Review: Ariel’s Grotto in Disney California Adventure

Disneyland’s Princess meal takes place in Disney California Adventure at Ariel’s Grotto, a lovely little restaurant full of windows and under-the-sea themeing perfectly fitting for the princess from The Little Mermaid.

Ariel’s Grotto lunch at Disney’s California Adventure in Disneyland Resort begins with an impressive-looking first course followed by your choice of entrees. Go ahead and skip ahead to the dessert platter. It’s worth a quick peek now, but be sure to return here to finish our full review!

Restaurant Entrance

Atmosphere

The princess vibe hits you before you even walk into the restaurant. Well, at least it did for us! We were required to walk past a merchandise kiosk selling princess dresses in order to get to the front door. Can you imagine walking by all of those dresses with your little girl on your way to a princess character meal? You’ll have to keep your wits about you, because I’m guessing she won’t! ;-)

Princess Dress Kiosk

Passing the princess dresses, we walked under a sign welcoming us (and the Merfolk), and headed into the reception area for Ariel’s.

Ariel's Entrance

Here, we checked in at the podium and checked out a display of celebration cakes. These were prominent throughout Disneyland during our last visit. They’re available for order when [Read more…]

Disneyland Resort Restaurants and Chefs Win Awards

Traveling to Disneyland soon? You’ll want to add these resort restaurants to your dining list! We give a foodie shout-out to the winners of the Southern California Restaurant Writers awards!!

With a 36 year history, the Southern California Restaurant Writers, Inc. selects winners from south Santa Barbara to the border of Mexico. With such a large region, it’s a testament to the food quality at Disneyland that so many awards were presented to Disneyland restaurants at the annual banquet Sunday night.

Join me in congratulating Executive Pastry Chef Jean-Marc Viallet named the Pastry Chef of the Year! For the last ten years, Viallet has been dreaming up creative pastries for Disneyland guests.

Jean-Marc Viallet, Executive Pastry Chef, Disneyland Resort

Disneyland Resort received top honors in five categories! The Golden Bacchus is presented to restaurants with an extensive wine collection. The Golden Sceptre is considered the “top restaurant” award.

Special Award Category

* Pastry Chef of the Year: Jean-Marc Viallet, executive pastry chef, Disneyland Resort

Golden Bacchus Wine Award

* Napa Rose (Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel)
* Steakhouse 55 (Disneyland Hotel)

Golden Sceptre (Five Star)

* Napa Rose (Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel)
* Steakhouse 55 (Disneyland Hotel)

Gold (Four Star)

* Ariel’s Grotto (Paradise Pier, Disney’s California Adventure park)
* Blue Bayou (New Orleans Square, Disneyland park)

Sterling (Three Star)

* Goofy’s Kitchen (Disneyland Hotel)
* Storyteller’s Cafe (Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa)

Source: Disney Parks Blog
Chef Photo copyright Disney

Guest Review: World of Color Dining Package at Ariel’s Grotto

Here’s how lucky I am:
1.) I was traversing facebook the other day and randomly found Heather Sievers, who just happens to be a Disney food expert;
2.) Heather and her family also just happened to have a reservation for the World of Color prix fixe dinner at Ariel’s Grotto a couple of days later; and
3.) Heather generously put together this awesome blog about her experience.
Lucky, right? I know. Seriously, I should play the lottery.
(By the way, Heather is the brilliant inventor of Time Out Spots. Don’t know what they are? Check ‘em out! Personally, I like the t-shirts.)

July 18, 2010: Born and raised in Orange County, California, I’ve been lucky enough to have had regular visits to Disneyland since my first time on my 5th birthday. Over 15 years ago, my boyfriend (now husband) bought me my first annual pass for Christmas. We’ve renewed over & over and two kids later, our family has never skipped a year.

This means we’ve been closely watching the construction of World of Color since the Paradise Pier Lagoon was emptied nearly a year and a half ago. I knew I wanted to see the show as soon as possible, but I also knew that it would be nearly impossible to get near it…. Fans of all food Disney, I knew they had to have some dinners lined up that would include reserved seating for the show. So what did I do? I called Disney Dining every single day for about 6 weeks straight to ask about it. I know a bit extreme, but guess what? I got my reservation the DAY they started taking them.

Genie at World of Color

Specs
We all know that the show opened on June 11, 2010, but we had company coming the following week that wanted to join us, so I waited out one week and made the reservation for Friday, June 18th. (I’m sure you are thinking, “get to the food part, get to the food part;” I promise I am almost there.) My options for in-restaurant dining were [Read more…]

Disneyland Dining News

Disney's California Adventure's World of Color Show (c) Disney

There have been lots of updates and rumors coming out of Disneyland in the past week, so I figured I’d gather them all into one big Disneylandia update! ;-)

New Dining Coming Soon to the Disneyland Hotel

Disneyland Hotel will be renovating their Never Land pool area, and new dining will come along with it! Two new dining spots will be introduced in 2011, including one table-service restaurant reminiscent of the 50’s and 60’s era “Tahitian Terrace” restaurant. A lounge/bar will be added, which will draw from the “adventure” theme of the Jungle Cruise attraction. These additions will [Read more…]

World of Color Dining Packages Announced

Dining Packages for the World of Color have been announced! The dining packages will work like Disney World’s Fantasmic Dinner packages. Guests will book their dining arrangements and eat well before the show begins. After dining, guests will receive tickets for reserved viewing at the shows. Ariel’s Grotto and Wine Country Trattoria are the restaurants participating in the package.
Update: After June 14, 2012, World of Color Dining Packages will no longer be offered at Ariel’s Grotto.

Dinner Seating Times

Dinner seatings for the 9pm show will be from 4-6:30pm. Dinner seatings for the 10:15pm show will be from 6:30pm-8:30pm.

Ariel’s Grotto

A prix fixe meal with reserved viewing will be available in the elegant surroundings of Ariel’s Grotto on the edge of Paradise Bay. After dinner, guests will be offered admission to the “World of Color” Preferred Reserved Viewing area.

Wine Country Trattoria

Guests can enjoy a three-course, prix fixe dinner in the newly expanded and remodeled Wine Country Trattoria. Following dinner, the guests will be admitted to the Preferred Reserved Viewing area for the show. The Italian meal includes choice of starter, entrée and dessert plus a special wine pairing.

To Make Reservations, call 714-781-DINE. Note on Reserved Viewing: Each guest entering the reserved viewing area must have reserved viewing area admission. Children (ages 3-9) must be accompanied by an adult. Guests may only enter the viewing area during designated times and no early or late admission will be allowed. Guests in large parties may not be guaranteed admission within the same reserved viewing area. Separate theme park admission is required.

World of Color Picnic Meals

If table-service isn’t your style, consider ordering one of the World of Color picnic meals. Varying from cold fried chicken to delicious sandwiches, these can be ordered in advance or picked up (subject to availability) on the day you’re in the theme park! See details here on how to order the World of Color Picnic Meals! Here’s a World of Color Picnic recent review.

Other Disneyland Dining News…

See more Disneyland Dining News here.

“I’m Going to Disneyland!”

Yep, the Disney Food Blog train is headed to California next month to cover Disney’s fifth annual California Food and Wine Festival at Disney’s California Adventure Theme Park!

We’re pretty excited around here and wanted to share a little pre-trip “Dining Line-Up” for those of you who might be interested. Feel free to shout out your suggestions for dishes to try, counter service to sample, and your favorite snacks we shouldn’t miss. Here’s where we currently have reservations:

disneylandrestaurants

We’re excited to take you all with us to the Festival! In the meantime, be sure to check out our Disney’s California Food and Wine Festival Guide. If you’re headed to the festival, click on our nifty “Reserve Now!” links to go straight to the Disneyland Website and reserve spots at your chosen events.