WDW Weekend Eats
April 6, 2012
Yes Dear Dedicated Readers, it’s time for another set of pics from a (fairly) recent weekend of dining at Walt Disney World… so let’s head on in…
On our first evening we sampled a few of the items at the temporary kiosk in the Italian pavilion at Epcot – this is open while Tutto Italia undergoes renovation, and features some items you wouldn’t normally expect to see at a quick-service location.
We tried the Caprese Sandwich (fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and basil), the traditional pasta and bean soup Pasta e Fagioli, and to wash it down I had a Moretti draft while Miss Bonnie went with the fancy imported San Benedetto water (which pretty much tasted like, well, water…).
Overall the taste of the sandwich was a bit bland – the fresh cheese is naturally mild in flavor, but the tomatoes were not great and the basil was a bit skimpy. The bread was good, and if you had more flavorful tomatoes and upped the ante on the basil (plus maybe some fresh-cracked pepper) this would be a pleasant change-of-pace from the usual fare, but otherwise was not worth the hefty $10.00 price tag.
On the other hand the soup was very good – a hearty mix of pasta, beans and a little bit of meat for flavoring in a nice broth. This was a good size portion and would be great on a cooler evening at Epcot.
The next day for lunch we made our was down Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood Studios and decided to try a couple of the “Gourmet” Hot Dogs at Fairfax Fare.
High-end versions of the humble frankfurter have been showing up all over property the past year or two.
The Mac & Cheese version wasn’t bad, but a little underwhelming – the aroma of the sprayed-on truffle oil hits you at first, but quickly dissipates – Bonnie & I were thinking of ways to make a more truffleious version at home…
More satisfying was the BBQ Pork and Slaw version. Similar to the one served at Casey’s Corner in Magic Kingdom, the bun holds a good portion of pulled pork (and better than was expected for this self-professed pig-snob) upon which rests the weenie that’s then topped with coleslaw. We both agreed we’d gladly down this version again.
We were at the World for the Princess Half-Marathon (I did say it was a fairly recent weekend, didn’t I?) and we next met several friends for our pre-race dinner at the Turf Club.
Turf Club was selected for the evenings dining as Lori Loves Tigger and her Hubby Erin (who after a bit too much tequila one day at La Cava also wound up somehow becoming my fiancee… don’t ask…) as they were staying at Saratoga Springs for the weekend – Doc Terminus and Running-Fiends Julie and James were along for the ride…
I had been to the nice bar area a couple of times before for apps and beverages, but other than that none of us had dined in the restaurant per se before.
A couple of plates of decent stuffed ‘shrooms and some onion rings were ordered for appetizers.
I chose the stereotypical pre-race pasta while Miss Bonnie decided on a salad as her entree.
Several other entrees were ordered around the table…
The Chocolate Espresso Torte was shared by some for dessert and was given a thumbs up.
Overall the food was fine, but far from spectacular. If you’re staying at Saratoga and want a sit-down meal (and can’t make the long trek over the water to Downtown Disney for many more dining options) you should be able to have a reasonable meal here, but I’d say the Turf Club is not exactly destination dining.
The next day was the race itself, and afterwards there was actually an interesting edible…
At the end of most races you’ll find things like bananas, bagels, muffins, protein bars and the like offered to runners – at the end of the Princess Half we were also handed a snack box with some interesting, and good, options.
Interesting crackers with a squeeze container of hummus, roasted edamame (we both really liked these – we found the same brand at Whole Foods. Try the wasabi version – it’ll clear your sinuses!), fruit and nut mix and some semi-high-end chocolate… a nice change of pace from the usual post-race fare!
After a much-needed shower and a post-race celebratory Stella (me, not Miss Bonnie…) we made our way to Animal Kingdom to sample some of the new snack and quick-service offerings there.
Over the past several months there has been some new items (and a new kiosk) added to the path from Africa to Asia… this is a lovely walk, and we’ll see if it has been enhanced by the eats & drinks…
at Tamu Tamu Refreshments in Harambe they have a beef sandwich we’d been wanting to try…
we both really liked this (somewhat messy) sandwich, as well as the accompanying seasoned potato chips – we’ll be having this again. Our good friend Ryan also recently reviewed this item and I’d have to say that I concur completely with his assessment – you can check it out over at the Main Street Gazette.
As you travel on towards Asia you’ll come across the Safari Egg Rolls Kiosk…
while they have long offered the typical fried egg rolls (a veggie version as well as a pork and shrimp one), which are perfectly fine and for the fairly nominal prices are a nice snack, recently added was a Vietnamese-style cold Summer Roll.
Rice paper encases glass noodles and fresh veggies… it could use a bit more herbs (Miss Bonnie found it a bit bland), and it really needs the sweet chili dipping sauce to enliven it, but overall I’m liking this item (which means it will probably be pulled from the menu soon)…
This crunchy, chilled roll is a good alternative to the fried rolls, and should be a great snack on those sweltering summer days in the often steamy Animal Kingdom park… and it’s only two bucks so it’s worth giving it a try… and yeah, it should be fairly healthy… shhhh… don’t tell anyone that…
Along the way is a fairly new structure primarily purveying beverages of the adult variety.
Frozen Margaritas are the beverage of choice here – if you’re not sure which to pick, try them all layered in the “Triple Yeti Blast”!
Miss Bonnie really liked the mango flavor, while I was more partial to the lime. I’m not real big on frozen ‘ritas, but this will be nice during the heat of the summer (if you want a good non-frozen one in AK, try the African Margarita they mix up at the Dawa Bar).
We also wanted to try the new “Boneless Chicken Wings” (read sauced nuggets), but didn’t have the chance this time as we had to make our way towards Epcot for dinner… you can check out what our buddy AJ had to say about them over at the Disney Food Blog (she also covers the margarita kiosk in the same post – note how the offerings have changed since her visit just a few months prior to ours).
So yes, we arrived at Epcot and headed directly to (big shock) La Cava del Tequila…
We met the same motley crew as the night before (less the good Doctor) and Erin & I introduced Julie to the wonders of the tequila shot.
From there we went to dinner at Teppan Edo, the teppanyaki style eatery in the Japan pavilion.
The chef always puts on a good show…
While I think the food here is very average…
it is a very fun place to go, especially with a great group of friends!
The tables here usually seat eight, and if your party doesn’t fill a table you will likely be seated with others (strangers at the start, but usually not by the end of the meal).
We were fortunate to be seated with a very nice young couple and their infant son. The husband was in the military and this was their last Disney trip before he was being sent for a tour of duty in the Middle East. This young gentleman and his wife were personable, bright and the perfect dinner companions – I was proud the shake his hand afterwards, thank him for his service to our country and wish him well. If he is at all typical of the men and women that serve us in the military, I’d say we are very well represented around the world. I hope to see the great couple and their adorable son very soon again in Disney!
So there you have it – another weekend of eating around the World – nothing spectacular this time, but some fun times and a few good finds nonetheless! Hope you enjoyed it!
Now, as always, back to the kitchen – we’ll see you soon!