You know when you’re in EPCOT and it’s time to eat? And then you get SO overwhelmed because there are SO many good options? Yeah…been there!
Today, we’re stepping back inside EPCOT’s newest restaurant: Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Crafts, Drafts, and Barbecue in The American Adventure Pavilion. Will it be as good as the last time? Or perhaps even BETTER?! Let’s see how this BBQ joint is holding up a little over half a year after opening!
Regal Eagle is heavily themed on old-fashioned Americana. The story is that you’ve just so happened to arrive on the day of Sam the Eagle’s (yep, THAT Sam the Eagle of The Muppet Show fame!) Centennial barbecue cook-off. Lucky you!!
We still chuckle at the “salute to ALL cook-offs, but mostly barbecue!” Fans of the now-retired “The Muppets Present…Great Moments in American History“ over in Magic Kingdom’s Liberty Square will get the nod to Sam the Eagle’s song during the show — “Great Moments in History (But Only the American Parts!).”
The inside of the restaurant is pretty bland, theming-wise. A couple cast iron pots and copper pans decorate the walls along with some simple patriotic bunting.
This isn’t a spot you’d necessarily seem out for its stellar interior theming, but there is plenty of seating available both indoors and outdoors right now. Chairs have been removed from certain tables to discourage guests from sitting there to maintain social distancing. So, time to pick a table and get to chowing down.
The real draw for us is the copious outside patio area. Look at how nice this looks!
There aren’t TOO many outdoor quick-service options in World Showcase, so Regal Eagle’s large open-air patio, complete with an on-site smoker, is surely a welcome sight for many weary travelers as they make their way around the World. After all, the CDC still does recommend outdoor dining, when possible. Regal Eagle offers that and more.
Speaking of that on-site smoker, some of the meat is smoked right outside near those outdoor tables! So you can find a spot to sit and enjoy the delightful aroma of smoked meats and fire if they happen to be cooking on the smoker on your visit.
Regal Eagle has a unique smoking process (with its own warning signs and everything!), so get ready for some tasty eats.
The outdoor area is also notable for their patio bar area. Here, you can order a variety of mixed drinks wine, beers, and ciders, and speciality non-alcoholic drinks, like the frozen Iced Tea Lemonade we recently tried.
Regal Eagle, like most quick-service restaurants in Disney World right now, is heavily encouraging the use of Mobile Order. Once you’ve selected your items and paid in the app, you enter on the side of the building where the (currently closed) bathrooms are.
Then, you head up to your designated cashier to pick up your food once it’s ready!
The cashier space is much emptier without all of the people in line, but the theming is still quite patriotic. Make sure you say hey to Sam the Eagle (well, at least the spirit of him. Sam isn’t just hanging around watching you eat ribs!).
Due to safety measures put into place because of the pandemic, you can’t get your own drinks right now, but a Cast Member will get your beverage for you at the counter where you pick up your food.
The same is true of the sauces. You can still take a gander at the gloriously large selection of sauces (you know we’re suckers for sauce options!), but you’ll need to ask for individual sauce cups at the counter.
The Cast Members will be happy to get you any flavors that you want!
For the standard condiments though, they DO have individual packets available. So feel free to stock up on mustard, ketchup, and mayo.
Enough about sauces, we’re here for the meat!
While there’s been a couple of changes to the menu since the Regal Eagle first opened earlier this year, they’ve still got a pretty solid selection of items.
One item we were looking forward to when Regal Eagle first announced their menu was their burgers made with garlic toast for buns! What a clever (and messy sounding!) idea that we were READY to try. We picked up the BBQ Burger! It’s a 1/3 lb Angus burger on garlic toast, topped with BBQ pork, garlic aïoli, and a fried onion ring. It comes with your choice of side, too (hellooo Mac and Cheese!).
Ok guys, this burger was good. C’mon, it’s a burger on garlic toast, which is basically a dream come true. What’s not to like about that? Our sandwich had a super juicy patty — no overly well done hockey pucks here like we sometimes find on standard Disney burgers! We only had a small amount of pork on our sandwich but what was there was full of flavor and was cooked perfectly. It was super tender and very smoky! We also loved the crunch from the massive onion ring!
If you’re wondering, yes, your fingers will get a little greasy handing the garlic toast. There are somethings in this life worth getting your hands dirty for though. You can get this yummy burger with a side for $13.49.
Of course, we opted for the Mac and Cheese as our side. Pro tip: you can also snag it on it’s own for $4.99!
This was MUCH better than the first time we had it when Regal Eagle first opened. The first time we tried it, it was surprisingly bland and under-seasoned, so we were super impressed (and pleasantly surprised) with the flavor this time around. We were very pleased to see their mac game has gotten stronger as time has passed!
And finally, we wrapped up our meal with the Banana Pudding for $4.99. This wasn’t too much of a surprise, but this remains an A+ dish. While it’s simple, it’s a perfect dessert, and it definitely holds up to our first review! We still love it!
It’s simple but it works. If you’re a fan of old fashioned ‘nana pudding, this hits the spot nicely. It’s sweet but not too sweet and a great way to wrap up a heavier meal.
Can’t get enough of the Regal Eagle Smokehouse? Check out this new merch from one of our favorite BBQ joints!
Nosh or Not
You SHOULD grab a meal at Regal Eagle Smokehouse if…
- You LOVE BBQ, or meat, in general. They’ve got you covered.
- You’ve got picky eaters in your party but still want to eat in World Showcase.
- You want a large outdoor patio for dining or taking a break as you make your way around World Showcase
You should NOT grab a meal at Regal Eagle Smokehouse if…
- You’re looking for the absolute best BBQ in Disney World (while Regal Eagle is a close second, we suggest The Polite Pig in Disney Springs!).
- You’ve got vegetarians or vegans in your party. The plant-based options here are very limited.
- You’re looking for a new and exciting meal while you’re in World Showcase.
Overall, while we liked the burger, we’re not too sure we’d order the it again just because it IS a barbecue restaurant and there are a number of other great options. That said, there’s not a lot of options in EPCOT for folks looking for a familiar burger and fries. So if you’re a real burger fiend, go crazy, but we likely would opt for something that has a little more of that specialty pork or their other smoked meats in the future, like the Sliced Texas Beef Brisket Sandwich!
That said, our meal was awesome. The BBQ Burger was an excellent burger, and easily stands out in a sea of often overcooked burgers in Dinsey World. Add in the tasty Mac and Cheese and the Banana Pudding and you’ve got a pretty delightful lunch.
So far, we’ve loved Regal Eagle since it opened. It’s a winner in our books! The only downside is that EPCOT has a LOT of winners, so it really just makes our lunch or dinner decision that much harder. BBQ connoisseurs or guests turned off by the idea of more unique cuisines that can be found elsewhere in World Showcase will likely enjoy this spot. Plus, it’s a great location to stop for a break and a beverage or two on the patio.
As always, we’ll be bringing you all the Disney food reviews YOU need to know, so stay tuned to DFB!
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Have you eaten at Regal Eagle? What did you think? Tell us in the comments!