What’s New at 50s Prime Time Cafe in Disney’s Hollywood Studios?

Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World has always been a destination for movie (and TV) magic.

And even though the park is in the throes of dramatic re-imagining, we’re happy that some favorite dining experiences have remained. One such favorite is 50s Prime Time Cafe, the totally immersive, throwback-Thursday-everyday table service restaurant where your Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins berate you for putting your elbows on the table and the menu is packed with comfort food.

We’ve visited 50s Prime Time Cafe several times over the years (most recently in 2016), and one of the best parts of the experience here is the consistency of the food. If you enjoy American comfort food, you won’t be disappointed by the offerings at 50s.

And if you’re not a fan of heavy classics like meatloaf and fried chicken, there are actually still some decent options for you — and you’ll get to experience the fun of mid-century family life straight out of a sitcom.

So set the table, keep those elbows off the table, and get ready to clean your plates!

50s Prime Time Sign

50s Prime Time Sign

Atmosphere

The immersive experience at 50s Prime Time Cafe is evident from wall to wall — and we mean that literally. You’ll find old timey collectibles ev.er.y.where. And we can’t get enough of them!

Open shelving and tchotchkes galore!

Open shelving and tchotchkes galore!

Retro busts and figurines

Retro busts and figurines

Everyone should have a Cookie Trolley.

Everyone should have a Cookie Trolley.

Every shelf is packed full of fun stuff — so you’ve got to take a stroll to check it all out. Seating is in the family kitchen, where shelves of retro items are on display and everyone gets a television — black and white and flashing clips of old programs! (And yes, these are the SAME clips you saw on your last trip…even if it was in, like, 2005.)

Seating at 50s Prime Time Cafe

Seating at 50s Prime Time Cafe

The wallpaper is seriously serious, with its classic black-and-white checkerboard pattern.

50s Prime Time Cafe Seating

50s Prime Time Cafe Seating

And the TV styling? Space age, baby!

Someone adjust the bunny ears!

They should sell these things.

But here at 50s Prime Time Cafe, there are rules, family!

Stay out of Mom's kitchen!

Stay out of Mom’s kitchen!

Remember that dining here, you’re being served by your cousin most likely, and they’re pretty straightforward! No special treatment for you, and if you can’t tell them what color the soap was in the restroom you may end up standing in the corner for not washing your hands. If you don’t want to take part in the shenanigans (like singing “I’m a little teapot” in front of the whole restaurant when you didn’t finish your veggies), let your server know when you are seated.

If you’d like to see some of the fun antics, click here!

So what’s Mom cookin’ up in there? Let’s check it out!

Eats

The menu at 50s Prime Time Cafe is a laundry list of classic American comfort food — with a few nods here and there to healthier eats that probably weren’t on Grandma’s table. But you’ll want to start with a glance at the Drink Menu, where you can pilfer something From Dad’s Liquor Cabinet (or select a Sparkling Wine or Craft Beer).

50s Prime Time Cafe Drink Menu

50s Prime Time Cafe Drink Menu

Beverages at 50s Prime Time Cafe

Beverages at 50s Prime Time Cafe

While these adult beverages are a fun addition to the meal (and included in the 2018 Disney Dining Plan!), there’s really one drink you’ve got to try — and it’s family friendly! The Peanut Butter and Jelly Milk Shake is front and center on the full menu, and it’s delicious!

50s Prime Time Cafe Menu

50s Prime Time Cafe Menu

It’s served in a tall glass with the stainless milkshake cup so you can top off your shake throughout your meal. And you’re going to want to drink every last drop!

PB and J Milkshake at 50s Prime Time

PB and J Milkshake at 50s Prime Time

On this visit, I asked to see the Allergy-Friendly Menu and received this two-page menu with allergens clearly listed in red.

50s Prime Time Cafe Allergy Friendly Menu

50s Prime Time Cafe Allergy Friendly Menu

50s Prime Time Cafe Allergy Friendly Menu

50s Prime Time Cafe Allergy Friendly Menu

The Fried Herb and Garlic Cheese is one of my favorite things on any menu anywhere in the World — and we celebrated hard when it returned to the menu years ago after disappearing for a period! It’s a wheel of fried cheese served with fruit, raspberry sauce, and a piece of crusty bread. You have to get this!

Fried Cheese Appetizer

Fried Herb and Garlic Cheese Appetizer

Next up, entrees! Dad’s Stuffed Pork Chop was a miss on my visit. I love the concept — and the flavors are good.

Dad's Stuffed Pork Chop

Dad’s Stuffed Pork Chop

There’s great color on the outside of the chop, and the accompaniments are colorful and tasty.

Dad's Stuffed Pork Chop

Dad’s Stuffed Pork Chop

But this pork chop was way too tough and a challenge to cut through — to say nothing of actually chewing it! Hopefully it was just poorly executed on my visit and is actually awesome for everyone else. But I wouldn’t chance it again.

Dad's Stuffed Pork Chop Interior

Dad’s Stuffed Pork Chop Interior

Rather, I’d go for a Sampling of Mom’s Favorite Recipes! This is a definite yes if you enjoy the three components: Roast Beef, Fried Chicken, and Meatloaf (complete with ketchup squiggle).

Sampling of Mom's Favorites

Sampling of Mom’s Favorites

If you’re looking to choose just one of the three, though, the Fried Chicken is the bomb, followed closely by the Roast Beef. You can’t go wrong with either one!

Sampling of Mom's Favorites

Sampling of Mom’s Favorites

The Sustainable Verlasso Salmon is one of those menu items that likely wasn’t on everyone’s gran’s table. But it’s a terrific option for those looking to eat a little lighter (and more sustainably). This was well prepared and served with a great assortment of veggies.

Sustainable Verlasso Salmon

Sustainable Verlasso Salmon

The final entrees of the day are actually two versions of the same dish: Adult and Kids’ Chicken Pot Pie. This creamy mix is a combo of chicken, mushrooms, carrots, celery, onions, and peas. It’s topped with a flaky pastry — which seems to be pretty much the only difference between the two sizes. The grown up version comes with a square of pastry…

Adult Chicken Pot Pie

Adult Chicken Pot Pie

…while the (way more fun) kids’ version comes with Mickey-shaped pastry! Really, the portion size was so similar that it’s worth it to go with the kids’ just for the fun factor!

Kids' Chicken Pot Pie

Kids’ Chicken Pot Pie

The flavor on this is a little bit bland, but I’m not a huge chicken pot pie fan. If you LOVE pot pie, you’ll likely enjoy this one. It has several guest devotees.

Of course, there’s also a Dessert Menu, where Mom and Dad have listed some of their favorite sweets.

Desserts at 50s Prime Time Cafe

Desserts at 50s Prime Time Cafe

Dessert at 50s Prime Time Cafe features some classics — and we do love a classic dessert! Unfortunately, these were not really up to par. The Traditional Warm Apple Crisp was covered in plenty of sweet/buttery crisp.

Traditional Warm Apple Crisp

Traditional Warm Apple Crisp

But the filling is a generic canned apple pie-type filling. So it was tasty, but it wasn’t special.

Traditional Warm Apple Crisp

Traditional Warm Apple Crisp

Dad’s Favorite Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer Cake was disappointing (especially for lovers of chocolate/PB combos!). This was dry and unremarkable. Get the Peanut Butter and Jelly Shake instead!

Dad's Favorite Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer Cake

Dad’s Favorite Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer Cake

Nosh or Not?

Pull up a chair in Mom’s kitchen if: 

  • The idea of dining in a different decade sounds fun!
  • You like comfort food and want to eat some good renditions of old favorites!
  • You’re looking for a table service dining experience that’s casual and even a little irreverent.

Change the dining channel if: 

  • You prefer not to be pulled into hijinks while you dine.
  • You want to eat food that’s a bit more innovative and adventurous.
  • Table service doesn’t interest you — you’ve got rides to ride and attractions to enjoy.

Overall

Family, 50s Prime Time Cafe is still the bee’s knees, with tasty eats and some of the best atmosphere you’ll find in the World! On my visit the service was truly amazing (shout-out to Mark and Elaine). It’s a must-do at least once in your travels to Hollywood Studios. And don’t forget: if you can’t score an Advance Dining Reservation for 50s (or the walk-up time is too long a wait for you), you can get the full menu in neighboring Tune-In Lounge!

Want to know how 50s Prime Time Cafe ranks among Hollywood Studios restaurants? Check out our DFB YouTube video of the best (and worst) of the Studios!

Is 50s Prime Time Cafe on your Disney must-do list? Tell us what you love the most! 

Review: Warm Apple Crisp from Sunshine Seasons in Epcot’s Land Pavilion

Disney World’s fancy desserts are impressive with their layered fruits and house-made gelato and gaufrettes for texture.

And we love a creme brulee as much as the next guy with crisped, caramelized sugar on his upper lip. But, really, there is nothing like a good, soul-warming apple crisp.

We recently fell in love with the apple crisp they’re serving up at The BOATHOUSE in Disney Springs. And this typically-seasonal dessert finds a home on table service menus and in quick service dessert cases alike.

Today, we want to talk about the latter. And, not all that surprisingly, we found our most recent Warm Apple Crisp food hug at Sunshine Seasons in the Land Pavilion at Epcot.

Sunshine Seasons at The Land pavilion in Epcot

Sunshine Seasons at The Land pavilion in Epcot

Of course, we could have gone with an old favorite and ordered the Strawberry Shortcake (yum!) or a new favorite with the Mickey Oreo Cheesecake. But Warm Apple Crisp is the current seasonal dessert here, so we couldn’t pass it up. [Read more…]

Guest Review: Old Faithful Club Concierge Lounge at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

Welcome Guest Reviewer James Armstrong! Today, we get to see the concierge’s food amenities at the Wilderness Lodge in Walt Disney World. Let’s head to the Old Faithful Club!

While recently staying at Wilderness Lodge we had the pleasure of staying on the Concierge level (also known as the Old Faithful Club).

This is an “upgrade” you can purchase for your room when staying at most of the deluxe Disney World hotels. As part of this upgrade (and additional cost), you benefit from a private concierge to help arrange tickets, childcare, transportation, and recreational activities.

You ALSO get some free food in the Club Lounge.

Atmosphere

To get to the concierge level guests need to use their room key in the elevator, which will activate access to the seventh floor.

Old Faithful Club Elevator Key.

From here, you’ll be afforded excellent views of both the Fire Rock Geiser and the lodge itself. It also has the Old Faithful Club Lounge!

Old Faithful Times Guide. Click image for larger version.

Eats

As part of the Concierge experience, access to the Old Faithful Club Lounge is granted. Here, you’ll find all-you-care to eat snacks and drinks. This service will likely not replace all three meals, however it is a convenient stop for in-between snacks or light meals.

Continental Breakfast (7:00am – 10:30am*)
Breakfast was a nice variety of pastries, muffins, bagels, yogurt, fruit, and cereal. The menu was consistent throughout our visit.

Breakfast Pastries

Fridge stocked at breakfast

Cereal Dispensers

The Cinnamon Rolls had tender dough and a nice sweet flavor.

Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon Rolls Close-Up

There were plenty of Mini Muffins– Blueberry and [Read more…]

Review: Shula’s Steak House at the Walt Disney World Dolphin

If you love steak like I love steak, then you are going to enjoy today’s review, my friend.

Today we’re FINALLY headed back for a classic meat-stravaganza at Shula’s Steak House! Seriously, it’s been way too long since I’ve reviewed this place.

Located steps away from the International Gateway entrance to Epcot, Shula’s is one of the superb restaurants that call the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort home. To be more specific, you’ll find this fine dining spot in — you guessed it — the Dolphin. (Get it? Don Shula? At the Dolphin? I knew you would.)

Let’s head inside the wood-paneled walls to see if the steaks and sides here are just as good as I remember!

Atmosphere

Step into Shula’s and you’ve entered a decidedly masculine domain. With dark wood walls, rich colors, and very low lighting (no joke; the servers have flashlights for you to read the menu sometimes), you feel as though you’re in an exclusive club dining here.

And just like many other Disney restaurants, Shula’s is “themed!”

Seating Along the Back Wall and Giant Picture of Coach Shula

This place is all about The Miami Dolphins’ 1972 “Perfect Season!” Now those of us who are true Buffalo Bills fans and still, in our (utterly broken) heart of hearts, despise the Dolphins…well, we have to come to a decision on how much we love steak to eat here. Me? I really love steak. I love the Bills. But I love steak.

Anyway, large photos from the 1972 team are lavishly framed throughout the comfortable dining room, so you can’t really escape them.

Two Top Seating

And speaking of steak, another prime decor element in the restaurant is the plaque displaying the proud members of Shula’s 48-Ounce Club. To have your name engraved on the plaque, just finish a 48-Ounce Porterhouse. Are you up for the challenge?

Seating with Steak Club Plaque

While I wasn’t quite sure we were up for making ourselves famous, we were quite hungry… Let’s get to the menu!

Eats

OK, so this kind of cracks me up, but it shows that the restaurant — though very high end — doesn’t take itself too seriously.

While you’ll get an actual menu, too, the main Shula’s cut steaks are hand painted on an official NFL game football. So while it might seem a little, well, odd to be handed a football when you’re preparing to order dinner, it all sort of makes sense. ;-)

Football Menu

Soon after you start looking at your football, it’s time of a bit of Shula’s education. In addition to [Read more…]

Guest Review: Royal Court Aboard the Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship

It’s time to step aboard the Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship! Today, guest author Rachel Gardner brings us a wonderful review from the princess-themed Royal Court — one of the rotational dining restaurants on this gorgeous Disney Cruise Line ship.

Atmosphere

The Royal Court Restaurant on Disney Cruise Line’s newest ship, the Disney Fantasy, is a princess haven!

The restaurant has the princess concept refined to its most basic elegance. This sophisticated restaurant located on Deck 3, adjacent to the lobby, reflects each princess through unique and breathtaking mosaics!

The stroke of midnight!

There are two rooms set off from the main dining hall with even more princess décor including beautiful (they look hand-painted!) plates.

Beauty and the Beast Plates.

One of the two rooms is dedicated to The Princess and the Frog, with large tiled mosaics on the walls.

The Princess and the Frog!

Princess motifs adorn the restaurant as well. They are so subtle, yet I made it my personal mission to try to spot the unexpected.

Chandelier in lobby area - notice the crowns on top!

Carriage lamps - I want one!

Rose patterned carpet.

The music that plays throughout the restaurants includes songs from classic [Read more…]

Review: Unexpected Sundaes at Hollywood Scoops

Beneath the Tower of Terror’s ominous shadow at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World, you’ll find the fun blue and pink sign for Hollywood Scoops Ice Cream!

Now, after seeing the menu recently, I could NOT believe I’d never tried the APPLE CRISP SUNDAE!! Did you know that was there and not tell me?!? ;-)

I love all things apple crisp, so I couldn’t wait to high-tail it over there and snag this snack on my next trip!

Atmosphere

This little ice cream stand at the corner of Sunset Ranch Market channels art deco retro Hollywood in style and decor.

The lines here are often long, but since it’s one of the only places around where you can get your hand-scooped ice cream fix, it’s usually worth the wait.

Eats

I begged Matt from Studios Central to meet me in DHS (what better way to explore Hollywood Studios food than with the expert?), and we decided to sample both the Brownie Sundae and that Apple Crisp treasure.

At least I was [Read more…]