View Full Version : California Grill review & dress code

08-09-2006, 08:15 PM
I just called and changed some of my reservations. The cast member who helped me that the person she spoke to right before me cancelled reservations at the California Grill and recommended that I grab them! So I did. :woohoo: Its kind of a late dinner (9:40) but she said fireworks are at 10, so it will be a perfect time. I dont know what to expect, but she said those reservations are hard to get, so it must be a good place! If you've eaten there lately, tell me about it.

She also mentioned a business casual dress code. What exactly is business casual? Does that mean no shorts? Can my kids wear shorts and polo shirts? They dont have any pants that fit them. I could certainly go buy some, but if its not necessary, I'd rather not. They go to a private school and their uniform consists of navy cotton shorts, and white polo shirts. I think they look presentable in them. Also, for women, could I wear just a linen type skirt and a tank top? Would that be nice enough? I dont want to stand out by not dressing appropriately.


08-09-2006, 08:37 PM
Business casual normally refers to slacks (dress or chinos like Dockers), a collared shirt and closed toe shoes that aren't sneakers for guys. For women, full-length pants (dunno about those 3/4 length pants) or a skirt / dress and something with at least a short sleeve on the top. We've been told previously that "park attire is not appropriate" there, which we took to mean that shorts, t-shirts and tank tops weren't allowed.

08-09-2006, 09:07 PM
This is from the 2007 DDP brochure:

Men: Dress slacks, jeans, trousers, or dress shorts, short or long-sleeved shirt with a collar required. Jackets are optional.

Ladies: Jeans, skirts, or dress shorts with blouse or sweater, or a dress required.

Not Permitted: tank tops, swimming suits or swim suit cover ups, t-shirts, hats for gentlemen, cut offs, or torn clothing of any kind.


08-09-2006, 11:05 PM
I hope I don't offend anyone but I ate there last year and had called ahead to ask if what I was wearing was appropriate and it was given the okay. I wore nice shorts, a polo and sandals. I didn't feel under-dressed in any way.

08-10-2006, 06:23 AM
I ate there last week and we followed their dress code and were told for men a collared shirt with smart shorts and sandals was ok, i wore a dress with sandals. However when we got there, some patrons were clearly in park attire (jeans, sneakers etc.) and they were still alllowed in much to my annoyance as we had made a special effort.

As for a brief review, the service and surroundings were superb, as was the food. However I spoiled my appetite by splitting the sushi and then an appetiser (we were on dining plan and advised to do this) so when the entree came out I barely had room to eat any more. It was certainly all excellent. we ate the deluxe sushi platter, followed by shrimp and melon. The entree was the pork tenderloin with cream cheese polenta which was slightly too rich, and my DH had the beef filet which he could cut with a butter knife. Very good.

08-10-2006, 06:53 AM
They give the same dress code spiel for Flying Fish. I think those who dress up even may end up feeling a little out of place.
I had a CM once tell me it was to keep pool wear out of the restaurant. But I have even seen guests wear what I consider pool wear. (One piece bathing suit with some wrinkled shorts covering the botton half on a woman.) So I don't know they would keep anyone from coming in who looked reasonable.

08-10-2006, 10:04 AM
We were at CG in July (my sig pic is from the observation deck). You will see everything. Some folks have just come up from the parks, and some will be dressed nicely. We were also there twice in March (pitiful, but we loved it). The first time I wore jeans, running shoes and a hoodie. DH had on a sweatshirt and jeans. The next time we dressed a little more, but still were very casual.

One thing I would mention though. You will likely wait a while after your ADR time to be seated. It seems that table turnover pretty much stops the hour before Wishes starts. You can easily walk out on the observation deck or maybe even get a table in the lounge. But you will probably not be seated at your table until after the fireworks are over. That is just my experience. Could be different for you. But I'd probably get there well in advance of 9:40 just so you can be sure you are in the restaurant and checked in. You check in on (I think) the second floor of the Contemporary and ride the elevator to the restaurant.

We actually just ate our dinner at tables in the lounge this last time. We were by the window and it was a great seat so we just stayed.

I've ordered the filet every time and LOVED it each time. We also got several of the flatbreads for an appetizer and loved those, too.

It's my favorite restaurant in the World because of the view and the atmosphere. I hope you will love it, too!! :sunny:

08-10-2006, 10:43 AM
We dined there in May (it's one of our fav restuarants!)and as we waited at the bar the couple next to us well....the woman had on a white tshirt with a bathing suit underneath and flops....her hair was wet in a pony like they had just come from the pool.

When we got to our table the couple next to us the guy had on jeans, nice collared shirt and flops.

So basically you see everything!

08-10-2006, 10:53 AM
Sounds like you do see everything, but I don't remember them saying no sneakers. If DH is in a polo, khaki shorts and sneakers I thought that would be ok.

08-10-2006, 06:41 PM
Sounds like you do see everything, but I don't remember them saying no sneakers. If DH is in a polo, khaki shorts and sneakers I thought that would be ok.

That's exactly what my DH will be wearing next month for our dinner there. We're planning to stroll through World Showcase after dinner and sneakers are a must.

08-10-2006, 07:01 PM
If your reservations are at 9:40 and Wishes is at 10, be prepared to not be seated until after Wishes is over. We had reservations at 8:00 this Tuesday, were seated at 8:10, and had a lovely window seat & view of the fireworks. The timing was perfect; our dessert was delivered right before Wishes began.
Last year, we had 9:45 priority seating, and weren't seated until 45 minutes after we checked in. Very, very few people will give up their table when they get within 45 minutes of Wishes. But you will still be able to watch from the outside viewing area.
Heather W

08-10-2006, 07:14 PM
I called today to confirm the dress code and the CM said that there have been a few minor changes as all the Signature restaurants will now have the same code. Jeans and sneakers are fine with a collared shirt, as are dressier shorts. Sandals also are fine, but no flip flops, swimware, tanks, or anything torn.


08-10-2006, 07:58 PM
We just ate there on July 22. We also had 9:40 ressies. We arrived around 9:15 and waited on the observation deck. We were seated around 9:45. Perfect timing. Our view was great from the table so we didn't get up and go outside and our waiter was wonderful. We got very fast service while most of the other people were standing outside. Walter was our server and I would recommend him to anyone. Our table had everything from sushi to the pork and the filet, halibut and pizza. It was a wonderful evening. The corn soup was very good as was the flatbread.

08-11-2006, 01:08 PM
Due to this thread I have changed my 7:30 ADR for California Grill to 7:00 with Wishes starting at 8:00. I hope we're able to get a window seat. I'm going to request it at the podium and tell them we'll wait for it if necessary. Hopefully, one will become available BEFORE Wishes starts. It's for my mom. It's her first time at WDW and I wanted this restaurant to be her first experience on arrival day. Does anyone not approve of this ADR time?

08-11-2006, 01:19 PM
We have an ADR for 7.30pm, Wishes is at 9pm.
We made it quite early after being reccomended to on the boards, incase we are seated late.
I estimated we would be on dessert when Wishes start. Does this sound ok?
Its my parents first visit, Dads b/day, DF & mine 40th b/day & we are getting married!!! :)