Dining in Disneyland Review: Star Wars Season of the Force Menu Hits Galactic Grill

Great news, Star Wars fans!

Tomorrowland Terrace in Disneyland has recently transformed to celebrate the Star Wars Season of the Force debut at Disneyland.

Season of the Force

Season of the Force

The resort is currently celebrating all things Star Wars, and along with that celebration comes the grand opening of the Galactic Grill.  Last week I was invited to the restaurant’s first service to try out some of the new offerings.

Galactic Grill

Galactic Grill

Located in the heart of Tomorrowland, this counter service restaurant is serving up Star Wars themed menu items with clever names and some clever ingredients, too! The menu offers both “Dark Side” and “Light Side” foods.  You have to choose which side you’re up to trying!

[Read more…]

Dining in Disneyland: The New Smokejumpers Grill at Disney California Adventure

While the Disneyland Resort continues to prepare for the much anticipated Diamond Anniversary later this month, some of the refurbishments are already starting to open.  Formerly known as Taste Pilots’ GrillSmokejumpers Grill at Disney California Adventure has its doors open and is ready to serve hungry adventurers.

Smokejumpers Grill

Smokejumpers Grill


Located right next door to Soarin’, this counter service restaurant specializes in burgers and chicken sandwiches.  Enormous in size, Smokejumpers has plenty of seating both indoors and out.

Outside Seating

Outdoor  Seating ( I predict a 2nd side to the left of the restaurant once the wall for Soarin’ comes down)

This indoor seating area is located at the entrance of Smokejumpers Grill.

Just Half of the Indoor Seating at Smokejumpers

Just a Small Portion of the Indoor Seating at Smokejumpers

There is also indoor seating both to the left and right of the ordering kiosk/kitchen.  Below shows the seating to the left. It is basically identical with some different decor on the right side.

More Indoor Seating

More Indoor Seating

My absolute favorite thing about the new Smokejumpers Grill (besides the french fries) is the [Read more…]

Review: Pulled Buffalo Chicken Waffle Sandwich at Animal Kingdom’s Trilo-Bites

You know we lurve our waffles here on DFB, and today we’ve got ANOTHER awesome new waffle item to share with you!

Now, Waffle Sandwiches aren’t new to Disney World. At Magic Kingdom’s Sleepy Hollow Refreshments, the featured waffle sandwiches are the Sweet and Spicy Chicken, the Ham, Prosciutto, and Swiss Cheese, and Nutella and Fresh Fruit. Even Epcot got in the game for a while over the holidays with a Sweet Potato Casserole Waffle and a Savory Seasonal Waffle (think Thanksgiving in a waffle!).

But today? Today we’ve got an extra EXTRA special waffle sammy.  We’re heading to Trilo-Bites today for a sometimes-it’s-there-sometimes-it’s-not Waffle Sandwich!



Trilo-Bites in Dinoland previously held the distinction of being THE spot to pick up a Turkey Leg in Animal Kingdom. The menu has shifted, however, to offer sweeter fare: a Warm Waffle with Fresh Strawberries and Cream and a Baked Apple Blossom with Ice Cream (or without) are the menu highlights.

Waffle with Strawberries and Baked Apple Blossom

Waffle with Strawberries and Baked Apple Blossom

You can also find Milk Shakes, Floats, and a Waffle Bowl Sundae here, too.

(By the way, for those of you wondering, “Well, where do I get my Turkey Leg in Animal Kingdom now?”, you can head over to Flame Tree Barbeque. You’ll see the Turkey Leg listed under the entrees with a side of slaw, but it can also be purchased by itself for $9.79.)

Anyway, on a recent visit to Animal Kingdom, I noticed something special was briefly back on the menu. It’s a little hard to catch since it’s only offered on “peak crowd level” days, so it was great to spot it: the Pulled Buffalo Chicken Waffle Sandwich! Seriously? You ask? YES! I reply! 

Trilo-Bites Menu with Pulled Buffalo Chicken Waffle Sandwich

Trilo-Bites Menu with Pulled Buffalo Chicken Waffle Sandwich

See, that’s the bonus to visiting the Parks when they’re crowded: MORE FOOD! Shazam!

There was no picture on the menu, so I was happily surprised when I was presented with this (Ooooooh! Aaaaaah!):

Pulled Buffalo Chicken Waffle Sandwich

Pulled Buffalo Chicken Waffle Sandwich

The pulled buffalo chicken tops the waffle, of course, but it also [Read more…]

Review: Storytellers Cafe at Disneyland’s Grand Californian Hotel and Spa

I was recently back in Disneyland for a visit, and I couldn’t resist booking lunch at one of my favorite locations, Storytellers Cafe.

storytellers cafe

We visited anticipating a delicious and relaxing experience, as we often have at Storytellers. The fact that I had a mad craving for that Charred Nebraska Corn Chowder and had been dreaming about it was just a happy coincidence. ;-)

Won’t you join us?


You’ll find Storytellers at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel, which certainly lives up to its name. It is simply a gorgeous place to spend some time.

With design that typifies the American Craftsman style, you are surrounded by larger than life, simple warm accents that make grand use of natural materials, like wood and stone. You find the same style carried through Storytellers Cafe.

Fireplace and Atmosphere

Fireplace and Atmosphere

Two major design elements tend to dominate the decor of Storytellers Cafe: you’ll find murals and large paintings covering the walls. Paintings depict…storytelling, of course — featuring classic stories with California as their setting.

One of the Many Large Paintings in Storytellers Cafe

One of the Many Large Paintings in Storytellers Cafe

But you also find ample use of silhouettes in many places throughout the dining space. And check out the beautiful post and beam construction on the ceiling while you’re looking up. (Disney World fans will get a definite Wilderness Lodge vibe from this place!)

Lighting and Ceiling Detail

Lighting and Ceiling Detail

Stained glass with warm swirls of color are a hallmark of Arts and Crafts design, and the stained glass softly filters the indirect light, which provides the perfect backdrop to these working man silhouettes.

And be sure to notice the detail on the hanging lights as well! They’re really something special.

Storytelling Lighting

Storytelling Lighting

Lanterns hung from copper stands distribute light throughout the dining room, and give the sense of bringing the outdoors inside.



And as is often the case — don’t forget to look down! Even the carpeting conveys the theme and story of this spot with letters and more silhouettes.



Throughout Storytellers Cafe, the art of storytelling shares the stage with [Read more…]

Disney Food Pics of the Week: Sandwiches!

Anytime I’m longing for a getaway to my favorite place to enjoy some fun and fabulous food, I love hopping onto the Disney Food Blog Photo Extravaganza on Flickr! It’s a great way to make plans for my very next trip. Thanks so much to all of you who submit photos to the group!

Today, I have a hankering for sandwiches. And you know that some of the best meals between two pieces of bread (or what have you) can be found at Walt Disney World and Disneyland.

Open-Faced Chicken Sandwich at Norway’s Akershus

Whoa! It is seriously time for me to get myself back to Akershus! This Open-Faced Chicken Sandwich and Garden Vegetable Soup combo look incredible! And check out the awesome Henna in the background!

Photographer: Nancy RK

Open-Faced Chicken Sandwich at Epcot's Akershus in the Norway Pavilion

Holiday Sandwich at Earl of Sandwich

Earl of Sandwich is the place to go for sammiches in Disney World and Disneyland, and an all-time favorite menu item for many of us is the Holiday Sandwich. Thanksgiving Dinner [Read more…]

Review: ABC Commissary at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

I have a confession to make: I’m not in love with the ABC Commissary, and I haven’t been for a while now. So when I’m on the Backlot at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and I’m looking for a bite, I tend to head over to Backlot Express.

I also find the general atmosphere here kinda boring, which is clearly a sign of superior themeing, since it’s supposed to be…basically…someone’s work cafeteria, right? :-)

Well, armed with an enthusiastic menu recommendation from my friend Matt Hochberg of Studios Central, I headed over there on a recent trip to see if I’d find anything I liked.


As you approach the ABC Commissary, you really do feel like you’ve stumbled onto a block of buildings occupied by the people who run this “studio.”

ABC Commissary - Outside View

A palm tree promenade (that’s admittedly kind of cool) and marble flooring ushers you into the restaurant.

Palm Trees Line the Entrance

The walkway is also lined with these glass partitions etched with the ABC logo and interspersed with memorabilia from the network’s shows.

Glass Partitions Give a Good View of the Seating Area

Props Megaphone from ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition"

If you look hard enough, you might just see an [Read more…]

New Menu Items at Restaurantosaurus, Pizzafari, and Flame Tree Barbecue in Animal Kingdom

Editor’s Note: The Chili and Cheese Dog is no longer on the menu at the Restaurantosaurus.

Once again, Animal Kingdom is re-vamping its menus with some wonderful results! Thanks to a helpful DFB reader, we’ve got photos and insights into new options!

You’ll remember when we reported a few months ago on the delicious and summery additions to the Bradley Falls Kiosk and Tamu Tamu Refreshments — now we’ve got some great updates to the menus at Restaurantosaurus, Pizzafari, and Flame Tree Barbecue!


Restaurantosaurus had a significant menu change, adding several new items:

Chicken BLT Salad
With a very light ranch dressing, this is perfect on a hot day! Crisp greens with chunks of tomato, baked chicken strips, bites of bacon, and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese. This salad is priced at $9.19 and — according to our reviewer — worth every penny!

BLT Chicken Salad

Chicken Sandwich
The chicken sandwich ($9.59) had a tomato bruschetta topping with hints of basil and garlic, along with bacon bits and shredded cheddar cheese! This sandwich is served hot and is “just a perfect combination, thoroughly enjoyable!” says our reviewer.

Restaurantosaurus Chicken Sandwich with Bruschetta Topping

Specialty Hot Dogs
Our reviewer tried the two hot dogs that are now a permanent addition to the Restaurantosaurus menu as well. The standard chili and cheese dog ($9.59) is topped with jalapeno pepper rings and corn chips, making it appealing to her and others who might like their entree a bit spicy!

Restaurantosaurus Chili Cheese dog with jalapeno and corn chips

Her son enjoyed the very original macaroni and cheese dog, topped with a sprinkle of bread crumbs ($8.79). She says, “I cannot imagine that this won’t be a hit with [Read more…]

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

While we previously told you about the menu changes at Studio Catering Co., I finally got the chance recently to stop in and sample their “new to me” menu of sandwiches for myself!

Please note that this post is my contribution to StudiosCentral.com’s Disney’s Hollywood Studios Awareness Week! (Better late than never! ;-D)


With its awesome location right next to the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure, the Catering Company is a great spot for families with children to take a play break from the attractions.

Studio Catering Company Exterior

There is also a TON of shaded seating, so there is always a spot to sit and relax for a bit.

Studio Catering Company Tables

And while you’re taking a load off, don’t forget to snag your Stoplight Margarita from High Octane Refreshments next door! Just sayin’…


The menu was changed up here a while back, and I’ve been hearing some pretty good reviews of it. The casual dining spot currently offers an interesting selection of hot and cold sandwiches.

Studio Catering Co. Menu

A grilled vegetable sandwich and Greek salad are also available for those looking for quick service vegetarian fare. (I hear GREAT reviews of that vegetable sandwich, by the way.)

The standard Kids’ Picks of chicken nuggets or Smucker’s Uncrustables PB&J don’t offer a lot of adventure for younger diners, though.

Studio Catering Co. Menu 2

While there aren’t too many sides offered (your standard apple slices and french fries are available, of course), there are a couple of options for dessert (hey, this is vacation, right?). And you’ve got a few beer and [Read more…]

Guest Review: Gasparilla Grill and Games at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort

Editor’s Note: The lobster mac and cheese is no longer offered at Gasparilla Island Grill.

Thanks to Chantel B. for sending along these great photos and mini-reviews from Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort’s Gasparilla Grill and Games!

Gasparilla Grill and Games overlooks the marina at Disney’s Grand Floridian. Open 24-hours (!!!), this quick-service restaurant makes a great late night stop when leaving the Magic Kingdom. Dinner items are served until 11:30 p.m., then late night snacks are available overnight.

Dining indoors can be a bit noisy since this space also functions as the arcade. For a view of Cinderella’s Castle (and a quieter atmosphere) in the distance, dine at an outdoor table.

View from Gasparilla Grill

You can check out our full review with more atmosphere pics here! But let’s take a look at Chantel’s reviews of some very popular Gasparilla dishes…

Lobster Macaroni & Cheese

If you’re not staying at the Grand Floridian, this dish is worth a trip to the resort! The Lobster meat was small, not chunked. And the gruyere cheese blend had a nice creamy texture.

Lobster Mac and Cheese

Chicken Sandwich plus Mozzarella & Tomato Salad

Served on a wheat bun, this sandwich had a nice flavor (obviously marinated) and not dry! The salad was [Read more…]

Review: Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater’s New Menu

At the end of Commissary Lane, nestled in an unassuming soundstage-like building, is one of the most unique restaurants at Walt Disney World — Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater.

This restaurant will get you out of the hot Florida sunshine (or downpours if you’re here this week!), take you back in time, and provide a restful setting. Stepping inside, 1950s cars and kitsch will invite you to dine in an Imagineered drive-in at night time.

After being seated in your convertible car, the welcoming car hop will take your order while you watch classic clips from silly 1950’s horror flicks, cartoons, and news reels. Check out the snack bar commercials beckoning you to visit long-ago concessions stands for a truly vintage experience!

After glimpsing the new menu that was just unveiled last week (which features a burger + hot dog in one), we had to change up our trip reservations to stop by this restaurant in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Wouldn’t you?


After checking in with your reservation, you’ll start to get the idea of what this place is about. 1950’s movie references are all around you — even tucked into the nooks and crannies of the soundstage set around you!

Movie Posters in Entrance Area

Movie Posters in Entrance Area

B-Movie Props

B-Movie Props

After a (usually long, in my experience) wait, you’ll be taken “down the highway” into the main dining area and your table.

When you first walk into this incredible room, you’ll be bowled over. At least I always am! I just want to stare for a while at the realistic looking Drive-In theater environment…the sparkly shining convertible cars, the picnic tables in the back, the stars twinkling in the night sky… [Read more…]