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Fourth of July News! Regional Craft Beers This Week at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel

Drink beer, do good. Sounds like the perfect way to enjoy the Fourth of July!

To that end, we have some fun news for readers who enjoy exploring the world of craft beer!

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel, in conjunction with Tampa’s Cigar City Brewing, will offer eight Cigar City selections when they stage a “Taproom Takeover” at Cabana Bar and Beach Club July 2-8!

Cabana Bar and Beach Club

Cabana Bar and Beach Club

Guests of the hotel can enjoy Cigar City’s regionally brewed beer and cider on all eight of the Cabana Bar and Beach Club’s taps. A selection of Cigar City Brewing’s beers will also be available at the Dolphin’s Lobby Lounge.

And on July 4, the endeavor will take on a charitable twist. One of the beers that will be available is Homefront IPA, and a portion of the proceeds from its sale will be donated to Operation Homefront, an organization providing services to military families across the nation.

Homefront IPA

Homefront IPA

This special brew is crafted in collaboration between several American microbreweries — Cigar City Brewing among them.

Cuban Espresso Brown Ale

In addition to Homefront IPA, beer and cider selections will include Continue reading →

Review: Specialty Hot Dogs at The Lunching Pad in Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom

Can’t wait for lunch? Head over to The Lunching Pad with us!

You’ll find this snack stop in Tomorrowland at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. And while it looks pretty unassuming, it’s a great place to enjoy Cream Cheese Pretzels, or even Mickey Soft Pretzels!

But in addition to some of our favorite soft pretzel snacks and carbonated frozen drinks, they’re also an outlet for those delicious and inventive Gourmet Hot Dogs that you’ll find around the resort.

Today, we’re taking a look at not one, not two, but three of these deluxe dogs for lunch. C’mon!

Atmosphere

So, atmosphere at The Lunching Pad…well, what you see is pretty much what you get.

The Lunching Pad at Rocketeer Plaza

The Lunching Pad at Rocketeer Plaza

If you’ve been to Tomorrowland, you’ve seen the atmosphere of this spot. It’s really just a walk-up window.

Ordering Window

Ordering Window

There are a few tables scattered nearby, complete with those awesome, padded Tomorrowland seats.

And because The Lunching Pad is located beneath the PeopleMover and Astro-Orbiter, the overhang provides some much-welcomed shade when you stop here for a quick meal or snack.

Seating

Seating

But now that we’ve taken a (very quick!) tour around The Lunching Pad, let’s see about those dogs!

Eats

The menu at this snack stop is very small. You have a handful of frozen, carbonated beverages, which are so amazing on a hot day! And you can get them in plain cups or sport bottles. And as we mentioned before, this is also a good place to snag a soft pretzel.

Mickey Pretzel with Plastic Cheese

Mickey Pretzel with Plastic Cheese

But the star attractions here, if you’re looking for real sustenance, are the line up of over the top hot dogs.

Menu -- Click to Enlarge

Menu — Click to Enlarge

Let’s just take a moment to admire them, shall we?

Today’s selections include, left to right, the BLT Hot Dog (NEW!), the Coney Island Dog, and the Philly Cheese Steak Dog.

Specialty Hot Dogs from The Lunching Pad in Disney World's Magic Kingdom

Specialty Hot Dogs from The Lunching Pad in Disney World’s Magic Kingdom

We’ll start with the brand new-to-the-menu Continue reading →

Disney Food Post Round-Up: June 29, 2014

We found lots of new treats, comfort foods, and beverages around Walt Disney World this week. There are so many fun finds that I can’t pick a favorite!! Check out all of our yummy discoveries in our What’s New post, including an adorable Orange Bird Caramel Apple!

Orange Bird Caramel Apple

Orange Bird Caramel Apple

Don’t miss the Cinderella’s Royal Table renovation announcement on our Pin Board! If you’re visiting in 2015, you’ll want to make a note of the rehab dates.

You’ll find more delicious treats by clicking on the links below!

Disney Food News

Of course, there’s more!

Check out all the latest Disney Food News — even the stuff we don’t mention in posts on the blog! — on our Disney Food News Pin Board, including restaurant closures, an upcoming renovation of Cinderella’s Royal Table, and more!

DFB Reader Finds

If you find a fun new food — or other edible awesomeness — in or from Disney, share a photo with us on facebook or twitter so we can add it to our DFB Reader Finds each Sunday!

We absolutely love to see our readers amazing Disney creations. This week, we look at unique Disney cakes for at-home celebrations!

Our Facebook Friend, Carolyn, made a gorgeous Mickey Ice Cream Bar cake. So clever!!

Homemade Mickey Ice Cream Bar Cake

Homemade Mickey Ice Cream Bar Cake

Toy Story Fans will love this cake created by DFB Reader, Terry. Outstanding!

Toy Story Birthday Cake

Toy Story Birthday Cake

Thanks for sharing your amazing cakes with us!

Disney Food Blog Guide to Epcot Snacks e-Book, 2014 Edition

This week, we announced the Grand Launch of the Disney Food Blog Guide to Epcot Snacks e-Book, 2014 Edition! And to continue the celebration, we’re offering a $3 discount for a limited time! Use code Epcot2014 at check-out!

We’ve updated our detailed snack guide to help you find the best eats (and treats!) in Walt Disney World’s Epcot. You’ll see some of your old favorites as well as some snacks that you might have missed. We’ve kept most of the snacks in the $1-5 range, but there are a few big spenders in there. (Yep, that turkey leg or frozen mojito is gonna cost you!)

How Do I Get One?

There is absolutely no waiting to satisfy your snack cravings! This guide is an instantly downloadable PDF guide with over 290 pages of information and advice on over 150 delicious snacks that you can savor in Disney World’s Epcot. Download your copy right now, and start planning!

This guide is guaranteed to help you better plan your snacks and treats in Epcot, or your money back — we all know that treats in Epcot are just as important as a FastPass+ for Soarin!

The DFB Guide to Epcot Snacks e-Book includes: Continue reading →

Review: Gravy Fries at Everything Pop Food Court at Disney’s Pop Century Resort

May I make a Disney food confession?

I can’t – CAN’T – enter the Everything Pop Food Court at Disney’s Pop Century Resort

Everything Pop Food Court

Everything Pop Food Court

…and not indulge in a serving of Gravy Fries.

Gravy Fries

Gravy Fries

If you’ve visited Everything Pop, you may not have even seen Gravy Fries on the menu – they just get a small mention on the side of the screen at the sandwich station, and it rotates out occasionally to spotlight other items.

Pop Century Sandwich Station Menu

Pop Century Sandwich Station Menu

Basically, everything you need to know is in the name: Gravy. And. Fries.

The fries are standard issue Disney fries. The beef gravy covering them is… well, I think it’s awesome – you can spot the bits of pepper to give it just a little zest, and it’s consistently thick and rich.

Gravy close-up

Gravy close-up

You actually need Continue reading →

Disney Recipe: Soft Pretzels from Epcot’s Germany Pavilion

Ready for another fun project? Haha! I thought you might be!

Who doesn’t catch themselves daydreaming about their favorite Disney snacks? And one salty treat that you write to me about over and over are those amazing Soft Pretzels that you can get in the Germany Pavilion in Epcot!

Hand-Twisted Pretzel in Epcot's Germany

Hand-Twisted Pretzel in Epcot’s Germany

These are the real deal — warm, salty, chewy, and perfect with a little mustard and a lot of beer!

Well, if you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at making them at home, now’s your chance!

I have a feeling that I know what I’ll be doing this weekend…

Authentic German Soft Pretzels

Epcot’s Germany Pavilion

Yield: 10 pretzels
Ingredients: Continue reading →

Best Disneyland Meals With a View

Good food is tops. But having a delicious meal with a lovely view makes everything taste even better, I think. And I’m pretty sure you agree with me, since we both love Disney!

Disneyland Dole Whip Float

Disneyland Dole Whip Float

I’m feeling a little homesick for the Park that Started It All today, so I thought I’d take a virtual trip to Disneyland and check out a few of my favorite spots that offer not just great food, but also cool stuff to look at. I’ll be honest — sometimes, it’s the view that draws me to a couple of these spots, even more than the eats!

Let’s take a look at some of our favorite Disneyland Meals with a View!

Blue Bayou

When thinking of a restaurant with a view, your mind may immediately jump to something outside — say, a river or a mountain. We’ll get to those, for sure — but we’re going to start with the Bayou.

That’s right. Our first meal with a view takes place at that Disney landmark, Blue Bayou. It may be Southern Cali sunny when you enter, but inside, the sky is inky blue, and the mood is foreboding.

Blue Bayou Atmosphere

Night Falls on the Bayou

Something mysterious and slightly sinister is in the air. Could it be…Pirates?

Should We Warn Them They're About to Encounter Scallywags?

Should We Warn Them They’re About to Encounter Scallywags?

Yes, indeedy! Because Blue Bayou overlooks the entrance to Pirates of the Caribbean. So you’ll have a chance to see folks off at the beginning of their perilous journey.

Fortunately, you’re safe on the terrace of this gracious Southern mansion, about to tuck into some delicious, Cajun-inspired food.

Atmosphere

The Beautiful Terrace Seating Area

Blue Bayou is open for lunch and dinner, but we prefer the former. That’s the only time you can get the famous and incredibly delicious Monte Cristo Sandwich.

Le Special de  Monte Cristo Sandwich

Le Special de Monte Cristo Sandwich

Classic food with a classic view. It’s a pretty special way to pass the time.

Cove Bar

When I’m in the mood for a little grown-up libation, I love to head over to Cove Bar in Disney California Adventure.

You’ll find this somewhat hidden gem situated above Ariel’s Grotto overlooking Paradise Pier. And it’s the location that makes this stop so special (though the food ain’t half bad).

View from Cove Bar

View from Cove Bar

That covered area with the beautiful seaside touches is a great place to relax and unwind. With the shady patio seating and close proximity to the water, you’ll often enjoy cool breezes that make you feel like you’re inside and outside at the same time!

And while most of the drinks here are part of the Standard Disney Bar Menu, you will find a couple specialty drinks as well. Personally, I think it’s a fantastic opportunity to indulge in that Disney classic cocktail, the Continue reading →

Don’t Miss Out! Subscribe to the Disney Food Blog Newsletter!

There is so much to know when it comes to planning your next Disney vacation. Help stretch your dollars even further by subscribing to the Disney Food Blog Newsletter!

DFB Newsletter

After all, knowledge is power, and each issue of our newsletter is jam packed with the latest news, exclusive articles, and lots of other deets that make planning your next trip a breeze.

Enjoy recipes that you can make right at home to keep that Disney feelin’ alive. Savor along with me as we discuss my favorite topic each issue — our featured “Munch of the Month”.

Every color newsletter delivers straight to your inbox even more of the information that you’ve come to love from Disney Food Blog.

And when special things pop up during the month like free dining or big news items, we’ll let you know about those, too!

Don’t wait — sign up today and you’ll receive Continue reading →

Guest Review: Studio Catering Co. at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Join me in welcoming Bob Sikon with a guest review of a counter service eatery at Disney’s Hollywood Studios — Studio Catering Co.!

I have to confess, if my wife and I eat a meal at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, we typically stop in to visit the ABC Commissary. Oh, we’ve eaten meatloaf at 50′s Prime Time Cafe and cobb salads at The Hollywood Brown Derby, but our trips to the Studios usually include the commissary’s burgers.

If not that, we’ll enjoy a mere Quick Service snack of Butterfinger cupcakes from Starring Rolls Cafe or a couple of carrot cake cookies from Writer’s Stop.

This last trip, however, we tried something new – an early dinner at Studio Catering Co.

Welcome!

Atmosphere

Another confession – in all our past visits, we had never given Studio Catering Co. even a little bit of thought. Part of the reason is that it is sort of hidden without really being hidden. In other words, it is clearly there, but if you didn’t know it was there, the signage wouldn’t help you much.

Exterior Menu Board – click image for larger version.

Despite that, the thing that struck us from the moment we approached the restaurant was the amount of available space. There is PLENTY of seating. Look at the size Continue reading →

Tip from the DFB Guide: How to Outsmart the Heat and Crowds at Disney World This Summer

We’re coming into the very hot, very crowded summer months at Walt Disney World. And that gives me a chance to share with you one of my favorite tips from the DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining!

2014 dfb guide 3d cover

So, dining in the theme parks is awesome and convenient, since you’re probably already there. BUT, it can also be a hassle…because you’ll get hungry for lunch, well, just about same time that everyone else does!

So one of my favorite tips for dealing with crowds during lunch at Disney Parks? Escape the Parks for lunch at a nearby resort.

The food is as good (and sometimes it’s better) than what you’ll find in the Parks. And with all of that wonderful air conditioning comes another pleasant surprise. Since most guests are busy running to and fro to attractions, you’ll often find little to no wait at Resort restaurants.

When I’m at Magic Kingdom, I love to hop a boat and head for lunch at Trail’s End Restaurant. Located at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort Campground, getting there by boat is actually a smart move, since the restaurant is located all the way at the back of the resort.

Grab this Sticky Bun Sundae -- or another mouth watering menu item -- at Trail's End on your Magic Kingdom Day

Grab this Sticky Bun Sundae — or another mouth watering menu item — at Trail’s End on your Magic Kingdom Day

ESPN Club is a short walk from both Epcot or Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and it’s a great place to catch up with what’s going on in the world of sports while you cool down!

Sanaa at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge has amazing food, and it’s an easy commute from Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

You Just Might View Some Animals While You Take in Lunch at Sanaa

You Just Might View Some Animals While You Take in Lunch at Sanaa

And don’t forget Continue reading →

Snack Series: Chocolate Covered Frozen Strawberry Cheesecake at Walt Disney World

So, I’m strolling through Landscape of Flavors at Disney’s Art of Animation during my recent Walt Disney World trip. I can never pass up a visit here!

Now, remember when I told you about the shockingly yummo Strawberry Cheesecake at Electric Umbrella? It’s part of the “dessert in a cup” genre of counter service desserts you’ll find throughout the parks. But it’s actually pretty good.

AND…do you remember when I told you about the Frozen Cheesecake on a Stick in Disneyland? Just when I didn’t think they could make cheesecake any more interesting or delicious, they popped it on a stick and gave it the deep freeze — perfect for a stroll-and-eat treat.

Well…Walt Disney World has obviously gotten the memo. Because check out what I just found!

Frozen Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cheesecake on a Mickey Straw

Yep — you guessed it — they’ve taken the Strawberry Cheesecake, popped it out of the cup, and made something altogether new. It’s Frozen Strawberry Cheesecake, Dipped in Chocolate, and served on a Mickey Swirly Straw.

Frozen Strawberry Cheesecake on a Straw

Frozen Strawberry Cheesecake on a Straw

So there are a few positives about this. Continue reading →