Review: The Bayou Burger and Southern Fried Shrimp at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort

Disney’s Port Orleans Resort, Riverside, is beloved by guests for its charming setting, classic accommodations, and location along the Sassagoula River.

Dining at Riverside is also quite good when it comes to resort eats, with four options for food and drinks. Boatwright’s Dining Hall is a hidden gem (though not everyone agrees with me on this ;-D) of a table service option serving up southern favorites like killer Jambalaya. River Roost is a comfortable lounge that offers a small apps menu. And Muddy Rivers on Ol’ Man Island, where you can grab a beverage while lounging by the pool (including the new Frosé).

But for a huge variety of quick service options, you want to head to Riverside Mill Food Court. Riverside Mill is known, of course, for classic Disney eats like Chicken Nuggets and Create-Your-Own-Pasta as well as southern-stylized grub like Fried Shrimp and Cajun Chicken Sandwiches.

The Riverside Mill

The Riverside Mill

So, welcome to The Riverside Mill… established in 1875!

Atmosphere

Riverside Mill Food Court is fairly distinctive against the lush backdrop of the resort, with its blue exterior paint and chunky white wood railings. I love the terrific front porch feel of the building. [Read more…]

Review: Caramel Butter Bar at Karamell-Küche in Epcot’s Germany Pavilion

Karamell-Küche has become a destination all its own within Epcot’s Germany Pavilion.

And with good reason! Even among the Pavilion’s diverse offerings within Biergarten (a Table Service buffet complete with festive entertainment), Sommerfest (the Counter Service spot with NUDEL GRATINNNNN), and Bier Carts and HovelsKaramell-Küche focuses on one thing, and one thing only:

CARAMEL!

From seriously addictive Caramel Corn to Caramel Bacon Squares to the ah-mazing Caramel Pecan Bar (you gotta try it!), it’s hard to take in all the different iterations of caramel treats tucked within the Caramel Kitchen’s bakery case.

And speaking of different iterations…  I noticed a change to one of my favorite golden treats on my last visit when I spotted a sign for the Caramel Butter Bar. It was front and center ahead of what looked suspiciously like the old Caramel Covered Shortbread — also previously known as the Chewy Caramel Bar.

Caramel Butter Bar

Caramel Butter Bar

I wasn’t super concerned at first because this particular snack has been known by a few different names over the years, but basically remained a dependable combo of thick caramel poured atop and in between layers of buttery shortbread.

I figured I was good to go because the “new” Caramel Butter Bar looks… virtually identical to its predecessor. See? [Read more…]

News and Review: Donut Nuggets at D-Luxe Burger in Disney Springs!

Here at the DFB, we love a good Disney food mash-up, but truth be told, even in our wildest dreams we never conjured up this one: Donut Nuggets.

We know, we know: they sound intriguing and delicious. (And maybe just a smidgen odd…)

The masters of American casual comfort food at D-Luxe Burger are the brainiacs behind this new creation, and since we are masters of, you know, eating donuts and nuggs, we had to get in on the action.

D-Luxe has quickly gone to the top of our favorite counter service burgers because — for once! — the burgers themselves aren’t overdone hockey pucks! We also enjoy the clever combinations of ingredients, like the Southern Burger with fried green tomatoes and pimento cheese (the caviar of the south, y’all!). Plus they have several dipping sauces, and that’s never a bad thing.

D-Luxe Burger sign

D-Luxe Burger sign

[Read more…]

Review: The Sausage and Peppers Hoagie at Epcot’s Electric Umbrella Might Surprise You

It’s pretty well established that Epcot is an exemplary place to get a meal.

Whether you’re queuing up at Sunshine Seasons for fresh and tasty quick service, making an ADR at Via Napoli, or using up some table service credits at Le Cellier, there are lots of quality eats to be found.

But a poll of Epcot visitors would likely, pretty much never find a lot of love for the Electric Umbrella. This mainstay of Epcot has a decidedly retro vibe, with tons of neon and bright colors (which we think is awesome, but others…not so much).

But while the hate for Electric Umbrella is there for some, I don’t really get it. It’s pretty good — and I’ve had awesome experiences here more than I haven’t in the past few years. But you DO need to know what to order… .

The Electric Umbrella

The Electric Umbrella

[Read more…]

Disneyland Must-Eats: Fried Chicken at the Plaza Inn

I’m not sure how to emphasize how good the Plaza Inn‘s Fried Chicken is. Let me just say this: it is the best fried chicken I have ever eaten. (Yes, that includes Homecomin’, which is incredibly tasty as well.)

Fact: Plaza Inn’s Fried Chicken — literally — is the best.

Plaza Inn Sign

Plaza Inn Sign

Plaza Inn is located on Disneyland’s Main Street, U.S.A., and its exterior is quintessentially Disney. So many great details on the awning and posts, not to mention the swirls of wrought iron on the sign. [Read more…]

Review: ALL! THE! CHEESE! at Casey’s Corner in the Magic Kingdom

Question: If you go to the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World and skip Casey’s Corner, were you ever really there?

Well, I can’t speak for everybody. But in my case, the answer is: Nope! Especially now that plastic cheese is back.

Wait. That’s not right. PLASTIC CHEESE IS BACK! You know how I love this King of All Condiments — ooey, gooey yellow cheese that comes on rib-sticking favorites like Chili Cheese Nachos.

Well, by now you know that Plastic Cheese disappeared for a while. We found some from time to time, but it was never enough. And we still couldn’t dunk our Corn Dog Nuggets in it whilst gazing lovingly at Cinderella Castle from the quaint patio of Casey’s Corner.

Thank goodness those dark days are over! Welcome back to Casey’s Corner, home of amazing hot dogs and even more amazing plastic cheese!

Atmosphere

Casey’s is quintessential Main Street, U.S.A., fulfilling Walt’s vision of a Main Street reminiscent of one of his childhood home in Marceline, Missouri. It’s got tremendous architectural detail, from intricate molding to fabulous window casings.

Casey's Corner

Casey’s Corner

Inside the small ordering area are lots of decor pieces harkening back to a simpler time. Oh, and there’s lots of classy striped wallpaper, too (which I kind of love). [Read more…]

Review: Contempo Café in Disney’s Contemporary Resort

Aaaaand I’m back at Contempo Café!

No surprise, really. After all, this Counter Service spot in Disney’s Contemporary Resort is easy enough for anyone to get to, regardless of whether or not you are staying at any of the Resorts on the Monorail Loop. Because I’m thinking it’s a pretty safe bet that your Disney World vacation plans include a trip to the Magic Kingdom. And the Contemporary boasts not only easy access via Monorail; it’s also the only Resort you can walk to directly from Magic Kingdom!

Even more, though, I love to stop here due to Contempo Café’s history of serving better-than-you’d-expect counter service grub, from surprisingly memorable entrees to some seriously stellar desserts.

So stroll or Monorail on in with me to check out what’s new (and which of my favorite entrees has remained, thankfully, nearly unchanged) at the Contempo Café!

Atmosphere

Contempo Cafe is located in the Grand Canyon Concourse adjacent to Chef Mickey’s. Basically, there’s no way you can go hungry in this zone! Contempo Cafe definitely has that we’re-trying-to-be-contemporary vibe that we know and love of the Resort, with lots of linear design and brushed nickel finishes.

Contempo Cafe Entrance

Contempo Cafe Entrance

It’s bright, open and, well… pretty loud most of the time. Aside from the Monorail zooming through regularly (hooray!), you get chatter from both open-air restaurants and the general hullabaloo of a busy resort. I find it to be festive, but if you’re craving some quiet, this may not be your spot. [Read more…]

Review: New Sandwiches at The Mara in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

Jambo from The Mara in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge!

It wasn’t all that long ago that we were here, pointing out three Must-Eat Snacks at the Lodge’s Counter Service option and sipping on some new-to-The-Mara Frozen Jungle Juice. But the Jungle Juice wasn’t the only new thing we found on that visit, which is what we’re excited to share with you today.

Longtime standouts at The Mara for lunch and dinner include unique items such as African Potjie Stew and tasty Soups of the Day alongside classic Burgers, Flatbreads, and Chicken Breast Nuggets.

That said, they aren’t afraid to switch things up every once in a while — and that’s a VERY good thing! Every so often, your basic Hot Dog or sandwich gets a bit of an African-inspired twist, as is the case with two of the three new items we’re trying today.

The Mara at Animal Kingdom Lodge

The Mara at Animal Kingdom Lodge

So, come right back into The Mara with us!

Atmosphere

The Mara gets its name from the Masai Mara National Reserve, located in southwestern Kenya on the border of Tanzania.  The small food court is only accessible from outside the resort, on the lower level and near the pool. Once inside, you’ll immediately notice the ceiling artfully mimicking the tree tops and some soft ambient lighting that creates interesting shadows. [Read more…]

Review: Grab-and-Go Menu Available at Art Smith’s Homecomin’!

We’re so excited to share that one of our favorite new restaurants in Disney World — Chef Art Smith’s (awesome!) Homecomin’offers grab-and-go options! (Oh, and yes, apparently the name has changed from “Homecoming” to “Homecomin’.” Just FYI.)

Y’all know that Disney Springs has added lots of quality food stops, including Top Chef Master (and master of Mexican cuisine in America) Rick Bayless’ Frontera Cocina and the fully updated Paddlefish. But even before its opening, Homecomin': Florida Kitchen and Southern Shine — the official full name of Art Smith’s labor of love in Disney Springs — captured our attention.

The backstory here is that Chef Art is originally from Florida, and the restaurant is a charming homage to the state of his birth. From colorful murals depicting Florida agricultural life to booths reminiscent of church pews, Homecomin’ is clearly full of Art’s very big love.

Chef Art Smith on Opening Day

Chef Art Smith on Opening Day

[Read more…]

Review: Raspberry Smoothie at Auntie Gravity’s Galactic Goodies

Do you remember, by chance, how much we loved the Iced Coffee Float at Auntie Gravity’s Galactic Goodies?

If not, then lemme tell ya. We loved it a LOT. But since there’s a new sipping spot/coffee joint in Magic Kingdom’s Tomorrowland with Joffrey’s Revive Coffee Kiosk, the offerings at Auntie Gravity’s (also located in Tomorrowland) have changed up a bit.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I think Joffrey’s Revive is a terrific addition to Magic Kingdom. But I have to admit I was bummed to find that one of the subsequent changes was the removal of Iced Coffee Floats from Auntie Gravity’s.

So, with that, it’s time to find a different sipper from Auntie (who still serves up soft-serve ice cream, too, by the way).

Ice Cream and Smoothies sign

Ice Cream and Smoothies sign

Fortunately, she still has a few tricks up her sleeve, as Auntie Gravity’s is one of the few spots where you can find Smoothies, available in Raspberry or Strawberry. [Read more…]