Review: The Dining Room at Paddlefish in Disney Springs

With so many new (and not-so-new, but still greatly loved) dining experiences in Disney Springs, it can be tough to decide where to make your precious Advance Dining Reservations.

So on a recent visit to Disney Springs, I checked out Paddlefish — this time in the dining room (as opposed to the top deck bar) to get an overview of some of the menu’s most popular items. And while most of it was good, some of it was great (and one item — spoiler alert! — was just bad).

Paddlefish is a brand new restaurant in an old, established building. You’ll recall that Fulton’s Crab House used to reside here, in the docked, multi-storied Empress Lily on Lake Buena Vista; and actually this spot has been a restaurant since 1977. When Paddlefish opened, guests were greeted with a combination of old and new. Neutral and trendy gray paint gave the restaurant a streamlined look, but some details of old remained, like brass railings and the fabulous sternwheel.

So what do you say? Shall we paddle in?

Paddlefish

Paddlefish

Atmosphere

The first floor bar at Paddlefish is a beautiful space, with its curved, recessed ceiling, wall of windows, and various seating arrangements. Definitely a comfortable place to grab a drink or two! [Read more…]

Disney Food Crawl: Pimento Cheese Edition

Cheese, glorious PIMENTO Cheese! It’s time for the ultimate Disney food trend crawl: the Pimento Cheese Crawl! We’ve been seeing this creamy cheese pop up in about two zillion places as of late, and with good reason.

Pimento Cheese BLT

Pimento Cheese BLT

In case you’re not familiar with the “caviar of the South”, it’s basically creamy cheddar cheese mixed with mayo (or sour cream) and pimento pieces. There are some spices in there as well, and those can vary from chef to chef (or from grandma to grandma!).

So if you’re like me, and you love all things Pimento Cheesy, THIS is the crawl for you! So, let’s begin.

Pimento Cheese BLT

First up, you’ll need to start your day at Animal Kingdom. Lucky for you, there’s a lot going on over there with the opening of Pandora — World of Avatar. So it’s the perfect time to hit that rope drop, work up an appetite on Avatar Flight of Passage and Na’vi River Journey, then make your way over to the Smiling Crocodile in Discovery Island. [Read more…]

The 12 Things You MUST Eat at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival This Year

We are just a little over a month away from the start of the Epcot Food and Wine Festival, and it’s all starting to fall into place!

2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Logo Disney

Soon, we’ll be hanging out, trying new things and enjoying old favorites at Marketplace Booths. And with 35 booths to choose from, situated within World Showcase as well as Future World, there are tons of great eats and drinks to choose from!

(See all of the menus here.)

We expect to eat way more than 12 things ;-) — but you need to start somewhere! So whether you’re crunched for time, on a budget, or just want the CliffsNotes version of what you’ve gotta try, we’re getting you ready for this year’s Dine Around by sharing the 12 Things You MUST Eat at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival.

Schöfferhofer Hefeweizen Pomegranate Beer

OK, this is not only new to the Festival…it’s completely new altogether! One of our favorite breweries has done it again. Previously known for their grapefruit beer, this festival-exclusive (YEP, you can ONLY get it at the festival!) Pomegranate variety is off the charts. Find it at the Brewers Collection Booth!

Schofferhofer Hefeweizen Pomegranate Beer

Schofferhofer Hefeweizen Pomegranate Beer

Le Cellier Filet and Canadian Cheddar Soup — Canada

The Canada Booth is the undisputed champion of the festival. No — seriously. Sales at this booth top all others (which has been known to spark a little competition among the “countries,” we hear).

And while it’s a given that we’re stopping here for the Le Cellier Filet, you might have a hard choice to make between this dish (it’s soooo gooooooood) and the Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup.

Le Cellier Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce

Le Cellier Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce

So do what we do. Don’t choose. [Read more…]

Review: Turkey and Pimento Cheese BLTs in Disney’s Animal Kingdom

We’re back today for another visit to Disney’s Animal Kingdom! And this time, we’re stopping by The Smiling Crocodile!

In case you haven’t noticed ;-) , Animal Kingdom has been undergoing some major changes lately. Of course the biggest change is the addition of, you know, a whole new world.

But in addition to that, we’ve been seeing little changes for years. It began with subtle changes to the color schemes. The bright colors that had decorated Discovery Island since it opened were traded for richer, deeper, more neutral colors.

Longtime favorite counter service spots like Pizzafari and Flame Tree Barbecue both underwent periods of refresh. And of course, Creature Comforts was overhauled when it became a Starbucks.

But then, other spots have changed up as well. In addition to brand new counter service spots, like Harambe Market, AK decided it was time to update a few of the kiosks, too. So familiar spots, like The Gardens Kiosk, were revamped. In this case, well — welcome to The Smiling Crocodile!

We dropped by The Smiling Crocodile recently to see what was new — and we found plenty! Let’s take a look.

Open Faced BLTs at The Smiling Crocodile

For now, it seems that Open Faced BLTs are taking over at The Smiling Crocodile. We found three different versions: Turkey BLT, Salmon BLT, and Pimento Cheese BLT.

Menu -- Click to Enlarge

Menu — Click to Enlarge

We didn’t have any takers on the Salmon BLT the day we visited, so we stuck to the other two. Here’s an introductory photo so you can begin to get an idea of what you’re getting. [Read more…]