First Look! Ghirardelli Opens in Disney California Adventure

After a successful week of soft openings, Ghirardelli has “officially” opened its doors at the Disneyland Resort inside of Disney California Adventure’s Pacific Wharf area.

We were lucky enough to be invited to the ribbon cutting ceremony, where Mickey and Minnie helped welcome the park’s first independently owned and operated establishment.

Disney California Adventure Park Vice President Mary Nivan & Disneyland Resort President George Kalogridis along with Ernst Tanner CEO of Lindt & Sprungli AG

First, we’ll take a peek inside and try a sundae. Then I’ll show you a very special surprise that makes this Ghirardelli location more incredible than any other in the world… (we even have a little video of what makes it so cool).

The Unveiling!

This Ghirardelli location is the first store to be built inside of a theme park (though there is a location in Downtown Disney in Orlando, that’s not, technically, a theme park). Although the cast members at Ghirardelli have had some Disney cast member training, they are actually employees of Ghirardelli and have been taught specifically by the chocolate company. 

Ghirardelli Entrance with Some Added "Chocolatiers"

After the ribbon was cut, we were invited in to see the gorgeous new Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop! 

As you enter the shop, there are menus to peruse as well as a few registers. You place your order at a register and are then sent to one of the three pick up windows where you will be handed your order.

As a “Grand Opening” guest, I was handed one of these tasty little treats!

Mini Sundaes? Yes Please!

It wasn’t easy to eat a sundae and take photos of the store at the same time, so unfortunately I had just a few bites and then got to work. My favorite thing about a Ghirardelli sundae? Definitely the [Read more…]

Disney Food Post Round-Up: December 11, 2011

Gluhwein in Epcot's Germany

We’re in Walt Disney World this weekend eating lots of good stuff and capturing tons of great photos to share with you as you plan your upcoming Disney trips, including a new caramel apple margarita, an ice cream cookie sandwich filled with pumpkin ice cream, and even a caramel-fudge-cookie sundae that only costs one Disney Dining Plan snack credit!

Speaking of upcoming trips, here’s a bit of Disney food news to keep you in the loop!

Weekly Disney Food News

Want more news? Stop by our Disney Food News Pin Board, where Disney Food News is updated on a regular basis! And don’t forget to follow along on our 2011 Holiday Dining page!

Disney Food Blog Gift Certificates Make Great Gifts For Disney Fans!

Our popular Disney Food Blog Guide to Walt Disney World Dining, DFB Mini-Guide to Magic Kingdom Snacks, and new DFB Dining Adventures e-Books have been very popular, and now there’s a way for you to give them as gifts to your friends and family!

Using our new Disney Food Blog e-Book Gift Certificates, you can instantly give all of this great dining info and advice to your favorite Disney fan, and it’s EASY! Get all of the details — and great holiday discounts — at http://dfbguide.com/giftcertificates!

Don’t let your friends and family go to Disney World unprepared. Get a DFB Gift Certificate for your favorite Disney fan today!

On to the Round-Up!

WDW For Grown-Ups takes a look at Adult-Friendly Character Meals! Great idea!!

WESH.com names Top 5 Holiday Food Picks at Walt Disney World — written by yours truly!

Goofy at Cape May Cafe -- an Adult-Friendly character meal!

Daveland Blog reminisces about a long-lost Disneyland coffee shop.

DisMarks has another great Disney Blog Carnival this week with lots of fun Disney food articles!

Stuff from the Park travels back in time to take a look at a 1970s menu from the American Egg House at Disneyland.

MiceChat.com reviews dining with diabetes aboard the Disney Dream.

BabyCakes NYC Blog shares the news that Downtown Disney’s Babycakes Bakery will now fulfill vegan and gluten-free cake orders for Disney World resort guests!

Main St. Gazette checks out the scene at Epcot’s Sommerfest! Happy Birthday, Ryan!!

Disney Weddings Blog highlights a new trend — mashed potato bars!

News! 2012 Opening for Ghirardelli Soda Fountain at Disney California Adventure

As we reported way back in June, the Old Mission Tortilla Factory shuttered its doors to make way for the Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop in Disney California Adventure.

It looks like this sweet location is set to open in late spring 2012 with delicious sundaes and free chocolate samples slated to please visitors to DCA! The recently released concept art gives us a sneak peek at the shop in its Pacific Wharf location!

Concept Art

What’s in store for your sweet tooth? On a recent visit to the Ghirardelli Soda Fountain in Downtown Disney Orlando, I indulged in The Gold Rush.

Gold Rush Sundae

This is a delectable Peanut Butter and Hot Fudge Sundae featuring vanilla ice cream with homemade hot fudge and melted peanut butter throughout the entire dish! You can get yours topped with [Read more…]

Guest Review: Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Treats

I’m excited to welcome Guest Reviewer Holly Burtchaell from Random Cravings Blog with a fun review of treats found at this year’s Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Walt Disney World! Warning: This read is sugar-sweet!

Party signage

Although Mr. Random and I have clocked too many trips to Disney World to count, somehow, neither of us has ever experienced Christmas at the Happiest Place on Earth. Luckily, that all changed last week, when we spent an entire week immersed in Disney Christmas happiness. In fact, this year’s very first Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party (MVMCP) was also our very first time at that event!

I quickly learned that in addition to being about the Christmas parade, the special fireworks, and the rare character appearances, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is also filled with yummy holiday treats!

Free Eats at MVMCP

Included with your ticket to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party are complimentary cookies and hot cocoa, along with healthier options of apple slices and apple juice. These treats were handed out at several locations around the Magic Kingdom…just follow the signs!

Signage at Cosmic Ray's

Signage at Columbia Harbor House

This year’s cookies were big, soft, delicious snickerdoodles. The apple slices were [Read more…]

Disney Ice Cream Gallery

July is National Ice Cream Month!!!

And since Sunday was National Ice Cream Day, we’ve put together a gallery of some of our favorite chilly treats from Disney parks and resorts! (Yes, you have permission to have ice cream for breakfast.)

We know we’re not covering everything, and we’d love it if you would leave us a comment mentioning your favorite ice cream-based dessert in a Disney restaurant. Can’t wait to find out what your choices are! :-)

So now, without further ado, here’s where to go to get some of our favorite sweet-cold treats in our favorite theme parks!

The Plaza Ice Cream Sundae

Scoops of vanilla ice cream drizzled with hot fudge is then covered in whipped cream when you order this Plaza Ice Cream Sundae. There’s not just one, but many crowning cherries on this divine treat.  And that’s all before you get to the crunch of a delicious waffle bowl (if you even make it that far…we didn’t)!

Okay, it’s served in a plastic bowl, which makes it a little less decadent but the crispy waffle bowl will make up for the lack of glassware. Got spare time while waiting curb-side for the parade? Grab one of these little beauties before staking out your piece of pavement! (Or, better yet, let someone else stake it out for you, then head over to the Main Street Ice Cream Parlor to snag one of your own.)

Location: Main Street Ice Cream Parlor

Plaza Ice Cream Parlor Sundae

And don’t forget to pick up this little favorite at the Plaza, too! A Mickey Ear ice cream cone!

Mickey Ice Cream Cone

Dole Whip Float

This is practically a food staple at WDW. Hey, it’s a daily fruit serving, right?! The Dole Whip float is soft serve treat with pineapple juice and should be on your Magic Kingdom touring plan.

No visit to Adventureland in the Magic Kingdom is complete without a Dole Whip. Before your flight on Aladdin’s Magic Carpets, sit for a spell and give your taste buds a sensational journey!

Location: Aloha Isle and Sunshine Tree Terrace

Disney World Aloha Isle Dole Whip Float

Kitchen Sink Sundae

It’s everything but the kitchen sink! This must-share, ginormous dessert begins with [Read more…]

Disney Food Post Round-Up: June 5, 2011

Sundae at Ghirardelli

Welcome to the Disney Food Post round-up; here we go…!

Disney Food News

On to the Round-Up

DisMarks features their 22nd Disney Blog Carnival this week!! Head over and check out stories from some of your favorite bloggers. :-)

MousePlanet‘s Chris Barry highlights a little Disneyana with these mid-century Disneyland birthday candles. I love the close-up look at the accompanying birthday cake decorations.

Boston Magazine ran an anonymous article in May where the town that made him famous…well…breaks up with Todd English, the celebrity chef who has his name on the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin’s bluezoo restaurant. The New York Times answered with a full profile of the chef.

All Ears Net‘s Laura Glibreath shares a virtual scrapbook of food photos from her Disney Cruise to Alaska.

Watch Me Eat documents the ice cream buffet at the Star Tours grand opening event in Disney World!

Main St. Gazette shares a secret recipe for Flame Tree Barbecue’s grill rub!

4Parks1Blog has a fun angle for a Hoop Dee Doo Revue Review — guaranteed to make you smile.

Studios Central reports that Anaheim Produce on Sunset Boulevard in Disney’s Hollywood Studios will be closed through June 24th.

Heather W has a gorgeous photo of an Epcot root beer float on her latest virtual Disney scrapbook page.

Do you have your copy of the Disney Food Blog Guide to Walt Disney World Dining e-Book?

Click here for sample pages, recommendations, testimonials, bonus items, and more! (The 30-day money-back guarantee means there’s no risk to you!)

Disney California Adventure Tortilla Factory to Morph Into Ghirardelli Factory

Disney California Adventure Mission Tortilla Factory

As of Tuesday May 31, 2011, the Old Mission Tortilla Factory at Disney California Adventure has closed. But hold onto your hats because rumor has it they are replacing it with a Ghirardelli factory, chocolate shop, and soda fountain!

If the current timeline stays the same, guests at DCA will be able to experience all of the delicious Ghirardelli goodness in 2012.

The location will remain, but the exterior will be changed to resemble Ghirardelli’s famous waterfront chocolate factory in San Francisco.

Ghirardelli Soda Fountain Downtown Disney, Orlando

Disney Imagineering plans to expand the current building to the adjoining backstage structure that currently houses DCA’s first aid and lost children complex. This expanded complex will have enough space to allow for a factory tour experience, as well as a chocolate shop and soda fountain (we smell free chocolate… ;-)).

The Ghiradelli experience will be in a prime location because of its proximity to the main entrance to Cars Land, which is due to open in June 2012, and also along DCA’s parade route.

So while you will not be able to get your free bag of birthday tortillas anymore, you can rest assured that you will be able to enjoy some of the best chocolate and ice cream in the world!

Source: Micechat

“The Best Thing I Ever Ate at Disney!”: Desserts

I am SO excited!! Dessert!!!

Here’s the final post in our series based on the Food Network’s (very cool) show, The Best Thing I Ever Ate. As many of you know, due to some keen suggestions from readers we’re splitting our series up into different sections: breakfast, appetizers & side dishes, snacks & drinks, entrees (lunch & dinner), and desserts.

Today, we’re finallly taking a look at desserts! I’ve done my favorite brand of informal polling (i.e. posted questions on twitter and facebook ;) ) to find out others’ experiences of the “Best Thing They Ever Ate” in Disney parks and resorts.

The following are the answers received from our readers about their favorite desserts! If your favorites aren’t here, please add them in the comments section below!

Yak and Yeti Cream Cheese and Pineapple Fried Won-tons: While I haven’t had the pleasure of trying these myself, you can bet Yak and Yeti is the first place I’m going when I arrive in September! (No kidding…it’s my first ADR…even before Liberty Tree Tavern lunch, and you guys KNOW how we feel about Liberty Tree Tavern lunch!)

Yak and Yeti Fried Cream Cheese Wontons.

Dole Whip: What better dessert [Read more…]

Disney’s California Food & Wine Festival — First Food Reviews

I finally get to share some food pics and reviews from Disney’s California Food & Wine Festival Center! I’ll be putting together blog posts specifically about merchandise and the Festival Center soon, but I always give the food pics priority, as you know ;-) Here’s how the Festival Food (beer and wine will be discussed separately) is set up, for those of you who might not have been here, yet:

The Festival Center: Here, you can find the “Taste of California” items — eight tapas-sized portions of food representing California, the Festival Center “Wine Seller,” other festival merchandise items, a Stella Artois-hosted “Star Lounge” and Belgian Brewers Collection, and one of the festival seminar locations.

Around Disney’s California Adventure: Throughout DCA, you can find six dining locations offering “festival-inspired” dishes, like “Mangia Meatballs” and Award Weiners!

Eats

Today, I headed to the Festival Center to nosh on several of the “Taste of California” Marketplace items as well as try out the brand-spanking new, still-in-testing-stages, 106-flavor, “PurePour” Coke Machine…which I’ll be telling you all about in the next week or so. Here’s the full list of food items available. These all cost between $3 and $5:

We started out with a selection of Artisinal Cheeses:

This included three extremely mild cheeses — the Cheddar had [Read more…]

A Collection of Awesome Stuff

Two of my favorite people sent me some very cool things recently, and I wanted to share them with you on this “freeform Saturday” post.

First of all, a beautiful food pic from James Chapman. This is Le Cellier‘s sausage and corn polenta appetizer, which is out of this world delicious. It’s just too pretty not to give it the spotlight. Thanks for Mickey-fying the plates, James — how did you know that Le Cellier’s butter balls are my favorite part of the meal?

Le Cellier Sausage and Corn Polenta Appetizer

Le Cellier Sausage and Corn Polenta Appetizer

And secondly, I wanted to share with you some “random observations” from Jeff Kocan‘s recent trip. They’re too witty not to print as-is:

Just random observations that I meant to bring up: [Read more…]