Review: Tusker House at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

It’s been a LONG time since we’ve talked about Tusker House, so let’s get down to business!

I consider this sprawling restaurant within Disney’s Animal Kingdom to be one of the best-kept secrets when it comes to Disney World character meals.

Yep — Tusker House is known for its bounty of African dishes, but it’s also a character dining destination. BUT — if you’re coming for the characters, be sure to book your ADR for breakfast and lunch. Mickey and friends don’t make an appearance for dinner.

We have a ton of yummy pictures to share with you, so let’s go!

Atmosphere

Animal Kingdom is one of my favorite Disney parks due to its truly incredible themeing, and Tusker House takes this one step further.

Tusker House - Outside View

It’s one of the Disney restaurants that doesn’t just incorporate theme on the surface — I could spend hours exploring all of the specialty decor, finishes, and props Imagineers have added to this massive restaurant.

You’ll enter the restaurant through the village of Harambe in Animal Kingdom’s Africa, and Tusker House serves as Harambe’s “open air” market on the edge of the Harambe Wildlife Preserve. The podium for the restaurant was outside during our visit. Once you check in, you have the option to wait at a few outdoor tables that are leftover from the days when Tusker House was a counter-service restaurant.

Outdoor Waiting area

Also, next door is one of our favorite watering holes — the Dawa Bar. This is a great spot to [Read more…]

Disney Food for Families: Great Disney World Restaurants for Boys

Much fuss is made about the ballyhooed princess dining experiences at Disney World. So much fuss, that parents of young boys sometimes find themselves wondering, “What does Disney have that’s special for me?”

The down and dirty dino loving boy will be right at home at the T-Rex Cafe.

Well, never fear sports fans; I’m here to tell you that while, yes, the girly girls are pretty visible in the parks (it’s hard to miss the Florida sun glinting off a tiara), there are plenty of Disney dining experiences where the men in your family will feel right at home.

Let’s break it down …

Character Meals

There are 10 different character dining venues at Walt Disney World proper. Of these, only three and a half of them have princess themeing. The rest are totally gender-neutral.

Boys are certainly welcome at any of the princess meals, and many boys love them just as much as the other character meals (PLUS they’re given a neato plastic sword at the Royal Table); but honestly, they do skew more heavily toward girl interests.

All of the other character dining restaurants appeal equally to boys and girls. Your best options for boys in the character dining department are the following (characters are always subject to change): [Read more…]

Disney Restaurant Photo Packages Now Part Of PhotoPass+. Is It Worth It?

We can’t wait to share some of the great new dining info that you’ll find in our updated e-Book — The DFB Guide to Walt Disney World® Dining 2012! In honor of the grand launch, let’s dig in!

New PhotoPass+ Option

For starters, we’ll take a look at the recently released PhotoPass+ option! It’s a new way to get all of your PhotoPass, Disney Attraction, and Dining photos in one handy package. But is it worth it just because it gives you access to your dining photos?

A Photo Package at Cinderella's Royal Table. Add Your Family Here.

Of course we analyzed this for you! The $199.95 package can be a good option for guests that hail down lots of PhotoPass photographers or tend to really want to show folks back home what they looked like on Test Track, however it’s not [Read more…]

“You Know You’re Dining in Disney When…” Part Two!

We freely admit that our first “You Know You’re Eating in Disney World When…” post amused us so much that we had to do a Part 2! After all, where else can we dine with a beloved mouse in the kitchen!

Our “You know you’re eating in Disney World when…” thoughts were bountiful, and we’d love to hear yours too! Who knows…there may just have to be a third post in the series!

Leave us a comment with your personal “You know you’re eating in Disney World or Disneyland when…” experience! ;-)

You Know You’re Dining In Disney When…

Your beverage glows in the dark!

Disney's Blue Glow-Tini

You find it appropriate to have your server correct your manners (and, frankly, get kind of annoyed when they don’t!).

Take your elbows off the table!

You order ketchup and have multiple bottles delivered to your table by a dozen patrons seated near you.

Whispering Canyon Cafe Ketchup Delivery

There’s a train [Read more…]

You Know You’re Eating In Disney World When…

Let’s face it. There are a few foodie experiences at Walt Disney World and Disneyland that we don’t normally find at our hometown restaurants!

We thought it would be fun to put a few “You know you’re eating in Disney World when…” thoughts together, and we’d love to hear your additions!

Leave us a comment with your own “You know you’re eating in Disney World or Disneyland when…” experience! ;-)

You Know You’re Eating In Disney World When…

There are strangers eating in the back seat of your car.

Who's in the Back Seat?!?

You memorize the color of the soap in the bathroom while your kids willingly set the table.

Setting the table

You can’t wait to take a bite out of a mouse ear.

That's better!

You get bragging rights for eating dinner while watching fireworks.

Fireworks and castle from Narcoossees

You ask a yellow bear if [Read more…]

Disney Food Post Round-Up: September 11, 2011

Donald Duck announces new lunch!

It was an exciting week with the announcement of a new character meal hosted by Donald Duck that will be offered at Tusker House in the Animal Kingdom.

And we’re getting so close to the 2011 Epcot Food and Wine Festival now that we’re already planning our touring strategy. You can too — just check out the information in our mini-guide below! We got some great reviews this week!

Latest Disney Food News

  • Starting December 4th, a Tusker House character lunch will be offered in addition to Donald’s Safari Breakfast!
  • Disney Parks exclusive wines will be debuting at the Food and Wine Festival!
  • Downtown Disney’s Raglan Road announced a Thanksgiving meal in addition to its regular lunch and dinner menu.
  • ‘AMA’AMA at Disney’s new Aulani Resort in Hawai’i is now serving guests! Check out this dinner review.

The DFB Mini-Guide to the 2011 Epcot Food & Wine Festival e-Book Review

We’re honored that our newest Mini-Guide is getting such positive reviews! One of the most recent is from Kristin Ford with the Orlando Sentinel’s A Mom and A Mouse! Here’s some of what she has to say about the Mini-Guide…

Like her other projects, AJ Wolfe’s new e-book is thorough. She, of course, explains the many components of the festival, such as seminars, celebrity chef meet-and-greets, signature tastings and concerts. It’s all valuable information laid out in an easy-to-find and easy-to-read format. …I especially like the “With the Kids Strategy” in The Disney Food Blog Mini-Guide to the 2011 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. Wolfe offers ideas to engage the kids throughout the park so that the family is moving around World Showcase, allowing parents to sample much of the food.

Read the rest of the review here. Thanks to Kristin and the Orlando Sentinel!!

The Disney Food Blog Mini-Guide to the 2011 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival e-Book has over 125 pages of information you need to dive right into the festival. Start YOUR planning with the purchase of your guide.

On to the Round-Up!

Meet the World in Progressland Has a compilation of photos of Tokyo Disney Resort’s popcorn stands! This is from 2009, but it’s awesome! Love the Roastie-Toasties!

The Disney Blog tells us how to eat cheap at Disneyland!

Main Street Gazette takes us to the River Roost Lounge for evening entertainment and eats! Yee-Haa!!

Eating (and Drinking) Around The World shows us how to make Tuna Poke, Aulani Style!

All Ears Net‘s Jack Spence talks restaurants at Epcot’s France Pavilion. We love it when he does that.

DisMarks has released their 29th Disney Blog Carnival! Lots of great articles on your favorite topics over there.

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We’re thinking today of the men and women who lost their lives on 9/11/01 and of the friends and family they left behind, many of whom are still fighting fear and loss with strength and resilience.

News: Tusker House Announces New Character Lunch Starting December 4

Jambo! I just love when a new character meal is added to our Disney World dining options! Tusker House Restaurant in the Animal Kingdom’s Harambe area will begin offering character lunches on December 4th!

Donald and Daisy Duck are taking on extra hours as Donald’s Safari Breakfast will still be offered daily!

Donald Duck announces new lunch!

Donald’s Dining Safari Lunch will be hosted by Donald and Daisy Duck while guests sample delicious all-you-can-eat spit-roasted meats, unique salads, vegetarian options, hearty stews and [Read more…]

African Inspired Meals in Walt Disney World — Tusker House

Jambo! Join me in welcoming Disney guru Mary Jo Collins and Disney World Moms Panelist Bernie Edwards back to the blog! In this article they’ll share with us various locations to enjoy an African Inspired Meal at Walt Disney World. We also get a close-up look at the Tusker House restaurant. Twende! Let’s go!

Theming Outside Animal Kingdom's Tusker House

Visiting the Walt Disney World Resort has become synonymous with the enjoyment of great dining at restaurants both inside and outside the theme parks. For many of us, these meals lend us the opportunity to experience exotic foods from exotic places.

African Food in Disney World
Fortunately for guests of Walt Disney World, African cuisine is showcased in a variety of table service restaurants offering a peek at the food that has been influenced by the marinade of cultures, colonies, trade routes and history of this land. To describe or categorize what African food is in a few words would be impossible.

The cuisine is as varied in Africa as the cuisine of any large continent. The continent’s regions each have significant differences in their own distinctive dishes and preparation techniques. However, in Africa the various cuisines traditionally combine [Read more…]

2011 United Way Chef’s Gala To Be Held in Epcot on May 21st

Benefiting Heart of Florida, The United Way’s Chef’s Gala will be held in Epcot’s World Showplace on Saturday May 21, 2011. The 19th annual Chef’s Gala touts the event as “A Tasteful Way to Make a Difference” which raised almost $170,000 last year! Walt Disney World has hosted the Chef’s Gala since its inception with over a million raised in that time!

Chef's Gala

Specs
The festivities begin at 6:45 pm. with a cocktail attire dress code.

6:45 – 8:15 pm Champagne Served and Martini Bar Opens
7:30 – 10:00 pm Chefs Begin Serving

Guests will enjoy a silent auction and wine reception. This tasteful event continues with a scrumptious tasting featuring over 20 top chefs (and restaurants) from Central Florida. There will also be paired fine wines, desserts and specialty coffees. For questions about wine and wine pairings, Sommeliers will be on hand.

Participating restaurants include: Artist Point, Kouzzina by Cat Cora, La Luce by Donna Scala, Raglan Road Irish Pub and Restaurant, Sanaa, Todd English’s bluezoo, Tony’s Town Square Restaurant, Tusker House Restaurant, The Wave…of American Flavors, Disney’s Contemporary Resort Bakery, Epcot Bakery, Joffrey’s Coffee and Tea Company.

Ticket Info: [Read more…]

Disney Food Post Round Up: September 5, 2010

Welcome to the Disney Food Post Round-Up! Our favorite piece of news this week is that the tarps have come down from around La Hacienda de San Angel in Epcot’s Mexico!

Check out these gorgeous photos of La Hacienda de San Angel in Disney World’s Epcot. Also, check out this interior concept art!

The restaurant should be opening in mid-September (15th or 16th). Reservations will be available for dates after Oct. 15th. For more details and menus for La Hacienda de San Angel and La Cantina de San Angel, check out our La Hacienda de San Angel info page.

Also in the news — save some space for Orlando Magical Dining Month! $30, 3-course meals with part of the profits donated to charity! Take advantage all through September. AND, if you’re in northern Cali, head over to the Walt Disney Family Museum for a film and food tribute to the Bay Area!

And now, on to the round-up!

Orlando Sentinel‘s Daily Disney blog posted info about our very own upcoming WDW Foodie Fest! Check it out! We’re famous! (Thanks to “A Mom and the Mouse” writer, Kristin Ford!)

Cakewrecks has takes another look at Disney cakes gone wrong!

WDW Character Hunt shares the rumor that Special Agent Oso (a la Playhouse Disney) will be replacing Jo Jo at Hollywood and Vine’s Play and Dine Character meal.

Main St. Gazette takes us to Tusker House for dinner!

BritMick laments the lack of a good cuppa on Disney property — and gives her solution to the problem.

The Givens Chronicles is posting one recipe per week from the 2009 Epcot Food and Wine Festival all this month! This week’s recipe? Mango Lassi from India!

A Taste of Wonderland follows Disney World’s Chef TJ to his new digs — the Grand Floridian’s 1900 Park Fare!

Eating Around the World reviews Coral Reef Restaurant in Epcot.

Samland’s Disney Adventures takes a look at Disneyland’s Roastie-Toasties!

Vintage Disneyland Tickets has a Spring 1970 copy of the Disney News, which includes this great historical find — find out how Disneyland feeds “those enormous appetites” of the guests!

Cooking With Mickey celebrates her anniversary at Club 33 in Disneyland!

Makin’ Memories brings us to Disney World’s ‘Ohana for breakfast!

Deb’s Digest, Deb Wills’ personal blog on AllEars.net, showcases Jim, the fun-loving Casey’s Corner pianist.

Touring Plans Blog‘s Tom Bricker has a food photo face-off, while blogger Kristen Helmstetter brings us to Epcot’s Via Napoli!

Eating (and Drinking) Around the World has some pics of the new Epcot F&W Festival pins!

WDW Magic has some news about menu changes at Animal Kingdom’s Restaurantosaurus.

Thanks to Global Disney Pinvestigation for sending Hacienda pics!