Listen. I don’t know who needs to hear this, but the world is very different right now, mmm-kay? And eating INDOORS where it’s super PEOPLE-Y and there’s all that RECIRCULATED AIR may not be your favorite activity at the moment.
If you’re nodding your head right now (and, tbh, even if you’re not, because this place is worthwhile regardless of your current global pandemic status), settle in to hear about our recent favorite hangout in Disney World to eat OUTSIDE in the fresh, un-contaminated air!
Disney’s Wilderness Lodge is a beautiful resort inspired by national parks and cabins in the Pacific Northwest. It’s here you’ll find rustic eats, a breathtaking lobby, and even a real (well, Disney-real) geyser! We recently stopped by to take in the grand architecture and share some bites at Geyser Point Bar and Grill. Take a walk in the woods with us as we rustle up some grub!
Geyser Point is an outdoor bar and grill (hence the name) with expansive views of Disney World’s Bay Lake. Like most Disney World restaurants, a few atmospheric elements changed upon reopening. Since it’s currently still encouraged to dine in open-air settings when possible, Geyser Point is an ideal location to grab a drink or a light meal, and we stopped by soon after reopening once already! Let’s do a quick recap of some of the things that are new to Geyser Point Bar & Grill!
Adhering to the new health and safety protocols, Geyser Point is practicing physical distancing at the restaurant. Some tables are unavailable, and seating is spaced further out to create distance between travel groups.
That being said, there is still plenty of bar seating, covered tables, and cozy benches that host a glorious view of the lake! The cedar and stone design creates a Northwest vibe, and the surrounding flora and fauna really set the scene. And I’m telling you, sitting here at sunset enjoying a cocktail and a charcuterie with your friends is the BALM FOR THE SOUL YOU NEED RIGHT NOW. (Sorry to yell.)
Honestly, the view alone is worth visiting!
To account for production shortages and/or social distancing in the kitchens (we’ve heard lots of stories from Cast Members and Chefs), many Disney World restaurants are offering limited menus. The walk-up counter-service window at Geyser Point is closed at this time at well. That said, many fan favorites are still available on the Rustic Fare menu!
The cocktail menu here is expansive! There are plenty of margaritas, mules, and tropical drinks to choose from. You’ll find all your typical “Disney Bar Menu” drinks mixed with a few drinks unique to the location.
To start, we ordered the WhipperSnapper Sour for $15. This cocktail is really nice and refreshing, especially when you’re outside baking in the Florida heat (remember that whole open-air thing? The restaurant has copious fans under the awning but it can still get a bit muggy on warmer days!). It’s made with only two ingredients: WhipperSnapper Whiskey and sweet-and-sour mix.
You really gotta like sour mix to enjoy it! We ordered this cocktail before, and, as always, it packs a powerful pucker! It’s a great choice for someone who doesn’t want a sweet cocktail and prefers a sour drink to sip!
We also tried the Northwest Iced Tea for $14. This cocktail is Geyser’s version of the classic Long Island Iced Tea. It’s mixed with 44° North Idaho Potato Vodka, Bacardi Superior Rum, Aviation Gin (this is the brand that is partially owned by actor Ryan Reynolds!), Cointreau, and sweet-and-sour mix with a splash of Coke.
This is a fairly standard Long Island and the only true “Northwest” flavor here is possibly the potato vodka or gin. It wasn’t incredibly memorable, so out of the two cocktails, it’s not our first choice. If you’re a die-hard fan of Long Islands though, you should be pleased with this strong drink. There are plenty of other creative cocktails on the menu that we’d be willing to try in the future (don’t twist our arms, geez)!
OK on to the eats. On this visit we checked in a few of our old favorites. We can’t visit Geyser Point without ordering the Cheesy Barbecue Brisket dip! We’ve had this dip several times, and it’s absolutely one of our favorites. (No joke, on this evening we had three DFB reporters dining together. One came late, and the other two had already eaten an entire brisket dip on their own. So the third reporter just ordered another round. It’s what you DO!) The appetizer is an ooey-gooey dip baked with provolone, cheddar, jalapeños, and brisket.
As an appetizer, it’s meant to be shareable (if you’re feeling generous), and it comes with house-made chips for dipping. YAS. The app is $11, and it’s just as tasty as we remember. The spice from the jalapeños balances out the well-seasoned brisket really nicely. It’s cheesy, it’s meaty, and it’s v. delish.
The biggest issue with this guy, though, is that it IS a bit small IMHO. I mean, this won’t stand in for your whole meal, and if you share it with more than one other person you’re all gonna get like two chips’ worth.
We also had the Charcuterie Board again to round out our appetizers (if you read DFB often, you know meat and cheese is one of the fastest ways to our hearts!). This dish comes with toasted sourdough slices, prosciutto, salami, shaved Parmesan Reggiano, arugula, mini pickles, honey grain mustard, and a jar of pâté-like duck rillette.
It’s a substantial app that’s a great choice for someone who doesn’t want to eat a crazy rich appetizer like the Cheesy Barbecue Brisket dip. We do wish it came with more cheeses to pair with our meats and pickles. What can we say? We LOVE cheese!
The last time we visited, we were too full to order an entree. This time, we came prepared with empty tummies and ordered the Bison Cheeseburger. The cheeseburger is $16 and comes topped with bacon, sweet crispy onion straws, marionberry sauce, lettuce, tomato, and garlic aioli. It’s served with a side of crispy lightly-battered waffle fries.
This bison patty was super juicy and not too gamey. It’s always been a winner for us, surprisingly! So much flavor in this usually very lean meat. We’ve always been super satisfied with this hearty burger patty!
Now, there are a lot of flavors incorporated into this burger! Entrees like this can sometimes fall flat when the tastes differ so much and there’s just so much happening in your mouth at once. We found that the contrast of the sweet marionberry and the saltiness of the onion straws, bacon, and garlic aioli really balanced things out nicely. It’s a really interesting balance of textures and a variety of unique flavors.
You’ll see below the marionberry is certainly noticeable once cut, but the sweet-tart berry sauce is really what makes this burger sing. Marionberries are a type of blackberry unique to the Pacific Northwest known for being slightly sweeter and juicer that the blackberries you might find in your local grocery store.
And of course, we can’t say no to a good waffle fry! These fries were especially crispy and well-seasoned. Bravo, Geyser Point!
Ok, on to dessert! We’d like to say that our experience at Geyser was a homerun. The desserts, however, were a little lackluster. We first tried the Campfire Brownie for $6. We’ve had this brownie before and it’s fine, but there are better desserts nearby. That said, if you’re really craving chocolate, we suggest heading inside Wilderness Lodge and grabbing the Campfire Cupcake from Roaring Fork instead.
We also gave the Seasonal Pie another try for $5.99. This dessert made our “favorite cute little pies” list this year. It’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like. It’s a cute little pie! The filling is swapped out regularly (be sure to ask what’s on the menu before ordering!), and this time it was filled with apples and cranberries.
These are basically counter-service desserts, and the flavors are a little underwhelming.
Don’t get us wrong! It’s pretty good, and we wouldn’t say no if you gave us one. It just kinda tastes like a store-bought, frozen pie. Sorry tiny pie, we heart you but we need more out of this relationship! 🙂
Nosh or Not
You might want to dine at Geyser Point Bar and Grill if:
- You want a good appetizer and cocktail, paired with a spectacular lake view.
- You stopped into Wilderness Lodge for a visit and want to hang out for a bit and enjoy the atmosphere.
- You want to chow on some Pacific-Northwest inspired grub and love trying new meats like bison!
- You want to eat OUTDOORS.
You might want to skip Geyser Point Bar and Grill if:
- You want air conditioning. Yes, it’s October, but it’s still really hot in Florida! The shaded tables offer some respite from the sun, but sometimes that’s not enough.
- You’re looking for an incredible dessert. There’s plenty of delish Disney World treats to be had elsewhere!
- You want a swanky lounge atmosphere. The place is really nice, but it’s more of a “casual outdoor dining” venue!
There’s a reason we frequently stop by this little bar by the water! For a small outdoor lounge, it has some really nice offerings. The cocktails are always kickin’ and the selection is huge. The brisket dip is top-notch and we’ll continue to order it again and again. The Bison Cheeseburger is one of the better burgers we’ve had on Disney World property. Yes, we had our complaints about the desserts, but there is plenty of other good food to enjoy!
And can you beat that view?? It’s really difficult to find a quiet spot that’s hidden from the crowds and noise at Disney World. This lounge offers guests a place to escape from the madness. You can cozy up in a comfy seat, sip on a cocktail, and watch a glorious Florida sunset. The location is really what makes this place a repeatable venue. The atmosphere is beautiful and offers a little peace and quiet on your vacation.
Don’t forget, right now Disney’s official stance on visiting hotels is that you either have to have a dining reservation at that location or a hotel reservation in order to visit a Disney resort. Several bars and lounges have been added to Disney’s new walk-up waitlist reservation option on the My Disney Experience app, and hopefully Geyser Point will be added in the future! If you’re not able to visit Geyser Point due to these restrictions, there are several similar options in Disney Springs where you can eat outside and enjoy apps and cocktails! We can highly recommend The Boathouse’s dock and of course WINE BAR GEORGE!
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Have you been to Geyser Point Bar and Grill? Let us know in the comments!