Photo Tour: The 2015 Grand Floridian Resort Easter Egg Display in Walt Disney World

It’s one of my favorite times of the year at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort!

Every spring in the weeks preceding Easter, the Grand Floridian Bakery Team is given the opportunity to create some absolutely spectacular Easter Eggs for guests to enjoy. And the best part? The Eggs are made of CHOCOLATE. There are other ingredients involved, too, such as fondant, icing, and cocoa butter. But no matter what they are made of, they are all edible!

2015 Grand Floridian Easter Egg display

2015 Grand Floridian Easter Egg display

The Easter Eggs have been a Grand Floridian tradition for 19 years, but this is just the fourth year that the eggs have been on display for every guest who passes through the Grand Floridian lobby.

2015 Grand Floridian Easter Egg Display

2015 Grand Floridian Easter Egg Display

2015 Grand Floridian Easter Egg Display

2015 Grand Floridian Easter Egg Display

Something new this year… previously the Eggs were all displayed in one row directly at the lobby entrance. This year, the eggs are grouped in smaller displays in different areas around the lobby. Since some of the eggs are preserved from year to year (you may recognize some familiar ones from the 2014 Easter Egg display), the collection just keeps on growing!

Eggs are on display in various areas throughout the lobby

Eggs are on display in various areas throughout the lobby

The Easter Eggs are on display through April 10th. But in case Walt Disney World isn’t part of your 2015 spring break plans, we wanted to bring the Eggs to you once again this year!

One of the centerpiece eggs for 2015 is an edible replica of Cinderella’s Golden Coach.

Cinderella's Coach Egg

Cinderella’s Coach Egg

The classic Disney animated version of Cinderella received a tribute as well.

Cinderella Egg

Cinderella Egg

Cinderella Egg

Cinderella Egg

In an echo of the fountain in the lobby of the Grand Floridian Disney Vacation Club Villas, the penguins from Mary Poppins have come out to play!

Penguin Fountain Egg

Penguin Fountain Egg

Penguin Fountain Egg

Penguin Fountain Egg

Penguin Fountain Egg

Penguin Fountain Egg

There are no shortage of Disney characters on display, including the entire Toy Story gang.

Toy Story Egg

Toy Story Egg

Toy Story Egg

Toy Story Egg

Peter Pan tops off this egg complete with a map of Neverland.

Peter Pan Egg

Peter Pan Egg

Never one to be outdone, Tinkerbell tops her own egg, too!

Tinkerbell Egg

Tinkerbell Egg

And what’s a day at Disney World anymore without spotting this face ;) ?

Queen Elsa egg

Queen Elsa egg

Nothing against Queen Elsa, but it is totally awesome to see some less-heralded characters get a little love this year, too. I think I audibly gasped when I saw [Read more…]

News! Aunt Polly’s is OPEN (for a limited time) in Disney World’s Magic Kingdom

Disney History buffs are going to love this news out of Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom!

Cinderella Castle in the early morning light

More Fun Dining News Out of Magic Kingdom Today!

After a hiatus of, oh, about forever — it seems that Aunt Polly’s on Tom Sawyer Island is serving food and beverages once more!

This is one for the books! After all, it’s been eons since we’ve seen anything substantial for sale here. Even the vending machines that have been in place here in recent years hadn’t been in service.

But thanks to Disney Food for Families columnist Erin Foster for giving us the heads up that Theme Park Insider is reporting the spot is open for business!

Now, before you get too awfully excited, you should know that the menu is limited. Very limited. Make the trip over to Tom Sawyer Island looking for sustenance, and you’ll find Sandwiches (Turkey and PB&J), Veggies and Hummus, Chips, Fresh Fruit, and an Assortment of Cold Beverages, including Lemonade. Note that, at least for now, they are not offering fountain drinks.

While it doesn’t sound like much, there are two reasons to love this move by Disney: [Read more…]

FIRST LOOK! Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto at Disney World’s Polynesian Village Resort

AHOY!!!! Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto is now in soft openings at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort!!!

Trader Sam's door sign

Trader Sam’s door sign

And we are SO excited to share pictures from some of our awesome DFB Readers who were there to ring in the occasion!

Many thanks to Lori Hope Fries, DFB Reader and co-founder of TheMainStreetMoms.com, for sending in some awesome pics for us to share with you, along with her review! We’re also suuuuuper grateful to our friend David Shearer for sharing his incredible photos as well! We’ll be using the collection of both of their pictures along with a few of ours to tell the story of the very first days of Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto.

But before we go in… what is a “soft opening,” exactly? Basically, a soft open means that guests may find Trader Sam’s in operation during a visit to the Polynesian from now until it’s official opening (expected for late April), BUT it can be closed at any given time to continue any necessary work. So, fair warning.

Okay, enough with the logistics! The anticipation is killing me!! Let’s step behind the door…

Trader Sam's door

Trader Sam’s door

Umm, actually, let’s head inside the Grotto after we wait in line. Just getting in on the first day was no easy task!

Take, for instance, this anecdote from our good friend, Mealtrip: “The system is, you get a pager, then they call you in. So there was a 3 hour wait to get a pager and then another 3 hour wait once you had the pager. There is no “pager waiting line”, and you can’t just wait in the hallway for a pager.”

Pager for Trader Sam's

Pager for Trader Sam’s

And so, a head’s up: for at least the first months of operation, we can all expect longs lines to be rule, not the exception. Anyone who’s had experience with Trader Sam’s in Disneyland will be fully aware of this gigantic problem. Okay, with that out of the way, NOW let’s step inside and see what treasures await!

Take it away, Lori!

“We have been on watch for months, waiting for Trader Sam to land at the Polynesian Village Resort. Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Room, at the Disneyland Resort, is a favorite stop when we go, and have been there many times. My middle son, Dennis, is an avid tiki mug collector, so we watched as the lobby walls came down around the fountain and a cast member showed us the door leading to Trader Sam’s new location. We watched and waited.

Trader Sam's door

Trader Sam’s door

When you go on the Jungle Cruise in each Adventureland, Trader Sam, the head salesman of the jungle, will greet you. From coast to coast, these two men share a name and a job (and some jokes), but each coast has their own Sam. We were excited to see how the tiki bars of the same name differed.

Trader Sam from Disney World's Jungle Cruise

Trader Sam from Disney World’s Jungle Cruise

We were in the Magic Kingdom when we learned that Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto was holding a soft opening. We hopped on a monorail and headed for the Polynesian Village Resort. The wait time was up to four hours to get in! Luckily, we got a pager from a friend who couldn’t stay, and combined the wait.

Pager for Trader Sam's

Pager for Trader Sam’s

We headed to the new patio [Editor’s note: Trader Sam’s Tiki Terrace], which has the same menu as inside, and ordered [Read more…]

What’s New Around Walt Disney World: March 26th, 2015

I’m not sure what it feels like in your neck of the woods, but the calendar says it’s officially SPRING! And the season is ON at Walt Disney World, with new food items to help feed those spring break crowds (did somebody say “Grilled Cheese”?), as well as an egg-stra special Easter display at the Grand Floridian Resort.

But that’s not all! There’s much more in store… so let’s hop to it, as we take another trip around the World to see What’s New!

MAGIC KINGDOM

Be Our Guest Breakfast

Hey, has anyone heard of some little dive by the name of Be Our Guest Restaurant? ;)

Be Our Guest in the First Light of Morning

Be Our Guest in the First Light of Morning

Well, in case you didn’t know about the Advance Dining Reservations heard ‘round the World, the popular restaurant is now open for BREAKFAST! Huge hits on the all-new prix fixe menu include the Open-Face Bacon and Egg Sandwich and the Croissant Doughnut.

Open-Face Bacon and Egg Sandwich

Open-Face Bacon and Egg Sandwich

Croissant Doughnut and fresh fruit

Croissant Doughnut and fresh fruit

You can read our Opening Day Everything on the Menu review HERE!

Sweet Treat Makeovers

Not sure how long this gem will be around, but the Cinderella Coach Apple celebrating the recently released live-action “Cinderella” film sure is a beauty!

Cinderella Coach Apple

Cinderella Coach Apple

You can find it for a limited time at the Main Street Confectionery and Big Top Treats. (Keep an eye out at spots outside of Magic Kingdom like Goofy’s Candy Company and Sweet Spells, too!) A few of the Krispy Treats have joined in on the fun, as well…

Cinderella Coach Apples and Krispy Treats

Cinderella Coach Apples and Krispy Treats

Snack Location Switcheroos

Looking for your favorite Dole Whip or Citrus Swirl over in Adventureland?

Citrus Swirl at Sunshine Tree Terrace

Citrus Swirl at Sunshine Tree Terrace

Well, the homes for these beloved snacks have changed places. You see, Sunshine Tree Terrace — home of the Citrus Swirl — is now located where Aloha Isle used to be. And Aloha Isle, boasting its signature Dole Whip? It’s now located where Sunshine Tree Terrace used to be.

New Aloha Isle location

New Aloha Isle location

New Sunshine Tree Terrace location

New Sunshine Tree Terrace location

Confused? Fret not — you can read all about it here! Rumor has it that this all has something to do with a new restaurant on the horizon for Adventureland. (And what’s this we’re hearing about a possible Jungle Cruise theme?!) Time will surely tell!

Speaking of location changes… If you’re hoping to enjoy a Jumbo Turkey Leg in Magic Kingdom, they’ll be available at Cool Ship in Tomorrowland starting TODAY.

Cool Ship

Cool Ship area

Walt Disney World Turkey Leg

Walt Disney World Turkey Leg

This temporary move will allow for [Read more…]

News! 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Eat to the Beat Concert Schedule Preliminary Dates

Here we goooooo, Epcot Food and Wine Festival Fans!

Food and Wine Festival Updates

We’ve got the first word on a few Eat to the Beat concert line-up listings ALREADY for 2015!

For those of you who may not know, Eat to the Beat is an Epcot concert series that takes place during the Epcot Food and Wine Festival, running this year from September 25-November 16. The series features musical acts from the 70s, 80s, 90s, and 00s each year, and concerts take place throughout most evenings of the Festival.

Since this partial list is preliminary, be sure to stay tuned to the Disney Food Blog for additions and/or changes to the schedule! We will bring you all the latest news first!

Eat to the Beat concerts are performed three times per evening, so you have three chances each night to see your favorites — 5:30PM, 6:45PM, and 8:00PM!

eat-to-the-beat-logo

2015 Eat to the Beat Concert Line Up!

Note that this schedule is subject to change.

October 2-4 – Starship Featuring Mickey Thomas
October 10-11 – 38 Special
October 19-21 – Air Supply

Taking in an Eat to the Beat Concert is a great way to unwind and continue the fun of the Food and Wine Festival into the evening.

All concerts take place in the American Gardens Theater at Epcot’s America Pavilion. Concerts are free — included in the price of your Epcot admission!

Many folks plan [Read more…]

Review: Gourmet Grilled Cheese at Epcot’s Taste Track

Today, we’re grabbing lunch from a pop up seasonal spot in Epcot! And this one involves Grilled Cheese!!

You know these kiosks…often you’ll find them closed (and sometimes not even there!) if you’re lucky enough to visit during less busy times of the year.

Spaceship Earth, How We Love You

Epcot!

But since we’re smack dab in the middle of Spring Break, we’re seeing lots of extra food around the Parks to help feed the hungry crowds and minimize wait times at regular Counter Service and Table Service Locations.

Thanks to readers Daniel Wanderman and Megan McQuillan‎ for letting me know recently that we needed to get over to Epcot’s Taste Track to check out an incredible menu of Gourmet Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. I can’t wait to show you these!

Atmosphere

If you’re looking for Taste Track, hang a right as you’re facing Test Track, and head back toward Future World. If the kiosk is serving, this is where you’ll find it.

Taste Track

Taste Track

You won’t find much in the way of seating — as in tables and chairs — but there are the same highboy tables that you see scattered around World Showcase, especially during the Flower and Garden and Food and Wine Festivals.

Taste Track Tables

Tables Near Taste Track

Taste Track Tables 2

More Tables

There are also some benches shaded by umbrellas situated a short walk away. And there are a few low planters with walls that conveniently double as both benches and tables.

For a landmark to get your bearings, Cool Wash is directly behind you if you’re facing the Taste Track kiosk.

Cool Wash, Across from the Taste Track Kiosk

Cool Wash, Across from the Taste Track Kiosk

Everything on the menu sounded pretty fantastic and we were excited to sample a range of things. Let’s check out what we chose.

Eats

For such a small booth, there’s a surprisingly diverse menu offered here!

With three different Gourmet Grilled Cheese Selections, plus Soup and Salad options, this could be a stop for the whole family. There are also some fantastic Craft Beer Selections. Because Grilled Cheese and Beer.

Taste Track Menu -- Click to Enlarge

Taste Track Menu — Click to Enlarge

I thought the Kids’ Meal option of Grilled Cheese on Goldfish Honey Wheat Bread was fun, too. I tried to snap a pic from the family behind me; alas, they must have been hungry because they snatched it too quick. :-)

When it came down to it, my friend and I decided to sample all three of the “grown up” options. We began with the [Read more…]

News! Jungle Cruise Restaurant May Be Coming to Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom

We first brought you news that a new restaurant was coming to Adventureland a while back. And today, there’s more buzz that the rumor may be fact!

Jungle Cruise Eats? Sign Me UP!!!

Jungle Cruise Eats? Sign Me UP!!!

The folks over at Orlando Weekly and WDW News Today have been reporting on some GREAT news for Adventureland Fans! While initial reports we were hearing firsthand indicated that a new restaurant would be a New Orleans-themed, a la Princess and the Frog…it may be that something EVEN BETTER is coming instead. Because the area just may actually be themed after the Jungle Cruise!

Do You Think Any of the Specialties from the Crew Mess will Make It to the Skipper's Cantina Menu??

Do You Think Any of the Specialties from the Crew Mess will Make It to the Menu??

The whole thing would take place at the old Adventureland Veranda, which served as a restaurant for years – with Kikkoman as a corporate sponsor. Here’s an awesome photo by Widen Your World that shows the old signage.

Old Adventureland Terrace Sign, Courtesy of

Old Adventureland Veranda Sign, Courtesy of Omniluxe.net

But most recently, the veranda has been used as a character Meet and Greet with Tinkerbell and her Fairy Friends. (Tink and Co. have since flitted over to the Main Street Theater, where you can catch them, along with Mickey and other characters, for aaaaaalllll of your photo op needs.) These days, you’ll frequently spy Peter Pan and Wendy here.

But now, it would seem that this new opening is definitely linked to the switcheroo we told you about last week, when Aloha Isle and Sunshine Tree Terrace swapped real estate (and treats). You can find all of your favorite Dole Whip Delicacies at the new Aloha Isle location, while the new Sunshine Tree Terrace continues to offer Citrus Swirls (and it’s pretty busy there, too, if our trip through the area the other day is any indication.)

But back to the restaurant. The backstory for the new spot may include a retreat for Jungle Cruise skippers, or even a secondary source of income for them!

After a Day of Dodging These Guys, It Will Be Great to Kick Back and Grab Some Grub!

After a Day of Dodging These Guys, It Will Be Great to Kick Back and Grab Some Grub!

Ahhhh...Jungle Waterfalls

Do you think we’ll be able to dine while viewing the backside of water?

Perhaps the spot will be similar to Be Our Guest Restaurant, in that it will offer counter service lunch (or quick service, more accurately) and table service dinner.

So another great question — will any of the fun drinks that we associate with the now defunct Adventurer’s Club, or Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto at the Polynesian (I’m counting the days ’til it opens later this month!!!) OR Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar be on the menu?

Schweitzer Falls at Trader Sam's Tiki Bar

Schweitzer Falls — a non-alcoholic drink at Trader Sam’s Tiki Bar

After all, Disney broke the long-standing tradition of no alcohol in Magic Kingdom with the inclusion of beer and wine on the Be Our Guest Dinner Menu. We’ll anxiously await the answer to this one. :-)

Wonder if Trader Sam Will Be a Frequent Visitor?

Wonder if Trader Sam Will Be a Frequent Visitor?

While we look for answers to the many, many, MANY questions this news brings up, if the rumors are true we anticipate the new restaurant could open as early as late 2015.

Are you as excited as I am about this HUGE rumor/news out of Magic Kingdom today?? Leave a comment and tell me if you think it’s a good idea…

Source: Orlando Weekly, WDW News Today, WDW Theme Parks

FULL “Everything On The Menu” Review: Breakfast at Magic Kingdom’s Be Our Guest Restaurant

The long-awaited moment has arrived…

So, in the (slightly paraphrased) words of Lumiere, “Now, we invite you to relax, let us pull up a chair, as Be Our Guest Restaurant proudly presents… your Breakfast!

Since the day Be Our Guest Restaurant opened as part of New Fantasyland in November of 2012, it seems to have only picked up steam. To say that its initial offerings of a Table Service Dinner and Counter Service Lunch have been successful would be an enormous understatement. The popularity and demand for meals at Be Our Guest have led to a third offering for the day, which is the new meal and experience that we’re here to review now: Breakfast at Be Our Guest Restaurant!

UPDATE: Please note that as of June 2015, the original test phase of breakfast at Be Our Guest Restaurant has been extended and Advance Dining Reservations are available for breakfast through October 3, 2015. 

Be Our Guest sign

Be Our Guest sign

Before we step inside, though, it’s worth exploring the outside grounds a bit, since that’s where you check in for your Advance Dining Reservation. But mostly, it’s just a neat hour to be in New Fantasyland and experience some of the quiet among the earliest breakfast arrivals.

Quiet New Fantasyland

Quiet New Fantasyland

With the Daylight Savings Time change being so recent, the sun had not been out long before my friends and I arrived for check in, so the natural light in the area was especially beautiful.

Beast's Castle

Beast’s Castle

Gargoyles in the morning

Gargoyles in the morning

But it’s also the indoor themeing of this restaurant that makes it so special, so let’s step once more into the Beast’s Castle…

Entrance to Be Our Guest

Entrance to Be Our Guest

Atmosphere

We’ve taken one or two (or three) tours around Be Our Guest Restaurant before, but it’s undeniable that the exceptional theming has been the top draw for guests hoping to dine here. And since, as with lunch, you get to choose where you sit for breakfast, you’ll want to give each of the three rooms consideration before your visit.

I don’t know which of the rooms has been most in demand since Be Our Guest opened. I’m guessing that it might be the Ballroom, since it so perfectly captures the scene where Belle and Beast dance together in the film, and is complete with elegant seating, stunning chandeliers, and falling snow.

The Ballroom

The Ballroom

Dancing Snow Outside of Be Our Guest Ballroom

Dancing Snow Outside of Be Our Guest Ballroom

Ballroom Tables

Ballroom Tables

Chandelier

Chandelier

Many guests, though, are eager to dine in the West Wing: the place Belle was forbidden to go due to the presence of the Enchanted Rose.

The West Wing

The West Wing

Enchanted Rose

Enchanted Rose

Aside from the magically falling rose petals, amazing special effects in this room include the sound of periodic thunderstorms, simultaneously revealing glimpses of the Beast in the portrait of the prince.

Prince - Beast portrait at Be Our Guest Restaurant West Wing

Portrait of the Prince

Beast Painting

A Glimpse of the Beast

While the third room, the Rose Gallery, isn’t open for dinner, it IS open for both breakfast lunch. The highlight is the [Read more…]

Review: Hot Chocolate Cupcake from the Contempo Cafe at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

So, today we’ve got a SUPER cute cupcake from Contempo Cafe at Disney’s Contemporary Resort!

The restaurant, located on the Concourse in the Resort, is one of my favorite stops for delicious counter service eats. It’s just a monorail ride (or quick walk) away from Magic Kingdom, making it a great option if you need a break during a busy Park day.

But they’ve also featured some truly decadent and beautiful Cupcakes throughout the years. I’m always anxious to pop in every time I’m in town to see what Chef Jeff Barnes and his creative team have come up with!

And on a recent visit, I didn’t come up empty handed when I stopped by for an afternoon snack.

The Hot Chocolate Cupcake

Well, the very last thing that you want in Florida 11 1/2 months out of the year is a steaming cup of anything. So this is a fun nod to hot chocolate without getting any of the “hot!”

It’s pretty great that you get so much description here on the sign…and it’s pretty irresistible, eh?

Hot Chocolate Cupcake -- In the Case, with Description

Hot Chocolate Cupcake — In the Case, with Description

I quickly opted to try this new-to-me cupcake, passing by the ever popular Frozen Cupcake and the classic Red Velvet Cupcake.

It’s definitely super cute, with Toasted Marshmallows on top, a Striped Chocolate Straw, Red Sprinkles, and a mound of light Chocolate Buttercream.

Hot Chocolate Cupcake -- Up Close

Hot Chocolate Cupcake — Up Close

When I cut into it, I found [Read more…]

NEW Wishes Fireworks Dessert Party Debuts July 5th — Booking Opens March 20th (TODAY!)

A NEW VERSION of the Wishes Fireworks Dessert Party will make its debut on Sunday, July 5th, at Magic Kingdom!

©Disney

©Disney

The “Wishes Fireworks Dessert Party” will offer enhancements to the very popular Tomorrowland Terrace Dessert Party (the final date of the Tomorrowland Terrace Dessert Party will be July 4th). You can see our review of the Tomorrowland Terrace Dessert Party here.

Guests will experience reserved seating areas and raise a sparkling cider toast as “Wishes” begins.

Wishes at Magic Kingdom

Wishes at Magic Kingdom

Of course, desserts will remain a key factor in the celebration, and Disney has revealed plans for offerings such as chocolate-dipped strawberries, chocolate mousse, and ice cream. New menu additions will include seasonal fruit and cheese assortments along with Disney character cupcakes. Additions to the beverage line-up will include [Read more…]