Do you remember your last visit to the Walt Disney World Resort? If so, you probably remember being in awe over Cinderella Castle, meeting your favorite Disney friends, and of course going on some magical rides. What most people fail to pay attention to when visiting is the wide variety of food options available around the resort. Most people associate amusement park food with soggy chicken nuggets and french fries, but Disney takes food to another level. From spectacular quick-service options to 5 star signature dining locations, Disney has a food for all palates. This is a list of (what I think are) the 5 best restaurants at Disney World Resort! Next time you visit, be sure to grab a bite to eat at one or all of these dining locations!
On my most recent visit to the Walt Disney Resort in January, I had the great privilege of being able to dine inside of Cinderella Castle. As hard as it is to score a table in one of the most iconic architectural structures, with hard work and dedication, I DID IT! When you first walk up to the reservation table, you are given a slip with your seating time. Once inside the majestic castle, you view beautiful mosaics and stained glass windows while waiting to have your photo taken with Cinderella. Following a magical meet and greet, you walk up a royal spiral staircase to the heart of the castle. The beautiful circular dining room is complimented by the fact that you get to mingle with some of Disney’s beloved princesses.
The great thing about this restaurant is that it serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. We had a breakfast reservation, and let me tell you that it was the best breakfast I had on the entire vacation. To start, your server brings out a tray of assorted pastries for the table. Following that, you are asked to order. I ordered the Baked Quiche and my sister ordered the Caramel Apple-Stuffed French Toast. The food was presented beautifully and tasted even better. Every diner was given a complimentary wand or sword to keep as a souvenir of their magical meal. The food and character interaction is sublime, and the overall atmosphere of eating in the castle is worth every penny!
In addition to Cinderella Castle, one is able to enjoy a meal inside of Beast’s enchanted castle. This restaurant is unique in that it serves quick-service style meals for breakfast and lunch and table-service style for dinner. I have been lucky enough to score reservations for all three meals (and yes, quick-service requires a reservation as it is extremely popular). The technology used in this restaurant makes the meal all the more magical. You have the option to place your order ahead of time, or wait in line and order at the kiosk upon arrival. It is easier to order ahead as you don’t have to wait in what can be hour long lines. Once you place your order and take a seat, a cast member magically brings you your food in a matter of minutes (how do they know where you were sitting? It’s Disney magic).
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The quality of food at this restaurant surpasses that of other dining locations, especially in its quick-service category. The cuisine is slightly altered to have some french flare to match the theme of Beauty and the Beast. The Croque Madame is my favorite breakfast item to order. Be sure to end your meal with “The Master’s Cupcake” featuring the popular “Grey Stuff” (yes, it’s delicious).
Located at the heart of the newly renovated Disney Springs, Raglan Road is the hub of all things Irish. What makes this restaurant so popular is not only the delicious food, but the fun atmosphere with live Irish dancers and musicians. Every few minutes the two acts switch and perform and engage with the guests at the restaurant. The best tables are located in the center of the restaurant located near the stage, but you can still catch a glimpse of the performances if you are seated at the sides. In addition, the dancers perform a part of the performance in the wings of the restaurant for the guests in the other areas to enjoy.
Although this restaurant does not scream “Disney,” just the theme and atmosphere is enough to make you want to use one of your table-service credits on it. The must get dishes are the Raglan Risotto, Fish & Chips, and the “Ger’s Bread & Butter Pudding”. Some people solely dine at the restaurant for the dessert because it is that good!
If you want to experience a unique dining experience, 50’s Prime Time Cafe is where you want to be. Located in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, this restaurant is filled with fun, laughter, and the one thing you can’t forget, manners. This restaurant is 50’s themed and the waiters and waitresses act like traditional 50’s figures of the time, serving and telling the guests to “get your elbows off the table!” It feels as if you are sitting in the dining area of a 50’s house with the home-like wallpaper, booths, and small televisions playing classic television shows such as “Dennis the Menace.”
The entrees resemble classic favorite meals from the beloved meatloaf to the warm and crispy chicken pot pie. You have to make sure to finish all your vegetables before you order dessert or you will have the playful experience of your server calling you out for leaving them on your plate in front of the entire restaurant. This is not a restaurant that you would go to for a peaceful meal, but definitely one you would go to for some fun!
Have you ever dined beside live fish in an aquarium setting before? If not, then make a reservation at Coral Reef during your next visit to Epcot. Coral Reef is unique in that diners can eat sitting right along the side of a glass wall that separates the restaurant with a life-size fish tank. Upon sitting at your table, the host/server hands you a guide with which you can classify all of the fish you see swimming about throughout the course of your meal. I was lucky enough to see scuba divers swimming around during my family vacation a few years ago!
The seafood from the restaurant is amazing, although it is sometimes difficult to eat, watching the beautiful fish swim by. My favorite thing to get at this restaurant is “The Chocolate Wave” which is a moist and delicious chocolate cake served with raspberry sauce, a raspberry ice cream-like treat, and chocolate curls. This restaurant is a must-do as the experience is always phenomenal with amazing food, exceptional service, and a fun atmosphere.