News! And Review: Animal Kingdom’s Tamu Tamu Refreshments New Menu!

We’re heading to Harambe Village in Animal Kingdom’s Africa. Tamu Tamu Refreshments is our stop today, so we can check out the entirely new menu!

Tamu Tamu Refreshments

Atmosphere

It’s easy to stroll past Tamu Tamu on your way to Kilimanjaro Safaris, because this unassuming little spot blends in so perfectly with its surroundings.

Tamu Tamu Refreshments

Ordering Counter

There are a few clues, however, as to what is available to passersby:

Good Eats!

Cold drinks!

And the best part of the atmosphere is arguably a hidden gem. A lot of people aren’t aware of the gorgeous and peaceful outdoor seating area tucked behind!

Entry into the Harambe Fort

Chunky wooden tables and chairs are complemented by rustic plaster walls and artwork. It’s truly unexpected!

Tamu Tamu Seating Area

Tamu Tamu Seating Area

But I’d mentioned a new menu, so let’s dive in!

Eats

I was truly surprised to see the all-new offerings, especially since the Pulled Beef Sandwich had been a hit. (I must admit to being sad over the loss of that gorgeous fresh fruit bowl on the menu, and will continue to look for it at Bradley Falls whenever it is open!)

Tamu Tamu Menu

The menu is now offering three primary entrees: Slow-cooked Chicken Curry, Vegetarian Curry, and Roasted Chicken Salad. [Read more…]

Disney Food Post Round-Up: October 27, 2013

Love treats? With Halloween this week, we’re all about stocking up on candy.

Fun New Chocolate Boxes!

On your next visit to Disney, try the new CHOCOLATE candy boxes! So clever!!

Don’t forget Disney Food Blog is giving away two sets of Epcot Food and Wine Festival Cookbooks from the 2012 and 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festivals!

Check out the rest of this week’s news from Disney restaurants!

Disney Food News

  • New candy boxes are on the shelves at Walt Disney World and Disneyland resorts!
  • Food Trucks will debut in early November at Downtown Disney Orlando!
  • Check out a review of ALL the Vegetarian Dishes at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival
  • Private Dining available at the Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Uzima Springs Pool Bar.

Of course, there’s more! 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 Rocky Road Caramel Apple at Disneyland, Earn a Free Sandwich App at Earl of Sandwich, and more!

DFB Reader Finds

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

Facebook Friend Timothy shares his mini-review of the French Regional Lunch at Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival: “Attended the French Regional lunch at Monsieur Paul’s on Sunday. Cotes du Rhone wine from Jean Luc Colombo. The food and wine was superb, a well done event. We started with the Amuse-Bouche. Next was the Saucisson in brioche, greens and Port reduction. Mr. Paul’s vinegar chicken, Grautin Dauphinois, chanterelles, this was unbelievable. Emmental cheese and last Saint Honore, caramelized apricots, light vanilla cream, pistachio ice cream. I cannot believe I had room for this it was soooo good.”

Saint Honore at French Regional Lunch

And DFB reader Katie tweeted [Read more…]

Guest Review: Vegetarian Dishes at the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

Join us in welcoming guest author Rebecca Dolan! After sampling ALL of the vegetarian menu items at the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival, she’s sharing her review with us. Read on…

Vegetarian Food at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival

The offerings at this year’s Epcot International Food and Wine Festival may err on the meaty (or fishy) side of things, but there are a number of nods to vegetarians around the World Showcase Lagoon. The veg options may not be terribly exciting, but there are enough to keep herbivorous appetites at bay. After sampling all of the items conveniently marked with a green “V” on the Food and Wine Festival menus, we’ve reviewed both the entrees and desserts below.

Savories

Africa: The spinach and cheese paneer pocket was one of my favorite vegetarian noshes. Since it’s fried, it can be a tad heavy, and perhaps not the best on a scorching Florida afternoon. The golden flaky pastry exterior yields to a filling that’s much like the saag paneer you’d find at an Indian restaurant.

Spinach and Cheese Paneer Pocket

Cheese: I personally did not care for the almond crusted blue cheese soufflé, as it was a bit soggy. But, blue cheese lovers might enjoy it as a unique vessel by which to enjoy its pungent bite, which is cut by a dollop of fig jam on top.

Almond Crusted Blue Cheese Soufflé

The cheese booth’s other offering was a trio of (what else?) cheeses: Flagship Reserve Cheddar, La Bonne Vie Triple Crème Brie and Wijngaard Goats Gouda. It’s a pretty standard cheese board and didn’t disappoint.

Cheese Trio

Greece: What would a Greek booth be without spanikopita, or cheese- and spinach-stuffed phyllo pockets? Though a tad on the greasy side, they were plump with filling. A bit like Africa’s spinach pockets, this version is slightly tangy thanks to the use of feta rather than mellow paneer.

Spanikopita

As advertised, the Taste of Greece is not vegetarian, due to the addition of [Read more…]

Review: Lunch at Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

So, it had been far too long since I’d been to Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano, and it was high time to head back.

Located in the Backlot area of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Mama’s is a hodgepodge, with all sorts of Hollywood memorabilia smooshed into an old fashioned Italian restaurant.

The food here can be inconsistent (surprise), so you never really know what you’re going to get. But my past two visits have been great, so I was excited to check it out again.

Let’s take a look at my most recent lunch here, and see where this meal falls on the Disney Restaurant Continuum. (Wait til you see the picture of the STEAK!!!)

Atmosphere

Mama Melrose’s is, well, a little strange. At first, it appears to a typical old-fashioned family restaurant that might be found in any large city’s Little Italy section.

Dining Room View From Outside

But once you move beyond the brick facade and really start to look around at the curious surroundings, you might inquire about the backstory to clear up the confusion.

The story behind Mama Melrose’s is a little “We Made This Story to Fit the Space.” But here goes.

A young girl from Italy with stars in her eyes makes her way across the US, in hopes of finding fame and fortune in Hollywood. But during her starving artist days, she found that her cooking was more successful than her acting.

Dining Room Inside

And so, she opened a restaurant at the urging of her friends in a vacant warehouse that had previously been used to store film equipment. Nicknamed “Mama Melrose” by her patrons, she gained the fame she was looking for — but it came via her authentic Italian cooking.

Since Mama was a poor, struggling actress — and a recent immigrant to boot — the dining room is set up with what she could find to make it cozy and comfortable. Low lighting from strands of lights give it a soft glow. (And who doesn’t love those little white lights?)

And chandeliers are mismatched — sometimes, right down to the glass globes around the bulbs.

Mismatched Shades

Quirky Lighting

Wall hangings celebrate Los Angeles, Mama’s new home, and her roots in Italy.

Wall Hangings

Of course, it is an Italian restaurant, and so you’ll also see foods — dried and cured sausages, cheese, pasta, and fruits and veggies — hanging around as well.

Food Decor at Mama's

Walls also hold pictures of [Read more…]

Guest Review: Epcot’s Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room

Today we are welcoming guest author Rebecca Dolan with a dining review of the Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room. Read on…

When it comes to Epcot’s Rose & Crown, the mantra should be “come for the fireworks, stay for the food.” Sure the menu of British comfort classics has always been on point, but the real draw here has to be the restaurant’s back patio, which offers one of the best fireworks views on the shores of the World Showcase Lagoon.

This combination of no-frills British food and fireworks made Rose & Crown both one of my mother’s favorite Disney spots, and the bane of the Epcot trips of my youth. (Ugh, do we have to watch the fireworks again? I want to eat in Morocco!) But, Rose & Crown and I have come a long way over the past years. And, I now fully support adding it to a Disney dining itinerary.

Atmosphere

The first thing you’ll probably notice about Rose & Crown is that it isn’t built in just one architectural style. Instead, the building is a mash-up of three different, popular pub styles.

The building’s three sides at Rose and Crown.

The main entrance leads into a full-service pub where you can belly up to the bar for traditional beers, ciders, and scotches from the UK. A handful of tables provide a much-needed respite from the afternoon sun.

Stopping in for an evening pint.

Outside the pub entrance, to the left, is the check in booth for the dining room. Seating is either on the outdoor patio overlooking the lagoon, or inside the main dining room. Try your best to score an outdoor table if you can (back patio is better than side patio) for the fireworks view.

This will likely prove to be a difficult endeavor, however. After close to three decades of dining here, this trip was the first time our family was actually seated outside.

Get a load of that view!

Now, don’t let that get you discouraged! Even if you can’t get the coveted front row seats, those eating inside are allowed [Read more…]

My Favorite Food Kiosks at Walt Disney World! What Are Yours?

I get lots of emails and questions about the food I personally love in Disney World, and today I’m sharing some of my favorite Disney Food Kiosks!

You know the ones — those cute little structures that are almost restaurants, but not quite? Here are a few of the BIGGEST TASTES you can get at the smallest places in Disney World! :-)

I hope you’ll share some of your favorites in the comments, too!

Aloha Isle

There is no way I could have a list of favorite kiosks without putting Magic Kingdom’s Aloha Isle right up front! The welcoming little stand, located in Adventureland, is home to one of Disney’s most beloved treats, after all.

Aloha Isle

Aloha Isle

That’s right — we’re talking Dole Whips!

And whether you like yours in float form, swirled with vanilla, or are you’re a purist, most Disney fans don’t consider their trip complete until they’ve made at least one stop here.

Dole Whip Float! A Must-Eat snack for every Disney guest.

As for me, I prefer about one visit to Aloha Isle for each day I’m at Disney. :-) No kidding, even though I’m usually eating non-stop on every Disney trip, this is one snack I never skip.

Fife and Drum

At the midway point while you’re walking around Epcot’s World Showcase, you’ll encounter another of our favorite stops, Fife and Drum.

This unassuming little stand looks like just another drink stop, but be sure to swing by and check out the menu for some seriously fun eats. Fife and Drum is home to some items you won’t find anyplace else! But there are not-to-be missed classics here as well, like the cult favorite Smoked Turkey Legs.

Fife and Drum Tavern

If you’re a pretzel fan, you have three different varieties to choose from. The stuffed Jalapeno Cheese Pretzel has a great spicy kick! And you’ll also find the sweet Cream Cheese Pretzel (decadent!) and the Mickey Soft Pretzel (cute!) here, too. This is one of the few places in Disney World to find all of these kinds of pretzels sold in one spot.

UPDATE: Please note, you can still find all these pretzels in the American Adventure Pavilion; however, they are now located at the Block and Hans Craft Beer kiosk.

Jalapeno Cheese Pretzel!

There are also some amazingly tasty drinks here as well. We’ve told you about the Jim Beam Red Stag Lemonade, a wonderful little frozen drink with a punch, thanks to black cherry-flavored bourbon.

You can get your root beer float fix here, too, made with vanilla soft serve.

Root Beer Float

But the piece de resistance of slushies can also be found in this humble spot: I give you the American Dream! This incredible frozen drink combines [Read more…]

New Menu Item: Quinoa Salad at Tamu Tamu Refreshments in Animal Kingdom

We’ve got another great Animal Kingdom menu item to share with you thanks to a DFB Reader who was recently in the park!!

This yummy treat comes from Tamu Tamu Refreshments in the Africa area of AK — Quinoa Salad!

Tamu Tamu Refreshments offers good eats and cold drinks.

Tamu has been improving its menu for over a year now, and even though there’s no under-cover seating, it’s starting to be able to take its place with the other counter-service spots in Animal Kingdom when it comes to food quality!

South African Quinoa Salad

The relatively new menu shows the vegetarian Quinoa Salad selling for $8.19. A great deal for a full meal in Disney World!

Menu at Tamu Tamu Refreshments.

According to our reader, “This salad is made with fried tofu croutons, large cuts of red pepper, vine ripe tomatoes, feta cheese, cucumber, and kalamata olives….with quinoa and romaine lettuce!

The fresh squeezed lemon juice just makes this dressing!”

Quinoa Salad.

Other Goodies at Tamu Tamu Refreshments

For more great goodies at Tamu Tamu, check out this review of the Pulled Beef Sandwich, and this look at 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: Vegetarian Meal at Monsieur Paul’s in Epcot’s France Pavilion

Join me in welcoming guest author Courtney Ketzler from Omaha, NE, with a review of the brand new Monsieur Paul Restaurant. When we first published the Monsieur Paul menu, many folks were concerned about the complete lack of vegetarian dishes. Courtney found that this isn’t a problem after all!

Being a vegetarian in the real world can be hard. I live in Nebraska, and the dining choices here are, well, limited. Dining at Disney World is another story.

My boyfriend and I are vegetarians, and we both LOVE food. It’s the only art we can really consume, and Disney World is one of the best places to visit with dining restrictions. I have yet to run into a bad meal, and during my last trip, encountered some very pleasant surprises, the biggest of which being the newly opened Monsieur Paul in the France Pavilion at Epcot.

Monsieur Paul Restauarant in Epcot's France Pavilion

Atmosphere

When we arrived, there were several unhappy looking people waiting to get seated. The very frazzled looking hostess told us we were on time for our reservation, but the reservations were not on time — it might be a 30 minute to an hour wait. We were using the deluxe plan and didn’t really have any other 2 credit options, so we sat down and decided to wait.

About 10 minutes later, a very kind manager came by and offered us both Kir Royales for waiting. Of course, how could we turn that down?

Stairwell leading up to Monsieur Paul

Eats

The drinks were delicious, and we ended up getting seated within a few minutes after that. Our server was very nice, and offered to walk us through the menu. We let her know we were vegetarians, and she started to tell us about fish options. I explained we don’t eat fish, and she said she would go speak with the chef.

She came back and said “the chef has told me he will be able to make you both a salad and a plate of vegetables”. Needless to say, we weren’t too excited by how the meal was being described and were hoping for our money that it would be a bit more sophisticated. She reassured us by bringing the chef out, and as he started to describe the meal, our fears melted away.

I am going to try my best to remember everything that was described about the meal [Read more…]

Snack Series: Vegetable Barley Soup at Sunshine Seasons in Epcot

Well, it’s no secret around here that I love soup in Disney World!

It’s a filling treat, relatively healthy (well, compared to a cupcake or Mickey Bar, anyway), and pretty cheap most of the time!

And on a recent visit to Sunshine Seasons in Epcot’s The Land pavilion, I found another great option for those of us who are Disney soup-lovers. Here, you’ll often find two kinds of soup: one will always be the Vegetable Barley Soup (vegetarian), and the other will be a seasonal soup!

I decided to try the Vegetable Barley Soup

Soups of the Day

Since Sunshine Seasons is a cafeteria-style restaurant, simply ask the cast member to dish up a bowl for you at the soup station!

Vegetable Soup

As you can see, it’s served with a crisp bread accompaniment — just enough for dipping! The soup is chock full of veggies, and the broth (unlike some vegetable broth) was very flavorful.

While you might not expect soup to be a #1 Disney snack, sometimes it’s really nice to [Read more…]