Review: The Crew’s Cup Lounge at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort

We are stopping into The Crew’s Cup Lounge for a light bite!

Located in Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, The Crew’s Cup Lounge is a wonderful little spot to take a breather and beat the heat for a bit. In fact, if you’re ever looking for me and I’m not wandering the parks with my camera, I’ll most likely be in a Disney resort lounge somewhere hiding in the blessed coolness.

This spot has a surprisingly awesome menu (dinner’s pretty darn fancy, even), a great staff, and a relaxed atmosphere. I headed in for lunch on a recent trip after arriving from the airport famished!

 

Atmosphere

The Crew’s Cup Lounge is tucked into the hallway between Disney’s Yacht Club and Beach Club Resorts. It’s easy to miss if you aren’t paying attention.

Crew's Cup Lounge Sign

Crew’s Cup Lounge Sign

See what I mean? There’s no flash here, folks. It almost feels like a private club. And that definitely enhances the relaxing atmosphere.

Entrance

Entrance

Step inside and you’re surrounded by the same decor you see elsewhere in the resort — lots of light-stained wood everywhere, from floor to ceiling.

You’ll find comfortable seating throughout the fairly small space. The wooden chairs are generous and cushioned, making them perfect for lingering.

More Seating

More Seating

The bar is tucked into one corner of the room.

Bar Seating

Bar Seating

Since there’s no outside light here, surroundings are a bit more dim than they are in lobby area; but it’s by no means dark. You’ll have no trouble reading your menus. :-)

But while you’re looking up at the lights, check out the brass surround depicting — what else? — rowing. The rowers are sculling along a smooth river, their perfect reflections mirrored in the water below. Don’t you love the detail? Well, we aren’t finished yet!

Lighting and Decor Detail

Lighting and Decor Detail

Check out the racing shell suspended from the ceiling! That big “window” is a view of the Yachtsman Steakhouse meat cutting room; the Crew’s Cup is often a waiting area for those awaiting their table at the restaurant.

Atmosphere

A Comfortable Place to Relax

Rain slickers hang from [Read more…]

Top 5 Must-Try NEW Restaurants in Walt Disney World for 2014

Happy New Year to all of our wonderful Disney Food Blog Readers out there!

Chocolate-Macaron-ice-cream-sandwich-600x471

Whether you’re busy getting started with those resolutions, or recuperating from the big party last night, we thought we’d take a few minutes and discuss some fun new options that you’ve just gotta try in 2014!

True, there wasn’t nearly as much expansion in Disney Parks in 2013. It’s hard to measure up to New Fantasyland and Cars Land, after all! But there are still some fun new spots to check out.

So if you haven’t had the pleasure, allow me to introduce our picks for the Top 5 Must-Try New Walt Disney World Dining Spots for 2014!

L’Artisan des Glaces

Who knew that you could make Ice Cream even better? We were a little sad to hear that one of our favorite destinations for ice cream, Fountain View Cafe (hand made ice cream sandwiches!!!) would be converting to a Starbucks. But our blues faded away the very first time we stepped foot into L’Artisan des Glaces.

L'Artisan des Glaces Moved into the Former Boulangerie Patisserie Space

L’Artisan des Glaces Moved into the Former Boulangerie Patisserie Space

The tiny sorbet and ice cream parlour has tons of Old World charm — quite a feat since it opened, brand-new, in 2013! Occupying the space that was previously home to Boulangerie Patisserie in Epcot’s France Pavilion, the shop gave us lots of reasons to venture off the beaten path in search of a refreshing treat. (Bakery fans, not to worry. The très popular bakery and pastry shop was rechristened Les Halles, and expanded to the back of the France Pavilion.)

Inside L'Artisan des Glaces

Inside L’Artisan des Glaces

On any given day, the scoop shop plays host to 16 varying flavors of ice cream and sorbet, made from scratch right here in the France Pavilion.

A scoop of the good stuff

A scoop of the good stuff

And the flavors aren’t your garden variety vanilla. They’re European-inspired flavors, with exotic names like Caramel Fleur de Sel, Coco-White Chocolate, and Profiterole. Okay and yes — there’s Vanilla, too. :-) They’re all made in house (I’ve actually seen the ice cream machines in the back!!), and the flavors absolutely pop.

L'Artisan des Glaces Ice Creams and Sorbets in Epcot's France

L’Artisan des Glaces Ice Creams and Sorbets in Epcot’s France

But that’s only part of the story. Because if you’re looking for something a little more interesting than just another scoop of ice cream (really, really incredible ice cream, mind you), then L’Artisan des Glaces is for you. They’re pushing the envelope with not one but THREE fun ice cream snacks that ensure I pop into the shop nearly every trip.

In the category of frosty drink treats with a grown-up twist, we have this gorgeous [Read more…]

Review: Downtown Disney’s World Showcase of Flavors Food Truck

At long last (and as you may know from a previous DFB post), the final food truck has arrived at Downtown Disney’s West Side in Walt Disney World!

World Showcase of Flavors joins Superstar Catering, Namaste Café, and Fantasy Fare to complete the Disney Food Trucks lineup.

World Showcase of Flavors Food Truck pre-opening

World Showcase of Flavors Food Truck pre-opening

We’ve got a full review of that $18 lobster roll for ya, so scroll down to see that! In the meantime, let’s take a peek at this sleek truck!

Atmosphere

Each Food Truck reflects the theme of a different Disney World Park (thus far Superstar Catering for Hollywood Studios, Namaste Café for Animal Kingdom, and Fantasy Fare for Magic Kingdom). World Showcase of Flavors represents Epcot — more specifically, the beloved Epcot Food & Wine Festival that comes to Epcot every Fall.

Banner on the back of the World Showcase of Flavors Food Truck

The adventure of travel and exploring other cultures for which World Showcase is known is captured in the design of the truck. I think the way it brings to mind an old-fashioned travel trunk covered with vintage-style “badges” collected along the way is pretty cool!

Vintage "stickers"

More vintage "stickers"

My favorite touch is the row of suitcases on top of the pickup window.

Pickup Window

By the way, my next pictures appear in a different setting – that’s because the trucks move :)! I snapped a few close-ups at its location by Cirque de Soleil pre-opening hours, but went back to eat when it was parked at the grassy area by Bongos Cuban Café.

Food Truck location by Bongos Cuban Cafe

Food Truck location by Bongos Cuban Cafe

Eats

The menu brings “The Best of the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival” to guests year-round.

"The Best of the International Food and Wine Festival"

The three entrees are Festival favorites

(null)

Menu! World Showcase of Flavors Food Truck in Disney World’s Downtown Disney

We’ve been reporting on the new food trucks at Downtown Disney steadily as they’ve been appearing, and now the World Showcase of Flavors Food Truck has joined Fantasy FareNamaste Café, and Superstar Catering, bringing the current line-up of Downtown Disney Food Trucks to four.

Featuring “The Best of the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival,” the green truck with vintage travel decor will be offering some of our Epcot Food and Wine Festival favorites!

Vintage Travel Posters

The Epcot Food & Wine Festival marketplace booths represented are Hops & Barley, Poland, and Florida Local. Let’s take a closer look at the menus…

Hops and Barley

From Hops & Barley, you’ll find the Lobster Roll with House-made Chips. The price of $18.25 seems kind of steep, right?! Not sure I’d be willing to shell out that amount, though you DO get a larger size serving than you do at the festival.

Hops and Barley Menu

Here’s the Food and Wine Festival version. Expect the Truck version to be MUCH larger!

Linda Bean’s® Perfect Maine Lobster Roll®

Poland

Pierogies with Kielbasa and Caramelized Onions are highlighted as a nod to the Poland booth.

Poland Menu


Fans of the Poland marketplace will be familiar with this version:

Kielbasa & Potato Pierogie with Caramelized Onions and Sour Cream

Florida Local

Florida Local showcases [Read more…]

FULL Review: The NEW BoardWalk Bakery in Walt Disney World!

OK,  I promised you on Saturday that I’d have a full, extensive review of the new BoardWalk Bakery for you soon…and here it is!!

Last Friday, I was up bright and early to be first in line for the grand re-opening of the brand new BoardWalk Bakery at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn! And while I wasn’t FIRST in line, I came pretty close. :-)

Long a fan favorite, this tiny bakery needed a major overhaul in the space department, and we couldn’t wait to see what Imagineers had dreamed up.

We’ll start with atmosphere pics and lead into the goodies. If you want to dive right into the super sugary part, scroll to the bottom section called “What Did I Pick?”

Atmosphere

When looking for the BoardWalk Bakery, head down the steps from the hotel’s main lobby to the BoardWalk, and you can’t miss it.

Sign Leading Down to the BoardWalk

I wasn’t disappointed to see that the bakery had tripled in size. This place really needed to be larger!

The NEW Boardwalk Bakery -- three times the size of the old one!

You can see that there are now two entrances to the bakery — one for those queuing up for food, and one for BoardWalk Inn and Villas guests who just need to refill their resort mugs. A great system!

Mug Filling Station Has a Separate Entrance from Bakery Queue

And, of course, Hue G. Krazont is still the proprietor. :-)

Bakery's Windows and Proprietor's Name

Time to head inside!! Guests who were there first thing received these snazzy celebration buttons. (Okay, they’re the regular celebration buttons with handwriting. But still.)

Celebration Buttons to Mark the Grand Re-Opening!

We are ecstatic to see a lot more room inside the bakery, even though most of it is reserved for the actual queue line.

The classy red walls and checkerboard floor along with wrought iron, brass, and dark wood accents give this spot a been-there-forever kind of classic feel. The schoolhouse lighting is another fun addition!

Note, however, that the display cases have multiplied by about four! They’re not kidding around with the focal point here!

Bakery Display Cases and New Queue Setup

If you do find yourself in that long queue line, at least the large windows make people watching on the BoardWalk an easy sport.

Looking Out from the Inside Onto the BoardWalk

Soon you’ll get up to the bakery and dessert cases to make your selections. We’ve got LOTS more pics of these in our “Eats” Section of this review…so scroll down for the goodies!

Assorted Pastries in the Bakery Case

After you’ve made your selections and check out, it’s time to [Read more…]

Review: Cap’n Jack’s at Downtown Disney

It’s time to talk about a restaurant that hasn’t yet been on Disney Food Blog! (GASP!!)

Time to try out lunch at a Cap’n Jack’s! I’ve been to this spot twice now, and even though it will likely disappear at some point in the next few years with the Downtown Disney / Disney Springs renovation, I still need to tell you about it so that you can run over and get in a meal before it’s too late! :-)

Looking every inch the waterside Florida seafood restaurant, Cap’n Jack’s is located at Downtown Disney Marketplace and sits right atop a pier overlooking Village Lake. You’re so close to the water that you’ll feel like you’re floating!

Recently, I stopped into Cap’n Jack’s for lunch with a friend. My previous visit wasn’t great, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. Will it be hit or miss? Time to find out!

Atmosphere

If you have ever been to a waterside seafood restaurant in your favorite beach resort town, Cap’n Jack’s will at once seem a bit familiar. Housed next to the Downtown Disney Marina, it’s a classic seafood spot!

Captain Jack's Sign

And that sense of history that you feel isn’t purely Disney magic. This restaurant has actually been around since 1975 when Buena Vista Shopping Center — now Downtown Disney Marketplace — originally opened. In Disney terms, that’s a seriously long time!

Within the restaurant, you’ll find fairly standard seating, low ceilings, and wooden floors. This feels like the family-owned seafood restaurant that you’ve been visiting for years.

Wide View of Seating

One thing you typically won’t find at Cap’n Jack’s is [Read more…]

Review: The Causeway at the Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic

Just in case you didn’t know, TONIGHT begins the Third Annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic right outside of Epcot! This year’s event will be held October 12-13 (tonight and tomorrow night) from 5:30-9:00 pm, and I think it’ll be even better than last year!

Swan and Dolphin Causeway

If you’re not familiar with this event, let me tell you a bit about it. The Food and Wine Classic is a fun companion event to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival, and features seminars and tasting stations from Swan and Dolphin chefs and restaurants as well as other culinary and beverage superstars. Seminars are beverage-related and feature everything from Wine Blending to Modern Mixology (check out our review here!).

But the centerpiece to the Food and Wine Classic is the tasting booths on the Causeway. To whet your appetite for the 2012 event, we have this review from last year’s Causeway. Be sure to check out this year’s menu selections to see what awesomeness is in store for 2012 guests!

Tables and Set Up

And stay tuned all the way to the end of the post, where we have special rate codes for DFB members to turn their Food and Wine Classic experience into a fun-filled weekend!

Atmosphere

This year, guests will choose from over 30 different tasting stations featuring dishes from all your favorite Swan and Dolphin eateries, including Todd English’s bluezoo, Shula’s, and others.

You’ll begin your evening at the check-in table on the Causeway. Here, your reservation will be checked and you’ll receive tickets or a wristband, as well as a plate and glass.

Check In for the Causeway

The Causeway takes its name from the location where the [Read more…]

Dining in Disneyland: Review of 1901 Lounge in Disney California Adventure

When standing in front of Carthay Circle Restaurant in Disney California Adventure, you will notice three entrance doors. The two on the left lead you into the restaurant while the one on the right takes you somewhere very, very special.

Carthay Circle Restaurant Marquee

Atmosphere

1901, a private lounge reserved for Club 33 Platinum Members and their guests, is perhaps one of the most tranquil spots in all of Disney California Adventure. A variety of eats and treats are served here, which are also served at Carthay Circle Lounge (a spot that all park guests can access — no membership needed there).

With a simple 1901 plaque at its entrance, behind the door is a spectacular space filled with historic mementos that Walt himself would’ve probably chosen to put on display.

1901 Entrance Plaque

As with Carthay Circle Restaurant, when you walk into 1901, you are immediately taken back to the 1930’s. The colors, decor and furniture are inviting, almost as if you are walking into someone’s home. 

The lounge is divided into two areas.

The hallway that divides the room in two.

On one side of the room you’ll find comfy couches surrounded by some chairs, loveseats, and a few little [Read more…]

Guest Review: New Columbia Harbour House Menu in Magic Kingdom

I’m grateful to Marc and Amy Stumbo, who captured this great review of two new Columbia Harbour House menu items in Disney World’s Magic Kingdom!

As AJ noted last week, several of the Magic Kingdom quick-service dining locations have recently gotten some additions to their respective menus. When asked if I was willing to do a guest review of some additions to the Columbia Harbor House menu, I leapt at the chance for fame and fortune. While I now realize that neither of those outcomes are likely, the food was still worth writing about.

New menu outside. Not pictured: cast member confused by my desire to photograph this menu.

Atmosphere

The Columbia Harbor House is located in the Magic Kingdom’s Liberty Square just around the corner from the Hall of Presidents and across the path from the Haunted Mansion.

I’ve always loved this corner of the park for its ties to our nation’s history, the superb attention to detail on the overall theme, the kinetics of boats coasting by, and the nautical theme carried into the restaurant. Check out [Read more…]

Sneak Peek: Lobster Roll at Epcot Food and Wine Festival

Here’s a sneak peek, thanks to Disney World, of the lobster roll that will be served at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival‘s Hops and Barley booth this year!

See the full Hops and Barley booth menu (and more pics of the lobster roll and crab cake, available this year!) in our 2010 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Pages!

Thanks to StitchKingdom for the heads up.