Welcome guest author Sarah Gurung as she shares her character dining experience at Cinderella’s Royal Table in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World. Yay!!!
On my most recent trip to Walt Disney World, I wanted to plan lots of first experiences for myself and for my family, comprised of my husband and my five-year-old daughter. We booked our trip just before the 180 day mark, and I serendipitously found myself staring at an available Cinderella’s Royal Table breakfast Advance Dining Reservation (ADR) shortly thereafter. I couldn’t pass it up! In fact, over the next few months, I regularly checked back to see if we could get in even earlier when, low and behold, I was able to grab a pre-park opening ADR. Even better!
Cinderella’s Royal Table is one of those Disney World experiences that is truly exquisite. The setting is stunning, the food is delicious, and the entertainment is so fun — for kids of all ages, really.
Let’s start with the beauty that is the restaurant itself. The check-in desk is toward the back of the castle on the right. This process was efficient, and we were quickly invited into the foyer of the castle for our Cinderella meet-and-greet. We found the foyer to be low lit but plumb full of details: shields, tapestries, and gorgeous lighting.
Our meeting with Cinderella was a little rushed and confusing, but my daughter was able to snag an autograph, so she was happy. Unfortunately, because I thought we would receive a photo package at the end of the meal, I did not take any pictures of the lady herself (I was too disoriented by the bevy of details in the foyer and the rushed confusion). Come to find out, at least when we visited, a photo package was not gifted to diners. This was, I’m happy to say, the only disappointment for us. (Don’t worry — the photos still appear in your PhotoPass.) (Editor’s Note: Character meals no longer give photo packages with the price of the meal. Guests can take their own photos, have the photopass photographer take photos with the guest’s camera, or purchase photos or a Memory Maker package through Disney.)
As soon as we were finished with our meet-and-greet with Cinderella, our names were called (I’d like to be referred to as Lady Sarah all the time now, please), and we were ushered up the winding blue-carpeted staircase.
I was able to take this photo of the beautiful stained glass Cinderella that lights your way up the stairs.
When we entered the restaurant, I was immediately taken aback by its openness and by the bright light shining through stunning stained glass windows. The arched ceilings and heavy light fixtures are elegant and let you know that you are in a special place.
We were fortunate to be seated in the area adjacent to the massive windows, so we were able to catch glimpses of Fantasyland coming to life, but the main attraction is inside. Tables are pre-set with small plates, juice glasses, utensils, and mugs for coffee. Our server came by quickly with menus and coffee — and a wand and wishing star for my little diner.
Our server also explained that the kids’ breakfast is the traditional (eggs, sausage/bacon, and a Mickey waffle), although I have seen alternatives on the online menus. I let our server know that my daughter doesn’t eat beef or pork, and she mentioned that the restaurant did not have turkey or chicken sausage on site. She offered to replace the meat with fruit and to bring more of anything that my daughter wanted (we ended up requesting an extra waffle later in the meal).
Orange juice soon arrived, and we asked for apple juice as well. It came quickly — along with a dynamite plate of pastries. Check out this beauty!
The pastries were all sweet and delightful. There were five different optionson our plate: two chewy pecan numbers, a raspberry elephant ear, an apple treat, a cinnamon bun with raisins, and a Mickey shaped blueberry muffin. We loved them all, but for the grown ups, the pecan was the winner. My daughter preferred the simple blueberry muffin (unsurprisingly).
When the pastry plate arrived, my husband and I also ordered, and our food arrived shortly thereafter — about the same time as the princesses themselves! On our visit, we met Snow White, Ariel, Aurora, and Jasmine.
My daughter’s traditional breakfast featured a small portion of eggs, one mini Mickey waffle, and a bowl of fruit (mostly melon). It was all fairly standard, with the waffle being the biggest hit, of course.
The grown ups ordered some slightly more sophisticated fare. My husband was debating between the shrimp and grits and the quiche. Our server helpfully told him that she thought the shrimp and grits was a tiny portion and that the quiche was a better option. So my husband (who is really not picky) went with her suggestion. Look at this lovely breakfast.
So well plated. The colors were vibrant, and the composition was tight and professional. You can see the puff pastry corners poking out, as well as the dollop of goat cheese sauce. Inside the quiche was a healthy dose of mushrooms. I tried one bite, but not being a fan (at all) of goat cheese, I’ll leave the review to my husband. He said it was delicious and filling. He particularly loved the arugala and the bright red peppers, which he thought contrasted well with the savory eggs and cheese sauce.
I forgot to mention that at the time of our visit, I was twenty-nine-weeks pregnant and craving red meat, so the beef tenderloin was a no brainer for me. And boy, was it delicious.
A generous portion of beef alighted atop broccolini and a cheese and potato frittata. All of these components married well with the chive oil and the comforting cheese sauce.
I ordered my beef medium-well, and it was perfectly seasoned and relatively tender. I was able to cut it easily with a butter knife (or a little less easily with a fork). The salty, peppery spices were balanced perfectly so that I could still taste the meat itself.
The frittata was perhaps not something so lovely to look at once you cut into it, but it did have a tremendous flavor. I give credit to the massive chunks of potato that were distributed throughout it. What a great textural component. And lest I forget the vegetable, the broccolini was nicely al dente and perfect with the cheese sauce.
It’s possible that I was tempted to lick the plate.
A few minutes into our meal, our server arrived with a little surprise. She had sent out to a nearby restaurant to see if they had any turkey or chicken sausage — and they did! We appreciated that thoughtfulness. My daughter had lost interest in the sausage by then (and who could blame her with princesses milling about and wishes to make), but I had some of it. The casing was a little tough, but the hickory flavor was dynamite. I’m not sure where it came from, but it was terrific.
And since we were celebrating my daughter’s fifth birthday, our server also brought out this little treat.
It came with us in a to-go container and was happily consumed later in the day (after the frosting melted into frosting soup).
I really can’t say enough about this meal. It was worth the price to see the expression on my daughter’s face, and we thought the food was stellar. We left full and extremely happy (albeit without a photo package…), and if my daughter requests this again in the future, I won’t hesitate to set aside some of our budget to do it. After all, there’s simply nothing like being treated like royalty in the happiest place on earth.
Is Cinderella’s Royal Table on your Disney dining bucket list? Let us know in the comments below.