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…]

Confirmed! Starbucks Coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios in February 2015

Okay, coffee lovers… what we’ve suspected for a while now has officially been confirmed by Disney: Starbucks is coming to Hollywood Studios in February 2015!

Starbucks logo

Starbucks logo

starbucksBut there are a few additional details along with the announcement: we’ve also got a name! The Trolley Car Café will have a “classic trolley car station” theme.

While Disney has only officially confirmed the location as being “along Hollywood Boulevard,” all signs point to the L.A. Prop Cinema Storage merchandise location, which closed for refurbishment a few months ago, and remains surrounded by refurbishment walls.

L.A. Cinema Prop Storage under refurbishment

L.A. Cinema Prop Storage under refurbishment

The location will carry [Read more…]

Review: Cheesy Bread Cones at Fantasmic! in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

UPDATE: According to WDW cast members, these cones were removed from the menu at Hollywood Studios. Them’s the breaks! Disney’s menus change all the time; this can be due to ingredient supply and purchasing issues (temporary), seasonal menu updates (temporary), or a menu refurb (usually permanent). We’re hoping they’ll return to the menu in Walt Disney World soon! In the meantime, get your bread cones filled with goodies year-round at Disney California Adventure’s Cozy Cone Motel in Disneyland!

Macaroni and Cheese Bread Cone

Macaroni and Cheese Bread Cone

Have you ever found yourself in this scenario: sitting in the Hollywood Hills Amphitheater, waiting for Fantasmic! – the nighttime spectacular at Disney’s Hollywood Studios — to begin?

Amphitheater seating for Fantasmic!

Amphitheater seating waiting for Fantasmic!

If you are planning to see Fantasmic! (the official show title has an exclamation point in the name, which moving forward I’ll omit for your ease of reading :), you should know that it’s best to arrive well before show time, especially if you are attending the first show of the evening.

So, what should you do in the meantime? Aside form join in The Wave, of course… which you can — and should — do.

Here comes The Wave!!

Here comes The Wave!!

But when you’re not Wave-ing, you might as well eat! Fortunately, there are oodles of opportunities around the amphitheater to do just that.

Prior to moving directly into the amphitheater, there are a couple of stands serving up snacks such as Mickey ice cream bars, roasted nuts, frozen lemonade cups, churros, Mickey pretzels, and the like.

Snack kiosks outside of amphitheater

Snack kiosks outside of amphitheater

Cast Members also wander the outside and inside of the amphitheater right up until show time, carrying items like popcorn and cotton candy, which somehow adds to the festive vibe.

Popcorn

Popcorn

Cotton Candy

Cotton Candy

Once you head into the amphitheater, there are two large concession stands in the back, both by the name of Hollywood Hills Amphitheater Refreshment. They have the [Read more…]

Review: Lunch at The Hollywood Brown Derby in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

We’re dining with the stars at THE place to “see and be seen!”

Welcome to The Hollywood Brown Derby! We’re enjoying lunch while taking a trip back in time to the elegance of the “golden age” of Hollywood. For fans of classic films, even within Hollywood Studios this signature restaurant is a destination in its own right.

A replica of the original Hollywood Brown Derby  (a fine dining establishment for the likes of Clark Gable, Lucille Ball, and Bing Crosby back in the day), the Derby of Hollywood Studios offers park-goers a touch of refined elegance in the midst of a busy park day. In fact, I’d say that once you enter the doors of the Brown Derby, it’s a little bit difficult to remember that you’re in a theme park at all.

Let’s step inside…

Atmosphere

I mention taking “a trip back in time” because I feel as though the setting of The Hollywood Brown Derby transports guests to another place and era better than just about any place in Disney World, starting with the outside entrance.

Brown Derby entrance

Brown Derby entrance

Brown Derby entrance

Brown Derby entrance

A plaque on the outside gives guests a tiny bit of the history and inspiration for the Hollywood Studios location, though many may stroll right past and miss it.

Plaque noting the inspiration for the building

Plaque noting the inspiration for the building

There are two defining features, I think, to the Brown Derby. One is [Read more…]

Review: Frozen Summer Fun and Food at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

UPDATE: Originally slated to run until September 1st, Frozen Summer Fun has been extended through September 28, 2014!

Perhaps you’ve heard of a moderately successful Disney film called Frozen? ;)

Frozen at DHSWell, it’s time to celebrate with some Frozen Summer Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

Frozen Summer Fun!

Frozen Summer Fun!

And there is so much to do! Your first stop might be belting out “Let It Go” with Anna and Elsa at For the First Time In Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration!

Elsa and Anna Letting It Go!

Elsa and Anna Letting It Go!

Or maybe you’ll head straight over to Frozen Funland, where you can try your hand (or, umm, feet?) at skating on the indoor ice rink. Or you can do what I did and enjoy watching other people skate in your place ;) .

Performers at Frozen Funland Ice Rink

Performers at Frozen Funland Ice Rink

Frozen Funland Ice Rink

Frozen Funland Ice Rink

You’ll want to make sure your Take-Along Olaf is snapping plenty of selfies!

Take-Along Olaf

Take-Along Olaf

Or maybe just take some time to gaze at the gently falling snow covering the pine– I mean, palm trees.

Let it SNOW!!

Let it SNOW!!

No matter which way you turn, there’s all sorts of Frozen Fun to be had, so you might need to refuel with a snack or two!

Several classic Disney Park snacks – such as Krispy Treats and Frosted Cookies, as well as a newcomer, Brownie Pops — have been spruced up for the occasion in hues of “Frozen” white and blue at the Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post (special for the event, you’ll find it in the Streets of America section), and Sweet Spells.

Wandering Oaken's Trading Post sign

Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post sign

Frozen Krispy Treats

“Frozen” Krispy Treats

Snowflake Cookies

Snowflake Cookies

Chocolate-covered Moose Cookies

Chocolate-covered Cookies

Blue and White Brownie Pops

Blue and White Brownie Pops

And these days no bakery case in Disney World is complete without the Olaf Candy Apple!

Olaf Candy Apple

Olaf Candy Apple

The Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post is the neighbor to Frozen Funland, the already-famous spot that includes the ice skating rink as well as the Sweet Treat Bar.

Sweet Treat Bar

Sweet Treat Bar

Sweet Treat Bar Menu

Sweet Treat Bar Menu

I know the choice of Hot Cocoa in July might not top your list, but they do keep it fairly chilly in there for the rink. Plus, the addition of Toasted Marshmallow flavor makes it a bit more enticing, no?

The Sweet Treat Bar is one of several spots around Hollywood Studios where you can grab the specialty cupcakes for Frozen Summer Fun: the Elsa Vanilla Cupcake with Buttercream Icing, the Anna Chocolate Cupcake with Buttercream Icing, and the Olaf Carrot Cake Cupcake with Cream Cheese Icing.

Elsa Cupcakes

Elsa Cupcakes

Anna Cupcakes

Anna Cupcakes

Olaf Cupcakes

Olaf Cupcakes

Of course, you can find the Olaf Cupcake at several Hollywood Studios Quick Service locations, including Fairfax Fare, Studio Catering Co., Pizza Planet, and — the spot where I grabbed mine — Starring Rolls Café!

Take-Along Olaf with Olaf Carrot Cake Cupcake

Take-Along Olaf with Olaf Carrot Cake Cupcake

There is PUH-LENTY of [Read more…]