If you’re preparing to set sail on the Disney Fantasy, you need to know that a brand new sweet shop recently opened on board Disney Cruise Line’s youngest ship!
We have something extra special for you today — a little peek into my Alaskan Cruise aboard the Disney Wonder!
My family and I booked a multigenerational family trip to Alaska on the Disney Wonder last summer (one of my dad’s bucket list items). And I couldn’t resist the chance to share some of what I found.
A Disney Cruise is an amazing experience. The service, ports, and accommodations are simply unparalleled IMO. PLUS — there’s a hefty dose of Disney magic, which always makes an adventure just a little brighter.
If you haven’t had the chance to go, then I hope you do sometime soon! Find out more about them by ordering the free Disney Cruise Line video. I get one whenever they have them available.
But there’s more to cruising than just bein’ on the boat. And when we were in port in Skagway, Alaska, I took a few hours to tour the tiny city in search of goodies! And I found PLENTY!
I hope you’re hungry. If you’re not, you probably will be very soon! [Read more…]
If the only thing better than a sundae is a sundae in a cool vessel (think: Kitchen Sink, Mickey’s Pants), then the only thing better than a sundae in a cool vessel is a sundae in a cool vessel on a Disney Cruise!
The Disney Dream, which went into ‘dry dock’ for some upgrades and alterations in 2015, is the (floating) place to go for Vanellope’s Sweets & Treats. And we don’t know about you, but anywhere with the words “sweets” and “treats” in the name is basically our favorite place.
So, what happens if you get a craving for cuisine from “Down in New Orleans” when you’re at sea?
Well, if you’re sailing on the Disney Wonder with Disney Cruise Line, we’ve got an answer for you. You’ll pay a visit to Tiana’s Place, the newest rotational dining restaurant on the Disney Wonder!
The Disney Wonder recently set sail having received a re-imagineering (also known as a major makeover) involving updates and additions to areas all across the ship. While the makeover in some ways is similar to the Disney Magic (which was re-imagined in 2013), the Wonder has a few new features all its own, including Tiana’s Place. [Read more…]
Great news for families who prefer to stick with healthy food options during their Disney adventures!
Mickey Check Meals have now made their way to the entire fleet of Disney Cruise Line ships.
The Mickey Check is an emblem that kids and adults can use on Disney menus to quickly identify meals that meet the Disney Nutrition Guidelines. Mickey Check Meals have been available throughout Walt Disney World and Disneyland. And now, you can add them to your Disney Cruise Line dining options as well.
The use of the Mickey Check and the creation of healthy, nutritious meals continues the work of the Disney Magic of Healthy Living Initiative. The project works to provide nutritious options and kid-appropriate portions.
Mickey Check Meals aim to provide three or more nutritious food groups, including [Read more…]
Join us in welcoming back Victoria Kabakian! She’s treating us to a review of the ultra-posh Remy — a Disney Cruise Line fine-dining restaurant.
The crème de la crème of Disney Cruise Line dining is without a doubt Remy, the Ratatouille inspired restaurant on the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy. On a recent cruise on the Disney Fantasy, I finally got to check out the “other” adults-only dining option from Disney Cruise Line.
The classic ships (Disney Magic and Disney Wonder) only feature Palo, a wonderful Italian restaurant inspired by Venice, but the two newer ships have also added this French culinary experience deriving half its menu from Chef Scott Hunnel from Walt Disney World’s Victoria & Albert’s and half from Chef Arnaud Lallement from L’Assiette Champenoise, a Michelin three-star restaurant in Tinqueux, France, to create a gastronomic collaboration that is worth every penny (and calorie).
Located on deck 12 aft (that’s the ship’s rear end for you land-lubbers), Remy is the ultimate tribute to the most perfect “little chef” there ever was. Even before entering the main dining room, two of the wines that are featured in the film Ratatouille are displayed in the wine case: a 1961 Château Latour (featured in the scene where Chef Skinner and Linguini are drinking in the office) and a 1947 Cheval Blanc (featured in the restaurant review scene with Anton Ego). And by the way, you can actually purchase these wines at Remy from their wine vault if you’d like. They cost $13,000 and $25,000 respectively.
Past the wine display is the intimate and elegant dining room, with windows stretching from end to end. This is truly the perfect setting for enjoying a view of the sunset during your meal. In fact we did, and trust me, it was stunning.
Details featuring Remy and his brother Emile can be found throughout the main dining room. Remy is found hidden in glass atop one of the vibrant chandeliers. He is carved in wood on the backs of chairs. Remy and Emile are stitched into the fabric of the booths and their figures frame every mirror in the space.
Upon further exploration, there are two additional dining rooms: a small wine room and of course the beloved Gusteau room, which is a replica of Gusteau’s restaurant in Ratatouille and even features a painting depicting the kitchen at Gusteau’s. A hand-woven carpet (one of three on the ship — the others are found in the atrium and the bridge where the ship is navigated). We’re told it took several months to create.
Although Remy also offers a Champagne brunch (at a $50 surcharge) on sea days, on this recent cruise we decided to splurge on dinner (a $75 surcharge plus $99 more if you add the wine experience, which we did not). First and foremost, the meal begins with a very special Champagne cocktail inspired by a very special character in the film, Colette.
The Colette is prepared tableside and includes a bit of strawberry, a mint leaf, some Absolut Pears, and Taittinger Champagne. By mixing the Champagne with a spirit, the bubbles dissipate, but by adding a small bit of dried apricot at the end, it creates an effervescent effect that mimics the natural bubbles in Champagne. It’s like a fun magic trick that you get to drink. Cheers.
Even before menus are presented, another taste of apparent magic hits your plates. The amuse bouche is a small sphere of deep-fried tomato soup. How is it made, you ask? Well after guessing that it’s prepared similarly to the way Chinese soup dumplings are made (using gelatinized broth in the filling, which then essentially melts when its heated), our amazing server Guiseppe confirmed that my suspicions were on the right track. How does it taste? Like deep-fried tomato soup, and oh so good.
A selection of fresh breads including tiny baguettes, multi-grain, and caramelized onion brioche are offered up next along with creamy butter from Vermont and sea salt from Bordeaux in France. The baguettes feature the perfect sound that Colette describes in the film as being a sign of great French bread. It has that crackle and that perfect taste and texture. The brioche is delicate and rich, another classic French creation. The multi-grain is the only bread I didn’t try.
The menu is divided in half with two tasting menus (with a la carte options as well so you can easily mix and match). The Saveur menu (meaning “flavor” in French) is created by Lallement, while the Goût menu (meaning “taste”) is created by Hunnel. Both are exquisite options, and while my sister opted to stick to the Goût side of the menu, I tried a little bit of each.
Our next treat from the chef before starting our official first course is langoustine with lobster bisque and lettuce reduction. The bite of langoustine is perfectly tender and succulent atop the super flavorful mound of bisque. The flavor of the sea really shines through here, creating a lovely start to this very special meal.
For our first course, we both selected the Wagyu carpaccio with ratatouille, basil coulis, 8 year aged Modena balsamic, and Parmesan crisps. The cold ratatouille is actually hidden underneath paper-thin layers of one of the world’s most famous beefs. The soft textures of the beef and ratatouille are offset by the Parmesan crisps, while the basil coulis and aged balsamic each provide contrasting nuances of herbaceous freshness and sweetness.
For our second course we tried the scallop crusted with masago (Japanese pearl rice) and served with a curried coconut broth, shiitake mushrooms, and bok choy. The scallop itself is the largest scallop I’ve ever seen in my life. It is perfectly cooked, still soft and slightly under in the center, with a lovely crisp texture on the exterior from the masago. The curried broth is so full of flavor, I wanted to tip the edge of the bowl directly into my mouth and slurp. Don’t worry, I didn’t. Anton Ego wouldn’t approve of that behavior!
Our third course is a polenta and chicken egg yolk stuffed ravioli served over a mixture of corn, black barley and poulet rouge topped with a sweet corn emulsion. This course truly encompasses the chicken AND the egg. I love the sweetness in this dish from the three different uses of corn (polenta in the filling, and corn in the base and in the emulsion). The chewiness from the black barley adds a great textural element, and of course the oozing yolk is the highlight of the dish.
My sister’s entrée from the Goût side of the menu is onion ash and black Hawaiian salt dusted lamb medallions, asparagus, marble potatoes, and pickled onions. The meat is succulent with a very unique flavor from that onion ash dusting. My sister only spared me one bite (but it was a wonderful bite) and she couldn’t stop swooning about her choice. It really is a lovely dish.
My entrée from the Saveur side of the menu is cold smoked and pan-roasted Wagyu beef with carrot puree, baby carrots, an orb (thanks, molecular gastronomy) filled with more carrot puree and braised short rib, spinach coulis, and served with a tableside drizzle of Bourguignon sauce. The beef is cooked perfectly and is so utterly tender. The bit of carrot puree and braised short rib that is encapsulated on the dish (not too visible in the picture, unfortunately) is a really neat surprise. It almost bursts in your mouth with sweet carrot puree and then that delicious meatiness that is short ribs. Oh yes. No regrets.
At this point because we were here for my birthday (belated, but still worth celebrating!) the chef actually came out and took a photo with us and then signed personalized menus for us. What a great treat!
Next it’s time for the famous Remy cheese [Read more…]
Whether you need something to add a little Holiday cheer to gift wrapping, or you’re looking for the perfect after dinner drink for your Christmas party this weekend, I totally think you should give this Christmas Cookie Cocktail a try. Served on Disney Cruise Line ships during the holidays, we think it’s a great way to kick up the festivities just a little!
It’s like the best grown up milkshake, ever! And it has all the cozy, delicious flavors of the season — cream, coffee, and the cooling flavor of peppermint.
Check it out!
Disney Cruise Line’s Christmas Cookie Cocktail
Makes One Cocktail
1 ounce Baileys Irish Cream
1 ounce Kahlua Coffee Liqueur
1 ounce peppermint schnapps
Vanilla ice cream
Today we’re visiting the newest Disney dining establishment on the high seas… Carioca’s!
The Disney Magic is Disney Cruise Line’s original ship. After fifteen years of sailing, she recently underwent her first lengthy renovation (referred to as a “re-Imagineering” by Disney Cruise Lines ). Several of the dining and adult lounge areas were refreshed and enhanced, while others received a complete redesign.
With the ship’s launch in 1998 came the introduction of Disney’s unique approach to dinner seating known as Rotational Dining. Instead of gathering in one large dining room every night, guests aboard Disney Cruise ships are assigned to a rotation among three different dining rooms. Their table servers rotate with them, getting to know their likes and dislikes (as well as any special dietary needs), allowing for a more seamless dining experience.
With the Magic’s recent post-renovation relaunch, what was formerly Parrot Cay in the dining rotation has become Carioca’s!
Carioca’s is inspired by and named after Donald Duck’s pal, the one and only José Carioca! You may know José from two Disney films from the early 1940s: Saludos Amigos and The Three Cabelleros.
Even if you aren’t familiar with these films, you may have enjoyed sailing and singing along with José, Donald, and their third amigo, Panchito, on the Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros in Epcot’s Mexico Pavilion!
“Where one, two, and three goes, [Read more…]
Remember when we told you that the Disney Magic cruise ship was about to get a full makeover?? Well, today we have an awesome photo tour for you!!
The Re-Imagined Disney Magic
The Disney Magic – The original cruise ship of the Disney Cruise Line – first set sail in 1998. Fifteen years later, she has just launched again after a lengthy stay in dry-dock where she spent her time being “re-imagined.”
Re-imagining is more than simply being refurbished or refreshed. Some spaces around the ship were entirely redesigned while others were enhanced. She sure is a beauty!
Since the re-imagined areas are primarily public spaces, this, of course, means that some of the dining areas and adult lounges were re-imagined or refreshed as well! Though some spaces, already timeless, remained unchanged or just refreshed.
Let’s have a look inside this amazing vessel and see what’s new!
The biggest update to the dining scene on the Disney Magic is the addition of Carioca’s.
What was previously Parrot Cay now pays homage to one of Donald Duck’s [Read more…]
For those of you who have been waiting for more Grey Stuff goodness from Magic Kingdom’s Be Our Guest Restaurant, check out the Grey Stuff Brownie!! Debuting during the Halloween season, this should be on the menu as a regular item going forward!
But there are even more events taking place — we love the Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic! Or treat yourself to the Flying Fish Cafe’s Instructional Luncheon. Read more below!
What else was in the news this week? Read on…
Disney Food News
Catch up on your reading!
- New menu items and Halloween desserts (on select nights) are being served during dinner at Be Our Guest Restaurant!
- Flying Fish Cafe has announced an Interactive Cooking Demonstration & Luncheon hosted by Chef de Cuisine Tim Keating as part of the Epcot Food and Wine Festival!
- Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic is scheduled for next weekend!
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 a Trick or “Tweet Up” for Give Kids The World, Price Increases for Disney Cruise Line’s Palo restaurants, and more!
DFB Reader Finds
Reader Oli tweeted “GAWRSH I’m addicted!” Me, too, Oli!!
Thanks for sharing!
The DFB Guide to the 2013 Epcot Food & Wine Festival e-Book
Don’t forget to pick up your copy of the DFB Guide to the 2013 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival e-Book THIS WEEK! With over 190 pages and multiple bonus items, it’s pretty substantial. And just in time to make your plans — the festival is under way!
This week, we have a discount option for DFB readers (as always!). You can get the mini-guide for $3 off the regular purchase price — just use code TRAY at the check-out!
As always, we’ve made this mini-guide instantly downloadable for your convenience, and easily installed on your mobile devices.
It’s a PDF guide with over 190 pages of detailed information about the Festival as well as photographs and customized bonus items to help you get the best experience possible.
Want an Even Better Deal?
We’ve got it! For an even bigger discount, head over to the DFB Store and check out our e-Book Bundles!
All the Guides Bundle, Including Food and Wine: Planning a big trip and need the low-down on Disney Food across the board? We’ve got it all for you in this steeply discounted e-Book Bundle, which includes the Epcot Food & Wine Festival Guide and the Holidays at Disney World Guide!
Food and Wine Bundle: Another chance to pick up two of our very best-selling guides! Get a significant discount on our 400-page DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining 2013, and the DFB Guide to the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival — together! This Food and Wine Bundle offers all of our insider tips and tricks for the Festival AND the rest of your Disney World visit!
For more detailed information and sample pages from The DFB Mini-Guide to the 2013 Epcot Food & Wine Festival, head over to DFBMiniGuides.com/foodandwine!
On to the Round-Up!
Mickey Fix features a cute Mickey Mouse Teapot for One
Studios Central spots Halloween Treats in Disney’s Hollywood Studios!
Gorillas Don’t Blog features vintage photographs of a “No Picnic Lunches Allowed” sign and an old-fashioned popcorn cart!
Walt Disney World for Grown-Ups stops by the Magic Kingdom’s Big Top Treats for Caramel Apples.
All Ears attends a Tomorrowland Terrace Dessert Party!
The Daily Disney looks at the enhanced marketplaces at Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival.
PortOrleans.org discovers new menu items at Boatwright’s in the Port Orleans Riverside Resort.
The Disney Blog showcases the new beverage menu at the California Grill in Disney’s Contemporary Resort.