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!


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…]

Walt Disney World Steak Gallery

It’s time for another fun addition to our Disney Food Galleries!

disney world steak gallery

We just love to share photos of all of our favorite foods — and collect them into galleries for easy viewing! Whether your craving is for popcorn, ice cream, or a cupcake, there’s a gallery for you!

And today, we’re introducing a brand new gallery for all of you red meat lovers out there! Yep, we’ve gathered a whole buncha steaks from around Disney World to help you make your choices on your next visit.

Remember, some of these may drop off menus from time to time or have side dishes or preparation changed, but hopefully this will give you a good overview of what’s available! Here we go!

Yachtsman Steakhouse

Yachtsman Steakhouse at Disney’s Yacht Club is one of my top picks when it comes to steak at Walt Disney World. After all, they decorate with meat — the first thing you pass en route to your seat is the Steak Trimming Room!

Chefs here pride themselves not only on the very best cuts of meat, but appetizers, side dishes, and desserts inspired by market fresh ingredients. Yachtsman combines the very best of seasonal flavors with the traditional steak experience.

My absolute favorite pick at Yachtsman is the 16-ounce Boneless Ribeye. It is always a melt-in-your-mouth choice.

Ribeye with Herb Fries at Yachtsman Steakhouse

Ribeye with Herb Fries at Yachtsman Steakhouse

But we are also big fans of the 12-ounce Prime New York Strip Steak, served here with a rich potato gratin stack.

Strip Steak

12-ounce Prime New York Strip Steak


Shula’s at Walt Disney World’s Swan and Dolphin is the kind of place that you think of when you envision an upscale steakhouse. As your eyes adjust to the dim lighting and you check out the menu — printed on a football! — you’ll settle into the refined elegance of your surroundings.

When I have the chance to dine here, I almost always go for my favorite, the 22-ounce Cowboy Ribeye (are you sensing a theme?). The Bone-in Steak has been excellent on every visit. The flavor is unbelievable!

Cowboy Ribeye

22-ounce Cowboy Ribeye

Looking for a lighter approach to soothe your carnivore cravings? We’ve also enjoyed the Steak Mary Anne. Delicate by steakhouse standards, the 5-ounce medallions are served with a simple demi glace in this case. It’s the perfect plate for the guest who prefers all the flavor of prime, aged beef in a smaller serving.

Steak Mary Anne

Steak Mary Anne

Flying Fish

If you’re a landlubber like me, then finding a great steak at a restaurant known for fabulous seafood is a dream come true. But it’s not impossible if you’re dining at Flying Fish Cafe.

When I visit, I always order the Char-Crusted Black Angus New York Strip. The creamy Sauce Foyot is such a great accent — and they’re never chintzy with it!

Char Crusted Black Angus New York Strip

Char-Crusted Black Angus New York Strip

Can’t decide between surf and turf? You don’t have to! Try the two house specialities side by side with the Entree Duo, which features the Char-Crusted Angus New York Strip Steak and the restaurant’s most famous fish dish, the Potato-wrapped Red Snapper.

Entree Duo of Red Snapper and Strip Steak

Entree Duo of Red Snapper and Strip Steak


Jiko offers some of the most interesting food at Walt Disney World.

And while I enjoy the fusion of African, Indian, and Meditteranean flavors when it comes to appetizers and desserts, I rarely deviate from my favorite entree: the Oak-Grilled Filet.

Oak Grilled Filet with Mac and Cheese

Oak-Grilled Filet with Mac and Cheese

And even when their delicious Mac and Cheese isn’t featured as the dish’s side, you can usually score it as a special request (and I totally recommend that you do). :-)

Liberty Inn

In the mood for steak with no Advance Dining Reservation? Then head to Epcot’s Liberty Inn. Their New York Strip Steak, served with Red Wine Butter, Roasted Potatoes, and Steamed Broccoli, is surprisingly good.

New York Strip Steak Meal

New York Strip Steak Meal

Sci-Fi Dine-In Restaurant

Even though most of my favorite steaks at Disney World are featured at signature restaurants, that doesn’t mean you can’t find a good option at moderately priced restaurants, too, like Sci-Fi Dine-In.

Recently, I was pleasantly surprised by [Read more…]

Disney Recipe: Chocolate Crusted Key Lime Tart from Disney World’s Grand Floridian Cafe

If it were up to me, I’d have a slice of Key Lime Pie Every. Single. Time. I set foot in Florida.

Fortunately, Disney has me covered with lots and lots and LOTS of options for this favorite!

But one of the best comes with a fun twist, thanks to the extra special crust. I’m talking about the Chocolate Crusted Key Lime Tart at the Grand Floridian Cafe in Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.

Big on equal parts richness, sweetness, and sour power, this is a great version of the Sunshine State classic. I’ve always loved lime and chocolate together!

Key Lime Tart at Grand Floridian Cafe

Key Lime Tart at Grand Floridian Cafe

If you need a little sunshine in your life today, how about heading to the market for the ingredients? You’ve just gotta have some key lime pie to bring on the Summer.

Chocolate Crusted Key Lime Tart

Grand Floridian Cafe


Yield: 10 servings

Crust [Read more…]

“The Best Thing I Ever Ate in Disney!” Breakfast!

We’re back for more fun with a brand new version of our hit series, “The Best Thing I Ever Ate in Disney”!

Best Thing I Ever Ate in Disney -- Breakfast

With your awesome input, we had tons of fun exploring our favorite Disney food categories a looong time ago. But Disney keeps adding amazing new dishes, treats, and foods! And so, it’s time to revisit these questions and add some of our new, and enduring, favorites to the mix!

Today, we’ll get the day started off right just like we should — with some delicious Breakfast! I’ll let you know a few of my favorites…and then it’s your turn to chime with in YOUR votes for “The Best Thing I Ever Ate in Disney — Breakfast”!

Let’s get to crackin’! (Like…eggs. Crackin’ eggs. Get it? :-) )

Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll at Kouzzina

In no time flat, Kouzzina by Cat Cora has become one of my favorite places to dine at Walt Disney World for breakfast. It’s quiet, relaxed, and offers some truly delicious eats.

If we’re going to talk about killer ways to start your day, first up has to be one of my favorite breakfast finds of recent Disney visits: the Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll at Kouzzina.

Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll

Wouldn’t you just love to dig into one of these babies right. this. minute?? Me tooooo! Warm, butter-rich dough envelops a beautiful center filled to overflowing with that yummy, buttery, cinnamon-y goodness that just makes your heart SING!

This. This is what a cinnamon roll should look like — so gooey that you need a fork to eat it! Believe me when I say that the Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll is plenty reason enough to make Kouzzina your very next advance dining reservation.

Warm Honey Pecan Cinnamon Roll — Inside

Tonga Toast at Kona Cafe

Classics become so for a reason. In Disney food circles, classics = awesomeness (and often over-the-topness) that just about everyone loves.

Case in point: Tonga Toast at Kona Cafe.

Tonga Toast with Bacon

Thick, fluffy bread is stuffed with banana yum, before it’s battered and deep-fried. After a roll in a ton of [Read more…]

Review: Breakfast at the Grand Floridian Cafe

I know I’m not alone in considering the Grand Floridian Cafe to be a hidden gem among resort restaurants.

Located in one of Walt Disney World’s most beautiful hotels, the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, this moderately-priced table service restaurant is rarely so busy that you can’t score a walk-up table. That has held true for me at even the busiest times, such as spring break.

A while back we experienced a delightful dinner at Grand Floridian Cafe, and I had been anxious ever since that time to get back for breakfast.

On a recent trip, we finally had an opportunity to take in our morning meal there.


The atmosphere at the Grand Floridian Cafe is a little on the nondescript side. It’s not that it’s uncomfortable or unattractive; it’s just that bumped up against all the over-the-top themeing in many Disney spots, this one pales by comparison.

Sign at the Restaurant's Entrance

What you will find is a really beautiful, bright, cheerful spot that melds the Victorian with the Floridian perfectly.

At breakfast, you’ll find plenty of guests sitting back, sipping coffee, and reading the paper. It’s just screams “relaxed,” which may be exactly what you need during a busy Disney vacation.

Seating in the Main Dining Room

It does feel a little on the dated side…but that kinda makes sense, since you’re supposed to feel like you’re surrounded by the 19th, not the 21st, century.

Mirrors give the space a larger feel, and the heavy marble and iron tables remind me a bit of the sunroom seating at Tony’s Town Square in Magic Kingdom. It’s a nice tie-in to the Main Street U.S.A. vintage feel.

There’s also mixed banquette and chair seating here, so everyone can have the seat they prefer.

Mixed Seating and Decor

The view through the windows onto the [Read more…]

More Great Disney Dining Tips from the Experts!

A while back, we polled Disney Food Blog readers — Disney fans who have been there, done that, and bought the t-shirt — on their top Disney Dining Tips.

Not surprisingly, the top tip mentioned was the advice to make Disney Dining Reservations, since you don’t want to be shut out of your favorites or from the most popular restaurants. So this time around we thought it would be fun to ask about their SECOND best Disney Dining Tips!

Read on to see what our Disney Food Blog twitter followers shared as their second best Disney dining tips, and be sure to share in the comments whether you agree or disagree! Share YOUR tips to help your fellow Disney lovers!

Enjoy Some Disney Snacks

We LURVE our Disney snacks around here! And so do our readers! Many of the tips we received were about the favorite classic pre- and post-meal goodies we all love to tuck into in the Parks.

While Brian C. had a unique, sweet option on the mind (“Try the beignets!”), Twitter pal Amber B. writes, “Do NOT skip the Schoolbread!” We can heartily agree!

Norway School Bread

Whether you prefer a sweet or salty treat, there are plenty of cupcakes, cookies and specialty pretzels to choose from.

And if you need a little help selecting the treat you’ll try first, make sure to download our DFB Mini-Guide to Epcot Snacks and our DFB Mini-Guide to Magic Kingdom Snacks.

Eat at “Off Hours”

Disney vacationers cannot live on snacks alone, though—there are too many great Disney restaurants!

Several of our twitter friends recommended taking advantage of “off” meal times by enjoying a late breakfast/early lunch, or a late lunch/early dinner! This is when the restaurants are less likely to be packed with families sticking to the traditional meal times.

Coral Reef in Epcot is even more serene during non-traditional dining hours!

Paul B. tweets, “Off hours eating leads to taking advantage of shorter attraction lines during the normal meal times.”  So while everyone else is waiting in the lunch line, you’re able to hop onto Splash Mountain with a much shorter wait.

And when you are ready to enjoy your late lunch, not only will you have a quieter, more intimate meal, but you’re more likely to get a coveted window seat or other special seating area (like a car-booth at Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater). Dining bonus!

Awesome convertible car booths at Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater

Visit the Resorts for Meals

If you’re not able to take advantage [Read more…]

Guest Review: Grand Floridian Cafe Breakfast in Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort

Join us in welcoming Emma S. with a review of the Grand Floridian Cafe’s elegant breakfast.

Visitors to Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort are certainly not lacking in restaurant options: from character buffets and tea parties to gourmet, multi-course dinners, the Grand has it all when it comes to dining!

With so many eye-catching choices, there’s one little restaurant that can get overlooked. The Grand Floridian Café occupies a charming corner on the ground floor, offers meals all day long, and usually has availability for walk-ups. One morning my brother and I decided to give the breakfast here a try.

An elegant menu board!

Grand Floridian Cafe Tablescape


As soon as you enter the Grand Floridian Café, you feel any [Read more…]

What’s Your Favorite Disney Burger?

It’s usually my job to smash though the stereotype that theme parks only serve burgers and fries, but today…it’s time to embrace it! We’re going to talk burgers, all! Are ya ready to share your favorites?

It’s time to update our “best burgers in Disney World” list, and we think there are some seriously unexpected meat-and-bun creations that go far beyond what you would expect from a theme park burger. Let’s take a look at some of the most notable in the bunch.

This isn’t an exhaustive list, though! I’d love to hear your favorites in the comments below!

Favorite Disney Burgers

Picnic Burger at Sci-Fi Dine-In

UPDATE: Please note that the Picnic Burger is not currently being served at Sci-Fi-Dine-In Restaurant, but they often feature a specialty burger on the menu in addition to the Build-Your-Own Burger. 

The All American Picnic Burger is a flame-broiled Angus burger patty topped with…wait until you hear this…a grilled hot dog! On top of this, you get sauerkraut, sautéed onions, ketchup, mustard, and a pickle spear! Yep — this one is HUGE…and messy!

Served at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, it’s a picnic on a plate. Go ahead and indulge!

Picnic Burger

Beaches and Cream Burger

The simple Beaches and Cream Burger made our very first “Best Burgers” list way back when, and now their upgraded Bacon and Blue version has made our list again!

Beaches and Cream is your spot for comforting food, including malted milkshakes, chicken noodle soup, awesome ice cream sundaes, and Angus cheeseburgers.

Bacon and Blue Burger at Beaches and Cream

Surf and Surf “Burger” at Landscape of Flavors

This is probably the newest on the list, and hails from Art of Animation Resort’s Landscape of Flavors!

Not technically a burger, the Surf and Surf is actually a Crab Cake topped with fried popcorn shrimp, tomato, lettuce, and Cajun remoulade on a brioche bun. There are plenty of other great burgers to choose from at this new counter-service stop, though, so [Read more…]

New Menu: Grand Floridian’s Beach Pool Bar

Disney chefs worked behind the scenes on new menu items for the Grand Floridian Beach Pool Bar at the Grand Floridian, which recently re-opened! Courtesy of Chef Jack Butler, we have all the details!

Beach Pool Bar Under Construction

After new recipes are developed, they are tested to see which menu items are most popular with guests. Testing took place at Gasparilla Grill before it closed for refurbishment this month.

Gasparilla Entrance

The new menu at the Beach Pool Bar now replaces Gasparilla as the go-to counter-service location for Grand Floridian during renovations. As always during refurbs and menu updates, this is all subject to change.

Let’s check it out!

New Menu Items

Watermelon, Feta, and Arugula Salad with Red Onion Vinaigrette ($7.19)
Chunks of watermelon, feta cheese crumbles, grape tomatoes, and shaved red onion on a base of arugula.

Grilled chicken Caesar salad ($8.39)
This is a holdover from Gasparilla. You can now sub out the chicken for grilled shrimp for an additional charge.

Crab Cake Sandwich ($9.99).
Served with a corn tartar sauce and cucumber salad. The cake itself is an un-breaded version of the Grand Floridian Cafe crab cake.

Crab Cakes at Grand Floridian Cafe

Citrus Chicken Salad Sandwich ($8.99)
Shredded chicken with a citrus tarragon [Read more…]

Reader Poll: Rather Eat Thanksgiving Dinner at Home or at a Disney Restaurant?

Happy Thanksgiving!

My family is considering having Thanksgiving in Disney World next year, and I wanted to hear some opinions about that! So we asked our Facebook Page Fans:

Would you rather have Thanksgiving Dinner at home, or at a Disney restaurant?.

Our readers chimed in with their holiday preferences! While dining at home was a strong contender due to family traditions, leftovers, cost-savings, aversion to holiday crowds, and a palate for a real home-cooked meal, ordering Thanksgiving dinner at a Disney restaurant was the clear winner!

And these voters didn’t care where they ate at Disney — they just wanted to be in the middle of the magic for the holiday. In fact, we think some of you might be happy with one of these!:

Disney Turkey Leg

Here are some of the other suggestions we received!: [Read more…]