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Old 08-17-2012, 07:23 PM   #151
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Mmm, we love Kona Cafe for breakfast (and dinner, LOL!) I love the Pineapple Macadamia Pancakes but can never manage to eat even one of them because they're so rich. We're going for breakfast on our upcoming trip and thanks to your review I might just give the Samoan a try this time around. If I'm not in a savoury mood, I might go for the fruit bowl with banana bread. I saw that being served on our last trip and it looked amazing! I've sadly never tried the Tonga Toast, as tempting as it is I figure if I can't manage the pancakes I'd probably be a real wimp with the TT.

Hungry for more of your reviews ...
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Old 08-18-2012, 05:52 AM   #152
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Just joining. I almost scheduled a Kona breakfast for our December trip, but then realized I would never be able to choose between tonga toast or the Samoan eggs Benedict. So instead, we're going to the Grand Floridian Cafe for lobster eggs Benedict. Someday I'll get to Kona...

I liked your CM review as well. It sounds like a fun place. When DD is older, I'll put that on the list for sure!
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Old 08-18-2012, 09:36 AM   #153
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I wish I was at Kona Cafe for breakfast today. We have 2 breakfast reservations there for our next trip and I can't wait!
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Old 08-19-2012, 09:11 AM   #154
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jecskc View Post
We do this every trip !! With a family of four, you can get another TS and CS meal that way. Going back to read now !!
We will definitely be doing it again. Some places just serve way too much food, and certain dishes are just way too rich, so it works out pretty easily! At Kona, Hercules left feeling like he could eat a bit more...but 20 minutes later when the food hit his stomach, he was fine. The rest of us left pretty stuffed (and that was with me having only one bite of the Samoan!)

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Oh tell me how divine this coffee is! I really want the pressed pot coffee now! As for the Samoan, do you think it may be too much for one person portion wise?
Oh, yes, get the press pot. It is bold and rich without being bitter, just yummy!

I think that the Samoan is a generous portion of food for one hungry person. It was 2 eggs and a sizeable heap of pulled pork with plenty of rich sauce and an average muffin underneath...I only had one bite and the rest kind of split it 3 ways, but we had the pancakes and tonga toast as well, so our judgment might be a bit off. I looked at it and thought it looked like a small portion, but the richness compensates. It wasn't as filling a portion as the TT or pancakes, for sure.

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Originally Posted by MainStreetFireman View Post
Delicious! If we had had more time, I would have ordered another pot.

In the context of the gluttony ahead of us, The Samoan was just right. But if you're looking for a filling portion, there are better quantity choices. That being said, this meal was excellent; and not because it was our first meal on the plan. It just was.
Yes, probably NOT too much for one person...definitely too small to share!

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Originally Posted by jabead View Post
Yay for Kona's Pineapple Macadamia Nut Pancakes!!! My favorite Disney World breakfast food.
We don't have broad enough experience with WDW breakfast food, because we rarely sit for breakfast when we're there, but it's hard to imagine enjoying anything more than those pancakes!

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Originally Posted by MrsB1228 View Post
Mmm, we love Kona Cafe for breakfast (and dinner, LOL!) I love the Pineapple Macadamia Pancakes but can never manage to eat even one of them because they're so rich. We're going for breakfast on our upcoming trip and thanks to your review I might just give the Samoan a try this time around. If I'm not in a savoury mood, I might go for the fruit bowl with banana bread. I saw that being served on our last trip and it looked amazing! I've sadly never tried the Tonga Toast, as tempting as it is I figure if I can't manage the pancakes I'd probably be a real wimp with the TT.

Hungry for more of your reviews ...
Oh, I'll bet the fruit and banana bread is delicious! The breads we have tasted at the Poly so far are heavenly, that must be great! The Samoan was terrific! Definitely try it if you're in the mood! I had 1/4 of the Tonga Toast and it was enough to satisfy. If you have a lot of people in your party, try splitting an order so everyone can taste.

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Originally Posted by jmm476 View Post
Just joining. I almost scheduled a Kona breakfast for our December trip, but then realized I would never be able to choose between tonga toast or the Samoan eggs Benedict. So instead, we're going to the Grand Floridian Cafe for lobster eggs Benedict. Someday I'll get to Kona...

I liked your CM review as well. It sounds like a fun place. When DD is older, I'll put that on the list for sure!
That Lobster Eggs Benedict sounds amazing as well! Let us know how it is, please! And you should get to Kona for one meal some day. It's worth a trip any time of the day!

Every Disney loving kid should experience CM's once!

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Originally Posted by butiflfeet View Post
I wish I was at Kona Cafe for breakfast today. We have 2 breakfast reservations there for our next trip and I can't wait!
I wish I were there too, and I am so jealous!
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Old 08-19-2012, 09:35 AM   #155
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Saturday, August 4 - Snack - China Tea Cart

By the time we reached the China pavillion early that afternoon, we were feeling like we could use a little something in our tummies. This was about 1 hour before our lunch ADR, so we wanted to keep it a little small.

Lo and behold, there was the tea cart with the somewhat famous egg rolls (I think it's called "Joy of Tea" but on our receipt it just says Tea Cart). We decided now was a good time to try the somewhat famous Egg Roll:

We used two snack credits for these, as each credit buys 2 small egg rolls. They were pretty good. Not much grease, nice and crispy, but not as much filling as compared to the shell when compared to egg rolls to which we are accustomed. If you live in an area where a difference is noted between "spring rolls" and "egg rolls" size-wise, these were the size of the spring rolls but came with meat in them (optional). We got ours with pork.

These were about as good as any spring rolls we can get close to home (not as good as the "egg rolls" in which we indulge very occasionally). It was a nice, satisfying savory snack. It's always nice to have a savory, as opposed to sweet, snack option. We wouldn't seek these out again, but if we found ourselves peckish in China again, this snack would suffice for my family (though I personally would prefer to wait until France for a ham and cheese croissant).

This snack rates a:



3/5!

Next up...lunch in World Showcase!
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Old 08-19-2012, 09:41 AM   #156
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I'm in! Can't wait for more reviews!
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Old 08-19-2012, 11:31 AM   #157
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Your Kona breakfast looks great! I totally agree with you that you should get 2 drinks with breakfast on the DDP. It doesn't really seem fair that there is no alternative option at breakfast to make up for the fact that you don't get dessert. I need my coffee and juice too.

Yum! I love the egg rolls at AK. You're right, it is always nice to have a savory snack option instead of a sweet one, but it can be hard to find in the parks. Looking forward to more!
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Old 08-19-2012, 11:46 AM   #158
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The cupcakes at Contempo Cafe sound good to me. I love sweet!

We ate at Chef Mickey's for the first time this year & we really enjoyed it. I thought the food & atmosphere were great especially after all the negtive reviews I had read. Those Mickey Oreo Bon Bons were the best. I do not want to admit how many I ate

Kona breakfast looks SO good! I would not know which entree to order.

Looking forward to more reviews!
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Old 08-19-2012, 02:25 PM   #159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nanienamou View Post
I'm in! Can't wait for more reviews!
Welcome! Stay tuned for lots more!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerseytinkerbell View Post
Your Kona breakfast looks great! I totally agree with you that you should get 2 drinks with breakfast on the DDP. It doesn't really seem fair that there is no alternative option at breakfast to make up for the fact that you don't get dessert. I need my coffee and juice too.

Yum! I love the egg rolls at AK. You're right, it is always nice to have a savory snack option instead of a sweet one, but it can be hard to find in the parks. Looking forward to more!
I have never tried the egg rolls at AK, or MK or anywhere in WDW until these. In fact, we almost never manage to eat a snack at AK, we are always too full from our meals there. Please stay tuned for more!


Quote:
Originally Posted by megan511 View Post
The cupcakes at Contempo Cafe sound good to me. I love sweet!

We ate at Chef Mickey's for the first time this year & we really enjoyed it. I thought the food & atmosphere were great especially after all the negtive reviews I had read. Those Mickey Oreo Bon Bons were the best. I do not want to admit how many I ate

Kona breakfast looks SO good! I would not know which entree to order.

Looking forward to more reviews!
Maybe you would like the cupcakes? Lots of people do, but they really weren't our thing.

I'm not too sure why CM's gets so universally panned? I recognize that places can be inconsistent and that expectations and price can play a huge role in people's enjoyment of their experiences. But we have almost always been VERY pleased with CM's. I'm glad you enjoyed it! Oh, those Oreo Bon Bons! I want one now...and everytime I think of them!

As far as what to order at Kona, you're pretty much good with any choice there! If you love macademia nuts and pineapple, go for the Pineapple Macademia Nut Pancakes. If you are a big banana fan, Tonga Toast! If you like eggs and pulled pork and are in the mood for savory rather than sweet, Samoan! Honestly, no bad choices!
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Old 08-19-2012, 02:56 PM   #160
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Saturday, 8/4/12 - Lunch - Via Napoli!

OK, we have resisted trying this place our last few trips (it was in soft opening during our trip in August 2010). We live near New York City, grew up on Staten Island, and have perpetual access to some of the best Italian food on the planet. (And when I'm in a cooking mood, I can whip up some pretty good stuff myself).

And pizza! Let me just say that pizza is my very favorite food! I would gladly eat good pizza 3 meals a day plus snacks...but I am spoiled by the great pizza we can find in our area, so I am a bit picky about it. My kids share my adoration for pizza, but Aladdin does not. He pretty much views it as a lazy person's meal. It would be one of his last choices for dine-in or take-out just about anywhere, but if he had to choose pizza, he would go for the Italian-style brick oven type.

Because of our love of pizza and the consistently good reviews we have seen of VN, the kids and I have been pressuring Aladdin a bit for the past few years to give Via Napoli a go. For some reason, the tides were in our favor this trip when he happily conceded (maybe it was the DxDP, and the ability to try so many new places this time around).

We checked in about 10 minutes before our ADR time of 2:00 and the reception area was a zoo! I thought we had a long wait ahead of us, but surprisingly, we were seated right on time.

Our bus boy came over to fill our water glasses right away and Belle's face was absolutely priceless!!! Let's just say that Belle is not the kind of girl who tends to be overly mindful of the appearance of a guy. She is a bit intellectual and rarely notices any man at first glance. Normally, she is much more interested by what he has to say. Well, she looked up at the bus boy to say, "Thanks for the water," and looked at me...I knew exactly what she was thinking. It was very unexpected and very cute, and we couldn't stop giggling.

Beatrice was our server and she was also extremely attractive, in a young woman sort of way. She was also an excellent server, which is really the more important quality for the purposes of this review, but since I had gone on about the bus boy, I thought it was only fair to mention Beatrice's good looks!

We were enjoying the atmosphere of the place as we perused the menu and soaked up the water. It was very authentically Italian trattoria, frenetic and busy without being overly noisy or chaotic. We loved the look of the pizza ovens! We had a hard time making choices from the menu, because we really wanted to try some of everything!

Aladdin started with a Specialty Beer:

I cannot remember the name of this, but he was trying to decide between 2, and Beatrice was able to describe both to him, so he made his choice. Looking at menus online, we think it might have been La Rossa. It was perfect for him on a hot summer day! He loved it!

I had read lots about their Sangria, so I decided to give the red a try:

Delicious! Not too sweet on the drink itself, and lots of nice chunks of fruit!

For our appetizer, Aladdin and I split the Fritto Misto:

This is listed as an appetizer for two on the menu, so we were allowed to order it to count for 2 appies on the DxDP. It would have been big enough for the 4 of us! And it was so yummy! It had a huge portion of calamari that were absolutely perfectly cooked, 2 arancini that were very delicious (cheesy and not at all dry or greasy), 2 pieces of fried mozzarella (so fresh!), and some fried veggies (I know there were a few pieces of eggplant, some artichoke, and I feel like there was something else, maybe zucchini?). The marinara sauce in the boat was perfect in every way, and I would have gladly poured it out of the boat and directly into my mouth if there had been any left in there!

Belle chose the Caprese:

Mozzarella cheese with tomatoes and basil (and it tasted like a balsamic viniagrette was drizzled on top). This was very light and refreshing! The cheese was scrumptious, and the tomatoes were so ripe and red and sweet. Perfect!

Hercules went for the Salame e Provolone:

This was a fairly small portion, especially when comparing it to our other appies, and we all looked at it like, "what?!" But once Herc dug into this, we understood. It was so rich and satisfying. Hercules quickly declared this meat "the best salami I have ever tasted." It came with a very high-quality hardish Italian provolone. It couldn't have been better and he loved it (so did the rest of it, judging from the small bites we were allowed)!



For his main course, Aladdin chose the Capriocossa:

This was a pizza with eggplant, artichokes, prosciutto and mushrooms. This was fabulous and Aladdin really loved it! There was a little burnt part of the crust, but Aladdin LOVES burnt crust (asks for his toast burnt at diners), so it was perfect that way for him. The rest of us tasted this also, and though we really liked it, we agreed that it was our least favorite of the pizzas. Not because it wasn't great, but because the others were even greater!

Hercules and I each got the Carciofi:

This was white pizza with artichokes (I think mushrooms) and three kinds of cheese (I think mozzarella, parmesan and fontina). We were extremely pleased with our choice. Hercules declared this the second best pizza he has ever tasted! My crust had a bit of the burnt crust phenomenon on it, and though I didn't mind the burned flavor, I gave that portion of mine to Aladdin. He again loved and appreciated it.

Belle chose the Quattro Formaggio:

Pizza with mozzarella, parmesan, fontina and provolone. O.M.G. BEST PIZZA EVER! While we loved everything on our table, this brought the whole meal to the next level. While all of us thought our collective pies were the best pizza we have ever tasted, we think this particular one was the best of the batch! Sooooo delicious, rich, satisfying. Pizza nirvana for sure!

We were feeling so full and happy after our delicious pizza...but so sad that the pizza was gone!! But we were looking forward to dessert to find out what else Via Napoli had for us! Since none of us was really hungry for dessert, we decided to pick 4 off the menu and pass them around, so we could say we tried stuff!

One of our choices was Pistachio Gelato:

It was beautifully presented with a piece of candy brittle and I was just too full to even taste that brittle. Aladdin tasted it and declared it fabulous! The gelato itself was rich and creamy with just the right amount of pistachio flavor. Very refreshing!

Another choice was the Coppa Amarena:

That is the name by which it is written on our receipt, and I can't find the full name in Italian, but this is called the Ugly but Good Sundae. Well, it wasn't good...it was great!!! Very creamy vanilla gelato with tart amarena cherries and some chunks of cookes that we didn't even taste. It was a huge dessert and sadly, we left much of it, but YUMMY! This was Aladdin's favorite of the afternoon.

We also tried the Frizzante:

This is a Via Napoli rendition of an ice cream soda. Herc and Belle thought it was "weird" and weren't big fans. I took a sip and I wasn't too sure so I took another...and another...and another, just so I could decide how I felt about this interesting concoction, and ultimately I decided that it might have been my favorite dessert on the table! It was soda (maybe orange?) with vanilla gelato, strawberry or cherry sauce, and tons of rich freshly whipped cream. It tasted like a creamsicle on steroids. Delicious and so refreshing! I hated to leave any in glass but I was just too full!

And finally, of course we had to try the famous Zeppole diCaterina:

OK. Yup. Get these. Just sayin! It was also a huge portion. We could have easily split this as our only dessert and been satisfied.

Overall, we couldn't have been more impressed with our meal at Via Napoli. It is hard for me to imagine any trip to WDW NOT including at least a lunch at this place. And if not on the DxDP, we could happily split a few of these pizzas and some salad (which sadly, we couldn't taste because it's not included on the dining plans...but we had no room this time around anyway).

Via Napoli rates a shocking:


5/5! Perfection! If you're debating whether or not to try it, give it a go!

The total OOP expense of this meal would have been $239.29, including our drinks and the tip. With the DxDP, it cost us 4 meal credits and $59.30 OOP. Thats a $38 tip and $21.30 for our alcoholic beverages.
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Old 08-19-2012, 04:25 PM   #161
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so true

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it is always nice to have a savory snack option instead of a sweet one, but it can be hard to find in the parks.
This was the one difficulty I kept running into with my snack credits. Plenty of sweet at every turn, but so little savory. I realize that the American palate tends to run sweet, but with so many International visitors (plus educated palates like us ) I hope to see more savory to savor!
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Old 08-19-2012, 05:39 PM   #162
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Wow Via Napoli looks amazing! Those desserts

My mom & I love burnt crust too.

Hopefully we will get to try dining there sometime soon.
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Old 08-19-2012, 07:58 PM   #163
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I am not hungry at all but my mouth is watering! First off, Kona breakfast looks amazing! I have a dinner ADR instead of breakfast but now I am tempted to switch! I have two other breakfasts booked though so I might just have to keep dreaming about the macadamia pineapple pancakes and pressed pot of Kona coffee!

And then Via Napoli! My favorite and a do not miss for us! I love the pizza and the ugly but good sundae!
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Old 08-19-2012, 08:26 PM   #164
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Great review of VN! Everyone always talks about the zeppole dessert, but I thought that the frizzante looked amazing.
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Old 08-20-2012, 05:38 AM   #165
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Your VN meal looks amazing! I had the Carciofi last year and it was just sooo good.
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