Review: Tea at Garden View Lounge at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

Editor’s Note: The menu for Afternoon Tea at Garden View Lounge has changed since this review was written, and many of the items featured here are no longer available. For more details, see our news post about the changes.

Today, we’re taking in afternoon tea at the Garden View Lounge. This charming spot, which occupies the far end of the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa’s cavernous lobby, is the perfect place to relax, dress up a bit (perhaps), and slow down, while you enjoy traditional offerings and steaming pots of tea.

Menu Cover

Menu Cover

It’s become a rather hot ticket, though, so if you like what you see, be prepared to make your advance dining reservation well in advance.

Tea at the Grand has become a tradition of sorts for my mom and me, and so we were excited to head there for this special treat.


Upon entering the Grand Floridian, take a moment to notice the details of the soaring atrium. With natural light flooding the seating areas during the day, the large birdcage, and the beautiful domed skylights, it really is lovely.

Lobby and Atrium Garden View Lounge

The Lobby and the Atrium Put the “Grand” in Grand Floridian

I’ve often heard people suggest that the Grand suffers from a “lack of themeing”. I’ve never thought so. To me, the setting is beautiful — elegance with a light touch, befitting Florida’s subtropical climate. And even with families around me rushing to catch the monorail, I’m transported when I enter it to a less-rushed time and place.

Whether you visit during the day or evening, you are likely to catch some form of live musical entertainment here. During the day, you’ll enjoy piano music. In the evening, be sure to catch Grand Floridian Society Orchestra playing jazz standards from the bandstand located just outside of Mizner’s Lounge on the second floor.

Piano Music in the Grand's Lobby

Piano Music in the Grand’s Lobby

The Garden View Lounge is located at the far end of the lobby, directly opposite from the main entrance.

View of the Tea Room from the Lobby

View of the Tea Room from the Lobby

Flanking either side of the lounge are these adorable mosaics of inlaid marble.

Mrs. Potts Mosaic

Mrs. Potts Mosaic

Be sure to look down occasionally while walking around the Grand! They redid the floors a few years ago and added mosaics like these throughout. They are absolutely stunning.

Chip Mosaic

Chip Mosaic

Garden View is also the setting for the Perfectly Princess Tea Party, a character and storytelling experience.

Tea Info

Tea Info — Click to Enlarge

The Lounge itself is an open-air spot, separated from the rest of the lobby by a wall featuring “windowless” windows.

Flowers Garden View Lounge

Looking Into the Lounge from the Lobby

We arrived a few minutes early for our advance dining reservation, and were told that our table would be ready shortly. I’m not sure what all of the luggage by the hostess stand was about! There was a full house inside, however. And it seemed as though a few people were dressed up for a special occasion of some sort.

hostess stand Garden View Lounge

Hostess Stand

We relaxed nearby in the lobby. Soon, our pager went off, and we were shown to our table.



Marble statues flank both side entrances of the lounge. Other than that, the space is sparsely decorated.

Entering the Lounge

Entering the Lounge

The center of the room is dominated by [Read more…]

Guest Review: Disneyland’s Golden Vine Winery Port and Bleu Cheese Tasting

Thanks again to Chelsi Murphy, who wrote our great review of the Flying Fish Chef’s Counter, for providing yet another interesting look at a Disney dining experience. This time, she takes us to Golden Vine Winery at Disney’s California Adventure. Take it away, Chelsi!

Golden Vine Winery, the Wine Bar connected to the Wine Country Trattoria at Disney’s California Adventure, is a great place to take a break from a busy day at the parks. My husband and I love to stop by and take a look at their ever changing menu and speak with their knowledgeable staff, a few who came from Mondovi when Robert Mondovi built the original restaurant.

Click for larger image

One of the best ongoing deals the wine bar has to offer is the Port and Bleu Cheese tasting. Price for this is $12.50 plus tax, and you receive 3 one-ounce pours of port paired with 3 different blue cheeses, fruit compote and crackers. They also do the pairing with 3 types of chocolate, but we were told the cheese out sells the chocolate 10 to 1.

Port and Bleu Cheese Tasting

The first Port poured was Sandeman Founders Reserve Ruby Port, paired with Point Rayes Blue Cheese
from California. The Second was 2004 Sandeman Late Bottle Vintage Ruby Port, paired with Maytag Blue Cheese from Iowa. The third pour was Sandeman Tawny, aged 20 years, paired with Gorgonzola Dolce.

Bleu Cheeses and Fruit Compote

Our favorite was the Tawny –- it tasted like butterscotch in the glass! But all three were excellent ports and pairings with the cheese. We also thought that it was an excellent price to get to try three amazing cheeses and a flight of port.

Port Varieties

The Wine Bar opens at 11:30 AM and also has beer and sodas for those who don’t drink wine. The staff is always happy to help you out with any questions you may have if you want to try something new.