The Walt Disney World Resort is home to so many restaurants and dining locations that it can be a little difficult to decide just where to enjoy meals. While each restaurant has a unique theme and menu, there are definitely a few locations that Guests disagree upon for various reasons.
Last time, we discussed whether Chef Mickey’s, ‘Ohana, Le Cellier Steakhouse, Whispering Canyon Café, and Be Our Guest Restaurant were overrated, and today we’re heading into round two with five more table service restaurants. Are they overrated? Worth it? Let’s discuss and you decide!
California Grill is one of the most popular dining locations at the Walt Disney World Resort and can be found at the top of Disney’s Contemporary Resort overlooking Seven Seas Lagoon and the Magic Kingdom. Open nightly for dinner, California Grill focuses on cuisine from the Pacific Northwest that Guests can enjoy in a modern dining room with bold color choices, geometric and metallic light fixtures, and stunning views.
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California Grill currently utilizes a prix fixe menu, where Guests can choose one Market Inspiration (appetizer) option, one Chef’s Journey (entrée) option, and one Sweet Creations (dessert) option. With elegant plating and interesting flavors, Guests can choose from options including Braised Beef Short Rib Wontons, Lobster and Parsnip Bisque, Oak-fired Filet of Beef, Wild Alaskan Halibut, Monterey Bay Cioppino, and Lavender Sugar Doughnuts.
California Grill is definitely a pricey dinner option at the Walt Disney World Resort, but the menu of indulgent and expertly crafted options could well be worth the price. Plus, there is no better view of Disney Enchantment each night than through the large windows of the dining room and from the outdoor observation decks. The only downside to California Grill is its current use of the prix fixe menu, but those who are satisfied with one option from each menu category can enjoy an unforgettable meal!
The Hollywood Brown Derby
The Hollywood Brown Derby in Disney’s Hollywood Studios is modeled after the original restaurant in California and features a classic and deco-inspired interior that whisks Guests back in time. Open daily for lunch and dinner, the table service restaurant features unique touches like caricature sketches of Hollywood’s elite lining the walls, light fixtures that look like golden derby hats, and a soothing color palette.
The menu at The Hollywood Brown Derby focuses on contemporary American cuisine with several unique options that pay homage to the original location like the famous Grapefruit Cake. Guests who enjoy a meal at the restaurant can dig into delicious options like Tuna Carpaccio Nicoise, Filet Mignon with Walt Disney’s Roast Beef Hash, Our Famous Cobb Salad, Shrimp and Scallops Newberg, and Braised Short Ribs.
The Hollywood Brown Derby is definitely the most expensive table service option in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, but it can be argued that it is well worth it. With a menu of upscale and delicious options that can’t be found elsewhere and an immersive atmosphere, it’s definitely the best table service option in the Disney Park for lunch or dinner.
Wine Bar George
The Landing in Disney Springs is home to one of the highest concentrations of table service restaurants including Wine Bar George which welcomes Guests into an industrial and modern space that is open for brunch, lunch, and dinner. Featuring a menu of shareable plates and several charcuterie boards, Wine Bar George is predominantly designed around a menu of wines from around the world chosen by Master Sommelier George Miliotes.
Wine Bar George’s menu features delicious small plates that Guests can share including options like Crispy Mac & Cheese Bites, Roasted Beets, House-made Meatballs, Grilled Octopus Salad, Burrata, and Saganaki on Fire, as well as cheese and charcuterie boards that are designed to pair perfectly with the wine options. Those who are looking for more of a full meal can also choose between the Skirt Steak and Grilled Whole Greek Sea Bass, which are served with fresh sides and designed to serve two to four Guests.
Wine Bar George has an incredible atmosphere that has a relaxing and cool feel to it, and the food is definitely delicious, but Guests who are looking to enjoy a traditional menu of individual entrée options will be disappointed. The table service restaurant does succeed with Guests who are looking to enjoy an incredible glass of wine and pair it with small plates, but for everyone else looking for a full meal, there are better options available in The Landing area of Disney Springs.
Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’
Another table service option in The Landing area of Disney Springs is Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’, a popular location created by the famous chef who is known for Southern comfort food. The restaurant features a blend of industrial and rustic elements including lots of exposed wood and metal, and Guests can enjoy their brunch, lunch, or dinner with views looking out at the water in Disney Springs.
The menu at Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’ focuses on Southern food blended with the fresh flavors of Florida and the restaurant is extremely popular for its delicious fried chicken which can be enjoyed in several ways including the Thigh High Chicken Biscuits, Fried Chicken Salad, and Fried Chicken & Doughnuts. Also available on the menu are indulgent options like Church Lady Deviled Eggs, Bunch of Puppies, Key West Shrimp Cocktail, Catfish Sandwich, Shrimp & Grits, Chopped Pork Barbecue, Country Fried Steak, and the popular Hummingbird Cake.
Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’ definitely features a unique menu of indulgent Southern classics that are satisfying to the last bite, and there is no better place at the Walt Disney World Resort to enjoy fried chicken. The only thing that the location has going against itself is a lack of lighter options for Guests who don’t want to completely indulge. With an inviting interior and pretty extensive menu, Chef Art Smith’ Homecomin’ is one of the best options for dining in Disney Springs.
Cinderella’s Royal Table
The Magic Kingdom is home to several table service restaurants including the very popular Cinderella’s Royal Table which invites Guests to dine like royalty inside Cinderella Castle. The interior of the restaurant features a completely unique and opulent theming with vaulted, gothic ceilings, brightly colored royal flags hanging above, and beautiful views of Fantasyland out of massive windows.
Cinderella’s Royal Table features a prix fixe menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner each day, where Guests can choose one appetizer, one entrée, and one dessert from a selection of royally titled options. Guests are sure to love menu selections like Baked Quiche, Beef Tenderloin and Egg, Caramel Apple-stuffed French Toast, Steamed Mussels, Tenderloin of Beef, and When Will My Life Begin Chicken and Pasta.
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Cinderella’s Royal Table absolutely has one of the most immersive and beautiful interiors of any restaurant at the Walt Disney World Resort, but it also comes with a very high price for a prix fixe menu. While the atmosphere is great, unless Guests are absolutely set on dining at Cinderella’s Royal Table, there are better options to be found in the Magic Kingdom like Jungle Navigation Co. LTD Skipper Canteen and The Crystal Palace.
What do you think? Are these restaurants overrated? Or do they deserve all of the praise?