Look what just rolled into Disney Springs… the 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck!
Currently taking up residence in the Disney Springs Marketplace, the 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck is a new venture for the 4R Restaurant Group (home to the popular 4 Rivers Smokehouses in the Orlando area).
While Food Trucks are not new to Disney Springs, the 4R Cantina is the first non-Disney owned Food Truck to be regularly based in Disney Springs.
The 4 Rivers Smokehouses are well known in the area for serving up barbecue. However, 4 Rivers founder John Rivers shared the story behind the Food Truck’s cuisine. When Disney Springs approached Rivers with the idea of a partnership, it was understood that barbecue could not be the focus since The Polite Pig — operated by James and Julie Petrakis who are also known for their presence in the Orlando food scene — already serves up barbecue in Disney Springs.
So, Rivers was inspired to learn more about barbacoa, which takes traditional barbecue and layers it with Mexican flavors. Hence, the 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck!
You’ll find the new Food Truck just across from Ghirardelli, by Basin and World of Disney in the Marketplace.
The area it’s parked in offers a few fun, themed standing tables for guests.
You’ll find some paper towels and bottles of hot sauce at each table for you.
The set-up is simple, of course, as it is with all good food trucks…
… so you can go straight to diving into the menu!
Here’s how the build-your-own style entrees work: first, you pick your protein filling. Choices include Brisket Barbacoa, Nana’s Pork Sofrito (using the recipe from a woman Rivers met in Mexico who’s literally Nana), Chicken Tinga, and Grilled Tri-Tip Steak.
Black Beans and Rice serve a dual purpose in that it can serve as your protein, for instance, in a Burrito. But it can also serve as the base for a chosen meat, as you’ll read below.
Next? Decide how you’d like it served! In a bowl with Black Beans and Cilantro Rice? On Nachos or in Tacos or a Burrito Bowl? Maybe in a Squash Blossom Quesadilla? How about in a Taco Cone?
Note that the base options are served with accompaniments as you’ll find on the menu. Though they vary somewhat per dish, inclusions are things like pico de gallo, queso fresco, cilantro, jalapeno, salsa verde, and even guacamole for some dishes.
The Kids Menu features a Cheese Quesadilla.
Dessert options include Dulce De Leche Churro Balls and Dessert Nachos.
And, of course, you can also grab something cold to wash everything down.
We obviously couldn’t resist anything called a Taco Cone!
But, of course, we grabbed a few other dishes, too 😉 .
We ordered the Taco Cone filled with the beef Brisket Barbacoa.
The absolutely huge, crispy shell is further packed with shredded lettuce, guacamole, sour cream, pico de gallo, queso, cilantro, jalapeno, and a lime wedge… whew!
Though technically it’s quite portable, the MASSIVE cone is so full of meat and fixings that — at least at first — it’s best to stay put and enjoy.
But we did enjoy the tasty barbacoa (which carries a nice little kick).
The Taco Cone is definitely the best deal for the price due to the sheer amount of food.
We topped our Nachos with Nana’s Pork Sofrito.
Additional accompaniments here include black beans, queso, pico de gallo, salsa verde, shredded lettuce, guacamole, sour cream, jalapeno, and cilantro.
The Nachos were good and the toppings were plentiful, but the dish didn’t stand out the way the Taco Cone did with its more unique form. And while the pork was tender and flavorful, it was not as memorable as the barbacoa.
Dessert Nachos (Chocolate Hazelnut Spread Nachos) start with flour tortilla chips tossed in cinnamon sugar.
Then they are drizzled with Nutella and piled high with strawberries, pineapple and blackberries.
The Nutella is served warm, giving a boost to this already awesome dish. These are terrific.
Dulce de Leche Churro Balls are the other dessert option.
These serve up the classic cinnamon-sugar-meets-fried-dough flavors of a churro, and pairs them with a dipping sauce. The Churro Balls offer a little crunch on the outside surrounding a very soft center.
So, they’re yummy, for sure. But the hero here is that dipping sauce! It’s like a creamy cinnamon sauce with a hint of caramel. (And, by the way, it would make a killer frosting on cinnamon rolls.)
It’s good to know that, as of this evening (August 21, 2018) the 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck will accept the Disney Dining Plan. All entrees come with a soda (or a beer for of-age guests) for one Counter Service credit for guests on the Plan. Each of the desserts will be snack credits.
Nosh or Not?
Sidle up to the 4R Cantina if:
- You’d like to see how a local Barbecue favorite translates to Mexican fare
- You’re craving a giant taco cone in Disney springs
- You simply must get your hands on those dessert nachos
Skip this spot if:
- You’d like a table-service meal…or even a meal where you get to sit down while you dine
- The other food trucks and counter service locations in Disney Springs are more appealing (there are SO. MANY.)
- You’re not a Mexican food fan
And note, we’re hearing from some of our friends in food service that, in their opinion, the truck doesn’t quite live up to the hype when it comes to flavor profiles, so that’s good to take into account. But we enjoyed the eats we tried just fine.
The 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck is clearly run by seasoned pros. The food is great, and it’s fun that visitors to the Orlando area who may not have the chance to venture outside of Disney World can still get a taste of some local fare!
Something to note: The 4R Cantina Barbacoa menu stems from the same passion that has earned 4 Rivers Smokehouses some of the culinary world’s highest accolades, including recently being named “America’s Best Barbecue Chain” by The Daily Meal. The 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck at Disney Springs is the only 4 Rivers location to offer service seven days a week – including Sunday.
As such, this location will be part of the 4R “Barbecue Ministry,” all net proceeds from the Food Truck’s sales every Sunday will support The 4R Foundation, which in 2017 funded more than 950 local schools, churches and charitable organizations. (All other 4 Rivers Smokehouse locations will remain closed on Sundays.)
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The 4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck is currently in the Disney Springs Marketplace. Check out the area in our DFB YouTube Video!