View Full Version : So-so Ohana experience

06-26-2007, 11:53 AM
We just got back a couple of weeks ago from Orlando and while we were there we made a special trip into DW at 9pm to Ohana for the only reservation available that week we were there. We have eaten there probably 8 times in 3 years but it had been 2 years since we had eaten there last so first things first:
we were in a cluster of about 7 or 8 tables with one server for all of them so she was trying but she just couldn't physically be everywhere at once, then with the same table count we had one guy who was in charge of cleaning tables, bringing the appetizers out, and bringing the meat skewers. Needless to say this was impossibly slow and in about 45min he managed to come over twice. It was soo bad the server ended up getting her own skewers to bring to us and literally by the time I had enough food in front of me worth eating I was already full from the few beers I had which seemed to be the only thing I could get quickly. Then there's the menu changes: They did away with the pu-pu platter (hope I spelled that right) in exchange for chips and dip (donít know what that was about) wontons (didnít know these were indigenous to the Hawaiian Islands) and scalloped potatoes (again didn't know this was a Polynesian delicacy). Then we discovered that they no longer have chicken on the skewers, which I could live with, and that the tiger shrimp, that were phenomenal, were replaced with tiny pork sausages all of which were dry because they are too small to handle being cooked over the heat of the open pits. Needless to say I was borderline irate because Ohana is far from cheap and that night it didn't live up to what it once was. Now for the good :goodvibesWe get the manager over, a Mr.Alexander Lewis, who apologized profusely and told us that there was a change in the cooking staff which prompted the menu changes, that he has had numerous complaints about this very same thing, and that he has hired a new chef who has full intentions of bringing back the old menu within about 4 months. Mr. Lewis also comp'd our meal and gave us his direct number and cell phone and asked us to come back after the 3 - 4 month period because he wanted us to experience Ohana as it should be and to call him directly if no reservations were available during our stay that he would make room himself. I was disappointed because this used to be one of my favorite places to eat in the country but with managers like that at the helm, i'm more than willing to give them another try!

06-26-2007, 01:47 PM
Thanks for sharing your experience. We also had a not-so-terrific time there about 3 weeks ago and vowed never to return. The hallmarks were bad service and overcooked meat. I guess I'll take a wait and see approach. If things improve, I may consider it again. It's good to know the manager is aware of the problems of service and food quality that have been reflected in some of the reviews and discussions on the board. More importantly, they're working to change things.

06-26-2007, 01:53 PM
If true and they are considering a return to the Ohana to its previous culinary glory, it will be great for them!!! This would certainly bring this longtime fan of Ohana back...

06-26-2007, 04:17 PM
Oh Man....We will be at Ohana in 3 months, I wonder if it will be better by then!

06-26-2007, 04:30 PM
On our last trip the meat was very overdone but the sides and desert were excellent. We also had great service. We are not visiting on our next trip in Sept. but would try it again sometime and hope they improve.

06-26-2007, 04:43 PM
I believe that the menu changed at the end of '05 but I could be wrong about that. We've eaten there twice since then and been kind of disappointed so this last trip we skipped Ohana. I really miss the jumbo scrimp, the stuff on the lazy susan, the pineapple with caramel and other things. Why sausage? What were they thinking?

06-26-2007, 04:47 PM
If true and they are considering a return to the Ohana to its previous culinary glory, it will be great for them!!! This would certainly bring this longtime fan of Ohana back...

Same here!

Mackey Mouse
06-26-2007, 04:47 PM
I think it is good to point out the dissatisfaction with their menu change as Disney does read this site and just maybe they are listening to their public who are so disappointed with these changes. I say bring back the old menu, people loved it.

06-26-2007, 05:39 PM
I never ate when the old menu was in place. We loved the salad, sides, dessert, sweet and sour shrimp and wings. We did not like the won tons nor the skewered meats at all. Loved the atmosphere - very fun. Hated the slow service. We certainly did not go away hungry and my lovely fruity (alcoholic) beverage certainly made me see everything in a rosie light!!! -- anyway, just wanted to say that I enjoyed 'Ohana but I can understand why people get frustrated. Would like to try it again with the new (old) menu.

06-26-2007, 05:43 PM
We never ate there with the old menu, but last year we had the current version and loved it. I know lots of old fans of 'Ohana were not happy with the changes, but we loved the food we had.

About the shrimp on skewers--someone posted part of the problem was keeping shrimp away from people with shellfish allergies. Apparently, when the shrimp skewers were cooked near the other meats, they would cross contaminate everything around. Now I also realize large shrimp are more expensive than the small ones they now serve, but the allergy thing does make some sense because shellfish allergies can be very serious.

And whether they're authentic or not, those potatoes are really very good.

06-26-2007, 06:00 PM
I believe that the menu changed at the end of '05 but I could be wrong about that.

You are correct - we ate there in October of 2005 and the new menu was already in place. We never had the old menu, but did like the menu as it is now (especially the potatoes and dessert! yum - I'm hungry...)

I would be skeptical about what the manager told you about having a new chef, etc., when this menu has been in place for over 18 months. I'd think the "new chef" would have figured it out by now...

My experience (3 times in the last 18 months) was that the food was varied in quality (sides seem much better than the main meat entree, which tends to be dry), but mainly that SERVICE continues to get worse and worse. We won't be eating there next time because I'm tired of the sporadic way food is delivered to my table, how hard it is to flag down a server, etc.

My kids do like 'Ohana, especially the games and songs, and you can't beat the view for the fireworks, so there are definite plusses as well. Just can't get past the bad service when I'm paying that much for my meal... Based on the comments I've read regarding this restaurant over the past 2 years, new menu aside, I think they really need to focus on that service portion.

I hope that if they do make menu changes, that the leave the bread pudding as a dessert option... It's my favorite food at WDW...

06-26-2007, 06:57 PM
Oh man!

I'm glad I read this thread to know what is going on, but I was just talking to DH about cancelling Hoop-de-doo and doing Ohana. I thought the kids would love it.

What to do? What to do?

06-26-2007, 07:51 PM
I really think you will like 'Ohana. I've never done Hoop-De-Doo but it seems awfully expensive for chicken (2TS right?). I think the food at 'Ohana is good and the atmosphere is fun -- just be prepared for a little bit of slow service. Or you might hit the right time and not have that problem. The Poly grounds are so beautiful to walk too! :thumbsup2

06-27-2007, 06:14 AM
Oh man!

I'm glad I read this thread to know what is going on, but I was just talking to DH about cancelling Hoop-de-doo and doing Ohana. I thought the kids would love it.

What to do? What to do?

We ate at 'Ohana a month ago and loved it, but we had never tried the ole menu. I would go back for the salad alone...oh and the dessert....oh and the potatoes and the steak oh my gosh the steak..... ok so maybe I liked it all!!! But I don't really like using 2TS for one meal anyway...


06-27-2007, 06:31 AM
Thanx for the review. We ate at Ohanas recently and had a lovely meal.. Sounds as though you got them on an off night.

06-27-2007, 04:05 PM
We love, love, love 'Ohana. We'll be there in about 3 weeks!

06-27-2007, 05:28 PM
Sorry you were disappointed, but it was nice of the manager to comp you.

I'll be curious to see what, if any, menu changes they make in the next few months. We never had the old menu, but we loved the wonton chips and dip(I could have eaten my weight--not an insubstantial amount, mind you--in those alone), pretty much everybody else on the DIS raves about the scalloped potatoes (you can get fried rice anywhere), and no offense, but there's no way pineapple in caramel sauce could hold a candle to that unbelievable bread pudding. I understand the disappointment about the shrimp changes, but it sounds like most everything else was an improvement!

Disney Ella
06-27-2007, 06:39 PM
I would be very happy if they brought back the old menu. I remember someone posting a rumor about a year ago that it was going to happen, but nothing ever came of it. Maybe I'm missing something, but the fried wontons they serve now don't seem any different to me than the ones you can get at any Chinese restaurant. The old wonton wrappers filled with shrimp were very good and fried wontons and dipping sauce just don't cut it as a substitute as far as I'm concerned. We also really liked the green beans. They were certainly more unique than scalloped potatoes, which you can get anywhere. If they bring back the old menu, we might just try 'Ohana again, but last time, with the new menu, it just wasn't worth the money.

The Sweetness
06-28-2007, 10:21 AM
:mad: 'Ohana was athe one huge dissapointment of my 8 night trip to WDW this month. It was supposed to be the most special meal of the trip, as it was my girlfriend's birthday. Even though I specifically requested at least 15 min between courses (not unreasonable IMO) we were rushed, having hot food dumped on the table before we had a chance to enjoy the salad and chips w/ sauce(s). The pork and turkey were brought to us were cold and dry. the steak was actually delicious. The sausage was putrid, and the bread pudding tasted like eggs :scared: Maybe I was expecting too much of this place, but I had hoped that in honor of her birthday, my girlfriend would have received a lei, or a special dessert (even if charged for it, I just didnt want an entire cake, therefore, i didnt order one ahead, as we were a small group, and had expected to enjoy the meal, rather than to leave in tears, and be hungry an hour later):headache: :snooty:

06-28-2007, 02:47 PM
I'm sorry you had a bad experience there. I'm glad that the manager was apologetic and was able to do something for you. Happy to hear that you are willing to give it another try :goodvibes .

I've been to Ohana 3 times in the past year. I love it there. My first time there was in October of '06 so we never had the old menu. I love the wonton chips and potatoes. I would be sad to see them go. :sad1:

06-29-2007, 02:48 PM
Oh Man....We will be at Ohana in 3 months, I wonder if it will be better by then!

I'm hoping so because we have a ressie there in 3 months and I definately prefer the old menu. 'Ohana used to be a favorite of our but was not that great in September. We did book it again since we are staying at Poly.

06-29-2007, 03:30 PM
I never tried the menu before it changed to what it is now but to me the best part of the meal was the salad, pork, peel and eat shrimp and the peanut dip with wonton chips. I find myself craving that dip. I would have been happy with just that. I would hate to see it go away. I also found that the wonton chips were seasoned and I never see that at a Chinese restaurant. They had a different taste which was perfect with that peanut sauce.