Review: Le Cellier Steakhouse in Epcot’s Canada Pavilion

We’re stopping by one of my favorite spots in Walt Disney World — Le Cellier Steakhouse — to see what’s new in The Great White North!

Well, technically, this isn’t North, it’s South. And we’re not in Canada. But we are in the Canada Pavilion in Epcot. Owing to the architecture and gardens here, this is one of the prettiest spots along World Showcase Promenade.

Who doesn’t love journeying back through the pavilion and getting splashed by waterfalls as you walk? You haven’t done it? I highly recommend it. And go see O, Canada! while you’re at it! Martin Short is the best. :-D (Speaking of, when we were in Vancouver for our Alaska cruise last year I couldn’t help but notice that Martin Short is the voice of, like, every single cartoon in Canada.)

But while I love exploring the whole area to see what’s new, it’s Le Cellier Steakhouse, the pavilion’s signature dining table service restaurant, that keeps me coming back trip after trip. Le Cellier is a favorite of mine because it features one of my favorite meals in all of Walt Disney World — the Le Cellier Filet.

But you know my philosophy: just because something has always been great doesn’t mean it continues to be. We always like to check back in with places — even our favorites — to make sure we can still continue to recommend them. And so, in the name of research, here I am at Le Cellier once again. And this time there was a new favorite… .

Atmosphere

Meander back along the beautiful gardens, following the signs, and you’ll come to the entrance of Le Cellier Steakhouse. Tucked into the bottom of the chateau that’s the hallmark of the Canada Pavilion, you get a sense that the spot is aptly named.

Le Cellier Steakhouse

Le Cellier Steakhouse Entrance

It always throws me a little, this imagining that I’m in Canada when Florida is so very hot most of the time. Still, as soon as you walk through the doors, the Disney magic kicks in, and you start to feel as though you have indeed traveled north. Stone walls and flooring, along with heavy wood accents, immediately evoke a feeling of…cool. [Read more…]

Epcot Food and Wine Festival: Our Favorite Gluten Free Dishes for 2015

Sometimes, eating with food sensitivities or dietary preferences can be a bit of a drag. And that’s never more the case than when you’re on vacation.

Food and Wine 2015 Info Graphic Square URL

But once again this year, Disney is taking its commitment to offering gluten free options seriously at the 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival.

To that end, not only will you find some delicious dishes that don’t contain gluten; they’re clearly marked in the free Food and Wine Festival Passports that you can pick up at the Festival!

Today, we’re highlighting a few of the more interesting gluten free options that we’ve tried so far. And if you love sampling your way around the World sans gluten, check out our handy page listing ALL of the Festival’s gluten free options this year!

“Le Cellier” Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce

Ok…this one’s a no-brainer! It’s a DFB restaurant favorite already.

But truly, this is the MOST wonderful time of the year — because you can get the “Le Cellier” Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce at the Canada Booth without an advance dining reservation!

Le Cellier Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce

Le Cellier Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce

Deliciously satisfying, this is one dish that I never, ever want to share. Get your own if we’re Food and Wine-ing it together! [Read more…]

Review: Lunch at Le Cellier in Epcot’s Canada Pavilion (With the NEW Filet!)

UPDATE: The Mushroom Filet is back at Le Cellier as a seasonal dish. (A photo is provided in the text below.)

We finally got to head over and try the new menu at Le Cellier Steakhouse!

Yep, you heard me right. A new menu. And while the menu changes up regularly here now that it’s a Signature-restaurant-all-the-time-forever-always, we weren’t expecting the news that the beloved filet with mushroom risotto and truffle butter sauce was getting a makeover.

As soon as we found that out, we had to make an ADR. And, yep — we ordered the replacement. Along with a lot of other goodies.

Let’s go see how it all turned out!

Please note: in addition to the “update” notice above, we’re also posting this menu shot confirming the current presence of the Mushroom Filet. Due to its status as a signature restaurant, menu options change here more frequently than most Table Service restaurants, but we’re happy to see this one back on the menu for the time being!

Le Cellier Menu (update)

Le Cellier Menu (update)

Atmosphere

Because we had a busy day and the lunch and dinner menu are now the same, we decided to opt for a lunch advance dining reservation.

Le Cellier Steakhouse -- Outside View

Le Cellier Steakhouse — Outside View

When we arrived, we only had to wait for a bit before we were shown to our table. The very slight delay gave us a chance to check out once more the addition of several paintings by The Group of Seven, which were recently installed to honor this important Canadian school of painters.

Description of Lobby Paintings

Description of Lobby Paintings

The seating in this tiny waiting area is of the outdoor bench type, which makes it not all that comfortable. But, honestly, most of the waiting area seating is usually taken up whenever I get there.

Seating and Paintings in the Lobby

Seating and Paintings in the Lobby

Nameplates beneath each painting give you more information. If you have a few moments, be sure to check them out. They really are beautiful.

Lobby Decor -- Up Close

Lobby Decor — Up Close

As you’re shown to your table, you’ll wave goodbye to sunlight for a little while. Le Cellier really is, well, in a cellar.

Le Cellier Entryway

Le Cellier Entryway

And you get a sense of that as soon as you turn the corner into the restaurant. The feeling is at once warm and cozy, yet elegant.

Le Cellier Dining Room

Le Cellier Dining Room

The rich detail lends itself to the feeling that you’ve stepped into the wine cellar of a grand chateau. Beamed ceilings and stone arches fit right in!

Le Cellier Ceilings and Chandeliers

Le Cellier Ceilings and Chandeliers

The room seems to be lit primarily by candles. These are electric, of course. But they lend a soft light to your surroundings. Bad for reading your menu and photographing your food, but good for setting the right tone. :-)

Wall Sconces

Wall Sconces

En route to your table, you’ll also see

[Read more…]

Epcot Food and Wine Festival Recipe: Le Cellier’s White Truffle Butter Sauce

It’s almost Epcot Food and Wine Festival time (the best time of the year!). So far, we know the Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Menus, and we even know the special events that will be offered at the festival. As we lead up to the big opening day, I’ll be posting reviews and recipes from the main event. Today, we have an incredibly indulgent recipe for you…

2011 Canada Booth

You know that I am a huge fan of Le Cellier Steakhouse in Epcot’s Canada pavilion. And when I go there, I often order the Mushroom Filet Mignon!

This fantastic filet — one of my favorites in Disney restaurants — is topped with a white truffle butter sauce that’s pretty freakin’ awesome. I love it so much that I recently discovered that I can order extra when I’m at the restaurant (and I do)!

Mushroom Filet Mignon with White Truffle Butter Sauce and Micro Chervil

This dish is scheduled to be featured in the Canadian Booth at the 2012 Epcot Food and Wine Festival, so I wanted to share a recipe for the sauce so you can make it at home!

If you’ve been dying to try it yourself but don’t have a trip planned, then this is [Read more…]