Guest Review: Boma in the Animal Kingdom Lodge

Welcome our Guest Reviewer Andrew Serio, who takes us to dinner at Boma inside the exotic Animal Kingdom Lodge. Let’s sample the flavors of Africa with him!

Boma, which is nestled down the stairs from the lobby of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, is among the most popular “non-character” buffet restaurants at the Walt Disney World Resort. After a several year span away from Boma, my wife Joy and I tried it again on a Thursday night in late February.


Because Boma shares a common exterior area with Jiko, things can get a little hectic when approaching the podium. This was the case on this evening, as there were a good many people milling about. However, when we approached the host stand, we were greeted immediately and cordially by James and Anna. Our ADR was verified, and we were asked to wait briefly while being handed a pager.

Welcome to Boma!

After a very short wait, we were ushered to our table, which was [Read more…]

More Details on Disney World’s New Dine with an Animal Specialist Option: Menu, Photos, and Activities!

Jambo! Thanks to Vallen Tucker at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge concierge office, we have some great NEW information about the resort’s Dine With An Animal Specialist opportunity!!

As you know, the dining option is offered at Sanaa at Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Kidani Village. Guests can dine with an Animal Specialist, savoring cuisine from Sanaa while learning about the animals grazing outside the window. During the “untamed” lunch, your family will be immersed in African culture while posing questions to the animal expert regarding the animals on the nearby savanna.

Dine With An Animal Specialist: Menu

The four-course menu will delight your senses during this exclusive experience limited to 12 guests. It is recommended for guests over 8 years old. Special Diets can be accommodated and there is a separate menu for kids

First Course: Indian Style Bread Service
Breads – Naan, Onion Kulcha, Papadum, Paneer Paratha

Accompaniments – Red Chile Sambal, Cucumber Raita, Coriander Chutney, Mango Chutney, Garlic Pickle, Green Mango Pickle, Roasted Red Bell Pepper Hummus, Tamarind Chutney

Parts of the First Course Offerings

Second Course: [Read more…]

New Offering at Animal Kingdom Lodge: Dine with an Animal Specialist!

Update: See the Dine with an Animal Specialist menu, food photos, and details here!

Thanks to reader Cliff Yow for the heads up on this awesome new adventure! A new dining experience is available at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge — Dine with an Animal Expert!

Enjoy an exclusive and interactive experience while dining with a Disney Animal Expert at Sanaa, an exotic restaurant offering views of the African savanna. As you immerse yourself in African culture, you’ll get to ask questions of the expert while also learning fascinating facts about the care of savanna’s animals. See the resort’s savanna animals outside the window as you learn special insights into these African creatures.

View from Sanaa

Dine with Animal Specialists: An Untamed Lunch

Offered at Sanaa every Wednesday, 11:30 am to 1:15 pm, this unique opportunity will appeal to animal enthusiasts.

A four course meal and suitable children’s menu will be [Read more…]

African Inspired Meals in Walt Disney World — Tusker House

Jambo! Join me in welcoming Disney guru Mary Jo Collins and Disney World Moms Panelist Bernie Edwards back to the blog! In this article they’ll share with us various locations to enjoy an African Inspired Meal at Walt Disney World. We also get a close-up look at the Tusker House restaurant. Twende! Let’s go!

Theming Outside Animal Kingdom's Tusker House

Visiting the Walt Disney World Resort has become synonymous with the enjoyment of great dining at restaurants both inside and outside the theme parks. For many of us, these meals lend us the opportunity to experience exotic foods from exotic places.

African Food in Disney World
Fortunately for guests of Walt Disney World, African cuisine is showcased in a variety of table service restaurants offering a peek at the food that has been influenced by the marinade of cultures, colonies, trade routes and history of this land. To describe or categorize what African food is in a few words would be impossible.

The cuisine is as varied in Africa as the cuisine of any large continent. The continent’s regions each have significant differences in their own distinctive dishes and preparation techniques. However, in Africa the various cuisines traditionally combine [Read more…]

Orlando Sentinel Foodie Awards Include Several WDW Area Restaurants

For those of you who plan your Walt Disney World vacation around your gastronomical dreams, you may want to take note of the restaurants listed in this year’s 13th Annual Foodie Awards by the Orlando Sentinel.

Readers and critics chose these restaurants for their outstanding cuisine, and with five of the restaurants located within the WDW theme parks, you’ll need park admission and an Advance Dining Reservation to cast your vote for best meal. Check them out here! [Read more…]

Review: Jiko…A Cooking Place

Well, my food-loving friends, it’s finally time to talk about one of my very favorite restaurants in all of Walt Disney World. My husband and I spent our first Valentine’s Day at Jiko, and we’ve returned time and time again to enjoy consistently delicious meals.

Now, a few of you might be concerned that you won’t find anything on the menu that suits your taste in a restaurant that touts “African” food, but fear not; there really is something for everyone here.


Jiko is located on Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge’s ground floor and features floor to ceiling windows that look out onto a beautiful and peaceful water feature. But the windows are probably the least interesting thing about this restaurant’s design, which was developed by Jeffrey Beers.

Walking into the restaurant you’ll pass a bar area to your left and see the Cape Town Wine Room directly in front of you. (Yep, that’s it behind the glass walls of wine!) Jiko serves exclusively [Read more…]

DIY Disney: Coconut Curry Chicken Soup from Boma

Today, Chef Big Fat Panda’s DIY Disney Recipes column brings us a savory favorite from Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Boma! Take it away, Panda!

Hello Disney Food People! It feels like I haven’t seen you in forever. You look fantastic? Did you lose weight? I need to feed you something delicious, don’t I? Well, I have just the thing.

Today, I am going to recreate something from Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Boma restaurant called “Coconut Curry Chicken Soup.” Some Disney recipes call it a stew, and it is a hybrid of sorts as I will explain.


I make no secret of my Italian heritage, but what many people don’t know is that among all the pasta and tomato sauce type dishes my mom prepared as I grew up, she also made curry. My mom had [Read more…]

Disney Food Trends: Gourmet Mac and Cheese

Even Chef Mickey is in on the trend...

I’ve been noticing a few food trends while traipsing through Disney parks, and I think they’re important to mention — especially since they seem to be popping up on every menu re-vamp out there.

First, we gotta take a gander at good old macaroni and cheese. When I asked Disney World’s Sanaa Chef Bob Getchell about the gourmet mac and cheese trend that seems to be taking over Disney restaurants, he mentioned that chefs like to make food they themselves love; many have fond memories of mac and cheese while they were growing up, and they want to create new and improved contemporary recipes for the dish. Here are a few of our favorite versions on and around Disney property:

Yachtsman Steakhouse
Yacht Club Resort’s Yachtsman Steakhouse gets a nod due to a relatively new mac and cheese dish I found on the menu in October. Their truffle mac and cheese uses huge orecchiette noodles and Reypenaer cheese with a touch of truffle oil and a topping of crunchy onions. It’s served in a cast iron baking dish that lends a rustic look — very fun! The best part — it tastes amazing. Rich, tangy, creamy sauce nestles into those pasta pieces and serves as the perfect accompaniment to the meal. This is sold as a side dish only, so be sure to look for it at the bottom of the menu.

Yachtsman Steakhouse Mac and Cheese Side Dish

Le Cellier
Not to be outdone, Epcot’s Le Cellier Steakhouse has also introduced some mac and cheese on the menu. Served in a cast iron skillet, elbow macaroni is [Read more…]

DIY Disney: Chai Cream from Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

Today, Chef Big Fat Panda’s DIY Disney Recipes column brings us a sweet treat from Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Sanaa! Thanks to Chef Bob Getchell for sending along the recipe. Take it away, Panda!

Chef Mickey with Ingredients

Hello Disney Foodies! Boy, do I have a treat for you!

I want to be honest and tell you that I procrastinated about this recipe a bit. It is totally out of my comfort zone because I fell into the same trap that I warn against time after time. If you have ever read my articles, you know that I advise you not to “fear the ingredients” — that you can often make a recipe work with a substitution. Well, I feared the ingredients (you’ll see why). We then decided to approach this fantastic dessert from a different perspective. We thought — Let’s try to be as true to the recipe as possible, while finding alternatives that are readily available to most people. With that freedom, here it goes… and after the result, I am glad I stopped being scared of Sanaa’s Chai Cream!

As usual, the recipe’s instructions will be bolded for easy [Read more…]

Five New Disney World Drinks You’ve Gotta Try

You guys know I’m always looking for new, fun drinks to try, and I had a field day on my recent trip to Orlando! Here are just a few of my new favorites:

Yak and Yeti: Shaved Ice Martini
A.K.A. — the snow cone. This fun drink comes in three flavors — Grape, Cherry, and Citrus/Melon. I chose the shockingly bright green version, which included vodka, midori, and pineapple juice along with my (beloved) sweet and sour. The presentation is the best part, but who WOULDN’T want to try an alcoholic snow cone?! Find it at Yak and Yeti Restaurant in Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Citrus Shaved Ice Martini

La Luce by Donna Scala: Limonata
A straight-up pucker-fest, the Limonata is a classy drink served in a classy atmosphere. It’s light, refreshing, and sour — just how I like it! Pair it with the fritto misto or the (incredible) four cheese pizza appetizer. Find it at La Luce by Donna Scala, a new restaurant at [Read more…]