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Old 01-01-2013, 10:42 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
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Favorite Counter Service Restaurants in WDW

Hi all! My DH and I will be visiting WDW for the first time in just one week, and will be staying onsite for 6 days. We have only made two ADRs (one for breakfast at Crystal Palace: 8:35 am!! Woot! and one for dinner at Be Our Guest). For the rest of the trip we just plan on utilizing counter service around the property instead of feeling like we HAVE to be somewhere at a specific time for a lot of our meals.
SO....what are you favorite counter service restaurants and food items around WDW?

1987-2005 Many, many, many day trips to DL as a kid
Jan 2013 - FIRST trip to WDW with DH
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:49 AM   #2
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YAY on your first trip! As far as counter service goes.... I always go in with such a great plan, but then always end up being hungry far away from where that planned meal was supposed to be. With that being said, I actually really liked the food at the Yak & Yeti counter service in Animal Kingdom. I also really liked the Shrimp Po Boy at Restaurantosaurus also in Animal Kingdom.

For Hollywood Studios, Starring Rolls Cafe! Their sandwiches are so good and HUGE plus the cupcakes are YUMMY! I absolutely enjoyed the red velvet cupcake. I haven't had any other CS meals in DHS.

Oh, my absolute favorite CS meal is at Wolfgang Puck Express Downtown. ALL of it was seriously amazing and I tried 4 different dishes while there.

It doesn't seem like you can go wrong in World Showcase at Epcot. Also, Sunshine Seasons in The Land is fantastic and uses a lot of the fresh ingredients grown right there.

Every time we're in Magic Kingdom we typically go for whatever is closest. We never want to waste time while we're there. We typically just get a burger, none of them have been bad... mostly very delicious actually. I hear so many rave reviews for Pecos Bills, but have yet to try it. I am making it a point on our next trip because of the awesome toppings bar. Dipping french fries into plastic cheese is awesome!

I hope you have a magical vacation!
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:55 AM   #3
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Epcot: Tangierine Cafe
Animal Kingdom: Flametree BBQ
MK: I've only had Pecos Bill and it was ok
HS: Pizza Planet or Starring Rolls

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Old 01-02-2013, 08:22 AM   #4
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Downtown Disney we too love Wolfgang Puck Express
MK Cosic Rays-choice of chicken (maybe ribs too can't remember),burgers, chicken burgers
Animal Kingdom- Flame Tree BBQ
Hollywood Studios-Don't have a fav as we like to do Sci Fi or Prime Time when there and both are TS but so worth it.
Epcot-again usually one of the countries around the World Show case.
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:33 AM   #5
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MK: Columbia Harbor House (salmon, tuna sandwich); also, they serve waffle sandwiches at Sleepy Hollow that are good, but are not full meals.

Epcot: Sunshine Seasons for the variety (I like the roasted beet and goat cheese salad), Tangierine Café (vegetable platter or sliders combo).

Animal Kingdom: FlameTree BBQ (1/2 chicken platter or BBQ Chicken Salad), my DW and DDs like Pizzafari.

DHS: Fairfax Fare (1/2 chicken platter or Fairfax Salad)

DTD: Earl of Sandwich (Mediterranean Tuna Salad; Holiday Sandwich in season); Wolfgang Puck Express (Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf)
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:34 AM   #6
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My new favorite is Tamu Tamu at DAK http://www.jamboeveryone.com/Blog/En...reshments.html

I also like Flame Tree and Restarauntosaurus

at Epcot: I like Sunshine Seasons, Tangerine Cafe and the Cantina a lot

MK: waffle sandwiches at Sleepy Hollow

DHS: go elsewhere
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:46 AM   #7
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Summer hot and humid weather when we go - all of these are inside with AC:

Animal Kingdom - Pizzafari for hot italian sandwiches
MK - Columbia Harbor House for tuna sandwiches
Studios - Backlot Express for basic burgers. It never seem crowded here.
Epcot - Electric Umbrella in Future World.

Since you are going when it may be cooler, you could also try these outdoor places:

AK - Flametree BBQ, great food and there are tables down by the water
Epcot - Fish and Chips in England (and a beer!), nice gardens across the street from it.
MK - grab a hot dog at Casey's, then a Dole Whip over in Adventure Land

Enjoy your first trip! Go to the bank right now and open your Disney account . . . coz you'll be going back!
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:58 AM   #8
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Congrats on the trip. How fun!

We like:

MK - Cosmic Ray's. Roasted chicken and garlic mashed potatoes were surprisingly good. Chocolate cake dessert is yummy.
- Also have had Pecos Bills....I think that's the one with the pretty large fixins bar for your burger.

AK - Another vote for Flame Tree Barbecue. Really nice setting, good size portions, and good barbecue

DHS - nothing memorable, I'm afraid

EP - Sunshine seasons. And quiche and desserts in France!!

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Old 01-02-2013, 11:30 AM   #9
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One favorite. WOLFGANG PUCK EXPRESS. Its VERY VERY VERY good. Always consistent, always delicious. Never had an issue with the food there. Its so tasty and one of my favorite places to go.

Earl of Sandwich is decent, but its just a sandwich. A very overhyped sandwich. At the end of the day I have to decide whether I want a sandwich for dinner (EoS), or a bacon wrapped meatloaf with mashed potatoes (WGPE).....guess what? WGPE always wins every single time!
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:33 AM   #10
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Sunshine Seasons in the Land pavilion at EPCOT. Great variety, and lots of stuff you don't see in other restaurants.

Also love Columbia Harbour House in the Magic Kingdom.
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Old 01-02-2013, 01:53 PM   #11
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MK: Pecos Bill's (love the fix your own taco salads) or Cosmic Ray's(1/2 chicken is a great deal)

Epcot: Sunshine Seasons

DHS: Studio Catering Co.

AK: Flame Tree(great deal of 1/2 chicken or ribs meals) or Pizzafari(nice to be in the A/C)

DTD: WPE(this might be our favorite CS food on property!)
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:02 PM   #12
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My favorite is Flame Tree at AK -- actually has very good Q for anywhere, not just good considering that it's at a theme park.

At MK, it's Pecos Bills if I'm hungry, Sleepy Hollow for a quick bite.

At EPCOT, Sunshine Seasons if I'm hungry, Norway for a quick bite.

Have yet to find any CS at HS that I would consider palatable or even edible, but I'll be trying out Starring Rolls this time based upon the recommendations I've heard since the last trip.

Good luck!

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Old 01-02-2013, 02:24 PM   #13
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Wolfgang Puck Express
Earl of Sandwich
Capt Cook's-poly
POR/POFQ-poor boy, chef dinners, beignets, create your own pasta
Sunshine Seasons
Pecos Bills-topping bar
Cosmic Rays-topping bar
Columia Harbour House-shrimp

Here is a link to counter service menus: http://allears.net/menu/menus.htm
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:43 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by JimmyV View Post
DHS: You'll probably notice two trends in this thead. First, people will tell you that they really enjoy Flame Tree at AK. Second, people will tell you that there isn't any good CS food at DHS. Funny thing is, Fairfax Fare at DHS serves pretty much the same food as Flame Tree.
Originally Posted by jrtoastyman View Post
My favorite is Flame Tree at AK -- actually has very good Q for anywhere, not just good considering that it's at a theme park...

Have yet to find any CS at HS that I would consider palatable or even edible..
See what I mean?? The head-scratching continues...
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:56 PM   #15
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Do I really just have to pick one? For some parks, I just can't. I'm going to cheat just a little.

Magic Kingdom - Definitely Cosmic Ray's. I love that silly little singing alien, Sonny Eclipse. I think that the assortment of food is fantastic as everyone in our group, no matter the size, is always able to find something. The topping bar is also fantastic. Honorable mention does go to Casey's, though. Be Our Guest looks fun and we will try it out when/if the excitement wears down and it isn't as crowded.

Epcot - I keep going back and forth between Tangerine Cafe and Cantina de San Angel. I love mexican food and being from Texas, I am pretty particular about what I personally like. Cantina is very good. They have shortened their menu in recent years, though, and I'm not happy about that. Tangerine Cafe is excellent with HUGE portions. You and your husband could likely split something easily. Or, just get your own and eat off of each other's plates. The lamb wrap is probably my favorite. Make sure you get the baklava. It might have seven million calories in one little triangle, but I think it's worth it.

DHS - I agree with people that Starring Rolls is good - especially if you get the butterfinger cupcake. Oh wow it is good! But, for me, it doesn't get much better in this park than Min and Bill's frankfurter in a pretzel roll. It comes with homemade chips and I will sometimes splurge and get the frozen lemonade.

Animal Kingdom - I spend as little time as possible in this park as it is easily my least favorite. That said, I think that Flametree is easily my favorite. The food is the same bbq you get in the rest of the park, which isn't bad, but I especially enjoy the themed rooms.

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