Review: Gingerbread Hot Cocoa and other Holiday Treats at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Disney’s Hollywood Studios is one of the best parks to visit during holiday time — especially if you’re a food fan like me!

Disney's Hollywood Studios at Holiday Time!

On this visit, I got to check out several new holiday additions to the DHS menus — especially around the Streets of America area. These are in place to create a more festive atmosphere for Osborne Spectacle of Dancing Lights attendees! :-)

Streets of America Newsstand Holiday Eats

First up, a Newsstand decked out in holiday gear…

Disney's Hollywood Studios Holiday Newsstand

The menu included goodies like caramel corn, spiced eggnog, and two flavors of hot cocoa!

I began my perusal with checking out the new Mickey Popcorn Buckets for this holiday season! These are different from last year’s Mickey Snowman buckets, and are found throughout the parks.

Disney's Hollywood Studios Mickey Popcorn Buckets

Turns out, you can get the caramel corn in these festive containers! But how they open — basically the “caramel corn is Mickey’s brain” as the cast member put it — is a bit disconcerting… ;-)

Disney's Hollywood Studios Mickey Head Caramel Corn

Disney's Hollywood Studios Holiday Mickey Popcorn Bucket

So after checking out Mickey’s innards, it was time to try some of the new holiday beverages here at the Studios! I had a choice of [Read more…]

Fantasmic Picnic Package, “A Taste of Hollywood To Go,” Returns in 2012-2013

We all know that those lines for Fantasmic! are long and the table-service seating for Fantasmic! meals is limited. Mickey’s solution for the busy holiday season debuted in 2011 “A Taste of Hollywood To Go – A Fantasmic! Dining Experience”.

Returning this year to help feed the holiday crowds, a picnic-style, quick-service dining option will be offered to guests visiting Disney’s Hollywood Studios from December 22, 2012 – January 5, 2013 and March 24-April 4, 2013. Guests can make reservations up to 24 hours prior by calling 407-WDW-DINE (a credit card guarantee is required).

The picnic meals include a 20oz drink ($15.99 adults, $5.49 for kids) as well as reserved seating for Fantasmic! similar to the standard Fantasmic dining packages. Each entree can be purchased with one counter-service Disney Dining Plan credit.

Seating in the reserved section of the stadium will still be first come, first served.

Min and Bill's Dockside Diner

Meal Pick Up will take place at Min & Bill’s Dockside Diner beginning at 11:00 a.m. until 1.5 hours prior to the show time that you preselect. Get your meal when it best fits into your touring schedule!

Fantasmic seats will be based on the number of guests in your party, and entrees ordered must be equal to or greater than your party size.

Here are a few pics of what the picnic meals may look like![Read more…]

Review: 50s Prime Time Cafe (The Cheese is Back!!)

I never say no to a meal at 50s Prime Time Cafe, but I hadn’t been in WAY too long. So when I got a little email tip from a reader last week (thanks, Courtney!!) I knew I had to head over there…and quick! A menu change was about to make my dreams come true!

Located at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, this place is pure nostalgia. You really feel like you’ve stumbled into the 1950s when you enter this eatery — from the decor to the menu, everything screams mid 20th Century Americana.

Fancy meatloaf and mashed potatoes or fried chicken? Then you’re in the right place! Grab a napkin and set of silverware, remember to keep your elbows off the table, and join me for a fun, interactive helping of comfort food in this well-loved table service spot.

Atmosphere

Stepping into this restaurant truly is like stepping back in time.

50s Prime Time Sign - Outside

I never cease to be amazed at the way this restaurant immerses guests in the 1950s home atmosphere. You begin your meal by waiting in Dad’s Living Room. Be sure to take a moment and look around; I bet you’ll find something you’ll remember from your parents’ (or grandparents’!) house — I always do!

Dad's Living Room - The Waiting Area

Fancy a drink from Dad’s Liquor Cabinet? Then sidle up to the Tune-In Lounge Bar for a house specialty, or order something once you arrive at your table.

Full Bar at Tune In Lounge

Here’s a tip: If you can’t get an Advanced Dining Reservation here, hang out at the bar. You can order food there, too.

Another of Dad's Living Rooms - Seating for the Tune-In Lounge

When it’s time to [Read more…]

Review: Hollywood Scoops at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

OK, let’s be totally honest here (this is just between you and me, of course…). I’ve never ordered a hand-scooped ice cream cone in Disney World. NO KIDDING! (What can I say, I always prefer that ice cream cookie sandwich!)

Yep — until my last visit to Hollywood Scoops in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, I was ice-cream-cone-less. But this is no longer the case, my friends… Hollywood Scoops to the rescue!

Hollywood Scoops

Atmosphere

Nestled between the Hollywood Tower Hotel and Sunset Ranch Market, both themed to the late 1930’s, this brightly-colored stand fits perfectly into the World War II-era style of the Boulevard. You just want to stop here, right?

Hollywood Scoops from Second Angle

Even Scoops’ saucer-shaped light fixtures feature a scalloped edge, which was popular with early mid-century designers during the late 1930s and early 1940s. I love these!

Hollywood Scoops Light

And how cute is this little guy?? So many random “mascots” for restaurants in Disney World…

Hollywood Scoops Mascot

SO — because it’s got a fun theme and is located right on the corner of Awesome Ride and Awesomer Ride (Rock n Roller Coaster and Tower of Terror), lines for this spot are [Read more…]

Snack Series: Banana Split at Starring Rolls Cafe in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Everyone knows that Starring Rolls Cafe is one of my very favorite spots in all of Disney World. The concentration of unique treats there surpasses most other Disney World locations.

Even though the Cafe is teeny-tiny (no seating inside at all) there are some incredible eats to be had, including several of our favorite Disney Cupcakes!

Banana Split Dessert

But on a recent visit, I indulged in a few non-cupcake items! First, that incredible Napoleon I told you about last week, and second, this colorful treat…

Banana Split

It’s called the “Banana Split,” but there’s nothing ice creamy or “split”-y about it. So I’m not really sure where the name comes from.

Granted, it does have a banana flavor, and it does have some chocolate-ness to it, so perhaps that’s it? Plus, they’ve topped it with a bunch of yellow goo…so maybe yellow goo = banana?

Banana Split Close-Up

Anyway, I’d had my eye on this item for a while, and just wasn’t sure about it. What was it like? What was inside? Finally, my curiosity got the better of me and I snagged one. Here’s what it’s like inside: [Read more…]

Snack Series: Oasis Canteen at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

There are some dining spots in Disney World that are easy to walk right on by, but afford some really fun themeing to check out! Oasis Canteen in Disney’s Hollywood Studios is one of these!

Oasis Canteen

This Indiana-Jones themed snack stop looks like it’s been cobbled together with scrap mental and canvas found around a desert military base, complete with rusted out menu boards!

Beverages at Oasis Canteen

The specialties here include freshly-made funnel cakes (sugar, strawberry topping, and soft-serve ice cream optional) as well as soft-serve ice cream in a waffle cone, and [Read more…]

Review: Backlot Express at Disney’s Hollywood Studios (Now with New Menu AND Buffalo Nuggets!)

Time to head to one of my favorite counter service spots in Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Backlot Express! And there’s a brand new menu in place! We’ve have more for you on that in just a few paragraphs. But first, let’s take a look around…

Atmosphere

From the name alone, you can quickly deduce that this counter service mainstay is, in fact, located in the Backlot area of the theme park. (I know. What would you do without me?)

To locate it, head straight back and to the left as you enter the park. You’ll know you’re getting close when you pass the Sounds Dangerous and Star Tours attractions.

The premise here is that you’ve wandered into a functioning part of the Disney’s Hollywood Studios backlot, where they store all of the props, paint all the sets, fashion all of the haywire stunt gear, and fix all of the machinery needed to put on the show. It’s a glorified warehouse…but that “glorified” part is where Disney’s imagineers shine.

Outside View

As you head in to order you’ll walk past the outdoor seating area, which is nicely shaded. You begin to feel the vibe of the place even here, with mismatched patio chairs and interesting outdoor props, like giant plaster statues, and classic automobiles.

Shaded Seating Area

It’s completely fascinating to wander around and through this huge spot. Imagineers have created the theme to feel as if you’re about to run into someone who’s working on a film while you’re there. There are all kinds of props everywhere, even hanging above you.

Dragon Prop - You Never Know What You Might Find Here!

You’ll also see lots of [Read more…]

New! 4th of July Caramel Apple Cupcake at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Thanks to reader Patrick, @InIronsPL on twitter, for sending information on this holiday treat!

There’s a July 4th caramel apple cupcake at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World…and we’ve got pics for ya!

4th of July cupcake

For those who are brave enough to head to the parks this week, you get the prize of trying this sweet treat complete with apple pie filling, caramel buttercream, and [Read more…]

Guest Review: Tables in Wonderland Great Movie Ride Dinner

Welcome guest author Jamie with a once-in-a-blue-moon review of The Great Movie Ride dinner event offered by Tables in Wonderland in Walt Disney World. PLEASE NOTE: This dinner is offered RARELY and cannot be booked through Disney Dining.

Who doesn’t like to go see a good movie? But what makes it even better? How about dinner and a movie! But not just any dinner, a four course dinner while you’re actually IN the movie!

On June 16, 2012, my wife and I had the pleasure of attending a Tables in Wonderland event at The Great Movie Ride in Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World.

Entrance to The Great Movie Ride in Hollywood Studios.

Atmosphere

Once we checked in and got our wristbands, we were able to walk around outside and look at all of the famous hand prints that decorated the pavement in front of the main entrance. You might recognize this one!

Minnie Mouse Impressions

Suddenly, a dapper looking figure comes bursting out of the main entrance. It was none other than Alberto Dante, the “famous” movie director himself. He proceeded to tell a few jokes and really got the crowd excited to see what the night had in store. I was extremely honored when he gave me one of his business cards.

Alberto Dante

Alberto Dante's Business Card

After about 10 minutes, we followed Alberto through the front doors.

Once we were inside, we were led to where the attraction begins. Through his megaphone, Alberto said to follow him, as he led us down to the main floor. We were now walking on the track that [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)

Atmosphere

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’…

Eats

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…]