends its Disney World run on October 9th?

Well, here’s an answer! Guests WILL still be able to book a prix fixe lunch at Tony’s Town Square Restaurant in the Magic Kingdom with reserved spots for a parade. But instead of the Main Street Electrical Parade, the package will change to the Festival of Fantasy Parade Dining Package.

That’s right — beginning October 10, 2016, Package guests will enjoy their choice of appetizer, entree, and dessert (along with a beverage) at Tony’s and receive a voucher for a reserved spot around the Town Square flag pole for the daytime (3:00 pm) Festival of Fantasy Parade.

Festival of Fantasy Parade's Big Gun!

Festival of Fantasy Parade’s Big Gun!

The cost is $45 for adults and $17 for children (or one Table Service credit on the Disney Dining Plan).

Festival of Fantasy Tangled Float

Festival of Fantasy Tangled Float

As of the time of this writing, Advance Dining Reservations for the Festival of Fantasy Dining Package are available by calling 407-WDW-DINE, and will presumably be available online as well in the near future.

Are you interested in the Festival of Fantasy Dining Package? Please let us know with a comment!

Guest Review: Brunch at the Top at California Grill in Disney’s Contemporary Resort

Guest Author AM Appleby returns to share her California Grill Brunch at the Top experience at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Brunch is offered every Sunday from 10AM – 1PM. Cost is $80 for adults and $48 for kids ages 3-11.

California Grill, located atop Disney’s Contemporary Resort, is well known for fine dining and spectacular views. A divine spot for sushi, steak, and fabulous cocktails, the restaurant began serving brunch in February for the first time in its 20-year history.

Considering the reputation of California Grill, I didn’t even glance at the menu before booking an Advance Dining Reservation. I thought brunch would be top notch, and had high hopes that I wouldn’t be disappointed.


Upon arriving at the Contemporary Resort, we were directed to Valet Parking where a Cast Member was waiting to greet us. After a quick trip to the second floor check-in desk we were whisked away in a private elevator to the 15th floor. We walked towards the abundant light streaming in through the enormous windows, admiring the view beyond, and were given complimentary mimosas (and a children’s mimosa — or “faux-mosa” for my seven-year-old daughter) at the bar.

Complimentary Mimosas

Complimentary Mimosas

The spacious room was fairly quiet, with charming music being played on piano and double bass. [Read more…]

Review: 10-Gallon Challenge Sundae at Whispering Canyon Cafe in Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

We are back at Wilderness Lodge’s Whispering Canyon Cafe, and this time it’s just for dessert! It seems like we were just visiting this favorite fun spot of ours for dinner but after hearing rumors about a new GIGANTIC dessert we had to make our way back… .

Making its sort-of debut is the…drumroll please…10-Gallon Challenge!

10-Gallon Challenge!

Ten Gallon Challenge!

Why sort-of? This item hasn’t made the official menu yet and will most likely be in a testing phase for the next few months. But don’t let that stop your party from ordering it for now. Just consider it to be a secret menu item!

[Read more…]

Best Places for a Cup of Tea in Walt Disney World

Sometimes, nothing but a nice cuppa will do.

Pour Tea Garden View

And even when you’re on vacation (which is, of course, supposed to be all about relaxing), an escape into a soothing cup of tea can be a welcome change of pace.

And that’s true regardless of weather, don’t you think? After all, serious tea drinkers don’t mind raising a cup, even in Florida heat and humidity. :-)

Are you looking to try something new or to celebrate the ritual of something familiar and comforting? Either way, we have suggestions for finding a really good cup of tea throughout the Walt Disney World Resort.

Come with us as we share some of our favorites.

Joffrey’s Tea Traders Cafe

Just like coffee, tea is finding a larger and more sophisticated fan base everyday. But whether you’re a lifelong lover of tea, or you’re just learning your way around it, Joffrey’s Tea Traders Cafe at Disney Springs is a welcome stop on your list of places to explore this storied beverage. [Read more…]

Review: La Hacienda de San Angel in Epcot’s Mexico Pavilion

Recently, I met some friends for a cozy dinner at La Hacienda de San Angel in Epcot’s Mexico Pavilion.

My last visit to La Hacienda proved to be just about the best yet. While my earliest visits to the dinner-only restaurant were largely hit and miss, my experiences during the last couple of years have been very positive.

But you never know when things can shift and change. After all, this is Disney World — not exactly known for being consistent when it comes to dining quality. And La Hacienda is pricey. Does it continue to be worth it?

Let’s head in for dinner and you can see for yourself.


We arrived on time for our 6:30 advance dining reservation and checked in. We requested a window side table, and they were happy to accommodate us. It only took a little longer to be seated.


La Hacienda de San Angel in Epcot’s Mexico Pavilion

If you haven’t been inside La Hacienda before, be sure to take a look around during your visit, and review the back story. In a nutshell, the restaurant is supposed to be the rambling home of an artistic family, and they’ve opened it up to guests. Seating is a mixture of booths and table/chair combos, all of which are comfortable and inviting. [Read more…]

News: Great Irish Hooley, Plus New Menu Options at Raglan Road in Disney Springs

The construction walls are finally (mostly) down at Disney Springs — WOO! So what better way to celebrate all of that wonderful parking and those beautiful vistas than by partying Labor Day Weekend away!

To that end, we’re sharing with you today that Orlando’s only Boutique Irish Festival is back this year, and it’s bigger than ever!

Raglan Road Irish Pub and Restaurant at Disney Springs will host their Fifth Annual Great Irish Hooley this Labor Day Weekend. The four-day party, named for a traditional Irish social celebration, kicks off at noon on Friday, September 2, and runs late into the evening Monday, September 5. The event features the very best of Irish Music, Dancing, Food, and Drink. And best of all — there will be NO COVER CHARGE for the entire family-friendly event!

Check out all of the details below — you aren’t going to want to miss it!

Raglan Road in Downtown Disney

Raglan Road in Downtown Disney

Tri Wishes Grand Irish Red and a Rack of Heaven

Food-lovers and craft beer fans are sure to love this part of the Hooley! [Read more…]

News: Orlando Magical Dining Month Begins August 29th and Includes New Disney Springs Restaurants

If you’re planning to be in the Orlando area for the month of September, get ready for some terrific dining savings that include hot new Disney Springs Restaurants like Morimoto Asia and STK!


For the eleventh straight year, Visit Orlando is sponsoring Orlando Magical Dining Month. The event kicks off with a preview week on Monday, August 29, and runs through Sunday, October 2, offering guests and residents of the Orlando area five full weeks to enjoy special savings, all while doing good. And this year, more than 90 restaurants will participate — up from 77 in 2015. The list includes several options in the Disney Resort Area as well. [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.


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…]

News: Chef Guy Fieri Teams Up With Disney World’s Planet Hollywood Observatory

It’s sure been a hoppin’ summer over at Disney Springs!

The recent arrivals of Frontera Cocina, Chef Art Smith’s Homecoming, and Blaze Fast Fire’d Pizza barely scratch the surface of all the additions that have helped to change the landscape of Disney World’s shopping and dining district over the past year or so.

And now that those are up and running, we turn our attention to a couple of spots that have been part of the scene since the district was known as Downtown Disney. One of those is Planet Hollywood, which will reopen as the Planet Hollywood Observatory this Fall. (The other is Paddlefish, formerly known as Fulton’s Crab House — look for a late November opening for that one.)

Now we’re starting to get a feel for what the refreshed Planet Hollywood Observatory will offer, especially with the arrival of the news that the location will feature — among many other dishes — an exclusive Burger and Sandwich Menu created by Celebrity Chef and Food Network Star Guy Fieri, best known for his show “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.”

@PlanetHollywoodObservatory Facebook

@PlanetHollywoodObservatory Facebook

These can be followed up with some of the Mason Jar Desserts that will also be exclusive to the Observatory. [Read more…]