Review: Lunch at ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill in Disney World

Welcome, Sports Fans, to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill!

To clarify before we begin, the ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill is not to be confused with the ESPN Club located on Disney’s BoardWalk. The ESPN Grill is a Counter Service eatery found in Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex — a place you may be familiar with if you’ve participated in a runDisney event, attended a Major League Baseball Spring Training game here, or visited as a participant or spectator in a sporting event hosted at the facility.

My visits to the Complex stem from being a participant in runDisney races (the Fitness Expos including runner Packet Pickup are typically housed here). Understanding how jam-packed any runDisney race weekend can be — from transportation to and from both the Expo and the races, the events themselves, as well as packing in all the park touring you want to do — it can be convenient to have access to some Counter Service eats at one of your required stops during the trip.

When I went to pick up my race packet for the Inaugural Star Wars 10K, I figured it would be a good time to grab a bite and give Complex visitors an idea of what’s available. After all, if you’re here, you’ve clearly got sports on the brain, so you’d better fuel up :)!

Atmosphere

As a facility that hosts numerous sporting events throughout the year, the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex spans over 230 acres that include playing fields and building facilities. The ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill is located in the Complex’s Jostens Center.

Jostens Center

Jostens Center

The very first thing you see upon entering are the menu boards and ordering counters, located outside of the main dining area. So you’ll place your order here… [Read more…]

Review: Contempo Cafe at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

One of my very favorite Disney hotel counter service spots is Contempo Cafe at Disney’s Contemporary Resort.

Offering awesome cupcakes, it’s an ideal spot to stop off on your way to or from the Magic Kingdom. And like Captain Cook’s or Sunshine Seasons, it offers a wide variety of unique and delicious eats.

Let’s head over to the Contemporary for some late night eats!

Atmosphere

The Contempo Cafe is located on the Grand Canyon Concourse of Disney’s Contemporary Resort, adjacent to Chef Mickey’s. While the restaurant has only been open since 2008, there’s an immediate sense of history here owing to its location.

Contempo Cafe on the Concourse of Disney's Contemporary Resort

Monorails have been buzzing through this concourse since the very beginning. And while the offerings have changed — a souvenir book from the 1970s reminds us that the Contemporary was once home to nine restaurants and lounges! — the interior as we all remember it from childhood remains very much the same.

You’ll still spy the soaring, colorful mosaic mural created by Disney artist and imagineer Mary Blair, that serves as the centerpiece to the concourse and a wall to the restaurant.

Mary Blair Mural

While not as large as some of the food court-style food service offerings of the value resorts, the Contempo Cafe occupies quite a bit of space. Because of the soaring ceilings and spacious layout, you feel as though you have plenty of room to stretch and spread out.

Seating is comfortable, dominated by tables and chairs with a clean, modern, almost Scandinavian feel. (Don’t miss the Mickeys!)

Seating Area

Though the area is spacious, [Read more…]