Attention CHOCOLATE LOVERS! (And ice cream fans! And people who love caramel and pretty much anything that tastes yummy!) Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop is now reopen in Disney Springs!
Mostly, that is… the Soda Fountain portion is now open to guests looking for some sweet treats. The Chocolate Shop (retail) section remains closed for the moment. But we’re here to show you around the newly reopened space, check out the new safety measures, and grab a (HUGE) sundae while we’re at it. So, let’s head in!
Aside from the lovely Ghirardelli sign and a not-so-small reminder of what’s in store (LOTS of ice cream, as evidenced by the larger-than-life sundae prop), you’ll also notice hand sanitizer available right when you enter.
You’ll also see plenty of clear reminders around the store to “Please keep a safe distance.”
Additional signage provides more reminders of the new safety measures for shopping and dining in Disney Springs, which also include the required wearing of face masks, more distancing notices, and more.
There is no indoor dining available at the moment, with the inside tables sectioned off from the ordering area.
But even though the indoor dining and the store part are closed, you can still pick up some of those classic Ghirardelli Squares!
And another noticeable difference is the reduced menu upon the reopening. Previously, the paper lists guests picked up to peruse was packed with a huge selection of sundaes and more (including the family-sized Earthquake).
But things are starting back up with a more limited selection for the time being featuring three Sundaes, ice cream scoops and some toppings, shakes, and cocoa — including the Frozen Hot Cocoa in time for the rising Florida temps!
So it was impossible NOT to notice the intriguing Gold Rush Caramel Sundae — designated as NEW!
But, wait a minute… how can it be new? We’ve had a Gold Rush Sundae at Ghirardelli before. (Okay, more than one — it was a favorite!)
When we asked about it, it was confirmed that this Gold Rush is indeed a new version, featuring (obviously) Salted Caramel instead of the old Gold Rush Peanut Butter Sundae (pictured below) that was once one of our absolute favorites.
Yeah, that’s it…. and it was a beautiful thing. Of course, since Ghirardelli stopped serving up peanut butter as an ingredient in 2015, this is not a huge surprise — we haven’t had the “old” Gold Rush in Disney World for years. (The Disneyland Ghirardelli location did continue to be the only spot to serve it for a while.)
So, how is the new Gold Rush different? Well…
Instead of peanut butter as the toppings star, this one serves up oodles of caramel sauce over vanilla ice cream with sea salt, diced almonds, and whipped cream. It’s topped with a White Chocolate Caramel Ghirardelli Square.
Before we dig in, here’s how serving works now. After placing your order, you step outside to wait. A cast member brings your treat on a tray with your spoon and a napkin.
You, in turn, take the whole thing, including the tray. (It’s also worth mentioning that cast members were wiping things down the entire time.)
And NOW… here’s a full look at the NEW Gold Rush Caramel Sundae!
I mentioned those “oodles” of caramel, right? Check it out… they’re not playing around!
And you know what? As much as we loved the old Gold Rush… there’s really nothing to complain about with the new one, either! In fact, it’s better than just “no complaints.”
It’s really, REALLY good. It’s flavorful, while not being as rich as the chocolate sundaes (in a good way, what with it being SO HUGE.) The sea salt brings some terrific balance to the super sweet caramal, and the almonds — which are plentiful — really deliver a nice crunch.
All in all… things are still decadent and delicious at Ghirardelli’s! We’re still checking out all of the recently reopen shops and restaurants around Disney Springs. And speaking of reopening… Walt Disney World theme parks have received the official approval to open to guests starting on July 11th. You can read more about the reopening and catch up on all the latest news by visiting any of the links below.
Will you be trying a new Gold Rush Sundae? Please let us know with a comment!