Better Late than Never! A Sept/Oct 2012 Dining Review - Complete
As my title suggests, I'm a bit late with these reviews. However, I am missing WDW a lot today (snowed in!) and thought this would help me feel a little bit better. I hope my reviews will be helpful for someone out there...or at least make someone a bit hungry! ;)
Let's get to it, shall we? This is my first dining review, so please be kind :flower3:
The partners in crime are myself (Sandy) and my guy (my fiance). I am a pescatarian but eat mostly vegetarian, and he is a full blown meat eater. Here we are with the man, the myth, the legend, Mickey Mouse, and Miss Minnie herself! Being excited to meet Minnie is an understatement!
Our trip was from September 25 to October 4 2012 - We stayed at Coronado Springs. This was our first time staying on Disney property, and we will never go back to staying off property again! We were also spoiled with free dining. We had 9 CS, 9 TS, and 9 snacks to eat...Needless to say we ate very well on this trip! I have photos of most of what we ate but not everything...sometimes I was just too hungry to wait ;) But don't worry, I'll do my best to describe what isn't pictured.
I hope you'll enjoy! Thanks for reading!
9/25 Arrival Day/DTD
Lunch: Earl of Sandwich
Dinner: House of Blues
Lunch: Sunshine Seasons
9/27 Universal Studios/DTD
Lunch: Bubba Gump Shrimp at Universal City Walk
Dinner: Wolfgang Puck Express at DTD
9/28 Magic Kingdom
Lunch: Columbia Harbor House
Dinner: The Wave
9/29 Islands of Adventure/CSR
Lunch: Snack at IoA
Dinner: Pepper Market at CSR
9/30 Hollywood Studios
Breakfast: Fairfax Fare
Lunch: 50's Prime Time Cafe
Dinner: Mama Melrose
Lunch: Food & Wine Snacks
Dinner: Coral Reef
10/2 Animal Kingdom
Lunch: Yak & Yeti
10/3 Magic Kingdom
Lunch: Cosmic Rays
10/4 Leaving Day :(
Breakfast: Pepper Market at CSR
Ah, we're finally HOME! :) Time to get eating!
We spent our first day at DTD...we were just too exhausted to hit a park that day.
For Lunch we ate at my guy's favorite spot: Earl of Sandwich.
I had the tuna melt:
This was incredible. I have never eaten at EoS before, and I'm not a huge tuna sandwich fan normally, but this was amazing. Not too much mayo, and the melty swiss cheese on that bread was just to die for!
My guy had the chipotle chicken and avocado (sorry, no picture!). He loves this sandwich and ate it three times on this trip...it's his favorite midnight WDW snack!
For dessert we had a peanut butter and brownie sandwich. This thing sat in our mini fridge at CSR for a couple of days because most of the time were just too full to eat anything else! However once I finally tackled it, it was one of the tastiest things I ate on this trip.
We spent the afternoon working off our giant sandwiches by shopping and took in a movie at the AMC (the nicest movie theater I've ever been in...and not overpriced, either!).
Once our movie was out, it was time for dinner: House of Blues.
I was a bit wary about this one because no one ever really talks about it on here, but I was dying to eat here from looking at the menu. We were seated very quickly and our server was phenomenal. She was such a delight, very attentive, and made great recommendations for food.
This was, hands down, the best meal of my trip:
Shrimp & Grits: Pan seared jumbo shrimp simmered in chipotle garlic cream sauce layered over a crispy grit cake and served with sweet tear drop tomatoes.
This was crispy, spicy, creamy, flavorful...absolutely amazing! I loathe whole tomatoes and there were a lot of them floating around in the sauce, but I ate every single one! This was incredible.
And my guy had the Jambalaya: Marinated chicken, risotto, spicy andouille sausage, sweet peppers and roasted green onion in a traditional jambalaya sauce.
This was my fiance's second favorite meal of the trip. He said it was spicy and incredibly flavorful...and a HUGE portion (this bowl was like 1.5' in diameter!).
For dessert we had the triple chocolate cheesecake and the bourbon bread pudding....We were so full we barely got to eat either of these, but both were rich and decadent. My favorite of the two was the bread pudding...had a great caramel flavor. I'm sorry, no photos for these.
Overall we were extremely pleased with our meal at House of Blues, and can't wait to go back!
Today was Epcot day 1!
For lunch we ate at Sunshine Seasons. I was really looking forward to eating here, and I wasn't disappointed!
I had the Orange Sesame Glazed Vegan Chick'n Chunks with Stir Fry Noodles.
This was good and bad. I loved the chick'n - I'm a huge Gardein fan, and these were very crispy and yummy! The noodles were great too. However, the orange sesame sauce was very sweet and there was way too much of it on my plate...this would have been a great meal if the sauce was on the side.
My guy had the same thing as me, except with real chicken. I won't bother duplicating the picture because really they looked identical!
For dessert we each had a cupcake. He chose the carrot cake (sorry, no photo...he dug in too fast!) and he said this was moist and had a great cream cheese frosting on top. I had the pineapple coconut cupcake...this was really good! It was humongous and I couldn't finish the whole thing. It had a great balance of cake to frosting. Yum!
For Dinner we ate at Biergarten. I was a little wary about eating here for a couple of reasons: 1) The communal tables with strangers, 2) As a pescatarian, will I have enough to eat?
I worried for no reason because this was one of our favorite meals of the trip...and the one we left fullest from! I have no photos of our food because it was just so dark in there, but here's some of the things I had to eat: Salmon, salad with the best dressing I've ever eaten, cauliflower soup, lots and lots of pretzel bread, spatzel, mashed potatoes, mac & cheese, roasted potatoes, and lots of dessert too - the cheesecake was amazing, and there were cookies, fresh fruit, and other cakes I can't remember. I left this meal feeling fuller than I ever have in my entire life.
Here's us with the cute couple we ate with:
It was a great meal with great company!
Great reviews! We're eating at many of the same places on our next trip. Yum!
I'm in, good start!!
Today we ventured out to Universal Studios. We had lunch at Bubba Gump Shrimp (no photos). I had the Shrimp Po’ Boy: "Just like the ones in New Orleans... French Loaf stuffed with warm Popcorn Shrimp. Served with Fries." This was huge and delicious. The shrimp was very fresh and crispy, and the bread it was on was fantastic as well.
My guy had the Texas Cajun Chicken Sandwich: "A big sandwich with big flavor…Cajun grilled Chicken Breast, crisp Bacon, Pepper Jack Cheese, fresh Guacamole and our signature Chili Ancho Mayo on a toasted Bun with Fries." He loved this - He's a big chicken sandwich person, and this ranked pretty high for him.
For dinner we ate at Wolfgang Puck Express at DTD. Spoiler alert: YUM!
My guy had the Bacon wrapped meatloaf with mashed potatoes and onion straws. He loved this. It was a huge portion for a CS meal, too!
I had the 4 cheese pesto pizza. The goat cheese on this gave it a nice tang, and the pesto added a great garlicky flavor. This was delicious and again a huge portion!
I had a cup of vanilla frozen yogurt with crumbled chocolate chip cookies on top (no picture, but it was basic and delicious.) My guy had the Creme Brulee...I tasted it and it was very good! The top was nice and caramelized with a great crunch.
Finally! The Magic Kingdom!
For lunch we ate a meal I was really looking forward to: the salmon at Columbia Harbor House! It came with broccoli & couscous. The salmon was perfectly cooked for me - it had a nice crisp outside but was still moist and delicious on the inside. It had a great flavor too. The couscous was average, but a great change of pace from the fries that are offered everywhere else. And I love broccoli so I was very happy with this side as well.
My guy had the fried shrimp platter with fries. The shrimp were very good, nice and crispy...and HUGE! I didn't get a picture of his meal, but I did steal a shrimp that you can see on my plate :)
For dessert we both had the apple crisp; I only wish I had a scoop of vanilla ice cream to put on top! It was delicious nonetheless.
For a snack, I had to have a dole whip float! (Well...we actually had about 3 each, for each day we went to MK! But how could you not?!) I like to get the pineapple and vanilla swirl.
For dinner we ate at The Wave. This was my guys favorite meal of the whole trip...maybe of his entire life! After this meal, he kept begging me, "CAN WE GO BACK TO THE WAVE FOR DINNER?" to which I had to say "No we have ADRs to keep!" ;)
My guy had the Grilled Beef Tenderloin with Goji berry-red wine reduction, three potato hash, locally-sourced butternut squash risotto. He's not a big vegetable person, but he practically licked his plate clean.
I had the Whole Grain Penne Pasta with Florida White Shrimp, Cedar Key Clams, Calico Scallops, and Roasted Garlic-Tomato Sauce. This was also incredibly delicious - spicy and garlicky! I ate every morsel.
Desserts from The Wave:
I got the Fall Ice Cream Trio: Pumpkin Pie with Maple Glazed Pecans, Salted Caramel Swirl, Double Chocolate Chip. This was really good, but the ice cream was a little freezer burnt, like they had scooped it earlier in the day and let it sit in the freezer until someone ordered it. Still very tasty!
My guy had the American Flavors: Chocolate Ganache-dipped Banana Mousse Cake, Apple-Almond Crumb Cake with Spiced Cream, Mississippi Mud Pie. I only tried the apple cake but it was amazing.
Overall this was an amazing food day. I can't wait to go back to the Wave and see what new things they'll have on the menu!
Islands of Adventure/CSR
Today we went to Islands of Adventure. We weren't very hungry as it was SO HOT so we just split a pretzel and cheese.
THEN we trekked over to the best part of IoA, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and I had a field day in my favorite shop, Honeydukes. Here's a very small sampling of the photos I took inside.
I wish that I could have these stairs in my house!
This was our other snack food - pink coconut ice. It's a white fudge dyed pink with coconut on top...amazing! I just had another piece (I'm surprised how long it's lasted in the fridge!)
After an exhausting day at IoA, we headed back to CSR for a nice relaxing evening. We decided to just have dinner at the Pepper Market because we didn't feel like traveling anywhere.
My guy had the Grilled Skirt Steak platter: Marinated Skirt Steak with Cumin Onions, refried beans and Mexican Rice. He liked this well enough; the steak was small of course but he said it was very flavorful. (Sorry, no pic of this one.)
I had the Fish Tacos: Marinated Mahi with Slaw and Chipotle Aioli. These were very good! I wish they came with some rice or beans on the side, but overall they were very flavorful and spicy.
We both had a giant m&m cookie for dessert...it was a pretty basic sugar cookie but it hit the spot!
We ate A LOT today, so be prepared!
We had an extra CS credit, so we stopped and had egg sandwiches at Fairfax Fare. They come with meat on them, so I got mine on the side and my guy made a giant meat monstrocity...needless to say this was one of those moments where he is really grateful that I don't eat meat!
For lunch we ate at the 50's Prime Time Cafe. I was nervous about having an over the top server, but we had a nice low-key snarky "cousin" - he was very attentive, although very sarcastic while doing it ;)
My guy had Mom's Sampler platter. There was so much food here but he said that everything was delicious and very comforting.
I had the spaghetti & vegetarian meatballs...definitely the most disappointing meal of the trip, unfortunately! The sauce was very thin and there was way too much of it...and way too many mushrooms. I was just not a fan of this at all.
However, dessert redeemed the restaurant for me. This was an incredible sundae! I couldn't help but eat almost the entire thing.
My guy had the boston creme parfait, but scarfed it down before I could snap a picture! I guess you could say he liked it...:)
For dinner we ate at Mama Melrose. We waited an inexcusable amount of time for our ADR...over an hour and a half! Luckily the food was very good so it made us feel a little better about waiting so long. Our waiter was from Ireland and was incredibly warm and attentive, so that also gave Mama Melrose some bonus points!
My guy had a frozen cappuccino with a hidden whipped cream to drink...this was refreshing and tasty!
For dinner, he chose the pork osso bucco with polenta and vegetables. He wasn't WOWed by this but he still really enjoyed it.
I had the shrimp campanelle with cheese, broccoflower and sundried tomatoes - one of my favorite meals of the trip! I loved this, it was incredibly flavorful and filling.
I'm sorry I didn't snap any pictures of dessert, but he had the tiramisu (his favorite) and I had the no sugar added panna cotta (which was very delicious as well!). Overall a great meal at Mama Melrose, and we will definitely go back!
Welcome to Epcot, day 2!
For lunch we decided to have some Food & Wine Festival Snacks.
Vegan chili colorado from the Terra booth - the best thing I ate! (Doesn't look appetizing but it was delicious.)
Shrimp on the barbie from the Australia booth
Crispy shrimp taco from the Mexico booth
Fishermans pie from Ireland
Canada: chipotle chicken sausage & mushroom filet - he LOVED these!
He also had pot stickers and a steamed pork bun from the China booth, but ate them both up so fast I couldn't take a picture!
We took a pit stop in Club Cool - My favorite is the watermelon one from China - I wish I could buy this at home!
We also made a pit stop in Germany...
Delicious goodies from Werthers
This chewy caramel bar was incredible. I actually found the recipe on the Werthers website and made them at home, and they taste exactly the same!
For dinner we ate at Coral Reef.
I got the Cheesy lobster orecchiette pasta with basil oil - this was delicious! Not very many pieces of lobster, but it was a great mac & cheese.
My guy had the Pan seared chicken with spatzel from Coral Reef - this was his least favorite meal of the trip. He said the chicken was dry and flavorless, and the spatzel was flavorless as well. Luckily we were given a great table almost next to the tank, so I think it made up for it a little bit.
We had the Chocolate wave with raspberry gelato for dessert - delicious! But again the gelato was freezer burnt...It's too bad that kept happening! The cake was super chocolatey and moist, though.
Today we were off to Animal Kingdom. We had yet another extra CS credit so we decided to have some breakfast at Pizzafari. No photos of this as we were very hungry!
My guy had the Bounty Platter - scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, french toast, breakfast potatoes, and biscuit. This hit the spot for him, and was a nice big breakfast! Nothing to write home about, but a great filling meal.
I had the Spinach and Goat Cheese Frittata - with salsa fresco and breakfast potatoes. This was very good but very small. It was nice to have a healthy, meatless option for breakfast, though!
For lunch we ate at Yak & Yeti.
I had the Crispy mahi mahi stir fried veggies. This was OK. The fish was nice and crispy on the outside but didn't have too much flavor.
My guy got the Ribs. He loved these, but what he was really wowed by was the fried rice! He wants to just get a giant bowl of that next time.
For dessert, my guy got the mango pie. This was sweet and tart, and a great, refreshing dessert!
But what stole my heart were the Pineapple cream cheese wontons...everything I was hoping they would be and more. Sweet, salty, crunchy, creamy, tart....amazing.
The fortune from my fortune cookie at Yak & Yeti - it couldn't be more perfect for WDW!
For dinner we ate at Boma at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. I'm sorry I don't have any photos of this buffet; it was incredibly crowded that night and I couldn't get any good pictures. I ate like a queen though! I had a delicious coconut soup, mashed yams, mac & cheese, vegetables, fish...I can't even remember everything, but everything I ate was very good. I loved the mix of indian/african flavors in the food, and hope to go back someday soon.
Boo, our last day in the parks! :( This post is lacking photos, I apologize!
For lunch we ate at cosmic rays. My guy had a bacon cheeseburger & fries with carrot cake. He was happy to finally have a burger on this trip, so it hit the spot for him!
I had the veggie burger with fries, with a ton of "plastic cheese" from the toppings bar! So delicious. I also had the mango gelato, which was incredibly refreshing that day.
For dinner we ate at 'Ohana. As I don't eat meat, I told them that I was vegetarian and they created a special meal just for me. We each had a Lapu Lapu also :)
Lapu Lapu & misc. food at 'Ohana
Us with our drinks...OMG were they STRONG!
We had the bread, salad, noodles, and broccoli stir fry. They then brought out the potstickers and wings for my guy, and brought me a special plate of roasted red pepper hummus & baba ganoush with warm pita bread. The hummus was out of this world! So delicious. They started coming around with the meats, and brought me out a stir fry made of tofu, peppers, onions, and potatoes. This was pretty good, but I was already so full that I just picked out the tofu and potatoes! Then they brought out the bread pudding, which was the best thing I ate all vacation. Seriously, it totally lives up to the hype.
We went back to the Magic Kingdom to watch the fireworks and the ELP, and we got a farewell carton of popcorn and a citrus swirl from Sunshine Tree Terrace (no pic of the swirl).
I was pleasantly surprised by the citrus swirl...it was incredibly delicious and refreshing!
Boo, leaving day!
We had breakfast at the Pepper Market before we headed off to the airport. It was set up as a buffet then, but it looks like they've gone back to a la carte. We had our choice of waffles, pancakes, french toast, cereal, make your own yogurt parfait, pastries, eggs, potatoes, meats, create your own omelet, juices, desserts...it was a tremendous spread and we left incredibly full. It's too bad they did away with the buffet!
Well, that's all folks! Thanks for sticking by me through my very first dining review. I hope to do another one when we take our 10th anniversary trip in December, and hopefully will take more pictures, too :)
I can't believe you got that whole thing done in one day! Wow! I enjoyed reading your reviews and looking at the pics. You basically eat the same foods as DP and I. I am so excited that Sunshine Seasons has the gardein chicken option now! Can't wait to try it. I love those noodles already (we have had them with fried crispy tofu in the past). Nice to hear how Ohana accomodated your special requests. We have avoided that restaurant to some degree because we didn't know how they'd make up for our requests for no meat. That pasta at MM looks delicious and that is what I will be having when we go in May! Thanks for this report!
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