It’s been quite a while since we’ve visited Tony’s Town Square Restaurant in the Magic Kingdom!
When we have visited for full reviews in the past, we have not been particularly happy with our experience. While the atmosphere has been charming and is perfect for Lady and the Tramp fans, the food usually seems to fall short. With other incredible options in the park like Crystal Palace (which recently reopened), or Be Our Guest Restaurant, we’re back to see if Tony’s Town Square is worth your time and money!
Opening as Town Square Cafe with Magic Kingdom on Main Street USA in 1971, Tony’s Town Square Restaurant has a rich history. The cafe was Victorian-themed with upscale eats like the Monte Cristo and Jambalaya. After companies like Oscar Mayer and Hormel ended sponsorships with the restaurant in 1989, Disney decided to do an extensive refurb and turned the joint into what is now called Tony’s Town Square Restaurant! Taking themes from the 1955 Disney film Lady and the Tramp, the menu changed from upscale eats to Italian food.
You can’t miss the sign out front of the restaurant featuring Tony himself! When you walk in, there is grand red carpet with gold accents. To comply with health and safety procedures in the parks, there are distancing markers leading up to the check-in desk.
Tony’s offers Mobile Check-In which allows guests to check in for their reservation without visiting the front desk. You’ll find this feature on the My Disney Experience app, and you can learn more about the online check-in process here.
While you wait for your table, there are a few places to sit. Sections of the sofas are blocked off so that guests can socially distance. These sofas are somewhat unique and fun. They remind us of seating you’d find while waiting to get into an old-style theater, which makes sense — Tony’s is next door to the Town Square Theater! In fact, both locations share the same carpeting and wood paneling in their lobby areas.
There are distancing dots for parties waiting to enter the restaurant.
When we received our text that our table was ready, we were taken into the restaurant where we passed the stunning Lady and the Tramp Fountain!
The statue of them admiring each other, mixed with the flowing water and flowers makes us AWWW every time we see it.
It’s clear in the design that there is a lot of inspiration from the iconic Disney film. Through this stained glass window, you can see the silhouettes of the two main characters sharing that sweet spaghetti moment!
The walls are filled with framed scenes from the movie…
…ALL over the place!
Even the bathrooms are themed with Lady on the door of the women’s bathroom…
…and the Tramp is on the door of the men’s restroom!
There are three main dining areas in the restaurant. The indoor dining room, the one with that fountain we showed you, features a classic black and white checkered floor with browns and deep greens as part of the color scheme.
Then there’s the GORGEOUS indoor sun-room! This room has the best of both worlds: natural sunlight and air conditioning. This is especially helpful for those super hot Florida days.
Then, there is the outdoor patio, which is a spot we recommend asking for if there is good weather on the day you visit! Although parades are not currently happening, there are character cavalcades! And this is the perfect spot to watch those go by while you dine.
We were seated in the main indoor dining room, but as we were walking to our table, we noticed several that were blocked off as unavailable. We’ve seen this table sign at restaurants all over Disney World, so it wasn’t much of a surprise to see them here, too.
And then we made it to our table! The restaurant has booth seats and chairs available, and although we were next to a group at this table, there was a bit of plexiglass between booths.
The table was not set when we arrived, but as soon as we sat down, our server brought out a cloth napkin with utensils and a small plate for the bread that was about to come!
Overall, the atmosphere is charming and beautiful. It’s not as aggressive in theming as other spots in Disney World, but it has a lovely vibe to it, similar in vibe to the Plaza Restaurant a short walk away down Main Street, U.S.A.. There is no doubt that any Lady and the Tramp fans would oppose the decor in here, and it’s stayed mostly the same over the years. Now that we’ve gone on about the restaurant’s looks, let’s dive into what we’re here for: the food!
Tony’s Town Square offers classic Italian food. Nothing too special on the menu, just your traditional chain Italian eatery-style cuisine. The menu is modified a bit at this time, offering slightly fewer options than you would have seen before the closures. The appetizers include soup, salad, fried mozzarella, and a Caprese.
On the entree menu, you’ll find familiar favorites like chicken parmesan, fettuccini alfredo, pizza, and spaghetti and meatballs. That means you and your loved ones can recreate that iconic spaghetti scene from Lady and the Tramp! (C’mon, you know you were thinking it! 😊)
Sticking with the Italian theme, the desserts include tiramisu, cannolis, gelato, and a plant-based Italian strawberry shortcake.
The kids’ menu is very similar to the main menu, but does offer some kiddo gold standard eats like grapes, apples, and mac & cheese. Tony’s also offers several wines and beers, as well as soft drinks and Joffrey’s coffee.
As soon as we sat down, bread was brought to our table. Tony’s serves Focaccia Bread with Herbed Olive Oil for dipping. The bread was fresh and paired nicely with the oil, but there wasn’t much to it. The olive oil is a nice change from the butter served at most locations but is a fairly common accompaniment at most Disney World Italian eateries.
Since this location offers specialty coffee (espresso, a latte, or cappuccino), we decided to grab a Latte with cinnamon dusted on top.
This was a pretty solid latte, but really there was nothing too special about it. The cinnamon was a nice touch. We usually love Joffrey’s in the parks, so it was nice to have this with our meal, but definitely not something we’d seek out otherwise.
For an appetizer, we ordered the Caprese. This dish is $12 and is made of Vine-ripened Tomatoes, Fresh Mozzarella, and Balsamic Glaze.
This dish was fine. The tomatoes were as ripe as they could be for non-tomato season, and they were big and juicy. There were a few small cherry tomatoes mixed in as well. The basil on top was very fresh and was a nice garnish to the dish as a whole, however we wish there was more cheese. But not this cheese. We could tell the cheese on our plate had been salted and it really didn’t need to be. Rather than tasting cheese, it felt like we ate a glob of salt.
We usually love Caprese but when it’s an even mix of slices of tomato and mozzarella so you get equal parts of both in each bite. Again, that lack of cheese hurt this Caprese, but with the saltiness, we’re not sure we would want more! Maybe we just got a heavy-handed cook who went a little crazy with the finishing salt, but it was definitely worth noting the saltiness here. Even though it was salty, it was still a light appetizer.
If you want to try a little something before your main course but don’t want to get too full, this isn’t a bad option. But $12 for a few wedges of tomato and salt cheese is a bit steep.
Because it has been a while since we’ve dined here, we tried not one, but two of the entrees! We decided to go with the Scampi Pasta and the Shrimp Fettuccini Alfredo.
We started with the Scampi Pasta, which is Freshly Made Linguini Pasta tossed with Shrimp, Mussels, Spinach, Tomatoes, and Onions in an Herb Sauce. Some positives about this dish are that the noodles were cooked very well and we loved the fresh veggies!
If you love seafood, you will probably like this dish. You get a good selection of seafood in one entree. But if the thought of mussels or seafood makes you nauseous, or you’re not into having big shells in your pasta, you’ll want to pick something else. After we tasted this, we began noticing a trend from Tony’s. The dishes have WAY too much salt! Salt can enhance dishes or it can ruin them, and in this case it ruined them. No matter what was in our bite, it was like a salt explosion in our mouths. For $27, the portion was huge and shareable, but just not great.
Next, we tried the Shrimp Fettuccini Alfredo. Simply put, this dish is made of Shrimp with Fettuccini and Alfredo Sauce. To start out positive, the noodles were cooked well in this entree also! Unfortunately, the salt bug got hold of this plate too.
Aside from being overly-salty, the sauce was rich and creamy, and for that reason was our favorite of the two entrees. The shrimp were also cooked pretty well (though they’d have been nicer with more of a sear on them). This plate is $24 which is a pretty standard price for a big serving of pasta at a table service Italian restaurant. But again, you could probably find better at your local Olive Garden. If you LOVE Italian food, these entrees may make you a little sad.
So the appetizer was a bit disappointing, and neither of the entrees dazzled us, so there was only one hope left: the dessert! We decided to try the Italian Strawberry Shortcake. This plant-based dessert sounded promising because it is made of Vanilla Cake with Whipped Topping, Balsamic-marinated Strawberries, and Fresh Basil.
Luckily, we were pretty impressed with this dessert! Surprisingly NOT too salty (hey, at this point, you never know! 😂), the cake was very moist and if we didn’t know, we couldn’t have guessed it was plant-based. This dessert is not super sweet, which we actually preferred, and the balsamic strawberries added a nice acidity to it. The biggest downside was the lack of flavor in the whipped topping, but it was not a major issue, and for $8.50, we weren’t mad that we picked this dessert! (The GIANT plate it’s served on is pretty funny though. It makes it look teeny tiny!)
As we tend to recommend when we review many table service restaurants, we’d still recommend grabbing a dessert outside of the restaurant if you’re looking for a sweet ending to your meal. At Magic Kingdom, there are so many other dessert options like Dole Whip, the Grey Stuff, giant Cinnamon rolls, and more. If you take a couple big steps out Tony’s front door, you’re at the Main Street Confectionery. We recommend spending those dollars on something better somewhere other than Tony’s for dessert.
Nosh or Not
You should dine at Tony’s Town Square Restaurant if…
- You LOVE Lady and the Tramp. The best part of the restaurant is the theming around the iconic Disney movie! So if you are a super fan, you might be willing to overlook the mediocre food.
- You are craving generic Italian food. It happens to all of us, where you just can’t stop craving pasta or pizza. You’re not looking for gourmet. You’re looking for easy. Nothing wrong with that.
- You have kids. While there are plenty of other restaurants in Magic Kingdom your kids would enjoy, we think they would enjoy this place. It’s charming, there’s plenty to look at especially if you eat on the outdoor patio, and the menu is perfect for picky eaters.
You should NOT dine at Tony’s Town Sqaure Restaurant if…
- You want a great table-service dining experience inside Magic Kingdom. Of all the table service places in the park, this is near the bottom. If you want an enjoyable sit-down meal, we really enjoyed our meal at the reopened Crystal Palace. It is currently fairly easy to snag a reservation for, and they also offer the Walk-Up Waitlist.
- You are a die-hard Italian food fan. You will likely be disappointed. Make a reservation over at Via Napoli in EPCOT and make yourself much happier.
- You are on a budget. For the quality of food you are getting, this place is not worth the money. You could probably find as good or better pasta at many quick service locations in the Disney World hotels.
Ultimately, we’d probably recommend just about any other restaurant over Tony’s Town Square Restaurant in Magic Kingdom. Yes, it has a perfectly charming and fun atmosphere with plenty of Lady and the Tramp memorabilia, but the food quality just isn’t there. In our experiences, it never has been and we wonder if it ever will be. We think there are many other places that deserve your hard-earned money more because the food here is just fine. Why settle for “fine” when there are lots of great places to eat in Disney World?
One of the biggest plusses to eating here was watching the parades go by from the outdoor patio. Since parades aren’t going on right now, this takes one of the few great things about this place off of the list. Watching cavalcade is a nice alternative, though. If we had to pick a highlight from the meal, it would probably be the plant-based Italian Strawberry Shortcake and even that wasn’t something we’d go out of our way to get. In our opinion, though, the price of the items versus the quality of food doesn’t add up.
Every time we have dined here, we haven’t had the best experience with the food. The service is usually great, however the food just has not improved over the many years we’ve been coming here. Our server this time was very attentive and aware, which was great. We understand that this is a draw for the location on Main Street, U.S.A. (it’s one of the first things you’ll see when you enter under the train tracks!), but be prepared for wildly underwhelming food. This is SUCH a good location and hopefully, in the future, Tony’s will wow us with top-notch food, but sadly that time is not now.
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Have you been to Tony’s in Magic Kingdom? Let us know in the comments!