Dining in Disneyland: Big Thunder Ranch BBQ Halloween Round Up Featuring Seasonal Cookie Bake

Disneyland’s Big Thunder Ranch BBQ has always been one of my favorites.  When I heard that it would be closing for good on January 11th, 2016, (in order to make room for Star Wars Land) I knew that I needed to plan a few visits.

Big Thunder Ranch BBQ

Big Thunder Ranch BBQ

[Read more…]

Top 3 Restaurants for Kids in Disneyland

Visiting Disneyland can certainly make you feel like a kid again! But what about if you’re visiting with…you know…real, live, actual kids?

We talk a lot about good options for grown ups, but today, I thought we could hit up our very favorite spots in Disneyland for when you have some small fry with you (which, for many of us, is most of the time!). So let’s tick off the Top 3 Restaurants for Kids in Disneyland.

Grab your Mickey Ears, and let’s go!

Goofy’s Kitchen

If you have a small child in tow on your Disneyland trip, a character meal is practically a requirement.

After all, most kiddos love meeting larger than life characters. But kids and adults alike can agree that long lines in the hot sun don’t make for magical memories. So our first suggestion is that you book your advance dining reservation asap for Goofy’s Kitchen.

The Entrance to Goofy's Kitchen

The Entrance to Goofy’s Kitchen

Why? Because we think the food is better here than at many other character meals.

Located in Disneyland Hotel, choose from brunch or dinner character dining at this popular spot. And the characters are especially fun at Goofy’s. Because in addition to Goofy, you just never know you might drop by!

Of course, you can totally expect to see the man himself.

Chef Goofy at Goofy's Kitchen

Chef Goofy at Goofy’s Kitchen

But you might just see a prince or a princess as well! And MANY other friends!

Aladdin and Jasmine at Goofy's Kitchen

Aladdin and Jasmine at Goofy’s Kitchen

Parents will appreciate the terrific seating options here. Sure, there’s no monorail whizzing above your head like you’ll find at Chef Mickey’s. But there are tables located both inside the sunny dining room and outside on a shaded patio. Ahhhh…how I love California.

One Room of Goofy's Kitchen Restaurant

Goofy’s Kitchen Seating — Inside

Outdoor Seating at Goofy's! Love It!

Outdoor Seating at Goofy’s! Love It!

And even though the characters are fun and the atmosphere is adequate, the eats are [Read more…]

Review: Dinner at Boma in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

Boma…Flavors of Africa is a tried-and-true Disney fan destination.

Many guests number it among their must-have advance dining reservations for it’s fun atmosphere, unique menu, and cult favorite dishes.

On a recent visit to Walt Disney World, we had the pleasure of eating at Boma not once — but twice…in the SAME DAY! Yep — we had breakfast and Boma AND dinner at Boma!

While I’ll be sharing the details of our Boma breakfast in a later post, today we’re taking a look at the rockin’ spread available for dinner.


Located at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, Boma is just one of three incredible restaurants at this resort — it’s a true food-lovers haven here.

Boma Sign

You’ll find Boma on the ground floor beneath the lobby level, adjacent to both The Mara and Jiko. (Sanaa is located in nearby Kidani Village.) And while The Mara is the resort’s counter service location, Jiko is a signature restaurant, and Sanaa features a table service fusion of flavors, Boma serves as the resort’s buffet offering.

But while many Disney buffets are more about character interaction than cuisine, a trip to Boma is all about the food. A sign in Animal Kingdom’s lobby provides a little background on the meaning of the restaurant’s name — and encourages you to make your ADR for Boma well in advance!

Boma Background Information

The term boma loosely refers to a fence fashioned of sticks, and you’ll see this motif throughout the restaurant’s interior. A wrought-iron version of a boma borders either side of the wide, winding path into the restaurant.

Walkway into Boma

Here, the fence borders a low wall separating the seating area from the [Read more…]

New Menu at Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

A new menu has debuted at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

In case you haven’t been to Sci-Fi, it’s basically a giant indoor drive-in theater! The all-day menu (lunch and dinner) is served to guests dining in convertible car/tables (awesome!) while old clips of B-movies are shown on a giant screen. The sky twinkles with “stars,” and there’s even a “concession stand” (aka, the kitchen) at the back of the restaurant.

And we love when we get to share updates about the eats — so let’s take a look!

New Sci-Fi Dine-In Restaurant Menu

I love the addition of the Buffalo Popcorn Chicken, and I’m SUPER glad that the Picnic Burger was left on the menu! It’s monstrous, but well worth it! (You can read my review here!)

Here’s the full new menu! Scroll down to see what’s been removed and what’s been added!

Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Menu - click image for larger version

Appetizer Updates

Buffalo Potato Skins have been substituted with [Read more…]

Guest Review and Preview: BBQ Weekend at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek

Courtesy of Andy Jackson from Eating (and Drinking) Around the World, we have a review of last year’s Barbecue Weekends at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek. This year’s BBQ weekend begins August 10th! Get details here!

The Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek resort, located in the middle of Disney World property, offered up a couple of food-related events during the summer of 2011. As part of their “SummerBlast!” promotion the hotel hosted a weekend devoted to Cupcakes, and followed that up with two weekends of Barbecue festivities.

So with the 2012 BBQ Weekend about to begin, I thought it was time to look back at the events from 2011.


I’d heard a lot of positive things about this resort (as well as the adjoining Waldorf Astoria), and especially its restaurants (I believe a certain Ms. Wolfe is a big fan…), so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to check it out. The resort is located smack-dab inside of Disney property, even though it is not a Disney-owned or run hotel.

The weekend was advertised as featuring cooking demos, cook-offs between the chefs of the various restaurants on the property, a Barbecue buffet, and a beer sampling. Most of the restaurants at the Hilton were also featuring special BBQ items on their menus while all the bars were offering themed drinks during the weekend. In addition there were to be BBQ-themed kids activities such as the [Read more…]

Review: Yak and Yeti Restaurant

According to the story of the Yak and Yeti, the restaurant is the center of a bustling boutique hotel in the foothills of the Himalayas. Adventure travelers seek out this location for rest and rejuvenation before moving ahead on their path, and the hotel’s owner, Arjun, is delighted to showcase the hodge-podge of antiques and decor he’s collected on his trips through Southeast Asia.

So, imagineered with exotic touches from the proprietor’s travels, Yak and Yeti succeeds as a well-themed restaurant in Disney’s Animal Kingdom’s Asia area. The surrounding architecture, decor, room configuration, and even light fixtures transport guests to that relaxing and beautiful hotel restaurant in the middle of exciting Anandupur, India.

Yak and Yeti Restaurant

click image for larger version


You’ll have to build in a bit of time on your visit to Yak and Yeti to just…look. Peek your head into each and every room. Check out the gorgeous artifacts, the decoration, the unique wall-painting, and the stunning…and mismatched…light [Read more…]

Guest Review: Animal Kingdom’s Flame Tree Barbecue

Guest reviewer Bill Iadonisi is back with another great counter-service review! This time, Bill takes us to a beloved Animal Kingdom eatery — Flame Tree Barbecue. Take it away, Bill!

Hello again Disney Food lovers! As promised, here is the second in the continuing reviews of Disney’s amazing quick-service restaurants. From our last review of the Columbia Harbor House, we trek over to Disney’s Animal Kingdom to talk about a personal favorite of mine, the Flame Tree Barbecue restaurant. Located in Discovery Island on the path to Dinoland U.S.A, you will find [Read more…]

Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe Review

Today, we’re heading to one of my favorite quick-service spots in Disney World – Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe. Tucked in between Tomorrowland, Fantasyland, and Cinderella Castle, Cosmic Ray’s has one of the biggest, most diverse menus of all Disney World quick-service locations.

Cosmic Ray’s is a giant, bright, semi-circular room situated around three food ordering “bays.” With each bay selling different types of food, be sure to check out the menus for all three before choosing your bay!

Bays at Cosmic Ray's

The theme is vintage space-age Tomorrowland, with lots of aquas and purples, trapezoids, and triangular furniture. There’s brushed chrome everywhere and signage in the same types of fonts you’d expect to find in early Space Mountain queue lines. Overall, if you loved the Jetsons and find the metal palm trees in Tomorrowland to be just about the coolest foliage ever — Cosmic Ray’s general decor will be ideal for you (and me).

Outdoor Seating

Pragmatically, what you need to know is [Read more…]

The Megalosaurus, Giganto, Paleozoic T-Rex Review

What is T-Rex? Part Dinosaur, Part Cotton-tini, Part Ice Cave.

Let me explain: if you’re a fan of Rainforest Cafe and other themed restaurants, you’ll love T-Rex. It takes themeing to the max — meteor showers, ice-bound wooly mammoths, a moving octopus bar — it’s all there. And it is what you make it. If you’re expecting gourmet food and bend-over-backwards service, you’re in the wrong place. If you’re expecting a fun, entertaining meal with decent grub and lots to look at — Welcome to T-Rex!

Located in Disney World’s Downtown Disney, T-Rex is a prehistoric carnival of themeing. Each room has a different focus: an ice cave, complete with shifting colors and an embedded T-Rex skeleton; and undersea room with giant jellyfish lampshades and a moving octopus presiding over the bar; a meteor shower room, where you’d better watch out every 10 minutes or so; a fern forest with giant wasps and a triceratops so big you can seat three parties in his…midsection…? And it goes on from there!

Ice Cave with T-Rex Skeleton

Triceratops Seating Area

Moving Octopus Bar

Octopus Hidden Mickey

[Read more…]

Sharing is Caring: Three Great Appetizers That’ll Feed A Crowd

I loooooooove appetizer platters. Give me a way to sample everything on the menu at once and I’m there. (I know. You’re so surprised to discover that about me, right?) Seriously, though, appetizer platters are a good way to give food-loving families a little taste of everything, and to give picky eaters a better shot of finding something they’ll enjoy as well. They bring peace and harmony wherever they go, and this is why we always have to order them when available.

So, going through my photos the other day, I realized that I’ve had three such delights in the past few months! This sampling covers three distinct food themes — Irish at Raglan Road, California Cuisine at Napa Rose, and Italian at Portobello — so I thought it’d be especially interesting…

Appetiser D’Lirrah for Two: Raglan Road Pub, Downtown Disney, Disney World

Raglan Road

At Raglan Road, amidst the stained glass, live Irish music and dancing, and imported bars (yep — they imported the actual wooden bars themselves from Ireland), you’ve got some incredible, authentic Irish food with a modern twist designed by Celebrity Master Chef Kevin Dundon).

Located in the Downtown Disney district of Walt Disney World, Raglan Road offers a great spot to while away an evening on some imported beer, keen cocktails, or incredible food — including this piece of foodie decadence called [Read more…]