Review: Cheese Danish at Writer’s Stop in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

If you’ve picked Disney’s Hollywood Studios as your first stop of the day, with plans to swing by your Resort’s Grab-and-Go to pick up a Cheese Danish before making your way to the park… may I offer a word of advice?

Don’t.

It’s not that it’s a bad choice, per se. There’s not a thing wrong with the standard cheese danish available across resort food courts. It’s fine. But it’s nothing compared to the Cheese Danish waiting for you at the Writer’s Stop.

We’re big fans of Writer’s Stop around here for a couple of reasons. Reason One: it offers a nice respite thanks to its out-of-the-way location in the Streets of America and low key coffee shop/bookstore vibe. It blends in so seamlessly in this area filled with TV and movie set false fronts that a lot of people don’t even realize it’s an operating snack stop.

Writer's Stop

Writer’s Stop

Writer's Stop

Writer’s Stop

Writer's Stop

Writer’s Stop

The casual bookstore-and-coffee-shop vibe inside invites you to meander and browse for a while.

Inside Writer's Stop

Inside Writer’s Stop

Inside Writer's Stop

Inside Writer’s Stop

Book shelves

Book shelves

Small seating area

Small seating area

Reason Two (ok, maybe this should be Reason One ;) ): it’s home to the famous Carrot Cake Cookie! We love this legendary snack so much that we’ve yet to sing the praises of the danish pastries available in this stop, because it’s so hard to resist the Call of the Cookie.

Carrot Cake Cookie at Writer's Stop in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Carrot Cake Cookie at Writer’s Stop in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

But since there really is no better way to start a day than with an enormous pile of cream cheese doused in icing, today is the day that the danish gets its due. I’m obviously focusing on the Cheese Danish, but you can often find [Read more…]

First Look! and Review: The Trolley Car Cafe at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

It’s officially official… The Trolley Car Cafe is your Starbucks stop in Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

Trolley Car Cafe

Trolley Car Cafe

Trolley Car Cafe sign

Trolley Car Cafe sign

Starbucks logo

Starbucks logo

Set right on the corner of Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards, the architecture [Read more…]

Review: S’mores at Herbie’s Drive-In at Hollywood Studios

It wasn’t all that long ago that we paid a visit to Herbie’s Drive-In to check out their Chili-Cheese Nachos with Pico de Gallo and Jalapeño.

In that post, we included a picture of Herbie’s current menu, and it stirred up a bit of curiosity about another item on the menu: Herbie’s take on S’mores. So, we’re back at the roundabout in the Streets of America of Hollywood Studios to give them a try!

You’ll find several twists on S’mores at snack stops and restaurants throughout Disney World, such as the Caramel S’more at Karamell-Küche, and the S’more served in a glass at Kringla Bakeri og Kafe. Sometimes you’ll even find a version tucked into the bakery case at the Main Street Confectionery.

At Herbie’s, though, the presentation is different. The ingredients most replicate that of a traditional S’more: marshmallow and chocolate completely enclosed in a graham “pocket” crust (which is also dotted with bits of chocolate).

Herbie's Drive-in Menu

Herbie’s Drive-in Menu

S'mores

S’mores

As you might be able to gather from the photos you’re about to see, they’re a bit messy. But that didn’t really bug me since I consider that to be one of the hallmarks of a genuine S’more.

Inside the S'more

Inside the S’more

What’s cool about the S’mores at Herbie’s is that they’re served warm.

Wait — that doesn’t make sense ;). Let me rephrase that: what’s neat and unique about the S’mores here is that they are warm — not fresh-out-of-the-fryer hot, but nicely warm, which [Read more…]

What’s New Around Disney World: January 23, 2015

The year isn’t the only thing new around Disney World… we’re on the lookout for new eats, sweets, and refurbishment feats. Please keep your hands, arms, feet, and legs inside your ride vehicle at all times as we tour all four Disney World Parks to see What’s New!

Something's always just around the corner at Disney World!

Something’s always just around the corner at Disney World!

Animal Kingdom

We’re starting out with another WILD trip to Animal Kingdom, which includes a couple of menu updates. At Yak & Yeti Restaurant, Firecracker Shrimp and Ahi Tuna Nachos for Two join the appetizers (the Dim Sum Basket for two remains), and Ginger Salmon with Japanese Udon has been added to the noodle dishes. Chicken Tikki Masala is among the new specialty entrees, and Malaysian Seafood Curry arrives under Wok selections.

Yak and Yeti Restaurant

Yak and Yeti Restaurant

Be sure to check out the Specialty Drinks for some fun new beverages: Pink Himalayan, Kiwi Kimono, and a Rickshaw Rickie.

Right next door at Local Food Cafes (also known as Yak & Yeti Counter Service), Korean Stir-fry Barbecue Chicken has replaced the Sweet and Sour Chicken.

Local Foods Cafe menu

Local Foods Cafe menu

At Dino Diner in Dinoland, U.S.A., the Snow Cone has been switched out for Nachos, served with just cheese or as Nachos Supreme (at least for these cooler months).

Dino Diner

Dino Diner

Dino Diner

Dino Diner

Tamu Tamu Refreshments has undergone another menu refresh, currently offering the Slow-cooked Chicken Curry, Vegetarian Curry, and Roasted Chicken Salad.

Tamu Tamu Refreshments

Tamu Tamu Refreshments

This isn’t entirely unexpected, as the menu here seems to go through a standard rotation. So, if you’re disappointed that the Slow-cooked Pulled Beef Sandwich is no longer available, Hakuna Matata. It could very well make its way back around in a few months.

And, as we discussed a few weeks back, Flame Tree Barbecue is closed for refurbishment with a tentative reopening of April 1st. Find out where you can find some of your favorite Flame Tree foods at other locations around the park!

Flame Tree Barbecue closed for refurbishment

Flame Tree Barbecue closed for refurbishment

Speaking of refurbishments, construction of [Read more…]

Review: Chili-Cheese Nachos with Pico de Gallo and Jalapeño at Herbie’s Drive-In at Hollywood Studios

I’m guessing Herbie’s Drive-in isn’t really the first place that pops into your mind when considering meal possibilities at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

And that’s fair, because this little stand tucked in the roundabout on the Streets of America is pretty basic. It’s not known for any sort of signature snack, and the Streets of America itself isn’t a major destination for many guests outside of the holiday season’s Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights (although I’d argue that some of the best detailing in the park can be found in this charming area, made to look like streets in New York City and San Francisco).

Plus, if you’re looking for more memorable treats in this section of the park, you’re likely more tempted by the goodies at the Writer’s Stop, like the Carrot Cake Cookie. No shame in that!

But if you’re in the mood for something savory instead of sweet, there’s a snack at Herbie’s that deserves as a mention.

Herbie's Drive-In

Herbie’s Drive-In

Herbie's Drive-In sign

Herbie’s Drive-In sign

Before we dive in, though, here’s a peek at the full menu.

Herbie's Drive-in menu

Herbie’s Drive-in menu

For a very small space, it boasts a decent list of options (and this is the place at Hollywood Studios if you’re in the market for a Corn Dog).  But my Herbie’s go-to has become the Chili-Cheese Nachos with Pico de Gallo and Jalapeno.

Chili-Cheese Nachos with Pico de Gallo and Jalapeño

Chili-Cheese Nachos with Pico de Gallo and Jalapeño

These are made per order, so if you’re not [Read more…]

What’s New Around Walt Disney World: November 18th, 2014

Ready for another trip around the World? We’re heading to three parks and a few resorts to check out holiday treats, gingerbread feats, and new menu eats! And which Counter Service location is now serving up steak? Just read on to find out and see What’s New!

HOLIDAY TREATS

Red and green aren’t the only colors taking over Disney World now that the holiday season has launched around here… hues of blue decorate the festive snacks at this year’s brand new “Frozen” Gingerbread Display at the Contemporary Resort!

Contemporary Resort Gingerbread Display

Contemporary Resort Gingerbread Display

We tried the Blue Raspberry Cake Gelato

Blue Raspberry Cake Gelato

Blue Raspberry Cake Gelato

Read our review and see all the other treats available at the new display here!

Get ready for all your favorite Disney World bakery items (we’re talking Krispy Treats, Candy Apples, and Mickey Macarons) to be dressed up for the holiday season in spots like the Main Street Confectionery, Seashore Sweets, and Big Top Treats.

Holiday Bakery Case

Holiday Bakery Case

Ornament Candy Apples

Ornament Candy Apples

More candy apples!

More candy apples!

Holiday cupcakes

Holiday cupcakes

Red and Green Mickey Macarons

Red and Green Mickey Macarons

And now let’s look into some ways the Parks are getting into the [Read more…]

Review: Lunch at ABC Commissary in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Let’s say you’re in Hollywood Studios. It’s about a million degrees or freezing outside, and you’re hungry. You need some A/C (or heat) and food stat. So, you head right into ABC Commissary.

More often than not, I think, that’s the drill for ABC Commissary. The theme (that of… well, a basic studio lot commissary) isn’t altogether exciting, and mostly it has a reputation for being a great place — above anything else — to score an easy seat in the air conditioning, and maybe grab a burger and a Coke.

But there are a few dishes here we hadn’t paid much attention to previously that get a fair amount of love from DFB readers. So here we are at the Commissary, ready to try a couple of choices unique to this spot… and do a little exploring while were at it.

Atmosphere

The name tells you just about everything: ABC Commissary is themed as a cafeteria on a studio lot — in this case, that of the ABC network.

ABC Commissary Sign

ABC Commissary Sign

ABC Commissary Entrance

ABC Commissary Entrance

Entering ABC Commissary

Entering ABC Commissary

ABC logo

ABC logo

And this completely explains the decor: a very basic collection of insane amounts of seating, peppered with props, pics, and posters from ABC shows.

ABC Commissary seating

ABC Commissary seating

And plants and stuff.

ABC Commissary seating

ABC Commissary seating

Costumes from "Nashville"

Costumes from “Nashville”

Signed pictures from cast of "The Chew"

Signed pictures from cast of “The Chew”

Props from "Revenge"

Props from “Revenge”

Oh, and some palm trees, while we’re at it ;) .

Palm tree in seating area

Palm tree in seating area

Clips from ABC shows are looped on high-hanging screens throughout your meal.

TV screens

TV screen

For my part, I got a kick out of seeing this display of props from [Read more…]

What’s New Around Disney World: October 28, 2014

Happy Fall! Autumnal treats have been appearing all over Disney World for a while now, but with Halloween just days away, we thought we’d give you one last glimpse of the season’s snacks.

But that’s not the only food news ’round these parts… not by a long shot. Take a trip with us around all four Disney World parks to check out What’s New!

Hollywood Studios

October is probably my favorite time for the candy apples that hit the scene, like these at Sweet Spells.

Halloween Candy Apples

Halloween Candy Apples

"Poisoned" Candy Apple

“Poisoned” Candy Apple

Minnie Witch Candy Apple

Minnie Witch Candy Apple

Min & Bill’s Dockside Diner currently features a Caramel Apple Shake as its tribute to fall. The featured shakes here change frequently, so be sure to pop by to see what’s available on your visit!

Min and Bill's Dockside Diner

Min and Bill’s Dockside Diner

Caramel Apple Shake

Caramel Apple Shake

Joffrey’s Coffee Carts all over Disney World have changed their seasonal offerings to include a Pumpkin Pie Latte and a Pumpkin Pie Frozen Cappuccino.

Joffrey's Coffee Kiosk at Pixar Place

Joffrey’s Coffee Kiosk at Pixar Place

Seasonal Coffee beverages

Seasonal Coffee beverages

Speaking of those Joffrey’s Carts… remember the Big ‘Ol Donut? We spotted a few topped with massive amounts of cookie crumble for a change [Read more…]

Review: Banana Parfait and Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Custard at Hollywood Studios

If you’ve visited any Quick Service restaurants in Hollywood Studios, you’ve likely encountered a few standard dessert options, in addition to some pretty spectacular cupcakes.

Regular options include Chocolate Mousse and No-Sugar-Added Strawberry Parfait, or Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Custard and Banana Parfait. These are often part of the dessert options to include with your Quick Service Meal on the Disney Dining Plan (and, of course, can be purchased on their own as well).

I stopped by Studio Catering Co. where the desserts include the Banana Parfait and Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Custard. You can also find these at Rosie’s All-American Cafe, Catalina Eddie’s, and Fairfax Fare. Let’s dig in so you can decide how you’d most prefer to use that dessert option! (Note that these are also available at Fairfax Fare!)

Studios Catering Co.

Studio Catering Co.

Studios Catering Co.

Studio Catering Co.

Before placing my order, I couldn’t help but admire the cheerful chalk art on the concrete floor.

Chalk art!

Chalk art!

Chalk art!

Chalk art!

As you can see, both the Banana Parfait and the Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Custard are part of the “in-a-glass” series of snacks.

Banana Parfait and Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Custard

Banana Parfait and Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Custard

That’s not an official series, by the way… that’s just what I’m calling it ;) . You may be familiar with the Cheesecake in a Glass over at Animal Kingdom.

The Banana Parfait is a banana pudding over a [Read more…]

Review: Strawberry Daiquiri, Blue Skyy Lemonade, and Captain’s Mai Tai at High Octane Refreshments in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Today we’re celebrating Happy Hour (no matter what the time is when you read this) with a few cold sips at High Octane Refreshments at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

The name is a hint as to what’s on the menu, since just about everything is “fully loaded” at this little bar, tucked into the Streets of America section of the park. It’s a very close neighbor to Studio Catering Co. quick service in both location and vibe. So much so, in fact, that — at a glance — it appears to be little more than expanded seating for the location.

But what High Octane offers that the Studio Catering food counter does not is a variety of specialty drinks served frozen and on the rocks, along with a full bar and an assortment of beer and wine to wet your whistle and offer a moment to refresh and refuel… in a “high octane” sense, of course ;) .

Atmosphere

The red and yellow color scheme over a large area of concrete that dominates Studio Catering Co. continues here, even down to the style of seating.

High Octane Refreshments next to Studio Catering Co.

High Octane Refreshments next to Studio Catering Co.

High Octane Bar

High Octane Bar

Seating at High Octane

Seating at High Octane

The only thing that really differentiates it is this small sign above the bar.

High Octane sign

High Octane sign

And sometimes you’ll spot a propped up menu in the middle of the street to let you know what awaits you at this stop.

High Octane Street Sign

High Octane Street Sign

Bar and Beverages

High Octane’s menu features good ol’ standard bar drinks like Long Island Iced Tea, Pina Coladas, and Rum Runners. (We miss you, Stoplight Margarita!) So when it’s time to belly up ;), you likely won’t have a difficult time deciding if you’re already familiar with these basic bar beverages.

High Octane Refreshments Menu

High Octane Refreshments Menu

High Octane Refreshments Menu

High Octane Refreshments Menu

I like the little seating area to the left of the bar that’s spotted with trees (it provides a wee bit of shade), so my friend and I carried our beverages there.

Side area seating

Side area seating

We decided to sample the Strawberry Daiquiri, Captain’s Mai Tai, and Blue Skyy Lemonade.

The Strawberry Daiquiri (this blend of strawberry and Bacardi Rum is pre-mixed and poured from a machine, for those curious) is [Read more…]