Happy Halloween! It may still be sweltering hot where you are, but Disney World is ready to whip out the ghosts, goblins, and pumpkin everything! Disney World is already decorated for the holiday and we’ve attended the first Disney After Hours Boo Bash. Spooky season has officially arrived!
Now here’s the thing — since its reopening, Hollywood & Vine has been blowing us away. Before Disney World closed, this restaurant was a (pretty lackluster) buffet, but after it reopened last year, it became a pre-fixe dining experience. We LOVED seeing our favorite characters decked out in their Halloween best last year, so we were excited to check out the experience one year later. But did Hollywood & Vine blow us away with the Minnie’s Halloween Dine experience this year, too?
Head right down Hollywood Blvd upon entering the park then make a hard left near Echo Lake and you’ll hit Hollywood and Vine on your left.
Peek up when entering too — you might spy a famous Disney private eye’s office in the windows upstairs.
When we last visited Hollywood & Vine, many adjustments had been made to account for the health and safety guidelines of that time. Here’s what it looked like inside then (VERY spread out!):
Now that many of the health and safety guidelines have been relaxed, so, too has the atmosphere of the restaurant. For starters, tables are closer together now, although the plexiglass dividers remain. Here’s what it looks like inside now:
Like last year, the Halloween mural for a photo op was available at the entrance, but there are still no characters to pose with there.
The good news is that you’ll still get to see plenty of characters, so let’s get to that!
Minnie and her best pals are here in their Halloween best. However, like last year, Donald and Daisy are still missing from the character lineup! But it’s nice to see the characters in their Halloween costumes (and they are the same outfits as last year). First up, Goofy was dressed as a cowboy.
The characters are still not interacting closely with guests, but are doing a great job at posing for photos and selfies. And they managed to get close enough to tables so those photos could happen. Pluto came out in his special Halloween collar.
And of course, it’s not a party without the mouse himself, Mickey! He’s still dressed as a vampire this year! He looks VERY dapper, don’t you think? Love that collar, Mic!
And of course, there is no Minnie’s Halloween Dine without Minnie, so she came out with Mickey! Doesn’t she look beWITCHing? Those green tights and matching purple gloves are FASHUN, y’all. We need them in our lives.
During our meal, we saw all four characters twice and they did a good job of alternating where they appeared in the restaurant. Note that you cannot get up from your table to take photos of the characters — you must remain seated when they’re coming around to your table. And sometimes table location can affect how well you can see the characters, although they do try to situate themselves for ideal viewing for everyone during the course of your meal.
At the end of the meal, you get a character postcard…
…which has autographs on the back!
As you can tell, characters are still not signing things in person for guests. We’ve actually grown rather fond of collecting these cards at character meals though!
So let’s get to the eats. Now, this is where Hollywood & Vine has impressed us since switching over to the pre-fixe menu. And we’re going to tell you right up front — it did not disappoint this time either! You get salad and bread, which everyone shares, and then each guest gets an option of one entree and one dessert per person. The cost is $55 per adult and $36 per child. Coffee, tea, and sodas are included in the price, although you also have the option to pay extra for alcoholic beverages, including cocktails…
…red wine, and beer.
Entree choices include Garlic and Cracked Black Pepper Sliced Tenderloin, Carved Herb-roasted Turkey Breast, Macaroni & Cheese with Shrimp, and more. The entrees are mostly unchanged from last Halloween. The Plant-Based option has swapped from Pan Roasted Trumpet Mushrooms to an Asparagus and Summer Truffle Risotto. The nummy Pork Osso Bucco we enjoyed last time is replaced by a Spice-rubbed Pork Loin. The beef option is largely unchanged but the cut of meat has shifted from Prime Rib to a Tenderloin.
Dessert selections include White Chocolate Cheesecake, Spiced Cherry Cake, Chocolate S’mores Pie, and more. Again, a few desserts have swapped from last year while other remain.
You get Sweet Yeast Rolls with Whipped Butter to start. We will always say “yes” to bread!
The Chopped Salad Bowl is made with Mixed Greens, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Red Onion, Cornbread Croutons, and Homemade Smokehouse Ranch Dressing. Everything is already tossed with the dressing, which had a great peppery flavor. The cornbread croutons were buttery, and crunchy, and are pretty tasty, too.
Although this is a pretty basic salad, it was enjoyable. All the ingredients were simple but fresh. And it was the perfect starter to the meal. We think it might have been kicked up a notch, though, if there was some cheese on it, but then again, you know how we feel about cheese — we think it should go on almost everything! 🧀
For the entree, we chose the Garlic and Cracked Black Pepper Sliced Beef Tenderloin, which is served with Sour Cream and Chive Whipped Potatoes, Sautéed Green Beans, and Herb Relish. We ordered it medium rare it came out just as we ordered. We loved the peppery crust on the meat.
The Herb Relish is almost like a Chimichurri sauce, but went great with the meat by adding just a touch more yummy flavor.
The Whipped Potatoes were warm and buttery and we love that they made it with the skins still on the potatoes! The addition of sour cream just made them that much more creamy. BUT we thought they needed just a touch more seasoning. Nothing a little additional salt and pepper can’t handle, though!
The Green Beans were buttery and had just the perfect amount of seasoning, though. They weren’t soggy either (there’s nothing sadder than a soggy green bean, people) — they were nice and crisp. Considering the meat plus the two sides here, you’re getting a really good portion size of food! This was a really enjoyable entree done remarkably well.
And for dessert, we tried the White Chocolate Cheesecake, which is served with Guava Sauce, Fresh Whipped Cream, and Mint. This was delicious — it has just a touch of white chocolate flavor, so it’s not overbearing. The crust was sweet and buttery, and worked great with the cheesecake.
The Guava sauce was very strong, though, and although we liked the tartness, it might not be for everyone. Ours was only poured over a small portion of the cheesecake, and we’re sure you could ask your server to skip the sauce or just ask for it on the side if you’re concerned. The Whipped Cream was nice and light and did help sweeten the guava flavor.
For the record, we would 100% order this again. This is one of the more simple desserts on the menu and sure to please a wide range of people.
Nosh Or Not
Head on over to Minnie’s Halloween Dine at Hollywood & Vine if…
- You want a character meal that legitimately serves great food (or a character meal at ALL in Hollywood Studios — this is your only option!).
- If you love Halloween and want to see characters in their costumes.
- You’re looking for a break on your long Hollywood Studios day. This is a great chance to sit for a while, cool off, and enjoy a nice meal.
Skip Minnie’s Halloween Dine at Hollywood & Vine…
- You don’t want to spend valuable park time at a character meal.
- You have a large party — the price of this meal could add up fast considering it’s already over $100 for two adults.
- You really miss that old buffet and the idea of paying buffet-level prices for a small selection of choices isn’t appealing to you.
We’re still impressed with the food and experience at Hollywood & Vine, even with Minnie’s Halloween Dine. We had a lot of fun seeing the characters in their costumes, even if they haven’t changed since last year. The service here is also awesome and we enjoyed seeing Cast Members interact with the characters. The cute Halloween details, like the photo op and the autograph cards, are fun, too.
Also, the food here is solidly good — much better than when it was a buffet. That’s not always the case with character meals, so you’re getting the best of both worlds here. Characters plus great food? Count us in! The breakfast here is good but, given the choice, we’d pick dinner. The food tips the scales plus it’s hard to compare seeing Mickey, Minnie, and co. in costume versus the Disney Junior characters you’ll meet at breakfast. (Though if you have a younger one with you, they might argue differently!).
We also didn’t feel rushed to finish our meal and had a chance to relax and enjoy both the food and the characters, but for some, that might be a downside — especially as it will cut into your park time. It can also get pricey here, especially if you choose to eat some of the more simple menu items (we felt the tenderloin was well worth the cost), so it’s ultimately dependent on what you plan on ordering for your entree if you want to really feel like you’re maxing out the value. That being said, we can highly recommend spending some Halloween time here for some good seasonal fun.
Have you been to Hollywood & Vine since its reopening? Let us know in the comments what you thought!