View Full Version : *Completed* The french fry Saga or How I learned to love the ice cream bombe

07-02-2007, 01:47 PM
So these reviews are a little later than I expected they would be, but that seems par for the course for me anymore. On with the show....

Your eaters for this evening will be:

Me (Princess Trisha - or just Trisha for short) I love food. I obsess about Disney food. I actually create a separate scrapbook for the food we eat on vacation. I follow my stomach, palate and nose everywhere.

Connie (aka my mother) She says she's not fussy but there is a lot she doesn't like. What she likes though, she really likes. Can't usually make up her own mind though so I have gotten pretty good at choosing things she'll enjoy (although sometimes I completely miss the mark as you'll see).

Bill (aka my father) If he could he would raise cows in the backyard so we could have a constant supply of beef on hand. Although he said to me a month before we left, "I'm not going to order steak at every meal this time, I want to try something new." He doesn't do well with new so I am glad that he forgot he said this to me.

A little background about the menu:
So, last October I decided there would be only 1 disney trip in 2007 - my finances were strapped a little tight with the two trips last year so, it was time to buckle down and go on a cash diet (I never even think of the other kind of diet because I know it's just not going to happen). Anyways, I around Christmas I started to get "the itch" - you guys know what I mean. You start playing with some numbers, costing things out on a "what if" basis. I thought to myself, I'll never make it until December 07 without at least a little Disney fix. So I started looking at a May trip - on the cheap (one of the most dreaded phrases in the English language). This meant no dining plan - how would I ever get through a trip without some of my favourite sit down restaurants? Is it even legal to stay a disney without having a mickey bar?

Disney to my rescue! I received the 40% off room discount postcard and called and booked the trip AND I ADDED THE DINING PLAN. Pixie Dust all around :wizard:

The menu:
:) Room service at the Polynesian
:) breakfast at Kona Cafe
:) a sandwich from Capt Cooks
:) Ohana
:) breakfast from Capt Cooks
:) Lunch at Le Cellier
:) Dinner at the Coral Reef
:) Lunch at Cosmic Ray's
:) A cheeseburger from the CR Food and Fun Center
:) Dinner at Tony's Town Square
:) Lunch at the CR F&F Center
:) Dinner at Planet Hollywood
:) Snacks at the MK
:) Another lunch at the CR F&F Center
:) Dinner at Kona Cafe
:) Breakfast at ABC Commissary
:) Lunch at Pepper Market
:) Dinner at the Grand Floridian Cafe

And for dessert:
:) How to effectively use leftover counter service credits and snack credits

Prices vary - the first 6 were pre dining plan - the remainder were on the dining plan.

Menu Descriptions:
To follow

07-02-2007, 01:55 PM
Cant wait!! :woohoo:

07-02-2007, 03:43 PM
This is gonna be good - have you got pictures as well popcorn::

07-02-2007, 03:59 PM
looking forward to your review!

07-02-2007, 04:07 PM
Ohhh...Sounds like fun! :goodvibes

07-02-2007, 04:09 PM
Subscribing for the ride!!!!!!

07-02-2007, 05:22 PM
Menu item #1

:) Room service at the Polynesian

We arrived at the Polynesian after being on the road for more than 25 hours (traffic, construction and mountain fog - oh the trials and tribulations we endured on the drive down). We had an ADR at the Grand Floridian Cafe but we were so tired and grubby that we reverted back to our basest instincts - room service.

I just wanted food, and I wanted someone to bring it to me.

So, we ordered (for the 3 of us):

Grilled Chicken Breast Sandwich - with Swiss cheese, smoked bacon, curry-mango mayonnaise and fried onion rings served with steak fries $11.99
Ironically, we didn't end up eating this tonight. There was so much food that this went into the fridge for the next day. Even cold though, it was good - the picture doesn't do it justice. The curry-mango mayonaise was just zippy enough that you could taste it over the cheese and bacon. The steak fries (not pictures since I ate them with my half of the pulled pork sandwich) were a little over salted but I find that of most fries in Disney. The sandwich came open like this - if you were eating this right away it would keep the onion rings crispy. A good choice for a quick dinner.

Hamburger with American Cheese served with lettuce, tomato, onions, and steak fries $11.99


This is where we had problems. My Dad had wanted the hamburger (he's the beef man remember). It came and well, it was burnt and the bun was hard - not toasted - hard. He picked it up and realized that it was not okay. He called dining and let them know that the burger was burnt and not acceptable so they said they would send another - it would be 20-30 min. An hour later, still no replacement burger. So he called again. Apparently, they had delivered a burger - just not to our room. That's right - they knocked on another room's door and brought in a hamburger, and the person accepted it. I guess it's not true what they say about "No such thing as a free lunch" - someone got a free hamburger that night. Anyways, my Dad let them know it was not delivered to us - they agreed to take the burger off the charge and send another replacement burger. When it arrived, it was brought by not only a server but the manager to ensure that everything was acceptable. And, as a way to make up for the delay (it was almost 10pm by this time) 3 pieces of chocolate cake - one for each of us. A nice touch - something I expect from Disney when such a comedy of errors occurs. Of course, both my mother and I were already in bed (although not asleep) by this point since we had actually driven all night the night before.

Free Cake:
This was some of the best, most fudgy chocolate cake I have ever had. The outside was covered with chocolate chips and the filling was a thick fudgy icing. The cake itself was very moist. I wish that they served this at Kona.

Open Faced Pulled Pork Sandwich - with barbecue sauce and served with coleslaw and steak fries $11.99
When this came, I took half and my mom took half (and I had the fries from the chicken sandwich). The picture didn't come out very well - but wow was this good. I was concerned that the bbq sauce would be too spicy (hence I ordered the chicken sandwich for my mom since spice is one of her "can't have" things). It was sweet and tangy with just a little bite. And tender, oh - I don't think you even had to chew it. It was served open faced on a toasted butter roll. The sauce had soaked in just enough to flavour the roll, but the edges of the bun were still crispy. This was the most outstanding item we ordered and I highly recommend it for a tasty lunch or dinner if you don't want to leave your room at the Poly.

And finally: Large Caesar Salad - Romaine hearts and parmesan cheese $10.99, Add Grilled Chicken Breast $3.99
I am also concerned when I am doing the ordering (without much input as we had a round of "What do you want? I don't care. No, really, what do you want to eat? I don't care, just order whatever. WHAT DO YOU WANT! REALLY, I DON'T CARE JUST ORDER. Fine, I'll order then. PAUSE Well, I could go for a hamburger. You know something "fresh" would be nice) that I won't please everyone so I order too much food. The salad was good - and I liked that the lettuce, dressing, and chicken all came separate. My dad could have lots of dressing, I could have a little and mom could have none. Course, Dad scooped most of the chicken but I wasn't concerned because he had only had his fries by this point (see above - "the missing hamburger"). At $14 it was a little steep if order for 1, but sharing it around, it was worth it.

One last shot:
They gave us enough condiments for 10 people. We brought them home. They are currently in the kitchen waiting to be packed for the next trip (hey, golden rule #8 - always travel with your own ketchup).

07-02-2007, 05:36 PM
Lovin your reviews. "I wanted food and I just wanted someone to bring it to me" - been there before!!!!:rotfl:

07-02-2007, 06:31 PM
You had me at "the french fry saga" :)

Subscribing to enjoy your reviews! :)

07-02-2007, 07:46 PM
ohhh....I am definitely subscribing to this thread.....you tell a good story...

07-02-2007, 07:53 PM
Subscribing...it sounds like it will be an interesting report!!! Thank you!

07-02-2007, 08:25 PM
I'm lovin it! Cant wait to read more!


07-02-2007, 09:07 PM
I found this while at work today and now I see you will have pictures! YAY! We love you already... And I started dieting a week and a half ago for my upcoming trip in September. I don't know how far I'll get, but I'll be rewarding myself when I get there!

Can't wait to see more! :banana:

07-02-2007, 10:43 PM
Can't wait for more!popcorn::

07-02-2007, 11:16 PM
That chocolate cake looks divine... who needs the rest? ;)

07-03-2007, 06:01 AM

07-03-2007, 07:35 AM
Enjoying your review/reviews! :) :) :)

07-03-2007, 08:28 AM
Can't wait for more! Great report so far.

07-03-2007, 08:53 AM
:woohoo: More!

07-03-2007, 09:34 AM
Thank you, great review, now keep going:)

07-03-2007, 11:47 AM
So, after a wonderfully restful night's sleep, we awoke hungry. Well, that was a surprise. Not really, I just like saying things like that (you know that funny, snarky humour that most people mistake for sarcasm).

I know people say you don't generally need ADR's for non character breakfasts but I was not taking any chances. You see, after 4 trips staying and eating on site (that's right - 4) I was finally going to try Tonga Toast.

Each trip I like to try at least 1 wildly popular item / restaurant. The first on site trip was Le Cellier and Mickey Bars; the second was Dinner at the Castle (before it became characterized) and zebra domes; the third was Whispering Canyon and their All you care to eat skillet and grapefruit cake at HBD; and on the fourth it was breakfast at Crystal Palace featuring yummy puffed French toast and breakfast lasagna and a dole whip. This trip it was Tonga Toast. As a little aside, I have been both enthralled and disappointed by these little forays into the most beloved Disney foods. While Le Cellier became a family favourite I wouldn't eat another zebra dome or dole whip if you paid me (well, I guess it depends on the amount of money you were offering - there's not much I wouldn't do for say $1,000,000) but I certainly would never voluntarily purchase these items again for myself (though you all are free to enjoy them whenever the mood strikes).

Okay so back to breakfast. We arrived right on time for our 9:10am ADR (being 5 mins away in Fiji was super convenient) and were seated right away. The restaurant was about 2/3 full but there were several empty tables around us (mind you these were filled about half way through our meal).


My Dad had said he wanted pancakes and my mom said she didn’t want a big breakfast. I think they were being cheap. We have this problem whenever we are not eating on the dining plan. They always go for the least expensive thing on the menu. They say it’s because it’s what they want, I know it’s because they are trying to save me money. I didn’t care about cost, I wanted Tonga Toast. My mom convinced my Dad to get the Big Kahuna platter and share it with her. I cringed. Not that I have a problem with sharing, it’s just I didn’t want to be running out afterwards to get a box of donuts because anyone was still hungry. It was early, we were still a little tired, and I didn’t want to argue so I gave in and let them do what they wanted.

We ordered:
Tonga Toast - banana stuffed sourdough bread, rolled in cinnamon sugar with bacon $8.99

Big Kahuna - Pancakes, French toast, eggs your way, home fried potatoes, ham, bacon, and sausage $11.99

I had a diet coke, mom had tea and dad had coffee. Prior to the trip I had been up to 2-3 extra large Tim Horton Coffees a day (what can I say, I don’t smoke or drink alcohol – I am a coffee addict). However, knowing the sad state of Disney coffee I decided after my last Timmy’s on Friday afternoon when we left Toronto, that I would wean myself off of coffee for the week so went I returned to real life, I would be back to my normal 1 a day. So I did not try the Kona blend coffee but according to my Dad it was really good.

That being said, I don’t really trust my Dad’s taste in coffee. He makes awful coffee at home and then “gasp” microwaves it the next day. However, knowing my dad’s taste, for it to be good coffee, it must have been strong as that is how he likes it. So if you like strong coffee, try the Kona Blend.

The hot tea came with two bags on the side of a pot of hot water. The waitress had no problem filling the pot twice more. There was a choice of about 5-6 kinds of tea and I believe my mom settled on a Lemon tea.

Sorry about the following pictures, we forgot to take shots when the food arrived, so instead we took pictures of it after it had been divided up between the three of us.




Tonga Toast is mind-blowing. If you like those little cinnamon donuts that you get fresh made at the fair, you will love Tonga Toast. I have to admit though, half of it was enough for me. This would be a good place to go with a buddy where you order two different breakfasts and then switch half way through.

The big Kahuna Platter was a good amount of food. My Dad was a little disappointed because the pancakes were two silver dollar sized cakes instead of “normal” size. But he enjoyed the piece of pineapple on the side. The eggs were cooked well, they ordered them scrambled hard (for those of you who don’t know what this means, it means well cooked until dry – wet scrambled eggs are persona non grata around us). The bacon was, well, bacon. It was crispy without being burnt and had a slight salty kick to it. The breakfast potatoes were thick wedges of hand cut potatoes cooked until they were soft in the middle, not crispy on the outside but well seasoned with salt, pepper and a little something else that I could quite pick out. I rarely eat sausage, nor does my mother so Dad got this along with the piece of ham. This was one of his favourite sausages ever. He really likes the plump link sausage (not the little fryers that are served most places) and the ham was grilled so it really brought out the smokey flavour. The french toast was “okay” but I think my parents would have preferred just plain toast instead.

Our server was quite attentive for about the first 20 minutes but once the breakfast platters were brought we didn’t see her again and actually had to flag her down for a refill of my pop and my mom’s tea and our bill. She never came back to check to make sure there were no issues with the breakfasts (i.e. something wrong or not well cooked, etc) which to me is a big no-no. But it didn’t really affect the food so it will not affect my decision on whether or not to return to Kona for breakfast.

Overall, it was a good breakfast but I am not sure I’ll return. As you will see in a future review, there are other ways to obtain the elusive Tonga Toast.

07-03-2007, 12:46 PM
Yeah!! Loving these reviews!! Please write more soon :-)

07-03-2007, 01:22 PM
Great reviews! Pictures and a fun read - how much better does it get?

07-03-2007, 02:28 PM
Great reviews so far. Can't wait for the rest.

07-03-2007, 02:40 PM
Great Reviews! I can't wait for some Tonga Toast!!!:banana:

07-03-2007, 04:13 PM
A sandwich from Capt Cooks

For lunch we ate up the leftovers from the night before (mmm, cold chicken sandwich, leftover salad, and some chocolate cake). It was enough to tide us over but by 4pm we were a little hungry again. Dinner at Ohana was not until 8pm (timed for the fireworks) so it was time for some snacking.

My Dad's choice - Little Debbie Cakes. These were purchased on the way down for him. He loves them. I only mention this lest you think I did not feed him.

My mother and I decided to split a sandwich from Capt Cooks (the counter service place at the Poly). So we sent my Dad to get it (he is handy to have around to fill mugs and pick up food). The only thing I could remember off hand that they had that I wanted to try was the:
Grown-up Grilled Cheese - multigrain sunflower bread with cheddar, swiss, and blue cheese, frisee and tomato $6.49

You see, we can’t send my Dad with the instructions to “Just get something” because he comes back with things we don’t like. For some reason he is convinced that my mother likes Crullers so he’ll come home with one every once in a while for her. She doesn’t like crullers – never has. There is just a little disconnect between his mind and our stomachs so if he is getting the food we HAVE to tell him ahead of time what we want.



The sandwich was tasty – for me, a little too tasty. The bread was a true multigrain – you could see and taste the different grains and seeds. It was a grilled cheese so it was a touch greasy on the outside but that is expected. To me where the sandwich failed to be all it could be was that the 3 kinds of cheese were not even distributed inside. One mouthful would be all cheddar and the next would be nothing but blue cheese. Now I like blue cheese but it was too much of a good thing. My mom LOVES blue cheese so she didn’t have an issue with it (she would have been happy without the cheddar and swiss with nothing but blue cheese but, sorry, not if we’re sharing). If they could distribute the cheeses more evenly, this would be a great sandwich. As it is, I can only recommend it to blue cheese lovers, not blue cheese likers.

I forgot that this was not served with the traditional French fry. It is served with Kona chips. These are three kinds of corn chips. Just a hint, the little orange ones (not cheese flavoured) are really, really tasty. The others are basically just nacho chips. Fine, but most of them ended up getting tossed out.

The sandwich itself was quite large. I would have to say that each half of the grilled cheese was about the size of the grilled cheese I would make at home. It came tucked into a neat little box which was filled to the brim with the chips.

If you like blue cheese and nacho chips this could be the lunch for you, otherwise, I’d try something else.

07-03-2007, 05:09 PM
Great reviews so far! Thanks for the warning about the grilled cheese. I have been thinking of ordering this ever since I saw it on the menu but since I am not in the blue cheese lovers camp, I think I'll pass. Oh well.

Lilo's Mom
07-03-2007, 05:53 PM
I know exactly what you mean about the grilled cheese sandwich. They have a similar sandwich at Cafe Orleans at Disneyland. It's a three cheese monte cristo. Its batter deep fried and has Swiss, mozzarella and double creme Brie. There was so much creme Brie in the middle of the sandwich that you couldn't even taste the other two cheeses. I would never order that sandwich again, and I am a big cheese lover!

Great reviews, can't wait to read more!

07-04-2007, 04:24 PM
Ohana is a family favourite of ours.

In fact, Ohana is what convinced me to stay the two nights at the Polynesian. I have always thought the hotel was too dark for my taste but after booking Ohana for dinner I decided I would rather just be able to waddle back to our room than have to: walk to the valet stand, wait for the car, get into the car, drive, park, and THEN waddle back to our room. Some people choose their hotel based on location and ammenities, I picked based on how quickly I could lie down after a big meal.

Anyway, it ended up being a great choice for hotel, but only a so-so choice for dinner.

We had an 8pm reservation and the fireworks were at 9pm so I figured we'd be enjoying dessert right around the time they came on.

We checked in at the podium and the woman said it would be about 20 mins because they were running a little behind. Although the lounge was pretty packed we did manage to find seats. Now, I am not a drinker and neither are either of my parents, but for some odd reason, I decided that some kind of fruity tropical drink was in order.

I ordered a something cadillac I think - it was one of the drinks from the cruise line. It was good, quite a kick to it, but the piece of pineapple was the best part.

My mother ordered a Long Beach Iced Tea - Bacardi Limon Rum, Skyy Vodka, Bombay Gin, Triple Sec, Cranberry Juice and Sweet-and-Sour with a splash of Sprite. If you like long island iced teas and want to try something a little different, this is the drink for you.


Remember that 20 min wait? It was about 5. We were still waiting for our drinks when the buzzer went off. Except that they have to close the bar bill before you go into the restaurant. So we had to wait, and wait and the hostess who was going to seat us started to get ticked off - she actually started to tap her foot and shift her weight from side to side and she sighed and hrmped. The drink server put the drinks down and the hostess started to walk into the restaurant. I of course, still had to pay for the drinks - thankfully I had cash. I told my parents to follow the server and after paying I would go into the restaurant. Even the drink server said thank you for staying to pay for the drinks (in a laughing manner).

So on to our table. It was in the main part of the restaurant where the windows are but was right in front of the big Tiki statue so we couldn't really see out the windows well. It was just off to the side of the fire pit, by the server door to the kitchen. It was one of those tables for 2 that they stick a third chair onto. I really dislike those tables because they never seem to have enough room - especially when the food is being served family style.

Right away our server came. The first thing he asked was if we were on the dining plan (and no, at this point we were not) and asked my dad what he wanted to drink - and then he walked away. When he returned I let him know that I too would like a soft drink as would my mother. He said he didn't think we would want anything because we already had drinks. Fine, I can understand, it was a simple miss understanding. Another server brought the salad and the wontons and sauces. Just a word of warning, I did not take pictures of the food - there are about 400 Ohana pictures on the food porn thread (several of which are mine).

About oh, 10 seconds after the salad, they brought out the chicken wings, shrimps, veggies and potatoes. We asked them to take away the salad and chips since we weren't really interested in them anyways, and we didn't have enough room on the table for the stuff we did want.

The shrimp were as wonderful as always - I really like them in the sweet and sour sauce. They stay very moist and it's a nice change from the traditional shrimp sauce. When they were on the skewer, they seemed a little "chewy" (i.e. dried out) and they had that peppered seasoning on them. The potatoes were to die for and we had a second plate of these. The veggies were okay (this is the one change I was never happy with, I really like the green beans they used to serve) but the wings were a lot spicier than previously. It might just have been our batch but they had a harsh bite to them. I think we each had one and that was it.

We were offered turkey and sausage several times but no pork or steak.

Now, the pork wasn't a big deal. But no steak? My dad asked 6 times and the response was - it's coming they are cooking more. More than an hour into the meal (the firworks were about half over) and another server (not one we had previously seen) came with the beef skewer. We literally just kept waiting for the steak, and waiting and waiting. It came and it was medium rare (great for me, fine for dad but mom wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole but she didn't really care anyways) so there is no way this took an hour to cook - I'd be surprised if it had been on the grill more than 10 mins.

We hadn't seen our server in quite some time (no drink refills) when my dad did spot him he tried to flag him down and pointed to the empty glasses. The server waved him off (I thought my dad was going to go through the roof at this point). Another server brought the dessert and then our waiter came back with a pitcher of pop and filled all of our glasses (a little thing but still - the pitcher was full of ice and pop - both my mom and I always order our drinks with no ice - I have a recent filling which is a little sensitive and she just has plain old sensitive teeth to both really hot and really cold). I know that they use team serving at Ohana but I don't think we ever saw the same person twice (except for drinks and the bill).

We finished dessert and the drinks and waited for the bill. And waited and waited. They seated a rather large party behind us and two servers lifted chairs into the air and placed that at that table - I wouldn't have minded but the chairs ended up being lifted over my head and passed from one server to another. Sorry, I know I am short but that's not okay.

Anyways the bill came, I paid it with my credit card - I handed the book to the server and when he returned with it - the server handed it to my Dad.

You know what - this was it for me. I can understand not offering my mom and I drinks (he thought we wouldn't want pop because of the alcohol), the missing / slow steak, even the bad table but - I am a 33 year old woman, if I hand out my credit card, I expect it to be given back to ME. It is a major peeve of mine when they give it to my father (or boyfriend or male friend or any man that I am sitting with) - handing the bill to the man, I'll accept (I don't like it because in this day and age that seems sexist to me but hey) but not when I have just handed you my credit card. As far as I am concerned you have just handed my personal and private information to someone else.

Anyway, I signed the bill (and yes I still tipped but only 12% - not my usual 18-20%) and we went back to the room.

So to recap, service was lacking but my favourite dishes (Shrimp, potatoes and steak) were still good.

Will I go back next trip (October)? No, I don't think so.
Will I ever go back? Of course, I mean, let's not let one mushy apple make you turn you off from them permanently.

07-05-2007, 09:42 PM
Monday morning I woke up and took the monorail over to the Contemporary to check in for the start of our package - I got our tickets and dining plan.

On the way back to the room at the Polynesian, I stopped at Capt Cook's to pick up some breakfast for my parents and I.

I settled on two orders of Tonga Toast, one with a side of bacon and one with a side of sausage and I got a side of breakfast potatoes.

The tonga toast at capt cook's is EXACTLY the same as the one they serve at Kona. I could tell no difference what so ever. It's less expensive and served on a paper plate.

Back at the room we divided up the breakfast food and ate quickly as we were itching to get to Epcot for opening.

It was fresh, it was hot, it was good.

A side note about Capt Cook's itself - the ordering system was great with the new touch screens but paying was another matter. After I ordered there were two huge lines to pay for your food. And you don't receive your pager until after you have paid. As I went to join the one line, the manager came out and opened another line where you pick up your food and she encouraged the people who had just ordered (myself included) to pay there. This meant that I actually got my food before a lot of the people who had ordered before me.

Two other things I noticed - several people after paying stood at the food pick up area - right in front of the counter and they did not let anyone around them, even others whose food was ready and their pager was going off. When my food was ready, the person who gave it to me had to hand it over the bakery cases because there was a man and a woman standing side by side who would not move. Another woman when collecting her food after saying excuse me three times to these people, basically just squeezed between them and then was stuck and had difficultly getting out.

There were also a lot of people at the pastry case which is right next to where you pick up the food - that is understandable. What really surprised (and kind of grossed me out) was that people put their trays on the floor, picked out their pastry, put it onto their tray on the floor and then selected another or a piece of fruit. I couldn't believe it when I saw 3 different people put their trays of food on the floor.

07-06-2007, 04:48 AM
Really enjoying your reviews - now I am in a quandary because I really wanted to go to Kona and try the Tonga Toast next month. We don't have an ADR, though, and I did wonder whether we would need one for breakfast. Now I am thinking we might just go to Captain Cook's instead and get my Tonga Toast fix there :confused3

07-06-2007, 12:49 PM
Honestly, if you don't care about the setting - I'd get it from Capt Cook's.

07-06-2007, 01:31 PM
Great reviews. I love the detail of the service as well as the food. Ohana had been on our "finalists" list, but didn't make the eventual list. And I think you touched on some of the reasons why. I just had this fear that we'd never see the server and wouldn't get half of the food options.

07-06-2007, 01:43 PM
I booked two reservations for this day - lunch at Le Cellier and dinner at the Coral Reef (two of our very favourite restaurants at disney). I wasn't 100% sure that we would keep both of them but we did.

Prior to lunch we had been on Ellen's Energy Adventure. I checked the time before we went onto the ride - and although it would be tight - I didn't think we would have any problems making our ADR. What I didn't count on was, despite the 4,000 warnings they give you about how long the ride is, you can't get off, etc. etc. - someone got up and off the ride because "they had to go to the bathroom". So the ride was stopped. And we waited, and waited, and waited (for 40 days and 40 nights we waited in the darkness, lost and alone - listening only to the bodyless voice telling us to please remain seated, they are attempting to restart the ride - this is only a delay). Finally, the started evacuating the ride. My mother uses a scooter when she is down there but for Ellen's ride you have to transfer to the wheelchair and you are seated at the back of one of the ride vehicles. We were in the last vehicle and were the last ones to be taken off the ride.

After getting off the ride, we were already 30 minutes late for our ADR. We booted it up to Le Cellier (I went first while my Dad got my mom back onto her ECV and they followed - my mom is the slowest driver - if she even thinks there is a person within 5 feet of her she stops and lets them go. She brakes for eveyone but my Dad and I - she often dings us slightly and almost ran my Dad down - she has also run over her own foot once). When I got to the podium, I explained what had happened and they had no problem seating us. In fact, they seated us right away.

We were seated at a four top in a nice open area (well, as open as Le Cellier gets which means I couldn't feel the breath of the next person on my neck - hey, the things you accept for really good food). Our server showed up right away and asked if we were on the dining plan. We had discussed earlier (my parents and I) if we wanted to use the dining plan (which means 3 courses) for this meal or if we only wanted a regular lunch, I would just pay out of pocket. I had also floated the suggestion of using 1 or 2 credits and paying for any extras oop. We decided that it wouldn't be worth using the DDP, and I would just pay OOP for the lunch.

We each ordered a diet coke to drink and the waitress brought these along with the 3 kinds of bread.


My mom took the bread out of the holder as previous pictures taken with the bread standing up do not give you "the full picture". My dad likes the sourdough best, my mom the pretzel and I the multi grain (though I do always have a bit of the pretzel bread).

For lunch, my mom ordered the Grilled Chicken Breast Sandwich - topped with marinated mushrooms, roasted peppers, black diamond cheddar cheese, and tarragon garlic mayonnaise on a sourdough English muffin $12.99


She chose the french fries instead of the potato salad as I had heard that the potato salad was a little spicy (and she doesn't like spicy at all).

The chicken was very tender and the toppings - although a little different were really good. My mother didn't eat the english muffin - I was actually very surprised when she ordered this and I know she doesn't like english muffins. In the future, if she ordered it again, she would ask for a different bread (the english muffin was also grilled - and a little too blackened). The fries were the thick cut steak fries, well cooked and again, a little salty.

My Dad ordered the Open Face Sirloin Steak Sandwich - topped with house-made caponata and melted provolone cheese $13.99

He had them substitute the cream cheese mashed potatoes instead of either the potato salad or the fries (I didn't tell him that the mashed potatoes had cream cheese into them until the next day, his response - I'm dying, you've posioned me - akk, akh, cough, cough.) This was by far the best lunch we ordered. The steak was tender and well seasoned and perfectly cooked to order. It is as good as the other steaks served at Le Cellier with the added bonus of having cheese melted on top of it. The bread was one thick slice of a good multigrain bread (even better than the bread stick). When I saw his lunch I immediately wished I had ordered it.


My lunch was not so good. I had order the Calgary Barbecue Sliced Prime Rib on garlic buttered sourdough with our house-made maple barbecue sauce and finished with celery root slaw. $14.99. I don't know what sliced means to you, but to me it means recognizable pieces of meat. The prime rib was not sliced, it was shredded into rice sized pieces. And the coleslaw, was on top of the meat (I assumed it would be on the side). The bread was very crispy around the edges but the inside was soft. I can't lie - it wasn't good. I didn't enjoy it at all - in fact I left half of it behind (but my dad did give me a small piece of his steak). I ordered the steak fries which were good (crispy but overly salted as I have come to accept and expect). Between these, and the bread and the bites of my parents food (and half of my sandwich) I had enough lunch. Now, you may be asking yourself, why didn't I send it back? I only send back food if it's wrong - not if I don't like it or it's not what I expected. Also, our server was a little non existent during this meal.

I know some people complain about service on the dining plan but we always have good service when using the DDP - it's when we're paying OOP that we seem to get the lackluster service.

My lunch (please don't order it, if enough people don't order it, hopefully it will be improved or taken off the menu):

Next up will be the Coral Reef - the best dining experience we've had at Disney (ever!).

07-06-2007, 01:53 PM
LOL...ok, so I saw Le Cellier and then I caught the picture of the bread before I'd had a chance to read it and seriously, it looked like a hot dog to me and I'm thinking "...hot dogs at Le Cellier...now that doesn't seem like something they'd have on the menu."

07-06-2007, 08:55 PM
LOL...ok, so I saw Le Cellier and then I caught the picture of the bread before I'd had a chance to read it and seriously, it looked like a hot dog to me and I'm thinking "...hot dogs at Le Cellier...now that doesn't seem like something they'd have on the menu."

Lol, I did the exact same thing :rotfl:

Great update on the report - it's always a shame when something you order turns out to be disappointing. I nearly always have 'meal envy' at restaurants (wishing I'd got what someone else is having).

07-07-2007, 09:14 AM
Great report!! I love your style of writing!!

07-07-2007, 12:06 PM
Dinner at the Coral Reef

This was the best meal of the entire trip.

We arrived about 15 mins early for our 7:20pm ADR and were seated right at our ADR time. We were seated on the third tier. I know a lot of people want to be right at the tank but we actually prefer being up top. It gives you a great view of all of the tanks - not just the one you are sitting directly in front of. Another bonus is that no one is trying to push by your table to look at the tank. We witnessed a number of children (unsupervised - no adult with them), squeezing around someones chair to try and get a better view of the tank.

Our server Brandon appeared promptly at our table and took our drink order (diet cokes all around - my mom and I had no ice and my dad had ice in his). The drinks arrived quickly and my mom and mine had the blue plastic dolphins in them. Brandon also brought us a guide to the fish we would see in the tank.


He also brought us a basket of bread and butter. He explained that the bread was ciabatta, but he wasn't sure how that made it different but it was very good bread. He talked to us about some of the newer menu items and made some recommendations. He was a very good server.

For appetizers my mom and I both ordered the Sea and Land - Grilled shrimp with cucumber salad and BBQ beef skewer with creamy polenta $9.49


This was incredible. It included two grilled shrimp which were tender (a little small but it was only part of the appetizer) atop some shredded cucumber with dressing - even this part which normally, I would assume was more for looks than eating tasted very good. It was crisp and light.

It also included a beef kabob with a flavourful but not spicy bbq sauce. The beef was cooked medium and very tender. It was served atop creamy, buttery polenta. Normally, I don't like polenta. I generally find it grainy and either pasty or dry, but this was so good. The texture was smooth and it was very moist and buttery.

This was an incredible appetizer and if it is still there in October I will order it again.

My Dad ordered the Chilled Shrimp - served with seaweed salad $9.99


I don't recall seeing the seaweed salad but the shrimps were good. They were chilled through and firm. The star was the seafood sauce. It was very mellow, and there was something else in there other than just horseradish. It had almost a sweetness to it. My dad really enjoyed this but I do think he was a little envious of my mom and I because of the beef skewers.

Brandon ensured that our glasses were always filled and brought us more bread. Neither of my parents eat crusts but loved the soft inside of the bread. One way I could tell that Brandon was an excellent server - he listened patiently while my dad explained to him how ciabatta bread is made and what the "sour" is and how it differs from other breads. And he did it with a smile on his face. He was attentive and friendly, and we were never without anything the entire meal. It was well paced and we certainly never felt rushed or forgotten.

For dinner we all ordered the same thing, Grilled NY Strip Steak - served with potatoes au gratin, and broccolini $31.99. When we were here last October I had ordered the Ahi Tuna with wasabi mashed potatoes and I really enjoyed it. I was disappointed that this was no longer on the menu. The ahi tuna with carrots and peas didn't really appeal to me. My parents had both had the steak last year and we knew it was good so I decided to order it as well. My mom ordered hers well done, my dad ordered his medium and I ordered mine medium rare. My mom asked Brandon about the red wine sauce that was included and he suggested that if she was unsure, they could serve it on the side. Both her and my dad got the sauce on the side, I went for the gold and got it on the steak already.


This was the best steak in the world - no matter how it was cooked. All of our steaks were cooked perfectly to the order and they were all tender, juicy and melt in your mouth good. I didn't even use my steak knife. I just cut the steak with my butter knife. And the sauce! I loved it. My dad ended up using his but my mom didn't really think it added anything so I had hers as well. It was way better than using any kind of steak sauce.

My medium rare steak sliced:


The potatoes were better than Ohanas (and that's saying a lot). They were cooked till soft but not mushy and had a wonderful sauce on them and then they were covered with cheese. My dad said the only thing that would have made them better was if the cheese was crispy. I thought they were perfect the way they were. The broccolini were cooked but still a little firm - which is how I (and my parents) prefer their vegetables. I don't like them where they are completely soft or even a little mushy. They were heavily buttered which gave them just enough salted flavouring so you didn't have to add anything. What I like about this restaurant is they serve whatever vegetable is in season - last October it was carrots and asparagus and now it was the broccolini. This was possibly the most perfectly cooked and flavoured meal I have ever had. :love:

For dessert we each chose something different. I wasn't sure how I was going to get through it but I was going to get it a good try.

My dad ordered the chocolate wave with brandied cherries $7.99:


I didn't think he would like the cherries but he did. The only thing that stopped me from ordering this is the no more ice cream. To me you can't have chocolate cake without ice cream.

My mom ordered the Citrus Creme Brulee - with Berries and citrus zest $7.99


She loved this. My mom really likes cream brulee and this was one of her favourites. It was nicely bruleed on top but the rest was properly chilled.

I ordered the Baileys and Jack Daniel's Mousse* - topped with a ganache and chocolate cigar $7.99


The top two layers were amazing (the ganache and the white layer) the bottom one was a little too "alcoholly" for my taste. When I was a drinker, these were my two favourites - Bailey's and coffee and straight up JD. A few years ago I would have dived into that bottom layer. This time I only skimmed it. But what I ate was so rich and creamy, I was very satisfied.

We had seen some kids get the Pirate punch that came with a tinkerbell lightup and my dad wanted to get one for my niece (his grand daughter) so we asked Brandon if we could buy one. They were $5 which to me is expensive for what you get - but I was feeling generous after being so deliciously full so I said yes. When Brandon brought me the bill to sign for the DDP, he had forgotten to put the bill in for the Tinkerbell. I had $15 cash in my hand - $5 plus tax for the tinkerbell and the remainder as an extra tip for such great service. Upon noticing that there was no bill for the Tinkerbell I pointed this out to Brandon because I didn't want it to come out of his pocket if it was a simple oversight. He was surprised that I pointed out that he had forgotten to charge me and then said because I was so honest, he wasn't going to charge me for it. :wizard:

I still put the $15 in the bill book and handed it to him.

It was such a perfect dinner that it was the first place I booked for our October trip this year. I only hope that it will continue to live up to our past experiences.

07-07-2007, 12:18 PM
I'm so glad to be reading such good reviews of Coral Reef. We're going for the first time next trip!!

07-07-2007, 02:25 PM
Oh my goodness. That was a loverly review of the Coral Reef :) We can't wait to finally make it this year and you made me even more excited for it!

Your reviews have been outstanding! :)

07-09-2007, 12:13 PM
I'm so glad to read such a positive review of Coral Reef! :) (I'll eat lunch there in August). Thanks for your wonderfully descriptive reviews!

07-09-2007, 01:14 PM
I'm seeing many more positive Coral Reef reviews these days. Almost makes me wish it was on our list. I made our ADR's and I've convinced myself to stick with them and not change. But Coral Reef may be something to really consider for the future.

07-09-2007, 01:28 PM
Great review of Coral Reef - it seems to me that this restaurant has come full circle. Used to be great, then got some really poor reviews for a while but everything I am reading lately seems so positive. I am hoping it stays so as I plan to eat there next April now.

07-09-2007, 04:19 PM
Lunch at Cosmic Ray's

I have always meant to eat here but usually we are on the other side of the park and grab burgers from Pecos Bill’s.

This trip we had a late breakfast ADR for the Crystal Palace. We ate there the last trip and loved it so I booked it again. However, this was an EMH morning at the MK just after Memorial Day and the park was packed! We ended up in the line for the new Monsters Inc Laugh Floor at 9:50 am and our reservation was for 10:20 am. I gave my parents our choice – A. After Monsters Inc was done we could rush over to the Crystal Palace or B. We could do a couple more rides, skip breakfast and have a counter service lunch consisting of chicken and ribs. Well, no one was really in the mood for a buffet (it’s funny; I don’t even think it was the heat – it was more the crowd. The idea of going into a crowded noisy restaurant just didn’t appeal to us. If it had been a more upscale place or less busy, we might have kept it) and we decided to wait for an early lunch.

And I know I am about to be flamed by the DIS board police but I did not cancel the ADR. I don’t carry a cell phone and by the time we were off the ride and got to a phone, it was past our ADR time. Sorry to whoever missed out on an ADR for 3 on Tuesday May 29th at CP – I send you my deepest condolences and (if you can prove it) I will buy you a Mickey ice cream bar next time we are both in the world together.

Anyways, I am so glad that we decided to go to Cosmic Rays.

1. I have not seen Sonny Eclipse since I was much younger. He is so cute and I have never seen so many children so mesmerised by something other than a television set.

2. The food is awesome. It is as good as some of the table service places (I would put this meal up against 50’s Primetime’s fried chicken dinner any day).


The chicken was moist and very good rotisserie (and up here in Canada we have Swiss Chalet – the king of all rotisserie chicken) and the mashed potatoes did not taste like instant. The carrots were fresh cooked and buttered.

We shared two meals between the three of us. On one of the meals the ribs were very meaty and tender; on the other the ribs were thin and didn’t have much meat. I guess with that part it is very hit or miss. But the bbq sauce was plentiful so I am sure it covers a multitude of sins on the ribs.

I can’t say enough good things about this food. It is not typical counter service. If I was not on the dining plan my first choice for dinner in the MK would be a half chicken dinner at Cosmic Rays. For this trip, Cosmic Rays was to counter service what the Coral Reef was to Table Service.

For dessert we got one chocolate cake and one carrot cake. We were so full (and we are big eaters!) from the entrees that we didn’t even touch these. They went into our bag and returned to the hotel with us where they spent a day or two in the fridge before being consumed. They have enough preservatives in them that two days later they still seemed fresh. I try not to think about food additives and chemicals while on vacation, but the “freshness” of these did make me think twice about consuming any more of them.

For drinks we were allowed the large one (2 diet cokes) with no issues.

The restaurant itself wasn’t overly busy and we had no issues finding a clean table right up front near Sonny himself.

Golden Rule #14 – Always eat at counter service restaurants early or come prepared with ear plugs, sanitizing wipes and aspirin.

07-09-2007, 04:43 PM
This is just fantastic and making me excited and hungry for my November trip!

Thanks for sharing!

07-09-2007, 06:54 PM
I love all your reviews, and the pics. One thing I would not put up with though, is someone handing a chair over my head. There is just no telling what might fall off the bottom into my hair, or food. YUCK! I probably would have stood up and gotten hit rather than that! Course, if I had gotten hit, it would have been a free meal.

07-09-2007, 07:33 PM
I tried to make it all the way through this thread, I really did. But I just didn't make it -- I got as far as the CR desserts when I had to get some ice cream - you made me HUNGRY!!! :goodvibes

07-10-2007, 02:05 PM
A cheeseburger from the CR Food and Fun Center

We returned in the afternoon to the hotel (the Contemporary – which is definitely in my top 3 disney resorts) for a rest and some relaxation. After spending a couple of hours in the arcade (I am addicted to any game which spits out paper tickets for completing some minor “skilled” task), I was a little hungry as was my mother. My dad had already eaten the leftover steak from the Coral Reef so he was fine. My Dad went down for a swim with the direction that when he returned, he should return with food. Knowing that we can’t trust him to choose something suitable, I picked the only thing I *knew* was on the Food and Fun Center menu – a double cheeseburger with fries. I also reminded him that since he was using a DDP credit, he also needed to get a drink and a dessert. We had bought the refillable mugs already (I was so happy that they still had the Contemporary specific ones at that time) so it should be a bottled drink.

After his swim he brought up the double cheeseburger with fries, some fresh toppings from the topping bar, a fruit bowl and a diet lemonade (sorry no pics – we were hungry).

The topping bar included fresh sliced tomatoes, pickles, lettuce, onion, ketchup, honey mustard, barbeque sauce, and mayonnaise, so it was fairly complete. The burger and fries were typical for Disney – hot, fresh, (salty) and good.

They had limited drinks in bottles – basically the lemonade, orange juice and water (and alcoholic beverages which of course are not included on the dining plan).

I don’t like the fruit bowls at Disney any more. They treat the fruit with a preservative to make it last and I think it gives it a “funny” taste. At the time, I didn’t much care but once I saw for myself the selection of desserts available at the Food and Fun Center, I was disappointed at his choice (and for a man who loves cakes and pies, I was very surprised that he got fruit for us and not something a little richer).

I am sad for anyone staying at the CR as this place is closing and as you will see in later reviews, it was actually pretty darn good for a counter service restaurant and it contained a lot more selection than most online resources listed.

Dinner at Tony's Town Square
This is actually the 3rd time I’ve had an ADR at this restaurant but the first time we’ve ever used it (and before you ask – yes, I did cancel the ones on previous trips that went unused).

We checked in about 20 mins early (we had planned on riding Pirates but there was a 40 min line so we opted to head to the restaurant directly instead) and were seated about 15 minutes after our ADR time. We were able to eventually find seats on a credenza by the television so it made the wait comfortable in the cool air conditioning. The waiting area was pretty full and the restaurant was not taking any walk ups (my dad had gone up to check us in but wasn’t sure if he was in the right place so he asked the CM “Is this Tony’s restaurant?” and the CM answered, “We do not have any availability tonight sir.” My dad freaked a little, and said something to the effect of “But we have reservations!” and the CM smiled and said “Well that changes everything”, and took our name, etc. The CM told my dad that he had just had about 20 people come up looking to eat here so he just assumed that we didn’t have reservations).

We were seated at a nice round table which was half booth with 2 chairs. This was very convenient since my mother has claustrophobia and does not like being enclosed in a booth. Plus, both she and I are Plus-sized and one concern of mine was “fitting” into a booth (since I have heard that they can be on the small size).

Our server appeared right away for our drink order which was brought promptly along with bread and a tomato dipping sauce instead of butter.


This was very good. My dad is a butter person but even he enjoyed it. I can’t recall everything that was in it but I can recall: tomato – basil – pine nuts. The bread was soft with a solid crust (which I like but my parents mostly ate the inside of the bread). We were all pretty hungry and this was enough to stave off the pains until the appetizers arrived.

My dad and I ordered the Spinach and Artichoke Dip - three cheese blend, tomatoes, and served with grilled bread $7.69.


This was good but more “artichokie” and less “spinachee”. My dad wasn’t thrilled with this as I think he was expecting a cheesy spinach dip and the artichoke flavour was quite strong. There was a thick layer of cheese on top of the dip which he really enjoyed though.

My mom ordered the soup of the day which was butternut squash. I tasted this and so wished I had gotten it. This was among the best soups I have ever tasted. It was thick, a little sweet but the squash flavour came bursting through. The flavouring was close to sweet potato pie but thankfully didn’t have the roasted marshmallows on top. I strongly urge anyone who likes thick, creamy soup – if this is the soup of the day when you are eating at Tony’s, try this, it is excellent.


For entrees we all went a different way.

My mom ordered the Beef and Spinach Cannelloni - served with basil cream sauce $19.49. I myself was hesitant to order these but they were very tasty (even cold late one night when I had the munchies). The cannelloni pasta was firm (cooked al dente) so it didn’t fall apart – and they were simply filled with the beef, spinach and cheese mixture. They had more cheese melted on top and were covered with the basil cream sauce (this was a light green colour – and while not very appetizing looking, it was a mild tasting cream sauce that didn’t overpower the other flavours, but really added a good texture to the dish.


I ordered the Chicken Florentine which came with mashed potatoes and asparagus. I ate only a couple of bites of the chicken but most of the potatoes and all of the asparagus. I was getting quite full by this time. I did however pack up the chicken breast which my dad ate late one night (while I ate my mom’s leftovers). He said it wasn’t very good because it was pounded very thin and the breading was thin and crispy. I was okay with this meal but when I return (and I am sure at some point I will) I will probably choose something different.


My dad ordered the NY Strip Steak with roasted potatoes, mushrooms, caramelized onions, and spinach tossed in a warm pancetta vinaigrette, topped with red wine gorgonzola butter $25.49. He was a little leery about all of the “stuff” that came with the steak but he cleaned the plate. This steak looked (and tasted) incredible. Again it was cooked exactly to order and was tender and perfectly flavoured. The only thing which stopped my dad from licking the plate was that he was trying to save room for dessert.


For dessert we again went our different ways.
My dad ordered the Tiramisu - espresso soaked lady fingers, whipped mascarpone and dark chocolate shavings $5.69. This was very creamy and light – but it was a huge serving.


My mom ordered the Lemon Walnut Layer Cake - layered vanilla cake filled with lemon curd $5.69. Again this was a huge piece of cake. My mom took at least half of it back to the hotel and enjoyed it later.


I order the Ice Cream Bomb - chocolate and vanilla ice cream covered in rich chocolate sauce $5.69. When this first came it was frozen solid – I am talking hard as a rock. My spoon could barely break the chocolate coating and scooping up ice cream was just out of the question. I had a bite of my mom’s dessert and a bite of my dad’s and had resigned myself to not having my own. However, as the bill came I looked down and the ice cream had started to melt. I broke open the chocolate coating and inside was the two kinds of ice cream atop a cookie. It was tasty but come on, it was just ice cream.


07-10-2007, 03:05 PM
Tiramisu the way it should be...in a HUGE serving!!

Your Dad's steak made my mouth water and to follow with my favorite dessert! YUM!!

07-10-2007, 04:08 PM
Loving your reviews :goodvibes

07-10-2007, 05:21 PM
Loving the reviews, thanks for sharing!

07-11-2007, 09:13 AM
I'm confused - I thought you learned to love the ice-cream bombe :confused3 I can't wait to find out if you really did learn to love it - it looks pretty nice to me ;)

07-20-2007, 04:05 PM
Before we left, I didn’t hold out much hope for eating counter service at the food and fun center at our hotel. The online menus didn’t look too appealing and it seemed to only offer heavy “junk” food like burgers and hot dogs. That is so not true.

My dad went to Typhoon Lagoon today (to swim with the fishes) and my mom and I slept in. Around 11:30, we decided we were hungry enough to venture out of the room in search of food.

We went down to the food and fun center. We decided to share the chicken bacon ranch melt with French fries and a piece of cheesecake for dessert. We also used a snack credit for a cup of chicken and corn chowder which was the soup of the day.

The chicken bacon ranch melt was an all white chicken breast which was grilled served with Swiss cheese and bacon. I didn’t notice the “ranch” part but it might just have been my taste buds concentrating on the flame grilled, tender, moist chicken. The only thing that would have made this better is if it was served on something other than a white bread hamburger bun (like a multi grain or rye bun). The fries seemed fresh cooked and very lightly salted (I think that’s a first for Disney). They are the shoestring kind.

The soup was outstanding. It was very chunky and flavourful. It had lots of chicken and potatoes and numerous bits of corn, carrot, celery and onion. If I had to guess, it was homemade – not frozen or pre-packaged in any way.

The cheesecake was typical – served with strawberry sauce in a little container on the side. I think they serve this same cheesecake at most of the resort counter service places because I would swear that it is exactly the same as the cheesecake I had at the Mara at AKL last May. Anyway, it was good but not really memorable.

I am going to skip over dinner for a minute and go onto lunch the next day since it was at the food and fun center as well.

This day we split up – my dad went to AK, I went to MK and my mom stayed at the hotel. I think we just needed a break from each other and this was perfect. I have to admit, things were very stressful at work prior to leaving and I needed a little “me” time to unwind and just do what I wanted. When I returned to the hotel, my mom and I again shared a lunch (I have pictures of this one).

We went to the refrigerator case and picked out a Cobb salad and a piece of key lime pie.


They had several different wonderful looking salads in the case. My mom loves blue cheese and I like it so we went for the Cobb Salad. This plastic box was jammed full of fresh goodness. It consisted of several kinds of lettuce on the bottom and then the ingredients you can see on top. There was easily enough to fill 2 people for a lunch entrée or 1 person for a complete filling dinner. It was good and it was fresh and it did not involve French fries.

My mom was so full from the salad (as she ended up eating almost all of the blue cheese) that she skipped dessert but I really wanted that pie.


It was quite good – sweet and tart and very creamy. I don’t like meringue so it was a pleasant surprise to find that it was actually whipped cream on top. Was it real key lime pie? No. But, it was one of the best fake ones I’ve ever had.

Next up - Dinner at Planet Hollywood

07-20-2007, 10:29 PM
Great Reviews!!! I really loved your Coral Reef review...now I can't wait to eat there in September.

We love Cosmic Ray's!! The chicken is really yummy!!


07-27-2007, 02:34 PM
Sorry for the long delay –

Dinner at Planet Hollywood – DTD

I know this restaurant gets knocked around quite a bit but we have always had really good experiences here – service and food. Maybe we’re just easy to please?

We had an ADR for 1pm in the afternoon – except my Dad went o to the water park this day (great weather!) so I cancelled it and we took our chances walking in around 4:30 – 5:00 (sorry, I don’t wear a watch – ever. At work, I have the time on my computer, the time on both phones on my desk, a clock on the wall and 100 coworkers I can ask for the time – when I am on vacation I depend on the kindness of strangers – or CM’s – for the time).

We were seated promptly with no wait.

Our server was young woman who was very attentive. We had multiple drink refills (and we were very thirsty from shopping), I swear the glasses were never allowed to get empty before another was placed before us. She was able to answer every question about the menu and allowed any substitution we asked for. She made recommendations and suggestions based on her opinions and feedback from other customers.

One of the reasons we like this restaurant is the appetizers.

My mom got her favourite – Tostadas. These are large nacho chips with bbq chicken and cheese with a tomato salsa and sour cream on the side.


My dad got his favourite – Capt Crunch chicken fingers. The first time we had these I was very sceptical – chicken coated with sugar? But they are good – plump, juicy all white meat thickly coated with a crispy, slightly sweet coating. Exceptional.


I tried a new appetizer - Zucchini chips. I like fried zucchini so I thought – why not? These were a tasty treat. They were thin slices of zucchini, lightly breaded and deep fried served with a lemon mayo. Because they were thinly sliced, they were crispy without being mushy in the centre like some zucchini sticks. There was a huge pile of these – we all had our fill and there was still some left over. Definitely a must have again.


For entrees we weren’t too adventurous. Both of my parents ordered steaks – my dad had French fries and green beans and my mom ordered double green beans (she was just a little sick of fries by this point). The steaks were good as always, not fatty or gristle – cooked right to order.



I had the Beef Fajitas. I had meant to order the chicken ones but for I guess I was so used to ordering steak that when the server asked me “beef or chicken”, beef just slipped out. There was enough beef, onions and peppers – lots of cheese, tomatoes and lettuce. I would have preferred more sour cream but I love sour cream on Mexican stuff so I probably should have requested extra when ordering. The tortillas were soft and there were more than I could eat. The side was Mexican rice – it was kind of bland, but I like to add rice into my fajitas so it didn’t matter much but if you wanted to eat your side as a side, my recommendation would be to order something other than the Mexican rice. The beef was very tender and cooked well done.


As we were finishing up our entrees, our fabulous server came by and let us know that this was the end of her shift and introduced us to the server who would be taking over for her. I already had the extra tip in my lanyard so I slipped it to her before she left ($10). I am assuming that she told him this because after she left we received only minimal service from our new server. Thankfully, we only had dessert left.

For dessert my Dad ordered the banana split:

My mom ordered the strawberry cheesecake - so creamy:

I ordered the chocolate cake with ice cream:

My dessert had obviously been sitting prepared for a few minutes since you can see that the ice cream had melted quite a bit.

My mom and dad’s were good but I found the chocolate cake too dry and the ice cream was too meltly. I know from now on to stick with either the cheesecake (which I’ve had before) or the Brownie sundae (awesome!).

Since the service went so far down hill, I didn’t see any point in providing the new server with an additional tip (even though I had another $5 bill ready because I know that in non-Disney restaurants they are only tipped on the reimbursement from the ddp not the bill amount) since it took a while for our dinner plates to be cleared and to take our dessert orders, and for dessert to be brought (and cleared) and then a further delay for the bill.

However, our first server was so phenomenal that we will still return here on future trips because we really enjoy the food, service and atmosphere.

07-27-2007, 02:47 PM
Snacks at the Magic Kingdom

This morning I was on my own in the MK so I didn’t really eat. I had ½ a fruit bowl in the room before leaving (I am so not a first thing in the morning breakfast eater). My 10 am I was hungry – by 10:30 am I was starving.

I was in Tomorrow land and (being lazy) didn’t want to go back to Main Street to get something from the bakery but the Lunching Pad had opened so I grabbed a cream cheese pretzel using a snack credit – I love cheese in any form – creamed with sugar and all meltly in the middle of a pretzel though is near the top of the list.
I told you I was starving (hence the piece missing).

Before I left the MK around noon, I grabbed a cappuccino smoothie from Auntie Gravities. Cold (duh) and good flavour (not too strong) – sweet but not overly so. I really enjoyed this - I only wish it came with a lid.


07-27-2007, 03:01 PM
Quick question about the chicken tenders...it appears they are served with shredded carrots...is this correct???


07-27-2007, 04:55 PM
You're reviews and pictures are fabulous! Thanks for sharing!:cool1:

07-27-2007, 09:13 PM
Quick question about the chicken tenders...it appears they are served with shredded carrots...is this correct???


I'm curious about this as well. My initial thought when I saw the pic was 'why on earth would they spoil perfectly good chicken tenders with shredded carrots?' :scared:

07-29-2007, 10:27 PM
Thanks for posting all the great reviews and pictures. I was particularly waiting to read your review on Planet Hollywood as we are eating there for the first time in about 3 weeks. I am looking forward to the appetizers as well. Thanks so much for posting!!:)

07-30-2007, 11:34 AM
Yes, they are indeed shredded carrots.

but they are easily pushed aside - my dad did not ingest even the most minute amount of carrot along with his deep fried tasties.

The carrots are just a colourful garnish.

08-01-2007, 04:14 PM
Dinner at Kona Cafe

Kona is one of our favourite restaurants. Although the atmosphere is kind of blah in my opinion, the food is absolutely wonderful and we usually have fairly decent service.

This time things didn’t start off too well – the table we were sat at was dirty and sticky. We informed the server and she sent over someone to clean the table – he took a quick swipe at the table and said, “Is that clean enough?” Well, no actually it wasn’t. While there was a little mess on top, the real sticky mess was all along the one side of the table. So my mom showed him where it was and it took a couple of minutes to clean off whatever it was.

On to the food –

We always order the chicken wings here because they are so good. Let me just say that 3 orders of Kona Wings is a huge number of wings! We ended up packing up more than half of them to go. They were sticky, and tasty (and not spicy at all) – not to mention meaty and not fatty or boney.

For entrees both my Dad and I ordered the Filet Mignon with mashed potatoes and asparagus. This is always some of the tastiest, most tender beef in Disney. And I am always happy to see a side of veggies. One of the top ten meals in Disney.

My mom ordered the turkey medallions with sticky rice and corn and succotash. Based on pictures on the DIS boards, I had recommended this to my mom since she didn’t feel like beef or fish and the pictures looked good. She didn’t like it. I liked it though so I ended up trading my mashed potatoes and asparagus for her sticky rice and corn and succotash. I couldn’t trade beef to turkey though because I ordered my steak rare and she has to have it well done. Usually I can choose good dishes for her but this time I really missed the boat. Luckily with the dining plan, there is so much food that she still walked away full.

For dessert my mom ordered the cheesecake (she relied on an old favourite – we have eaten at this restaurant 3 times for dinner and every time she orders the cheesecake).

My dad ordered the apple brown betty with ice cream. He said it was good but way too many nuts. He felt that there were more nuts than apples.

I ordered the Chocolate Macadamia Nut Tart - chocolate tart shell with chunks of macadamia nut and chocolate served with vanilla ice cream and caramel rum sauce. I ate the ice cream and packed the tart to go. I didn’t realize that this had a kind of butter tart filling, and I strongly dislike butter tarts. My mom ate this later and she pronounced it very good.


08-01-2007, 04:30 PM
The food looks delicious! We haven't ever eaten here and I cancelled the ADR we had for December because it just didn't seem like we could fit it in (going to Ohana instead because we've always wanted to eat there). Reading your review makes me want to try again to get it into our itinerary!

Too funny about the guy asking if the table was "clean enough"!

08-03-2007, 02:58 PM
Breakfast at ABC Commissary

This was the first day of the first Star Wars Week-end. We had headed to MGM for the morning extra magic hours. I wanted to get a few rides of Star Tours in early so we could enjoy the rest of the Star Wars events.

We headed over to Star Tours when we were let into the park. However, when we got over there, it was roped off – they were shooting some promo or video or something. You couldn’t get to Muppets 3D so we decided to go to the Great Movie Ride (we don’t do ToT or RnR rollercoaster so EMH rides are pretty limited). But that wasn’t working! They had a delay in opening and the CM told us they wouldn’t open until at least 9 am.

So, what to do around 8:30am? Well, have breakfast of course. I checked the times guide and the ABC Commissary (which is just steps away from the Great Movie Ride) was open and although I haven’t read a lot of good things on the DIS, I knew at least the muffin and yogurt combo was good (as my mom and I had gotten this last year). We were pretty hungry not having eaten anything prior to leaving the hotel, and then being turned away all over the place, I have to say we were pretty grumpy. I was hoping for a good meal.

We ordered two scrambled egg platters with bacon, sausage, hash brown potatoes and a biscuit (normally $5.99) and two large diet cokes with no ice (it was hot and we needed liquid more than bad coffee or sweet OJ).

These two platters came out and wow! They are packed. They had a large scoop of scrambled eggs, a large scoop of hash browns, a sausage patty, 2 pieces of bacon and a biscuit. My mom and dad each started on the main platters while I enjoyed a biscuit with butter and jam and then the second biscuit with a sausage patty on it (I am the only one in my family who will eat biscuits). I also had a little egg and a little hash brown. Between the two meals all three of us were stuffed. Although not the “best” use of a counter service credit, it was a very good meal and I would not hesitate to have breakfast here again.

A word about the seating – this is a very large indoor, air conditioned seating area with comfortable seats (both chair and benches). Although the lunch menu isn’t very appealing to me and mine, I do think that this is the nicest counter service place in MGM – and at breakfast, it was us and maybe 3 other families so it was quite and spacious.

Lunch at Pepper Market

I made the mistake before we left of telling my Dad that there was a counter service restaurant where you could order a steak. He had been trying to work it in all week so finally when we left MGM around 2:00pm he made the suggestion of trying the Pepper Market.

Since we have a car and drive to the parks, it wasn’t a hassle to get there. I knew that it was in the Animal Kingdom area resorts so we headed that way and followed the signs. It was easy to find. My dad parked the car and we headed in to the resort. We followed the signs down the hallway and waited to be seated.

They gave us a brief explanation of what to do (take the card, order, they’ll stamp it – bye!). My mom and dad both opted for the steak and I tried the pick two Chinese food option.

My dad got the steak cooked medium, mashed potatoes and veggies and my mom got the steak cooked well done and mashed potatoes. They were very unorganized and didn’t give my mom any veggies, my dad had to remind the guy about the mashed potatoes (since he went to hand my dad a plate with just the steaks) and he asked about the veggies (since the sign says they are included) and the guy put them on one plate and not the other.

I ordered the Sampler - any two of the following: roasted pork, bourbon chicken, spicy chicken Kung Bao or stir fry beef and an egg roll $15.95. Except they didn’t have any roasted pork or spicy chicken Kung Bao, so I got the bourbon chicken and the stir fry beef. It also comes with your choice of rice or noodles – I got the noodles and they were cooked plain and then he poured a sauce over them. I had to remind him about the egg roll.



The desserts were somewhat limited (any of the pastries but nothing in the refridgerator case). I got a chocolate croissant (very good) and my mom and dad got pecan sticky buns (good but not great).

When seated we were asked if we were on the dining plan, then the CM who brought us our drinks asked us again. When I went to pay I assumed it was somewhere on the ticket that they give you – nope. The CM punched everyone in and asked my for $87 (including a $10 tip for the server who brought us 1 drink and then we never saw her again). When I informed her that we were on the dining plan, she cleared the total and the new total was $33.10 and so she took my card and deducted 3 cs credits.

The food was good but not good enough for us to make a special trip here unless we have some CS credits burning a hole in our pocket and are looking a “real” meal.

08-03-2007, 03:26 PM
Dinner at the Grand Floridian Café

We had late dinner reservations (7:45) so we hopped on the monorail and were there in a couple of minutes. We are staying at the GF in October so I was very happy to check it out a little.

Originally we were seated at this booth that was tucked next to the kitchen doors. My mom has claustrophobia and wasn’t comfortable so we asked for a more open table and we were obliged (10 minutes later that table was filled by another family who again didn’t look too happy to be sitting there).

We started off with a nice bread basket and butter.

For appetizers we ordered:
Mom - Cheese Plate - a sampling of domestic and imported cheeses $7.99. This was a good cheese plate. My mom really enjoyed it but I couldn’t tell you what was on it except for the grapes (she saved them for me).

Me - Garlic-Spinach Dip - $5.99 I enjoyed this one more than Tony’s because it had a lot of spinach in it. I also really enjoyed the pita bread for dipping.

Dad - Cafe Salad - $5.99 My dad wanted a salad with lettuce, tomato and cucumber. Did he ask for this? No, he just ordered the salad on the menu and was disappointed when it came.

The funniest moment of the trip – my dad ate a piece of what he thought was just lettuce but was one of the peppery ones. He exclaims (a little loudly) “This salad tastes like fire!”

For entrees we all ordered the same - Land and Sea - grilled NY Strip, skewered shrimp, red bliss mashed potatoes, and seasonal vegetables $25.99



These were good – there were four, decently large grilled shrimp, a good sized piece of steak and of course the potatoes and vegetables. Although not the best meal of the trip, it was a solid performer.

For dessert both my dad and I ordered the fondue while my mom ordered the cheesecake. Again, not outstanding but good.


Service was acceptable – again, not outstanding but sufficient with drink refills and such.

08-03-2007, 03:36 PM
To use up the last of our CS (4) and snack credits (9):

At the food and fun center we got a roast beef sandwich and a deli meat sandwich -these were jam packed with meat and they were on good, thick, fresh buns. And large two chef's salads. For dessert we chose: gummy fish in jello, chocolate cake, and two brownies with mickey sprinkles. With the exception of the jello (don't ask why I got it - I guess I thought it was cute) they were all good - even two days later which is when we ate them (when we got them home).

For snack credits we got two cheese plates from the food and fun centre. These had 4 kinds of cheese, crackers and grapes. IMHO, these are one of the best uses of a snack credit. The cheese was excellent and they are easily shareable.

Before leaving disney property, we hit Goofy's Candy Company in DTD.
Here I got two big bags of mickey pretzels, 3 bags of some kind of mix (pretzels, mickey head cheese crackers, a couple of other things in it as well) and two choose your own mickey rice krispie head treats. One I got with white chocolate and peanut butter cups and the other was milk chocolate and caramel sauce. One I ate in the car on the way home and the other I took to work with my lunch when we returned. These are awesome and I highly recommend spending a snack credit or two on these treats.

So, that's it.

All in all a good eating trip. This was our 4th time using the dining plan so needless to say, we are fans and can't wait to our next trip in October!

Any question, just ask!

08-03-2007, 04:56 PM
Great Report, thanks for sharing.

08-03-2007, 05:30 PM
When seated we were asked if we were on the dining plan, then the CM who brought us our drinks asked us again. When I went to pay I assumed it was somewhere on the ticket that they give you – nope. The CM punched everyone in and asked my for $87 (including a $10 tip for the server who brought us 1 drink and then we never saw her again). When I informed her that we were on the dining plan, she cleared the total and the new total was $33.10 and so she took my card and deducted 3 cs credits.

What was the $33.10 for if you were on the dining plan? Can you imagine paying $87 at a fast food place back home?! Thank Walt for the DDP!


08-05-2007, 04:34 PM
Great reviews :)

08-06-2007, 06:18 AM
Great reviews, thanks for taking the time to post. :ccat:

08-06-2007, 09:39 AM
Great reviews - thanks!

08-06-2007, 11:59 AM
Really loved your reviews, thanks for posting.

08-07-2007, 07:09 PM
I wondered the same thing. What was the $33.10 for at the Pepper Market?

08-07-2007, 07:57 PM
Great reviews, I have been trying to get the Coral Reef for months and months for our upcoming trip, maybe next time. Great tip about the Tonga Toast being at Captain Hooks!:)

08-07-2007, 11:44 PM
Great reviews! Thanks a bunch for listing the prices. I am real glad we got the ddp. :goodvibes

08-08-2007, 11:16 AM
Great reviews and pics!

04-14-2008, 07:51 AM
LOL...ok, so I saw Le Cellier and then I caught the picture of the bread before I'd had a chance to read it and seriously, it looked like a hot dog to me and I'm thinking "...hot dogs at Le Cellier...now that doesn't seem like something they'd have on the menu."

I also saw a hot dog haha at least im not alone!

04-14-2008, 10:39 AM
great photos - now i'm hungry..... popcorn::