I remember the first time my husband Graham and I were planning our family's visit to Walt Disney World Resort. He couldn't understand all the fuss I was making about food! I watched YouTube videos about the restaurants and food options throughout the parks and read over the restaurant menus in the My Disney Experience app, over and over, before deciding on the restaurants where we would eat. "It's a theme park, don't they just have popcorn and cotton candy and stuff like that?" he asked. I shook my head. He was in for a surprise (and a treat)!
I think Graham was convinced once and for all how wonderful the food was at Walt Disney World Resort on the evening we ate dinner at Marrakesh, a Moroccan restaurant at Epcot. The food, drinks, service and entertainment were absolutely wonderful. We enjoyed many delicious meals together throughout the parks and resorts during our stay, and wouldn't hesitate to use any of Disney's dining plans on future vacations there together. But that's a topic for another post.
Today I wanted to give some helpful information about the four different ways you can dine at Walt Disney World Resort.
Quick Service Dining
Every family will have their favourite way to dine at the Walt Disney World World, but this is our family's preferred plan. We like that there's no need to reserve a table, and we can sit exactly where we like. With Disney's quick service dining, you have to put the idea of "fast food" out of your head...this is more like "great food fast." We've enjoyed meals such as Grilled Salmon with Vegetable Rice, Green Beans and Carrots at Columbia Harbour House at Disney's Magic Kingdom, an incredible Power Salad (shown in the gallery above) at Sunshine Seasons at Epcot, and other fantastic and tasty meals. At some quick service restaurants, there is fresh food for you, made-to-order, like a pasta bar, omelette bar or my personal weakness, nachos. While there are certainly burgers and fries on many quick service menus, there's no need to assume this is all you'll be eating when you stick to quick service.
Table Service Dining
If you and your family prefer to slow down a little and enjoy a more leisurely meal that will be served to you, table service is the way to go. You'll be seated at one of Walt Disney World's beautifully themed and decorated restaurants by a host or hostess, and waited on by a server. Some of the restaurants at Walt Disney World Resort are intricately themed, like the 50's Prime Time Café at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Others, such as the Marrakesh restaurant I mentioned above, serve international cuisine. Yet others, such as Ohana at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort, will feature appearances by favourite and beloved characters.
There are three styles of table service dining at Walt Disney World:
Walk-ups can sometimes be accommodated at table service restaurants, but reservations are highly recommended, and can be made in advance using My Disney Experience, or with my help.
If your family is celebrating a milestone occasion, like an anniversary, you might prefer to reserve a table at one of Disney's more upscale dining establishments. These restaurants have a more rigid dress code, but they also feature an award-winning wine list, elegant setting and fine dining. For example, Victoria & Albert's at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa has earned a AAA, 5-Diamond rating since 2000. Its multi-course dinner menu features dishes such as Bison Tenderloin, Maine Halibut and Australian Kobe-style Beef.
A dinner show experience at Walt Disney World Resort combines food with family fun! You don't have to be a guest at the host resorts in order to book these dining experiences. Any guest can reserve a spot for these fun meals, or I can take care of your arrangements for you!
One of the benefits of the dinner shows at Walt Disney World Resort is that the price includes your all-you-can eat, family-style meal as well as beverages, gratuities, and complimentary beer and wine!
There are three shows to choose from:
So there you have it, four unique ways to enjoy meals at Walt Disney World Resort. Which style of dining does your family prefer?
Amy is a former Disney Cruise Line cast member, Certified Cruise Counsellor and Vacation Specialist at Pure Magic Vacations.
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