News: Changes to Afternoon Tea Packages at the Grand Floridian’s Garden View Lounge

Are you looking forward to an Afternoon Tea at the Grand Floridian?

The Garden View Lounge at Disney’s Grand Floridian hosts Afternoon Tea each day with Advance Dining Reservation opportunities starting at 2:00 pm.  I mention Advance Dining Reservations (ADRs) because this has become quite a popular experience, so planning for your tea in advance is becoming more of a must.

In order to help you with your Afternoon Tea plans, we wanted let you know of some very recent changes to the Tea Packages available for purchase.

The previous menu featured packages ranging from $25 (the Buckingham Tea) to $45 (Princess Kate Tea), with the $13 “Mrs. Potts Tea” package for children ages 3-9. Packages on the new menu start at $30 and go up to a pretty penny for a big vacation splurge. Here’s the full rundown:

The Garden View Lounge Afternoon Tea menu

The Garden View Lounge Afternoon Tea menu

The Bedfordshire Tea includes finger sandwiches accompanied with berries, cheese, and lavosh; a buttery scone and jam tart; and a dessert course with the guest’s choice of pastries, strawberries and creme, or English trifle. And, of course, a pot of tea. The cost for this package is $30 per guest.

Bedfordshire Tea package

Bedfordshire Tea package

For a comparison to the previous menu, it closely resembles the former Buckingham Tea package which was $25, but with the addition of berries, cheese, and lavosh.

The Derbyshire Tea features all the [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…]

Photo Tour: The 2014 Grand Floridian Resort Easter Egg Display in Walt Disney World

Upon entering Disney World’s Grand Floridian Resort, you’ll find something that may distract you from the sights of the lobby, as stunning as it is. From now through April 22, you can enjoy the Third Annual Easter Egg Display!

2014 Grand Floridian Easter Eggs

2014 Grand Floridian Easter Eggs

And it’s certainly something to see, because these aren’t just any Easter Eggs… these are 9-12 pound chocolate Easter Eggs created and crafted by Disney Chefs!

For those who may not be able to catch this display in person, we thought we’d bring it to you :) .

History of the Display -- click to enlarge

History of the Display — click to enlarge

As the sign states, the Grand Floridian Easter Egg tradition has held for 18 years; however, the eggs could previously be seen only in the Resort’s restaurants. But now, for the third year in a row, they are on display in the lobby for everyone to enjoy. It’s definitely a treat to see what the Bakery Team comes up with!

Decorative Easter Egg

Decorative Easter Egg

As you look at these creations, it’s fun to note that every egg is decorated with “edible products such as  modeling chocolate, fondant, sugar floral, royal icing, colored cocoa butter and sculpted sugar art pieces.”
Yep — it’s all edible!

Butterfly Garden Egg

Butterfly Garden Egg

Butterfly Garden Egg

Butterfly Garden Egg

Chefs are given a blank “canvas,” along with the freedom to bring to life whatever vision they wish. So, you’ll see that the decorated eggs range from classic Easter themes

Decorative Easter Egg

Decorative Easter Egg

Decorative Easter Egg

Decorative Easter Egg

2014 Grand Floridian Easter Eggs Bouquet

Spring Bouquet Egg

… to the truly [Read more…]

Best Disney World Restaurants for Fish Fry

With Lent on the horizon — and with a few questions from readers recently about where to get a great fish fry in Disney World — I knew that now would be the perfect time to check out the best places to find that golden battered goodness at the Happiest Place on Earth!

Let’s check out some of the best fried fish in Disney World

Best Disney World Restaurants for a Fish Fry

United Kingdom Pavilion in Epcot

You can’t go wrong for fish and chips in the delicacy’s home pavilion in Epcot.

Fish and Chips from Yorkshire County Fish Shop

Whether you take a load off at the Rose and Crown Pub and Dining Room or grab some fried food to go from Yorkshire County Fish Shop, you’re in for a mild but authentic taste of one of England’s best exports.

While you’re there, enjoy a beer and a performance by The British Revolution or the Pub’s Hat Lady.

Cookes of Dublin and Raglan Road in Downtown Disney

If you find yourself in need of a fish fix while you’re “Downtown,” head over to the Pleasure Island District for two authentic and delicious options. The One & One at Cookes of Dublin is one of our favorites on property.

Cooked to order and served piping hot, the fish is flaky and tender.

Fish and Chips from Cooke’s of Dublin

But if you have the time for a slower meal, you may want to consider the famous beer battered fish and chips on the lunch menu at Raglan Road Irish Pub right next door.

Columbia Harbour House in Magic Kingdom

Here in Liberty Square, you can enjoy a counter service battered fish basket with broccoli, apples, or French fries at Columbia Harbour House counter service restaurant. The proportion of breading to fish is perfect, and the fish isn’t too oily.

Fried Chicken and Fish at Columbia Harbour House

Fried Chicken and Fish at Columbia Harbour House (photo from Kelly Amey via the DFB Flickr Group) 

Citricos at Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

For a slightly more upscale take on the English classic, take a monorail ride to the Grand Floridian and pull up a chair at Citricos. There, you should order the melt-in-your-mouth pan-fried Florida black grouper, which gets [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

Atmosphere

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

News! Dining Events at Citricos in Disney World’s Grand Floridian

Citricos at Walt Disney World’s Grand Floridian has announced several special dining events. This month’s Tables in Wonderland dinners include two Chef’s Domain dinners that will take place on September 18 and 19, 2012!

Be sure to check out our Pin Board for more information on Citricos Wine Dinners taking place later in September, October, and November!

Citricos Chef’s Domain Welcomes B.R. Cohn Winery Sonoma

Tuesday September 18, 2012

BR Cohn Winery is a medium-sized producer of some of Sonoma County’s finest Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. In the last few years, they’ve added a wide range of varietals. BR Cohn is also known for their olive oils. Doobie Brothers manager Bruce Cohn started his eponymous winery in 1984.

Citricos Dinner - click image for larger version

Menu
1st Course
Fluke Crudo with Pink Grapefruit
Silver Label Chardonnay, North Coast ‘10

2nd Course
Cornish Hen 2 Ways with Warm Bread Salad
Chardonnay, Sangiacomo Vineyard ‘10

3rd Course [Read more…]

Guest Review: Gasparilla Grill and Games at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort


Editor’s Note: The lobster mac and cheese is no longer offered at Gasparilla Island Grill.

Thanks to Chantel B. for sending along these great photos and mini-reviews from Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort’s Gasparilla Grill and Games!

Gasparilla Grill and Games overlooks the marina at Disney’s Grand Floridian. Open 24-hours (!!!), this quick-service restaurant makes a great late night stop when leaving the Magic Kingdom. Dinner items are served until 11:30 p.m., then late night snacks are available overnight.

Dining indoors can be a bit noisy since this space also functions as the arcade. For a view of Cinderella’s Castle (and a quieter atmosphere) in the distance, dine at an outdoor table.

View from Gasparilla Grill

You can check out our full review with more atmosphere pics here! But let’s take a look at Chantel’s reviews of some very popular Gasparilla dishes…

Lobster Macaroni & Cheese

If you’re not staying at the Grand Floridian, this dish is worth a trip to the resort! The Lobster meat was small, not chunked. And the gruyere cheese blend had a nice creamy texture.

Lobster Mac and Cheese

Chicken Sandwich plus Mozzarella & Tomato Salad

Served on a wheat bun, this sandwich had a nice flavor (obviously marinated) and not dry! The salad was [Read more…]

News! Disney Chef Scott Hunnel Named James Beard Award Semi-Finalist; Wolfgang Puck To Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

Each year the James Beard Foundation spotlights the best food and beverage professionals by bestowing the Beard Awards — considered one of the highest culinary honors in North America!

The semifinalists in the 2012 Restaurant and Chef categories have been announced, and we’re thrilled to see two Disney chefs on the list! In addition, several Orlando-area chefs were also named. The finalists will be announced on March 19, 2012, in Las Vegas. And we’ll be cheering on our faves when the winners are announced on May 7th in New York City!

Best Chef – South, Semi-Finalists

Scott Hunnel, Victoria & Albert’s Restaurant
Congratulations to award-winning chef, Scott Hunnel of Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa! Under Hunnel’s innovative leadership, Victoria and Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort has won many prestigious local, national, and international nods.

This exclusive restaurant has also won nine consecutive AAA Five Diamond Awards and twenty consecutive Mobil Travel Guide Four Star Awards.

Chef Scott Hunnel

James and Julie Petrakis, The Ravenous Pig
The Ravenous Pig is located in Winter Park, FL, very close to Orlando and Walt Disney World. Stop in for “an American gastropub experience” — casual dining with [Read more…]

Guest Review: Grand Floridian’s Afternoon Tea at the Garden View Lounge

We’re welcoming back guest author Melissa Sue as she shares a review of the Grand Floridian’s afternoon tea!

My husband, Rob, and I headed to the Grand Floridian for an afternoon tea experience in December.

Grand Floridian

Atmosphere

After hopping off the monorail we found the waiting area for the Garden View Lounge, which is located on the bottom floor of the Main Building lobby. The waiting area is extremely charming — though too small — and has Beauty and the Beast characters Chip and Mrs. Potts inlaid into the tile floor. How cute!

Mrs. Potts is the perfect Disney touch outside the tea room!

This Chip won’t blow bubbles in your tea!

The check-in podium was easy to locate and well-appointed. Unfortunately, there were only two seats in the waiting area, so we were mostly standing while we waited.

The check-in podium, on the south east side of the Main Building at Grand Floridian.

And, boy, did we wait. I should preface this by saying that the Tea Room was obviously either overbooked or understaffed the day of our tea. Our party of two waited for [Read more…]

Walt Disney World New Year’s Eve Dining and Special Events

Ringing in New Year 2012 from Walt Disney World? It’s going to be a memorable night! Call 407-WDW-DINE for holiday dining information and reservations! Here are some of your options for dining on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day:

Disney Resorts and Event Spaces

Boardwalk
Atlantic Dance Hall
Dance into the New Year at Atlantic Dance Hall at Disney’s BoardWalk
8 p.m. to 2 a.m., ages 21 and up.

Video DJ Tony Zapulla will play hits on the main dance floor. Beverages will be for sale from three different bars. There will be limited viewing of Epcot’s fireworks.

$37 (gratuity not included) for access to the main floor of the Dance Hall.
$80 for a VIP ticket that allows guests entrance to a private 2nd floor area with guaranteed seating and access to a private upstairs balcony for “limited” viewing of the fireworks. In addition, you’ll be able to indulge at a Dessert Station and private VIP bar. Cocktail service will also be offered.

Dress Attire: Business Casual or Formal

Parking:
Parking passes for the self parking lot will be given with advance purchases. Parking not guaranteed to be available for same day purchase.
Contemporary Resort
Chef Mickey’s (New Year’s Day brunch)
California Grill will host an evening of elegance!
$550 per person.

View of Castle from our California Grill Table

Entertainment will include casino-style games, live music and Disney characters. Enjooy food stations and beverages while watching [Read more…]