Tips from the DFB Guide: Off-The-Radar Disney World Bars and Lounges

Walt Disney World is supa fun, but it’s also go-go-go-go. Sometimes ya just gotta relax.


Of course, there’re all kinds of ways to accomplish that. But after a long, hard day of Disney touring, I love to head to one of my favorite Disney Bars and Lounges.

“Bar” might not be the first word you think of when you picture Mickey Ears and Pixie Dust. But actually, these are some of my favorite spots on property for a number of reasons.

And I know you agree, because when I first published the DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining, a comprehensive Index of Disney World’s Bars and Lounges was one of our readers’ top requests.

Well — we heard you! And I’m happy to let you know that the DFB Guide includes reviews of every Bar and Lounge in Walt Disney World!

Let’s dive into the Index and take a closer look at a few. You know my favorites, like Territory Lounge and the Dawa Bar. But today, I want to take you on a tour of a few places you may not have discovered yet.

And if you find this information helpful, then be sure to pick up your copy of the Guide today for $4 off using code “2015” right here!

Ready to grab a drink?

A Niche Menu and Free Beer: The Wave Lounge at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

The Wave…of American Flavors at Disney’s Contemporary resort is a great place to take in a relaxing breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Seldom crowded, the restaurant, located in the quiet back corner of the hotel’s lobby offers a market-inspired menu at a much lower price point than you’ll find at Disney’s suite of signature restaurants. You’ll also find some delicious breakfast options.

But in addition to interesting eats, you’ll also find a pretty cool bar and lounge area.

The Bar at Disney's The Wave Restaurant

The Bar at Disney’s The Wave Restaurant

While the food menu is market-driven, the drink menu features some specialties, too. The Wave’s wine list features New World Wines, primarily from the Southern Hemisphere. And nearly all of the wines featured have one thing in common — screwcaps! Sealing wines with screwcaps is a way to battle cork taint, an unfortunate chemical reaction that can ruin a good bottle of wine. So don’t be put off by screwcaps the next time you see one; many quality New World wines, especially those from New Zealand and Australia, are sealed this way.

Wines at the Wave

Wines at the Wave

Do your tastes run to beer rather than wine? The Wave also features a nice selection of Organic Beers. In fact, if you’re a guest staying at the Contemporary or Bay Lake Towers, you can enjoy a Complimentary Organic Beer Tasting on Saturdays from 3-4PM. (Remember, this is JUST if you’re staying at the resort.)

Beer Flight at The Wave

Beer Flight at The Wave

Just stopping in for a drink? Try the Beer Flight. The presentation is pretty impressive.

A Bar That Switches Things Up: Kona Island Coffee/Sushi Bar

Another favorite stop of mine certainly lives up to the name “bar” — but for completely different reasons. In this case, we’re (mostly) trading cocktails for java and some interesting eats.

New Tiki Statue in Lobby at the Polynesian!

New Tiki Statue in Lobby at the Polynesian!

The Polynesian Village Resort has just undergone a major facelift. We’ve welcomed new spots, like the Pineapple Lanai (the resort’s purveyor of Dole Whips these days) as well as the crazy popular Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto (waiting times have been up to 6 hours during its soft opening!)

Trader Sam's door sign

Trader Sam’s Door Sign

But with all of the changes, the resort has maintained most of its beloved eateries, including [Read more…]

Review: Lunch at Beaches and Cream Soda Shop at Disney’s Beach Club Resort

You know I can’t stay away from this place.

It’s been a while since we’ve visited Beaches and Cream “officially” here at the DFB. What I mean is, Beaches and Cream Soda Shop is one of the few spots I frequent almost every time I visit Disney World, but its been a while since I shared some of the goodness with you here on the blog.

We’re fixing that today with a little (well, actually a LOT of) lunch at everyone’s favorite soda shop, and checking out some of the options from the updated menu while we’re at it.

Ready to go? Let’s head to the middle of the Yacht and Beach Club resorts, right next to Stormalong Bay, and settle in…

Beaches and Cream at Disney's Beach Club Resort

Beaches and Cream at Disney’s Beach Club Resort


I’m not the only one who loves Beaches and Cream — not by a long shot. Over the years this little spot has become one of the most popular resort restaurants in Disney World… and I do mean “little.” Those arriving for their first visit might be struck by how small it is in comparison with most Disney World restaurants.

And, remember, speaking of small, the restaurant now offers advance dining reservations…which are recommended. While the to-go section is still open, and seats at the counter are easier to come by than tables when you’re a walk-up guest, ADRs are often necessary even during the slow seasons these days.

Beaches and Cream Dining Room

Beaches and Cream Dining Room

Once inside, you’ll see that the decor is bright and cheerful, with soft pastels making up most of the color scheme, and mirrors to “open up” the space a bit.

Beaches and Cream

Beaches and Cream

Much of the decoration [Read more…]

2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Preview: Belgium and Brazil

We are back with another look at some of the Marketplace Booths that will be featured at the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

food and wine festival logo

Today, we are visiting two more of our favorite spots — one Old World, and one New!

Both the Belgium Booth and the Brazil Booth epitomize one of this year’s biggest themes. We can’t wait to Taste Our Way Around the World with lots of returning favorites, and some new flavors as well.

Let’s take a look at what these two Marketplaces will be offering guests in 2014, starting September 19th.

Belgium Marketplace Booth

The Belgium Marketplace Booth offers Food and Wine Festival guests the best of both worlds. We love the interesting food options here. But it’s also a primo stop on your Brews Around the World Tour as well!

Belgium Marketplace Booth

The Belgium Booth first debuted at the festival in 2010, and has become a mainstay since then. After all, who can resist indulging in a sweet or savory Belgian Waffle?

2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Belgium Booth Menu

  • Potato and Leek Waffle with Beer-Braised Beef
  • Belgium Waffle with Warm Chocolate Ganache and Whipped Cream
  • Belgium Waffle with Berry Compote and Whipped Cream
  • Hoegaarden
  • Stella Artois
  • Leffe Blonde
  • Stella Artois Cidre
  • Chilled Coffee featuring Godiva Chocolate Liqueur
  • Beer flight (featuring 4 4-ounce servings): Hoegaarden, Stella Artois, Leffe Blonde and Stella Artois Cidre

There are many returning favorites here this year, but we’re happy to say that we see some fun additions as well.

The Potato and Leek Waffle was one of our Best of the Fest Favorites in 2013, so I’m thrilled that it’s returning! This year, the flavors are amped up a bit as the Beef topping the savory waffle is braised in Beer!

Potato and Leek Waffle with Braised Beef

Potato and Leek Waffle with Braised Beef

After such a hearty dish, we definitely recommend that you give one of the dessert waffles a try. You can’t go wrong with Belgian Waffle topped with Warm Chocolate Ganache and Whipped Cream.

Belgian Waffle with Warm Chocolate Ganache and Whipped Cream

Belgian Waffle with Warm Chocolate Ganache and Whipped Cream

But if you’d rather have a fruit topping, no worries. Try the Belgian Waffle with Berry Compote and Whipped Cream instead.

Belgian Waffle with Berry Compote and Whipped Cream

If you prefer a dessert that you can drink, you’ll be happy to know that the [Read more…]

Review and Preview: The Causeway at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic

In just a few short days, we will be headed to the The Fourth Annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic!

This event, which coincides with the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival, is a food and wine lover’s dream.

This year’s Food and Wine Classic will take place on Friday, October 18 and Saturday, October 19. The two-day event consists of food and wine tasting booths set up on the resort’s beautiful causeway each evening.

Guests can also take part in a number of special food and beverage seminars for an additional fee. Seminars take place at 4:30PM both days, and the Causeway booths are open from 5:30 until 9:00PM on Friday and Saturday.

In addition, guests can enjoy a complimentary Cocktail 101 seminar three times during each evening on the Causeway as well as live musical entertainment.

Tasting Plate from Shula's Steakhouse

We’ve had the opportunity to attend the event for the last three years, and we’re looking forward to what 2013 holds! To give you an idea of what lies in store for guests of the Food and Wine Classic, let’s take a look at the 2012 event!


When you first arrive, you’ll most likely need to pick up your tickets at the Check-In Table.

Check In for the Causeway

Here, staff will check for your reservation, and you’ll receive either your tickets or a wristband, as well as a palate plate and a wine glass.

We had wristbands for the event, which meant that we were free to enjoy unlimited trips to each of the tasting stations. If you prefer a ticketed approach, however, you can purchase books of 25 tickets (most of the booth items require between 2 and 6 tickets).

Food and Wine Classic Wristbands and My Seminar Ticket

For this event, tents are lined up the length of the walkway between the Swan and Dolphin Resorts as well as along the walkway behind the Swan. The resorts are located within walking distance of Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

The Causeway Setup

Tables of all sizes are covered with brightly colored tablecloths, and offer guests a place to sit and relax while enjoying their food and drink.

Tables and Booths Ready for Guests

In addition to tables with chairs, guests can also take advantage of high tops if they prefer to stand.

Individual Tables

It wasn’t too long before the crowd began to swell as guests looked forward to tasting a myriad of dishes.

Causeway is Getting Busy

On Crescent Terrace, guests could also take advantage of [Read more…]

Epcot Food & Wine Festival Food Pictures and Review: Scotland and Brazil Booths

We are coming to you LIVE from the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival this week!

It’s been a whirlwind of fabulous food and we have so much to tell you about! But today, we thought we’d bring you our very first Marketplace Booths of 2013.

Let’s take a closer look at two new booths — one brand new and one returning — Scotland and Brazil.

If you’re looking for your favorite booths, be sure to check out ALL the info and brand new photos on our Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Pages.


Following the success of the popular animated film Brave, it seemed like the right time for Scotland to debut as the Food and Wine Festival’s newest booth option.

Scotland Booth

We’ve been anxiously awaiting final word on what would be served to represent Scotland, and the final menu was met with mixed reviews from readers.

In the end, sponsors of the Scotland booth and Disney chose a menu that would represent some current trends in Scottish cooking and that would appeal to a broad audience.

2013 Scotland Marketplace Booth Menu - Click for larger image

Salmon is always a popular option with festival goers, and the Seared Scottish Salmon with Cauliflower Puree, Watercress and Malt Vinaigrette is proving to be a great addition to this year’s lineup! In fact, it made our Best of the Fest List!

Seared Scottish Salmon with Cauliflower Puree, Watercress and Malt Vinaigrette

Vegetarian Haggis with Neeps and Tatties (Griddled Vegetable Cake with [Read more…]

News! More Details and NEW Food Photos from the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

Yesterday, we attended a media event for the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

We had the opportunity to speak to some of the chefs, check out some of the festival merchandise, and of course — taste a few 2013 Epcot Food and Wine dishes that we haven’t seen yet!

Today, we are happy to bring you a few more details from the event and share some of the pictures that we were able to capture. And stay tuned later in the article for details on new Epcot Food and Wine Festival merchandise (including this year’s cookbook!), find out what the heck that Vegetarian Haggis is going to be like, get gluten-free updates, and more!

Sneak Peek at Some NEW 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Items

We began with a Griddled Lobster Tail with Garlic Herb Butter from the Hops & Barley Booth. The fresh lobster tails will be fully cooked within the marketplace booths, so guests will have the full experience of savoring the rich aroma as they’re grilled.

Griddled Lobster Tail with Garlic Herb Butter

I found the tail to be a good size, perfect for a small appetizer. And the Garlic Herb Butter enhanced the lobster’s flavor.

Another fun addition will be the Orange Dole Whip at Refreshment Port. The orange-flavored soft serve will be available by itself, or you can add Creme de Cacao White for a grown up creamsicle!

Orange Dole Whip with Cherry Man Farm to Market Maraschino

Incidentally, the smallest details matter here. Dole Whips are garnished with [Read more…]

2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Preview: Scotland and Brazil Booths

Excitement is building for the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival! And we know that you’re looking forward to it just as much as we are!

We’re keeping track of the Food and Wine Festival marketplace booths and menus carefully, and I wanted to share a preview with you today!

As always, the culinary team at Epcot is striving to keep this classic event fresh and exciting by introducing some brand new Marketplace Booths to the mix. New for 2013 is another entry from the United Kingdom, the Scotland Marketplace Booth! And after a year long hiatus we’re also excited to see a return of another South American hotspot, the Brazil Marketplace Booth!

Let’s take a closer look at what these two marketplaces will offer this year’s festival guests.

Scotland Marketplace Booth

While we are still awaiting our first pictures of what the Scotland Marketplace Booth will actually look like (soon!), we are excited already to know some of the fun additions that the menu will bring to this year’s festival.

And check out the new stamp from the Scotland booth that guests will be able to get in their Food and Wine Festival passports! (It’s in the bottom right hand corner of the slide.)

Scotland Booth Information

The menu offers some intriguing new flavors for guests!

2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Scotland Booth Menu

  • Seared Scottish Salmon with Cauliflower Puree, Watercress and Malt Vinaigrette
  • Vegetarian Haggis with Neeps and Tatties (Griddled Vegetable Cake with Rutabaga and Mashed Potatoes)
  • Scottish Banoffee Tart with Bananas, Scottish Whisky Toffee, Walkers Shortbread Crumbles and Sweet Cream
  • Innis & Gunn® Original Beer
  • Loch Lomond Cocktail featuring Glenfiddich® 12 year
  • Glenfiddich® Scotch Flight (12, 15 and 18 year)

Seafood lovers are already looking forward to the inclusion of authentic Scottish Salmon.

Scottish Salmon with Cauliflower Puree, Watercress and Malt Vinaigrette

And the Scottish Banoffee Tart will feature a pleasant kick courtesy of Glenfiddich Whisky Cream! I can’t wait to try this one!

The Scottish Banoffee Tart will be part of the NEW Scotland Booth at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival in 2013

I have no idea what to expect from the Vegetarian Haggis, but you know I’ll be first in line to try it!

The other real standout here will be a number of [Read more…]

Review: Mizner’s Lounge at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort

Today, I’m continuing my tour of Disney World’s bars and lounges with a trip to Mizner’s Lounge. Tucked into one end of the second floor at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, Mizner’s takes full advantage of views to the outside as well as the atrium.

Mizner's Sign

And if you’ve ever been in the Grand’s lobby in the evening and heard some bouncy jazz, this is where it was coming from!

I’m always interested in finding out what these spots serve. You can usually find some really interesting dishes in Disney’s resort lounges that reflect the theming of the hotel. Let’s check it out.


If I were to describe the vibe of Mizner’s decor in one word, it would be relaxed elegance. Here’s a pre-reno pic!

Mizner's Lounge During the Day

Theming here is understated, but the setting is comfortable. During the day, tons of natural light floods the room, giving it an airy feel.

Mizner's Bar

Potted palms and ornate carpets hint at the Victorian theme. Rather than [Read more…]