For many guests, dining at Cinderella’s Royal Table is at the top of their Disney World bucket list!
Located inside Cinderella Castle in Magic Kingdom, the incredible atmosphere and opportunity to meet the Disney Princesses have traditionally been the main selling points of this restaurant. But, upon initial reopening, the princesses are no longer stopping by for guests meet-and-greets — although Cinderella may make an appearance from a distance. So, is Cinderella’s Royal Table worth visiting even without the chance to meet the Disney Princesses? Let’s dive in!
As mentioned, Cinderella’s Royal Table is located inside Cinderella Castle. Dining at this restaurant is the only way guests are able to enter the castle — outside of receiving an extremely rare invite to the Cinderella Castle Suite.
There is a check-in desk near the entrance to Fantasyland from the passage through Cinderella Castle, and plexiglass has now been added around the desk.
Mobile Dine Check-In is available for this location, so we were able to check-in with our phone. We then received a text message when our table was available.
When we entered the restaurant, we noticed a sign informing guests that “castle royalty” may make a surprise visit. Guests are asked to remain seated and have their cameras ready.
The foyer on the first floor is decorated with artwork, tapestries, and topiaries fit for the royal setting.
Prior to the closure, guests were able to wait in line on the first floor to have their photo taken with Cinderella. But, since she isn’t meeting with guests at the moment, there wasn’t much action happening on the first floor.
Even though Cinderella isn’t currently meeting with guests, there are still plenty of gorgeous details to take in while standing in the foyer. If you look closely, you might even spot Jaq and Gus up on one of the ledges!
The dining room is located on the second floor of the castle, and there are both stairs and an elevator available for guests to use. The spiral staircase has directional arrows to show guests which side to use.
If you take the stairs, you’ll spot this pretty Cinderella stained glass window on your way up.
There is also an elevator available that is fairly small, but at least it isn’t a long journey up to the dining room.
And much like the first floor, the dining room is also fit for royalty.
If you gaze up, you’ll spy the vaulted ceilings and colorful flags which give the dining room a bright and open feel.
The stained glass windows provide guests with a view of Fantasyland down below.
The tables were spaced out to allow for distancing and some tables had signs that indicated they were to remain empty.
We also spotted hand sanitizer available in the dining room.
Remember the sign near the entrance informing us that “castle royalty” might make an appearance?? Well, Cinderella did in fact stop by to welcome us from a distance! There was a special announcement made before she appeared so guests were prepared and could grab their cameras.
Cinderella can’t stop for photos or autographs, and she would only make appearances for a few minutes at a time. The servers don’t come out during this time and guests are told to remain seated, so Cinderella is the only one up and moving during her visit.
She was constantly moving during her visits to the dining room, and she stayed within half of the upper-level dining area. There are two small staircases to the lower level of the dining room and Cinderella stopped there to wave and twirl for pictures before making her exit.
During our meal, we saw her once about every 30 minutes, although she could visit more or less frequently since she doesn’t have pre-scheduled times to appear. Since she only walks through a small section of the restaurant, keep in mind that you could end up being pretty far away from her when she visits which could be disappointing, especially if you have small kiddos in tow who don’t understand why they can’t get closer.
Since Cinderella isn’t able to stop for photos or autographs at the moment, we received a pre-signed autograph card from her instead.
Here’s a look at the artwork on the back of the card!
Heads up if you’ve got kiddos in tow — this spot was known for handing out fun extras to diners like plastic wands and “Wishing Stars” (AKA plastic stars on your table to…make a wish on? If you’ve ever dined here, you likely keep finding these in the bottom of your junk drawer like we do!). At this time, the same goodies aren’t available. Now, before the clock strikes midnight, let’s talk FOOD!
Cinderella’s Royal Table offers guests a pre-fixe meal that includes an appetizer, entree, and dessert. The current price is slightly reduced due to the lack of character meet-and-greets — it will run you $62 per adult or $37 per child 3-9 years old, plus tax and 18% added gratuity. There are several beverages available that are included in the price of the meal, including fountain drinks, coffee, tea, milk, and juice, and beer and wine are available for an additional cost. We received a QR code that allowed us to pull up a digital menu.
The Kids’ Menu, like many Disney Kids’ Menus today, is set up as a “Create-Your-Own” meal, where kids can select each component of their meal, including sides.
There was a wine list available as well.
For the first course, called the “Appetizer of the Court,” we ordered the Castle Salad, which consists of hearty mixed greens, toasted pumpkin seeds, Riesling-marinated golden raisins, Pink Lady apples, and maple-balsamic vinaigrette.
The greens were a mix of lettuce, spinach, arugula, and frisée and they were well coated in the sweet and tangy dressing. The raisins were one of our favorite parts — we liked the pop of sweetness they added and the extra flavor from the marinade made them stand out.
The pumpkin seeds added a nice crunch and nuttiness to the salad. There were just a few thinly sliced apples mixed in and they were fresh and crisp, as if they were sliced to order. Our salad also had thinly sliced red onions as well, even though they weren’t in the description. This was a very generous portion and hearty salad!
Since we dined there twice on the two first days the restaurant was open, we were also able to try the Charcuterie appetizer, which came with serrano ham, chorizo sausage, pork and duck fat spread, housemade pickles, and stone ground mustard.
Even though we know charcuterie just means meat, we still wish there was some cheese in the mix here! But the meats were all quite good, and we were particularly impressed with the pork and duck fat spread. The mustard was very vinegary and the pickles added a nice crunch. Heads up that the chorizo wasn’t spicy, which is good news for the heat-averse. We would suggest asking for extra crostinis because ours didn’t come with many. Overall this was a decent appetizer and we were happy with it, but it definitely wasn’t the best charcuterie we’ve ever had!
Now for the second course, called the “Entrees Royal.” First, we tried the Roasted All Natural Chicken Breast, which is pan-roasted chicken and fingerling potatoes with haricot verts and spinach in a leek-mustard cream sauce.
The chicken was a mixture of white and dark meat, and it was juicy on the inside with crispy skin on the outside. The potatoes were super tender and buttery. The haricot verts — A.K.A. green beans — were well-cooked and seasoned, although we weren’t given very many.
The sauce was rich and salty, and we thought it added a lot of great flavor to each of the items on the plate. The leeks are the strips on top of the chicken that look like fried onions, and we thought they were a nice touch! Overall, we enjoyed this dish and we found it pretty filling! But was it worth $62? Mmmm prolly not.
For the next entree, we went with the Tenderloin of Beef, which is grilled beef tenderloin, celery root mash, seasonal vegetables, and sauce bordelaise.
We ordered our steak medium-rare and it was cooked appropriately with a nice char on the outside. We really liked the bordelaise sauce, which added nice flavor to each of the ingredients on the plate. The seasonal vegetable we received was asparagus, which was cooked but still snappy.
The celery root mash was mixed with potatoes and it was very creamy. Overall, this was a good entree, but nothing extraordinarily unique. And while we wouldn’t say we were disappointed with it, it wouldn’t beat out the steaks at most other signature restaurants around Disney World.
Now, for the desserts, or “Finales” as they’re listed on the menu. First, we tried The Clock Strikes Twelve which is a dark chocolate mousse with a dark chocolate ganache served with a raspberry coulis.
This dessert is super pretty and it might be the most “Instagrammable” item on the menu! The richness of the dark chocolate hit us right away. The mousse was light and airy while the ganache was creamy and decadent. We enjoyed adding the (small amount of) raspberry coulis sauce to our bites to add an extra layer of flavor, and the blueberries were a nice, fresh addition. The clock on top of the dessert is made of white chocolate and it plays up the theme of the restaurant perfectly.
And finally, we also ordered Jaq & Gus, which is whipped cheesecake with seasonal flavors and garnishes.
The seasonal flavor for us was pumpkin, and this was basically a deconstructed pumpkin cheesecake. It came with big squares and crumbles of gingerbread, plus a caramel drizzle and pumpkin seeds. We really enjoyed this dessert and it was one of our favorite parts of the meal! There were a ton of autumnal spices and flavors, with pumpkin and ginger standing out the most. The pumpkin filling was really creamy, and the pumpkin seeds added a nice crunch.
So, while we didn’t have any major misses as far as the food goes, there were definitely some standouts (yay, dessert!) and some we wouldn’t choose again (we’d pass on the steak). This is pretty par for the course at Cinderella’s Royal Table, so I guess it’s good to know things haven’t changed much in the food department.
Nosh or Not?
Cinderella’s Royal Table might be for you if:
- It’s on your Disney bucket list to spend time inside Cinderella Castle.
- Your kiddos (or you) are major Disney Princess fans — particularly Cinderella at the moment, since she’s the only royal making appearances for now. (But, honestly, if your kids are going to be upset that they can’t MEET Cindy, going to this restaurant might backfire.)
- You’re looking for a quintessential Disney meal — it doesn’t get much more Disney than eating in the castle!
You might want to skip Cinderella’s Royal Table if:
- You’re on a tight budget. Even with the (slightly) reduced price, this meal is still basically highway robbery.
- You prefer to sit down for a quiet, peaceful meal. There are typically tons of kiddos around at Cinderella’s Royal Table and things can get hectic, especially when Cinderella pops up!
- You’re looking for the best signature dining at Disney. While all of our food was…fine…this time around, there are definitely better charcuteries, steaks, etc. around Disney World.
While things are obviously running a little different than normal at the moment, we still had a decent experience overall. The food was slightly better than we remembered, but it still feels like “wedding banquet food.” Maybe that’s your thing? But for $62 I’d expect something more than mass-produced dishes. So while we still aren’t sure the food justifies the cost itself, the atmosphere and location are still one-of-a-kind. And if dining in the castle is important to you (it should be — it’s kind of awesome to get to see inside), it should still be on that bucket list.
We had excellent service, and it didn’t feel as rushed as it usually does when there are more princesses and a more strict schedule to keep (usually at character meals, Cast Members seem to seat an area of the restaurant — in this case the whole restaurant — run the characters through, and then turn the tables as quickly as possible).
The modified visits from Cinderella were running smoothly. Although it is worth noting, she could be very far away from you, so much so in some cases that we aren’t sure we would really classify this as a “character meal” at the moment.
So is it worth that astronomical cost? Well, we’ve always said that Cindy’s should probably be a one-and-done for most people. And we still feel that way. But discounting the price just $13 isn’t really enough for everything you lose here right now. So if you CAN wait until the restaurant is operating more closely to its pre-closure experience — when you can meet five princesses and get autographs and take pictures — I’d recommend holding off on visiting until then. But if your upcoming trip to Disney World will be your one and only, then, by all means, book yourself a table.
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Have you dined at Cinderella’s Royal Table? Share your experience in the comments!