PDA

View Full Version : Character Dining Reviews


cinderella_mom
08-16-2007, 12:04 PM
Having a 6-year-old daughter, Megan, who loves meeting the characters and has little patience to wait for a meal when she could be on rides, we opted for Character Meals for 6 of our 7 TS meals. Five of our TS were late breakfasts. I made our DDRs based on which park we were visiting on each day, and only thirty-four days before our arrival on June 30th.

We found it worked well for us to do late morning breakfasts. We would have a small snack breakfast in the room in the morning around 8am, get to the parks at opening(usually 9am) and have time to grab a FP (sometimes 2), go on a ride and then have a meal. With this plan we would have a snack around 2pm, usually a pretzel or ice cream, and then have a CS dinner around 6pm. We also found that the servers at the buffets were fine with us taking a piece of fruit from the buffet to save for later (usually an apple or banana). They were also happy to give us drinks in to-go cups before we left the restaurant. Also, our family eats seafood and eggs, but not other meat products, so we find the buffets a good choice for us.

Anyway, with that introduction, here is my review of the following Character Meals:
Donald’s Breakfastosauras – AK
Princess Storybook Breakfast at Akershus – EPCOT
Crystal Palace – MK
Hollywood & Vine – MGM
1900 Park Faire – Grand Floridian
Cape May – Beach Club

Donald’s Breakfastosaurus
Donald’s Breakfastosaurus is currently located in the Restaurantosaurus in Dinoland of AK. At lunch and dinner this is a CS place, at breakfast, they put up walls in front the registers and bring out chafing dishes with the hot buffet food. The cold buffet is built-in. On the cold buffet there are pastries, bagels, fruit and cereal. The hot buffet included all of the usual foods, scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, pancakes, plus a potato casserole that has hot peppers in it. The food was hot and surprisingly fresh, considering the chafing dishes are free-standing on tables. The service was fine, though the server only did one practical joke. He squirted “ketchup” on us that was really just a string in a red bottle. Not as playful as I had expected. The restaurant has table in separate rooms, so we didn’t really see the characters until they got to our room. Because it was 10:40 when they reached us, the restaurant was not full and we got a good five minutes of character interaction with Mickey, Goofy, Pluto and Donald. They stayed for multiple pictures.
Overall, I give this place 3 out of 5 for food and 4 out of 5 for characters. This character breakfast is moving, however, once the new location is completed.

Princess Storybook Breakfast at Akershus
Princess Storybook Breakfast is located at the Akershus restaurant in the Norway Pavilion in EPCOT. This is one of our favorite breakfast spots, not only for the character interaction, but the food is yummy. The building is in the charming Scandinavian village near the Maelstrom ride. Our reservation was for 10:00am and we arrived about 10 minutes early to find Mary Poppins signing autographs and posing for pictures outside the restaurant. This is probably because the World Showcase didn’t open until 11:00am. We later saw her in England. Upon going in, you are put into a line to have a picture with Belle. Her dress is too big for her to walk between the tables. Once you are seated, the server takes your drink order and any special requests. We requested no sausage or bacon, but extra potatoes. Then we went to the cold buffet. It had fruit, bagels, biscuits, Norwegian bread, capers, lox and cinnamon rolls. When we went back to the table our food came and we enjoyed the hot eggs and cheesy potatoes. Our server was from Norway and it was her first day. She was very attentive. The food here is great. The princesses that day included, Mulan, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White and Jasmine. In the past we’ve seen Alice and Cinderella there. The princesses posed for multiple pictures and gave autographs. Most engaged Megan in conversation about the crown she was wearing or her Ariel shirt. For youngsters that don’t bring their princess gear, there’s a shop across from the restaurant where you can purchase autograph books, crowns, etc.
PSB rates a 4 ½ out of five for food and characters.

Crystal Palace
If you have a fan of Pooh and Friends in the family, this is the place for you. And if you don’t the food here is great. Located on Main Street in Magic Kingdom, this is a popular place. Even though we showed up at 9:45 for 10:00 reservations, we had to wait 30 minutes for a table. This buffet is the biggest breakfast buffet we found. For non-meat eaters, there are great choices, including an omelet station. If you ask the omelet chef, he will make chocolate chip Mickey pancakes! The waffles are shaped like Pooh and Piglet and they have a breakfast pizza at the kid’s station. Besides the characters posing for pictures and signing autographs, every 30 minutes, the characters do a parade around the restaurant and the kids can join in the fun. We have eaten here twice and found the food to be great.
CP rates 4 out of five for food and characters.

Hollywood & Vine
We had breakfast reservations for Hollywood & Vine in MGM, at 10am. The park opened at 9am and we were able to get a FP for ToT, ride RnRC and get a FP for RnRC before heading to H&G for breakfast. I was surprised to find there was no wait. The restaurant was practically empty. There were a total of six tables with guests. Though Megan rarely watches the Playhouse Disney shows anymore, she was delighted to see the characters here. We were greeted first by Leo and then June from the Little Einsteins and later by Jojo and Goliath. Goliath cannot sign autographs, but Jojo signed for both of them. We grabbed some food at the buffet and the server brought us our drinks. The server was friendly and we were checked on multiple times, probably because there were so few guests. The food consisted of standard breakfast fare, and was tasty. The potatoes were good and there were chocolate croissants and biscuits in the pastry area. The kids buffet had waffles with strawberries. About every 20 minutes, two emcee characters join the PHD guys and have the kids come to the center of the restaurant for some singing and dancing. This lasts about 5 minutes. It was really cute.
H&V rates a 3 for food and 4 for characters.

1900 Park Faire
We ate at the Cinderella Dinner 1900 Park Fare in the Grand Floridian. This was the hardest reservation for me to get. I took an 8:30pm dinner reservation hoping we could get in early. We showed up at 7:30 and were seated just before 8pm. We also went there on our trip last year. The food was pretty much exactly the same. I know this restaurant is undergoing refurbishment, so I don’t know if the menu will be updated as well. We found a good selection of food that we could eat. The salad selection was great with a Caesar salad, garden salad and pasta salad. Megan really enjoyed the cold tortellini salad. The salmon entrée and mashed potatoes were good, but my favorite is the shrimp pasta. This entrée is made fresh by a chef at the pasta station. The buffet also had prime rib and chicken. For dessert, there were many choices, including the makings for brownie sundaes. The character interaction was good, and though we were all tired, we enjoyed seeing Cinderella, Prince Charming, Suzi and Perla. The Fairy Godmother was in the waiting room greeting guests. I really enjoy this buffet.
1900 Park Faire rates 4 stars for food and characters.

Cape May
We went to the Cape May character breakfast on our last morning in WDW. It is located at the Beach Club Hotel, just off the main lobby. We had never been to this resort and had trouble getting there. When I called the transportation desk from our resort, we were told to take the bus from our resort to EPCOT and then the walk to Beach Club would be about 10 minutes. What they didn’t tell us was that you had to enter EPCOT to walk to Beach Club. It worked out okay for us, since we had an unused theme park day on our tickets, but it could’ve been a real nightmare.

As far as the buffet goes, it was above standard with a fruit and granola bar and yummy crepes. The omelets were pre-made with meat, so we stuck with scrambled eggs and potatoes. The atmosphere at this restaurant was charming and cute with an early 1900s beach theme. The characters were dressed in old-fashioned swimsuits and Megan was delighted to finally get to see Minnie. Chip and Dale and Goofy also posed for multiple pictures and signed autographs. Because the restaurant was only about half-full, the characters made it around twice. This was a fitting ending to our week-long vacation. When Minnie waved to us as we were getting up from our table, it really felt like she knew we were going home.
Cape May rates 4 ½ stars for food and characters.

There is the recap of our Character Meals. I hope someone finds my reviews helpful when choosing a place to eat and see some favorite Disney friends.

kelleigh1
08-16-2007, 12:17 PM
We already have all our ADR's booked and no kids, so your reviews don't really affect us, but I still think they rank among the top reviews I've ever read.

These are great for anyone planning character meals...whether it's one or a trip-load!

Great job!!

wilma-bride
08-16-2007, 12:20 PM
Thanks for your reviews - I would imagine we will be doing a lot of character meals in April with our 5 yo DS. He is just dying to have breakfast with the Mouse :rotfl:

cinderella_mom
08-16-2007, 05:25 PM
We already have all our ADR's booked and no kids, so your reviews don't really affect us, but I still think they rank among the top reviews I've ever read.

These are great for anyone planning character meals...whether it's one or a trip-load!

Great job!!

Thank you for the compliment. My DH took great notes each night, so I was able to use them to help me remember what each restaurant offered to eat. The characters I remember...

DisneyBride'03
08-16-2007, 10:24 PM
Thanks for the great reviews! We actually have an ADr at Cape May for breakfast our last day at WDW...I had to do one character meal for DD! Not sure how she would be...but this seemed the best!

Minniespal
08-17-2007, 02:09 AM
Brillant reviews ~ Thanx for posting.

SandraVB79
08-17-2007, 06:57 AM
I'm glad to read a positive review on Cape May. I can't wait to have breakfast with Minnie!!!! ;)

Your reviews are really great.

momofdbsdc
08-17-2007, 07:10 AM
Thank you for the insightful reviews!

my3disneygirls
08-17-2007, 07:47 AM
Thanks for the great reviews. We will be doing some character meals for my 6 year old Megan for our upcomming trip.:)

natalielongstaff
08-18-2007, 06:02 AM
thank you for posting :thumbsup2

cinderella_mom
08-20-2007, 05:36 PM
Thanks for the great reviews. We will be doing some character meals for my 6 year old Megan for our upcomming trip.:)

We both have 6 year-old Megans! Have a great time.

my3disneygirls
08-22-2007, 04:18 PM
We both have 6 year-old Megans! Have a great time.

Thanks!:goodvibes

monikay
08-22-2007, 04:48 PM
Thanks for the awesome reviews! We are eating everywhere except Donald's. That may change since the dining plan has changed. I may still be able to add it. We are going in January!:cool1: I love being able to get first hand reports! These boards are the best for getting honest answers! Thanks again-Monikay

Nursejilly
08-22-2007, 07:45 PM
Great reviews! My DDs are going to definitely want the chocolate chip waffles at Crystal Palace!:thumbsup2