You might have seen Sanaa Lounge before, either on your way into Sanaa or on one of our reviews — like this one of Jiko’s Bain’s Barrel-Aged African Whiskey! But we’re going in to do a full review of JUST the Lounge and see what eats and drinks we can find there! Let’s get going!
Jambo! We were super excited to be back at Disney’s Animal Kingdom to try an old favorite that has JUST reopened!
Checking out newly reopened restaurants has become the new normal around here! We’ve had a few spots reopen recently and recently we ventured to the welcoming village of Harambe to take part in not just one but two meals on reopening day at the newly reopened Tusker House Restaurant!
You’re in for a treat today, as we visit one of my most favorite Disney World restaurants —
Sanaa is truly a hidden Disney treasure, and while I hope you all have the opportunity to enjoy it, honestly, I hope the word never totally gets out!
I know that may sound selfish, but Sanaa is a favorite of mine for many, many reasons. In addition to a number of truly exquisite meals in the past, I also appreciate the quiet atmosphere. And it’s never been difficult to get an Advance Dining Reservation here — even at the last minute.
There had been some changes in the menu since I visited last, so I was anxious to book dinner at Sanaa on a recent trip to see if it’s still just as wonderful as it’s always been.
Sanaa is a hidden gem in part because it’s actually somewhat hidden. To get to Sanaa, you’ll need to head to Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. Once there, look for signs pointing you toward Kidani Village, the Disney Vacation Club portion of the resort.
As with all of the other restaurants at Animal Kingdom Lodge, Sanaa has been thoughtfully named. The word “sanaa” is Swahili for “art”. Step up to the restaurant’s entrance, and you start to see why. Hand woven trays decorate the area behind the podium and beautiful beads line the counter.
Be on the lookout for this guy though. (We’re talking about the Hidden Mickey…not the bird. 🙂 ) You’ll catch a an artistically rendered glimpse or two of him throughout the area.
One of my favorite touches are the African Proverbs that you’ll find on walls throughout Kidani Village. Think about it for a while!
While you wait for your table — and the wait isn’t likely to be long — you’ll get your first glimpse of Sunset Savanna. Keep your eyes peeled. The area is home to dozens of birds and animals, including gazelles, zebras, cranes, ostriches, and more. And right outside THESE windows, you my get to see a tortoise or two.
En route to your table, you’ll pass the Lounge. This is one of my favorite spots to relax and unwind.
Because it’s opened continuously from 11:30 to midnight, it’s a good option if you’re looking for a meal at one of those in-between times, or you just want to meet friends for a quiet night cap.
This is a detail that I love about Animal Kingdom Lodge (and most spots in Disney, actually) — no space is left untouched. Check out the rich detail on the ceiling in the bar area, which provides a subtle sense of definition…
…And this is what I mean. Once you enter the main restaurant, you leave the “building” of the entrance, and you’re under the canopy of a sprawling acacia tree.
It blends beautifully with the wide-arched picture windows, and melds the interior with the exterior.
Request a window-side table, and you’ll enjoy great views of the savanna as you dine.
Chances are pretty good that you’ll even see a few of these guys.
And it’s a good time to note — the ever-changing parade of wildlife outside the windows is a great diversion for little people in your group! There are few better ways to distract a toddler than by pointing out real life zebras!
Seating is broken up into small alcoves, and tables and chairs are fashioned with the same artisan detail as other surroundings. The mismatched chairs give the space an eclectic feel.
Padded booths also offer a cozy option, if you prefer extra comfort to views.
And remember when I said to keep an eye out for Mickey sightings? 🙂
Because the restaurant is decorated to resemble an East African spice market, you’ll find some interesting elements. I always stop to take in this [Read more…]
You’re planning your first trip to Walt Disney World. Or your 50th. Or your 100th. And you reeeeeeeally want to know what NEW dishes you MUST try? Weeeeeeelllllllllll, we’ve got a few suggestions for you!
We’ve got about nine of our favorite you-HAVE-to-EAT-this dishes and snacks featured in our brand new DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining 2015 e-Book, which you can pick up today for $4 off using code 2015 right here!
But I wanted to take a second to share just a few of those must-eat treats here with you as well.
Must-Eat Walt Disney World Treats in 2015
Yep — here at DFB, we always like to kick off each new year with some of our favorite treats spotted during the last few months. But when I sat down to brainstorm this post…well, at first it seemed like 2014 didn’t offer a whole lot of new stuff.
That said, when I started scrolling back through everything we ate this past year, I realized there was a lot to be said for 2014 and its culinary prowess.
There is one really big difference between this year and previous years, however. Most of our crave-worthy dishes are savory this time around! I know! WUT?!??!?!?!?!? Don’t worry, though — I’ve got a few sweeties thrown in.
Here’s the New Food I Want to Stuff My Face with at Disney Parks in 2015!
Barbecue Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese
We thought that Mac and Cheese, that king of comfort foods, was enough. But little did we know what we had been missing, until Disney started putting additional delicious food on top of its cheesy goodness.
We first saw the dawn of Gourmet Mac and Cheese — we’re just gonna call it that if that’s all right with you — a while back. Friar’s Nook introduced the concept, and we were smitten with their Bacon Cheeseburger Mac and Cheese and Blue Cheese Mac right away.
BUT THEN — this happened.