Disney Food Post Round-Up: June 21, 2015

Happy Father’s Day to all of you out there who are celebrating today!

Zuri's Sweets Shop Opens in Disney's Animal Kingdom

Zuri’s Sweets Shop Opens in Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Today, we’re sharing all the news that you might have missed this week, including important openings, interesting new treats, and some brand new experiences. Check it out!

Disney Food News

Check out all the latest Disney Food News — even the stuff we don’t mention in posts on the blog! — on our Disney Food News Pin Board, including menu updates, restaurant closures, special events, and more!

We’ve got all the latest for you, so check it out before you go.

DFB Reader Finds

If you find a fun new food — or other edible awesomeness — in or about Disney, share a photo with us on facebook or twitter so we can add it to our DFB Reader Finds each Sunday!

Today, we’re featuring Comfort Foods!

Melissa Edmonds Kruep shared this wonderful shot of the Meatloaf at T-Rex. She says it’s Amazing!

Meatloaf at Walt Disney World's T-Rex

Meatloaf at Walt Disney World’s T-Rex

Beth Kahline Scott just celebrated her honeymoon at Disneyland with this delicious meal — Three-Cheese Monte Cristos and Pommes Frites from Cafe Orleans! The PERFECT celebration meal, IMHO!

Three-Cheese Monte Cristo and Pommes Frites from Disneyland's Cafe Orleans

Three-Cheese Monte Cristo and Pommes Frites from Disneyland’s Cafe Orleans

Do you have a favorite Disney Food find? Share your photos with us!

180 Days DFB Guide Sale Graphic

Deal of the Week: 180 Days ’til Christmas Sale Now Through June 28!

Why is the 180 Day mark so magical? Most restaurants at Disney World start booking for Christmas Day on June 28th, 180 days before Christmas Day. So if you wanna get a table for your holiday dinner at one of Disney’s most popular restaurants, now is the time to book! And we can help you plan every meal.

180 Days ‘Til Christmas Sale — 3 Great Ways to SAVE!

We know you’re just as excited as we are about the upcoming holiday season in Walt Disney World! And like we said: it’s never too early to start making plans. After all, you’ve gotta make those advance dining reservations 6 months ahead, especially around the busy holiday season. So we have three exciting offers for you today — and they’re all yours until June 28th — 180 Days Before Christmas!

On a budget? Find out how to make those dollars stretch all around Disney World. Our DFB Guides are ALL you need to plan your holiday dining!

And with these handy, e-book format guides at your fingertips, there’s nothing that you won’t know about food at Walt Disney World! Just download them, put them on your mobile device, and GOOOOOOO!

Check out our 180 Days ’til Christmas Sale to discover three great ways to save for a limited time!

As always, thanks for your support of DFB! We couldn’t do this without you!

Mickey Fix Bag Giveaway

On to the Round-Up!

Mickey Fix is giving away a Dooney and Bourke bag! Check out all of the details on their website — but hurry! The deadline to enter the drawing is June 29.

Eating (and Drinking) Around the World highlights the big news that the Ocean Spray Cranberry Bog will return to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival this year.

Disney Parks Blog shares the special Inside Out-inspired options available right now at Disney California Adventure’s Award Wieners.

WESH TV explores the Dine with Animal Specialists Experience at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Resort.

And it’s always fun to take a look at what’s new on Cake Wrecks. This week — fantastic Disney Cake Fails.

Nerdy Nummies whips up some Carbonite Cheese and Crackers — the perfect snack for your next Rebel get together! (Get the molds she uses here.)

Review: T-Rex at Walt Disney World’s Downtown Disney

Alrighty Guys, it is time. We are heading over to Walt Disney World’s Downtown Disney to travel back 200 million years for dinner.

We’ve gotta do T-Rex again.

This super-themed-to-the-max restaurant is the sister of Rainforest Cafe. If you’ve been to one, you have an idea for the feel of the other (even if the themeing is different).

I’ll confess I wasn’t looking forward to this Advance Dining Reservation with great anticipation. But every restaurant at Disney deserves a little love from me, right? ;-) After all, it’s my job. So on a recent visit, over I went to check out if my experience would be better, worse, or the same as my previous visit.

Besides, there’s a Cotton-tini involved this time! More on that just around the corner. Let’s go!

Atmosphere

As you probably expect, there’s a whole lot going on when you walk inside T-Rex. The outside view of rock outcroppings and dinosaurs give you an idea of what you’re in for.

trex

Outside View of T-Rex

Once your eyes adjust, you’ll notice that there are four major themed areas inside the space. The bar is themed to look like an Undersea Scene, complete with a giant, moving octopus. (What?! It’s true!) You’ll see some jellyfish floating above you too.

Under the Pre-Historic Sea

Under the Pre-Historic Sea

You may recall this area experienced a little drama last year, when one of the cylindrical aquariums started gushing water right in the middle of meal service! Fortunately, fish and diners alike were all fine. (See the video here.)

The floors throughout the restaurant are themed as well. Check out the watery undercarriage of the Undersea Scene. These are actually tiles printed like water.

Watery tiled floor

Watery tiled floor

The themeing throughout the restaurant does vary a bit. A lot actually. Beyond the sea, you have a verdant Forest Area, where you can sit in the belly of a Triceratops if you’d like. (I have asked how I can get this table. I want to sit in that Triceratops. If any of you are willing to join me on a Triceratops challenge, let me know and we’ll go and wait for this table some night!

Dinosaur

The Triceratops Booth!

And then, there’s the Meteor Shower Room. Somehow you are simultaneously on Earth and viewing Earth. (Don’t think about it too hard.) You’ll find the star of the show here — T-Rex himself.

T-Rex Himself!

T-Rex! Ruuuuunnnnn!!!

Be forewarned — this room is very, very loud at regular intervals. Like every 10 minutes, when meteor showers rain down from the heavens.

Did I mention that it’s loud??

The Universe

The Universe on the Ceiling

Seating near the animatronic dinosaurs brings your experience to life. And for educational value, they have plaques scattered throughout the scenes that tell a little about the creatures.

Seating by the Dinosaurs

Seating by the Dinosaurs

In the Meteor Shower Room, you’ll also find the [Read more…]

News and Video! Fish Tank Bursts Open at T-Rex Cafe in Disney World’s Downtown Disney

Wow! Have you heard the latest news from Downtown Disney in Disney World?

On Monday, a fish tank at T-Rex Cafe burst open while patrons were eating dinner nearby.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, Landry’s, the Houston company that owns T-Rex Cafe, issued this statement Tuesday: “A seal failed on the tank causing water to leak. Employees took action and did a great job rescuing all of the marine life, caring for our guests and managing the situation. The marine life has been moved to holding tanks and the restaurant is open for business as usual.”

All of the fish have been rescued, and no animals or humans were harmed during the event.

T-Rex Cafe is [Read more…]

Best Disney World Restaurants Not on the Disney Dining Plan

As you know, Kim L. is our behind-the-scenes manager here at the Disney Food Blog, a Disney World Moms Panelist, and a blogger! You’ll begin to see her name more and more in that little author line! Learn more about her on our staff and contributors page! Here, she discusses her top choices for Disney World restaurants not on the Disney Dining Plan!

UPDATE 4/2012: The restaurants at the Swan and Dolphin Resort are not yet on the Dining Plan, but the others — T-Rex, Rainforest Cafe, Portobello, Fulton’s, Paradiso 37, Wolfgang Puck Cafe The Dining Room, and House of Blues, should now be on the Dining Plan!

Lots of guests want to know the top restaurants when dining with the Disney Dining Plan, but since those restaurants seem to fill up more and more quickly these days, we’ve also been getting requests for recommendations on restaurants not included in the Dining Plan. Here are my picks for the best table service locations that do not participate in the DDP! ;-)

Top 5 Restaurants Not on the Disney Dining Plan, for Adults

Portobello
For guests craving a casual meal with value, Portobello at Downtown Disney dishes out hearty Italian fare. Choose from a value dinner menu, wood-burning oven pizzas, signature sandwiches plus a meatball and beer bar!

AJ recommends the Bucatini!

House of Blues
Got late night munchies at Downtown Disney? House of Blues is open til 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights! The southern-inspired menu includes a large variety of sandwiches and seafood such as Creole Jambalaya. To soothe your soul, look for [Read more…]

Disney Food for Families: Coping With Fears

Kids can be caught off guard by some of the themed elements at Disney restaurants. Erin Foster’s next Disney Food for Families column describes what restaurants might pose a problem and how to cope.

Wooly Mammoth

When my daughter Louisa was four years old, she was already a veteran of several Disney trips. These trips included at least a dozen character meals, dinner at the raucous Whispering Canyon Cafe, and even the foot-stomping Hoop Dee Doo Revue.

She handled all these experiences with kiddie aplomb, so it never occurred to me that we would ever have any problems at Disney restaurants. I was shocked when we got to the Animal Kingdom’s Rainforest Cafe and mid-appetizer, Louisa had a full-on, quivering-lip meltdown.

As it turns out, we had been seated directly next to the life-sized, chest-thumping, screeching, audio-animatronic gorilla. In her preschooler mind’s eye, that gorilla was inches away and effectively alive. She was terrified. My husband ended up getting his meal and hers packed to go; they left the rest of the family and went back to finish eating in the hotel room.

I later learned that, of course, she had company in experiencing sensory overload at the Rainforest Cafe and that there are several other WDW restaurants that have the potential to unsettle [Read more…]

RIP Figaro Fries

Well, it’s happened. Sold for so many years at Magic Kingdom’s Pinocchio’s Village Haus, topped expertly with cheese, lettuce, ranch dressing, and tomatoes and desired by many, Figaro Fries lived a good life.

Figaro Fries

It was touch-and-go there at the end. Even after they were discontinued from the menu, Figaro Fries held on, coming back again and again for limited times. However, it seems as though this time, our delicious friends are gone for good.

Now, I know we could take this time to mourn, but instead, let’s be thankful for what we still have. (One thing we’ve learned about Disney restaurants is that they’re always changing; as Pocahontas says — you can’t step in the same river twice (that was her, right?).) So let’s take today to celebrate our crispy, salty, oily, and cheesy cravings for french fries by honoring what we’ve got left!

The Newspaper Chip
Thanks to Rose & Crown and the Yorkshire County Fish Shop, we’re still good to go on the chips-served-in-fake-newsprint!

Rose and Crown Newspaper Chips

Yorkshire County Fish Shop Newspaper Chip

The Waffle Fry
Found at T-Rex in Downtown Disney, the waffle fry offers consolation with seasonings and ideal texture. The surface area means [Read more…]

Chocolate Desserts You Might Have Missed…

While many have sampled Coral Reef‘s famous “Chocolate Wave” and Le Cellier‘s deep, dark Whiskey Cake, we wanted to show you three chocolate desserts in Walt Disney World that might be a bit “under the radar”…

Portobello Restaurant, Downtown Disney
This dense, rich confection is called Chocolate Paradise, and is described on the menu as a rich chocolate layer cake with chocolate ganache & toffee crunch. Now, you all know me as a frosting-lover, and while this cake didn’t have much, the moistness of the cake itself nearly made up for it.

Also, rarely is a dessert “too rich” for me, but this one almost did me in. This is absolutely one of the most delicious chocolate cakes I’ve ever had — highly recommended the next time you’re in Downtown Disney. And, don’t worry — I’ll be highlighting my review of Portobello on the blog very soon!

Chocolate Paradise at Portobello, Downtown Disney

Chocolate Paradise at Portobello, Downtown Disney

T-Rex, Downtown Disney
So…the Ice Age Indulgence is described as such: Layers of ice cream sandwiches, fudge sauce, whipped cream and Heath Bar Crunch, and it’s intriguing to say the least! It’s the exact dessert you’d have made as a kid if you were left alone in the house with a freezer full of ice cream sandwiches — admit it, you [Read more…]

Donuts! The New Interactive Dessert!

So, I find it fascinating that of the four new restaurants that recently opened in Walt Disney World (Sanaa, Kouzzina, T-Rex, and Paradiso 37), three of them have donuts on their dessert menus!

Donuts! With dipping sauces and everything! Interactive desserts are my favorite, and I have been called the “condiment queen.” So you can imagine how excited I am to have dip-able desserts, and the fact that they’re donuts makes them that much better. Let’s take a look at the three up-and-comers now:

Kouzzina's Loukoumades

Kouzzina's Loukoumades

Kouzzina’s Loukoumades
Kouzzina is Iron Chef Cat Cora’s signature restaurant in Walt Disney World, and the menu consists of many of her favorite traditional Greek recipes. One of these recipes is for her outstanding Loukoumades.

These “Freshly Made Greek Doughnuts drizzled with Warm Honey” come to the table with two delicious dipping sauces, including [Read more…]

Top Drink Suggestions From Readers

Grey Goose Citron Slush and Pomegranate Kir -- Photo (c) Kelly Tressler

Grey Goose Citron Slush and Pomegranate Kir — Photo (c) Kelly Tressler

A giant THANK YOU to everyone who made a suggestion for my next favorite drink at Disney World!

As you know, my beloved Leisure Suit has been retired, and I’ve long needed a replacement so that I can stop bugging bartenders to flip through their rolodexes.

Here are the suggestions I received, and, seeing as that Grey Goose Citron Slush was suggested 3 times, I think that’s the most serious contender!

Thank you again, and be sure to check out what everyone else recommended below (If anyone has any photos of these drinks, please let me know — I’d love to post them on the blog!):

Suggestions from Blog Comments:
Cotton-tini, T-Rex in Downtown Disney: A fruity martini poured into a glass filled with cotton candy
Octopus Juice, Coral Reef in Epcot: A Pina Colada fusion with Chambord
Grand Marnier Orange Slush, France Kiosk, World Showcase: Grand Marnier and Orange Fruit Smoothie frozen Drink Mix (Florida Natural Flavours)
Grey Goose Citron Slush, France Kiosk, World Showcase: Grey Goose Citron Vodka and Polynesian Pleasure Lemon Frozen Drink Mix (Florida Natural Flavours)
Backscratcher, Polynesian Resort: Meyer’s Rum, Light Rum, POG (passion fruit, orange, guava) Juice, Jack Daniels
Mai Tai, Polynesian Resort: Myers Dark Rum, Orange juice, Pineapple juice, Sour Mix, Lime juice, Orgeat syrup
Ultimate Long Island Iced Tea, 50’s Prime Time Cafe: Grey Goose Vodka, Hendrick’s Gin, Bacardi Rum, Patrón Citrónge Liqueur, Sweet-and-Sour, Coke
Dad’s Electric Lemonade, 50’s Prime Time Cafe: Bacardi rum, Skyy vodka, Blue Curacao, sweet and sour mix, Sprite
Strawberry Margarita, Mexico Kiosk, World Showcase
Orange Creamsicle, Contemporary Resort: Couldn’t find the actual DISNEY recipe, but others I found online included Vodka/Orange Vodka, Triple Sec, Orange Juice, and Cream or Ice Cream
Territory-tini, Territory Lounge, Wilderness Lodge: Captain Morgan, Grand Mariner, Sour mix, Splash of OJ, shake with ice

 

Top Disney Drink Suggestions

 

 

Polynesian Signature Drinks

Polynesian Signature Drinks

Suggestions from Twitter:
Antioxidant Cocktail, various locations serve this, including The Wave: Finlandia Wild Berries Vodka, Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur, Bossa Nova Açai Juice with Agave, Aloe Juice, Lychee, Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
PeachTree Punch, Hollywood Brown Derby: Skyy Vodka, Peach Schnapps, Orange Juice, Sprite, splash of Grenadine
Sunken Treasure, various locations–mostly Polynesian Resort and pool bars: Malibu Coconut Rum, Midori, Orange Juice, Pineapple Juice, Sprite, Blue Curacao
Backscratcher, Polynesian Resort: Meyer’s Rum, Light Rum, POG (passion fruit, orange, guava) Juice, Jack Daniels
St. Germain Cocktail, Les Chefs de France, World Showcase: champagne or dry white wine, St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur, sparkling water or club soda

Suggestions from Facebook:
Takara Plum Wine, Japan Pavilion, World Showcase
Pomegranate Kir, France Kiosk, World Showcase: sparkling wine with a shot of pomegranate liqueur
Grey Goose Citron Slush (x2), France Kiosk, World Showcase: Grey Goose Citron Vodka and Polynesian Pleasure Lemon Frozen Drink Mix (Florida Natural Flavours)
Grand Marnier Orange Slush, France Kiosk, World Showcase: Grand Marnier and Orange Fruit Smoothie frozen Drink Mix (Florida Natural Flavours)
Chocolate Mintini, Rix Lounge, Coronado Springs Resort: No recipe found

Thanks again, everyone! I’m looking forward to stumbling around Disney World for most of my trip thanks to you folks! ;-)