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Old 09-18-2012, 04:59 PM   #226
iloveeeyore
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Monday, 8/6/12 - Lunch - Biergarten!

We LOVED Biergarten last year, and so it was a "must do" this time. We enjoy it for lunch, because there are so many places we want to dine, and here lunch has almost as many items as dinner. We are all very glad we returned!

We were seated right away at opening of the restaurant with another family of four, mom, dad, boy around 11, girl around 8. They were a very nice and friendly family, and we enjoyed our interaction with them. There were enough empty tables in the restaurant that they could have seated each family at their own table, but they chose instead to seat groups together. The last time we had lunch here, we had our own table. I'm not saying one way was better than another, just letting you know it could happen either way.

The food was all fresh and wonderful! I didn't take too many pics because it is a buffet, but here is Aladdin's first plate:

I know this plate is Aladdin's because he ordered the beer flight, which he loved, and also I didn't taste that bean salad at 11 o'clock. I didn't have an adult beverage, just diet coke for me. At the time, we naively thought the pretzel bread was fantastic, but later in the week we would discover the mother of all pretzel breads and come to the realization that this pretzel bread was just good. You see that schnitzel at 2 o'clock? WONDERFUL! They have gone back to the pork schnitzel (was chicken for a while), and that sauce on top is a red wine "huntsman's sauce" that is so rich and delicious. It's served on the side, so don't worry if you don't want it. There were hot meatballs and cold meatballs and both were delicious, the best meatballs ever, IMO. There's also a wurst salad that tastes basically like bologna, so if you like bologna you will enjoy this.

Here is a closer photo of the beer flight and the meatballs:

Aladdin loved his beer flight, and it was quite a deal at only $10!

I'm not sure whose plate this is, probably Belle's, but it shows a small sampling of the salads available:


Delicious Cream of Cauliflower Soup:


I think this is Aladdin's second plate:

We all really enjoyed the wursts and the cheesy spaetzle. I'm not sure what that is between 1 and 2 o'clock, but it looks like some kind of white fish with hollandaise type sauce?

Marvelous green beans:


Desserts:

On the top of the plate is one of my favorite desserts in all the world (not just WDW), Bavarian Cheesecake, which sits ready to be dressed with scrumptious berry compote and vanilla sauce. This dessert is so simple, yet sublime, IMO, and I would pay a daily admission to Epcot just to go to the Germany pavilion to get this! That it's surrounded by the whole Biergarten experience is a bonus for me! There is also some Black Forest Cake on the plate, and while I'm generally not a fan, this version is the 2nd best I have sampled (#1 being Rolf's in NYC). Herc also enjoys the Apple pastry (Streudel or Streussel, IDK the difference, sorry) here, but don't ask me, because I am too busy eating the cheesecake to notice!

Overall, we STILL love Biergarten, and it remains one of our favorite lunch spots. The entertainment is fabulous, the atmosphere is so much fun, and the food is about as good as can be found on a buffet (if you like basic, simple German cuisine). There is nothing that pretends to be fancy or elegant at this place, just plain ol' good eats and drinks.

Our bill came to $144.37, out of which we paid 4 TS dining credits plus $33.65 OOP, which included the beer flight, the tax on the beer flight, plus a $23 tip.

Biergarten gets a VERY happy Eeyore rating of:

4/5!

Next up, snacks in Epcot!
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Old 01-03-2013, 01:57 PM   #227
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Sorry I have been away for so long ! I have missed updating my report and I am back! I hope you're still with me! Stay tuned for more updates really soon!
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With DH and DKs - CR TPV, CSR, AKL CL, WL CY, Poly GV (x3), Poly GVC, Courtyard by Marriott DTD, CBR
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Old 01-03-2013, 02:13 PM   #228
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Monday, 8/6/12 - Snack - La Boulangerie Patisserie

Around 3:30 that afternoon, we found ourselves near the France pavilion, and though we weren't particularly hungry (truly, we weren't the slightest bit hungry, but we knew it would be many hours until our 9:30 dinner at Yachtsman), far be it from us to pass by France without some kind of eating .

Hercules chose the chocolate chip cookie:

I don't think I tasted it, but he declared it "fine."

Sacristain:

A yummy pastry recommended by a trusted DISer. It was very good and I'm glad I tried it. I probaby wouldn't get this again, because there are other things I prefer at this bakery (Napoleon or Fruit Tart, for example), but because I was already full of cream from the Bavarian Cheesecake only a few hours earlier, this snack was less heavy and it really hit the spot. It would be perfect with some cafe au lait, which I passed on because it was just too hot.

Lemon Tart:

This was just the right balance of tart and sweet.

We shared the 3 snacks amongst the 4 of us and it was all good and way too filling after our enormous lunch at Biergarten. The prices aren't indicated on our receipt, but we "paid" 3 snack credits for this snack.


Rating: 3/5! To be fair, this snack may have gotten a higher rating BEFORE lunch instead of after!

Next up...dinner at Yachtsman!
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With DH and DKs - CR TPV, CSR, AKL CL, WL CY, Poly GV (x3), Poly GVC, Courtyard by Marriott DTD, CBR
Numerous trips as kids to CR, Poly, Golf Resort

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Old 01-03-2013, 05:11 PM   #229
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Monday, 8/6/12 - Dinner - Yachtsman's Steakhouse

This was the night that it poured down rain so hard during IllumiNations that the rain bounced off the ground and up under our pochos soaking us from below, and also seeped inside around our faces and necks no matter how tightly we pulled our pochos around us. It was so funny! After IllumiNations, we walked...er...waded our way out the International Gateway and splashed on wet feet over to the back entrance of the YC for our 9:30 ADR at YSH.

It took us a few minutes to locate the restaurant. After drying ourselves off as best we could with the complementary towels that had been invitingly set out in baskets, we solicited the help of the concierge, and discovered that the restaurant is located toward the BC end of the YC, and we probably could have saved ourselves jumping a few puddles. But that wouldn't have been nearly as fun, so we didn't mind!

I have to apologize that I cannot find our receipt for this dinner! It makes me sad because our server was easily the best of the trip, but I can't tell you her name...and also I can't give you the cost details. I know I had at least two delicious glasses of wine, and Aladdin may have enjoyed a wine with his steak, but we can't remember for sure. Rest assured that we unanimously agree that whatever we spent OOP that night for this meal was WELL worth it for one of the best meals we have enjoyed together, EVER! It was also well worth the 2TS credits per person. Anyway, thanks to our photos, we can remember what we ate!

First, the heavenly onion bread:

Its reputation is well deserved, my friends. This might very possibly be the most delicious bread product on the planet. I specify when I say "bread product," because I now know what is the very most delicious food item on the planet...and we're coming to it...wait on it...

This isn't it, but these were good, too...the other kind of rolls:

These paled compared to the onion rolls, which is unfortunate, because I believe that in any other setting, these would be great. I actually preferred the roasted garlic (I didn't get a good pic of that) on these, because I thought the onion rolls stood up on their own.

This is my Lobster Bisque:

It was creamy and a little spicy and loaded with lobster...excellent! (Can you see the lumps of lobster meat?!)

Belle's Beef Pot Stickers:

These had a soy glaze with earthy mushrooms. They were quite delicious, but probably the least inspiring dish we tried that night.

Aladdin's Mussels and Clams:

That is a squash blossom on the top. He loved these, and they came in a very tasty tomato broth...the plain bread rolls were perfect for sopping up the extra sauce.

Hercules' Artisan Cheeses:

This was easily the best cheese plate of the trip, and probaby ever! Each cheese was better than the last, and we even enjoyed the cheese in the jar with the oil that has gotten a bad rap here on the DIS. I would eat that oil-soaked cheese now, if I could! The plate was beautifully presented and Disney-magical!

I didn't have much luck getting good pictures of menus on this trip, despite many valiant efforts, but this cheese assortment was so good I went a few extra miles to make sure I had descriptions for posterity:


For her main, Belle chose the Handmade Ricotta Cavatelli:

These were spectacular! She loved them (we all did!) and would order them again in a minute.

This is Aladdin's meal, I'm pretty sure it's a Porterhouse:

He subbed his side for creamed spinach. My family loved the spinach, but I wasn't a big fan...there was something vaguely fruity about the sauce on the spinach, and I thought it was a little too watery. He ordered his steak as we all do, medium rare, and it was perfect. There was nothing left on this plate except the bone!

This is my steak:

I could have sworn I ordered a filet, but this is clearly a strip? It's not usual for me to order a NY Strip Steak, but I'm thinking our wonderful waitress suggested this instead of the filet. Anyway, it was outstanding, one of the best steaks ever, and the sauce was to die for, a scrumptious peppercorn brandy sauce. I didn't sub out my side, which was a wonderful potato gratin. I left nothing on the plate!

This is Hercules' plate:

OK, none of us can remember what kind of steak this was (dang the lost receipt!!), but I'm thinking perhaps it was the Boneless Ribeye? It probably wasn't a filet..especially since I'm thinking the waitress talked me out of the filet. He loved his steak like Aladdin and I did, but the REAL show stopper here is the side dish, which was a divine-intervention-inspired substitution. Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, I present to you the very most delicious tasting thing on the planet earth, the Yachtsman Steakhouse's Truffle Macaroni and Cheese. There is nothing better. The rest of my dining report will be sadly, nay, woefully, anti-climactic. In fact, I fear my whole life of eating will be bereft. I am sorry for you if you have never tasted this. I am sorry for me that it will be way too long before I can enjoy it again. This whole thing is turning way too sad, so I will move on, but please know...IT'S AMAZING!!! I am done here.

I guess I should also mention that we did order dessert...though we were mostly too full to finish them!

This was one of the few restaurants the whole week where our celebrations were acknowledged, and we received this as we ordered dessert:

These were delicious jellied fruit candy and dark chocolate salted caramels. Mmmm...

My dessert. This might be what's called Trio of Valrhona Chocolate:

The description on the allears menu says peanut, espresso and salted caramel, and that sound like what this tasted like. It might be something altogether different that is no longer on the menu. I seem to remember peanut, chocolate and caramel flavors. Whatever it was, it was a great combo of sweet and salty. We loved it.

Herc's Flourless Chocolate Cake:

This was so rich and maybe a little bit spicy, and that is a mango salsa that was very refreshing and cut the rich chocolate. So delicious!

Belle's Lemon...Cheesecake? Panna Cotta?

Served with raspberry coulis and gelato. She loved it!

Aladdin's Yachtsman Sundae:

A trio of gelato with amarena cherries and whipped cream. He ate it all.

We practically closed down the place, I think there was one couple still settling their bill when we left, and thankfully the skies had cleared so we could enjoy a nice walk over to the front of DHS (EMH night), where we could catch a bus back to the Poly. We were thoroghly thrilled with our meal at Yachtsman, and this would be on the top of our list of signatures to which to return. It was easily the best signature meal of our trip, and possibly the best signature dining experience we have ever enjoyed (at least tied with, and maybe even surpassing, our first CG meal).

Our rating of Yachtsman is unanimous!

An easy 5/5

Coming soon...our day at Animal Kingdom!
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Recent reports: No longer "LIVE" AUGUST 2012 TRIP REPORT!
Last Dining Report, summer 2012: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2922227



With DH and DKs - CR TPV, CSR, AKL CL, WL CY, Poly GV (x3), Poly GVC, Courtyard by Marriott DTD, CBR
Numerous trips as kids to CR, Poly, Golf Resort

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Old 01-03-2013, 10:06 PM   #230
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Wow, what a great review of yachtsman steakhouse! Everything looked fantastic, and now I really want to try truffle Mac and cheese... Maybe someday I'll get to eat there, but it will probably be off the menu by then.

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Old 01-04-2013, 01:54 PM   #231
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm476 View Post
Wow, what a great review of yachtsman steakhouse! Everything looked fantastic, and now I really want to try truffle Mac and cheese... Maybe someday I'll get to eat there, but it will probably be off the menu by then.

Sent from my iPad using DISBoards
So glad you enjoyed the review! Thanks for sticking with me and chiming in! So, you haven't experienced YSH and the perfection that is the Truffle Mac and Cheese, yet, eh? So sorry! Well...maybe it's better this way!
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:22 PM   #232
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Hi! So glad you are back and updating more of your DR!!

Glad to see that you loved Yachtsman! I agree that it deserves a 5/5! We are looking forward to going back there soon! I want to try the lobster bisque, that looks so delicious.
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Old 01-14-2013, 08:35 AM   #233
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emmysmommy View Post
Hi! So glad you are back and updating more of your DR!!

Glad to see that you loved Yachtsman! I agree that it deserves a 5/5! We are looking forward to going back there soon! I want to try the lobster bisque, that looks so delicious.
Thanks for sticking with me! Yes, we will be back to Yachtsman someday, for sure! I think you will really enjoy that bisque! Everything we tasted was outstanding (except I didn't care for the creamed spinach, but I think that was just me).
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With DH and DKs - CR TPV, CSR, AKL CL, WL CY, Poly GV (x3), Poly GVC, Courtyard by Marriott DTD, CBR
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Old 01-14-2013, 08:57 AM   #234
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Tuesday, 8/7/12 - "Snack" - Wild Africa Trek

We had an expecially quick breakfast snack this morning because we were a little paranoid about missing our check-in time for our Wild Africa Trek...I believe we were expected to meet outside the gate of DAK at 8:15. I don't have the receipt, but I'm pretty sure the kids got bagels and cream cheese and ate them on the way to the bus stop, and Aladdin and I had coffee only?

I'm including this event in my report because, well, food was served and we all think it was interesting and unique and definitely worth mentioning in the DR. Let me just say that the overall experience was wonderful, our guides were phenomenal, the CD that we received is one of our family's best souvenirs ever, and we all feel that the experience was well worth the price. Also, you are told that it might be physically demanding, but we didn't really find it so. It was a little scary crossing the suspended bridge, but that was also quite a thrill and worth tackling the thrill. I am scared of heights, but I was OK. Maybe that's because after the parasailing, this was a piece of cake. If you are really, TRULY phobic about heights, this probably isn't the tour for you. Our bottom line: We would happily recommend the Wild Africa Trek to anyone.

The food was served toward the end of the experience at a beautiful, quiet savanna lookout point. We could actually see the lions AND elephants from our table! First we used the lovely lavaratories to clean up, and there were fountains to replenish our canteens. We helped ourselves to that delicious tropical juice they serve at Boma, and were given metal snack boxes.

Our table looked like this:


This is the top layer of the box:

Fruit salad, yogurt with granola, and dried apricots with cheese (I think it was brie). Our guides made a point to make sure we knew the orchid was edible. It tasted like lettuce...crunchy and clean.

The bottom layer:

Cured meats (capicolla? prisciutto?), smoked salmon with cream cheese, and some kind of sweet made from nuts and figs, I think. Those are 3 small pieces of pita in between the tasty morsels. Everything was very good!

A close-up of the beloved juice:

I am not a juice drinker, but I love this juice!

The food alone was good to very good, but where else can you enjoy a snack while watching lions and elephants?

4/5 for this snack!
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Old 01-14-2013, 12:56 PM   #235
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Tuesday, 8/7/12 - Lunch - Tusker House

Well, Aladdin has said this: "As soon as you finish your dining report, we can have a ticker." OK, so he may not have said those EXACT words...I may be paraphrasing just a LITTLE...but I'm pretty sure the quote captures the SPIRIT of what he said!

So, I'm working furiously to finish this report ASAP since I am highly motivated to have a ticker SOON!!!

Since we do not enjoy Yak & Yeti for previously disclosed reasons upon which I prefer not to dwell, , and being on the DxDP and seeking a table service experience, we decided it was high time to give Tusker House a try. We hadn't been there since it was a CS establishment, and have read that the buffet was similar to Boma, a favorite of ours, so we expected we'd really enjoy TH.

Here is one plate with breads and dips:

Hummus, some sweet chutney, mango chutney, tabouleh salad.

Another plate:

Cous cous with root vegetables, mixed roasted vegetables, rice pilaf, fried plaintain, samosa with mango chutney (the definite standout of the meal, delicious and we all had more than one of these), carved beef with horseradish cream.

Mixed salads:

Tomato and cucumber with dill and creamy dressing, more of the vegetable cous cous, caesar salad, curried rice with raisins, apple salad with bleu cheese and craisins, and yummy green beens (what can I say, I am really a green beans fan).

Last photo I got:

Another samosa with mango chutney, Stouffer's-like macaroni & cheese, chicken stew (maybe tikka masala?), hush puppy, salmon with tomato relish, more mixed veggies, another plaintain, and that is a seafood stew on top (not good).

We tasted a few desserts, but I didn't get any pics. None particularly stood out.

There was a cute character parade and the character interaction was fine. Nothing except the samosas stands out food-wise, and nothing about the characters was exceptional. Service was fine; we were neither ignored nor rushed. I suppose we would go back if we were ever with family members who insisted, and I would recommend it to people looking for a relatively calm character meal, but my own family of 4 wouldn't choose to go back here. Though we'd place it as the #1 TS restaurant inside AK, we'd rather eat CS at Flame Tree or take a quick bus ride over to Sanaa for lunch.

To be clear, Tusker House is nothing even close to Boma. If you love Boma, go to Boma; TH will not likely stand as an acceptable substitute.

We paid $22 OOP for the tip, and spent 4 TS credits of our DxDP. We give TH an overall rating of:

3/5
I have to also add, Belle would give this one a 2/5. She pretty much only ate salad here, and the caesar was a bit overdressed and soggy.
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With DH and DKs - CR TPV, CSR, AKL CL, WL CY, Poly GV (x3), Poly GVC, Courtyard by Marriott DTD, CBR
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Old 01-14-2013, 01:41 PM   #236
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So funny...

Quote:
Originally Posted by iloveeeyore View Post
Well, Aladdin has said this: "As soon as you finish your dining report, we can have a ticker." OK, so he may not have said those EXACT words...I may be paraphrasing just a LITTLE...but I'm pretty sure the quote captures the SPIRIT of what he said!
And I'm thinking that this better happen sooner than later. What started out as you saying: "Wouldn't it be nice to be thinking of a Disney trip soon?" has fast become: "Okay, so other than Victoria & Albert's, what ADRs will we need when we are staying Grand Floridian concierge?" Wow...
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Old 01-14-2013, 01:49 PM   #237
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And I'm thinking that this better happen sooner than later. What started out as you saying: "Wouldn't it be nice to be thinking of a Disney trip soon?" has fast become: "Okay, so other than Victoria & Albert's, what ADRs will we need when we are staying Grand Floridian concierge?" Wow...
Oh, you know! Chef Mickey's (on the first night) and HDDR for dinner, plus Via Napoli, Kona Cafe and Biergarten for lunch. Other than that, we can totally do this next one on the cheap!
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Recent reports: No longer "LIVE" AUGUST 2012 TRIP REPORT!
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Old 01-14-2013, 02:59 PM   #238
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Tuesday, 8/7/12 - Dinner - Raglan Road

We had had such a fabulous time at Raglan Road last trip that DH and the kids emphatically declared it a "must do" for this time. If you have read my previous reports, you know that I am not a big fan of DTD, and that my food experiences at RR have left much to be desired (but I enjoy the entertainment). I was less than excited to return to this place, but knowing how much my family love it, I made the ADR anyway. Would the third time really be a charm? Would it win me over? Read on!

This was the only retaurant at which we had to wait a considerable time past our ADR time. We arrived a few minutes early, but it seemed we had to wait about 30-40 minutes, which placed us at our table about 20 minutes past our ADR time. We were seated in the main dining room very close to where the band plays, with an excellent view of the small dancing stage and the band, so no complaints there. This was definitely a table worth waiting for! Over the course of our dinner, we saw many sets, and again throroughly enjoyed the entertainment, though it seemed a little louder to me this year than last year.

Our server Todd was nice and efficient, but didn't rush us at all. Our bill from RR does not itemize the charges like our other bills, so I am doing my best identifying everything we had.

Looks like Aladdin enjoyed a beer flight:


My cocktail:

I have no idea what this is. Something Irish, I guess...Oh, I think it's an Irish Bloody Mary, extra spicy!

Soda Bread and delicious Guinness Reduction:

Hearty with lots of texture, but I like my bread that way. It's not anything like what we have experienced as "Irish Soda Bread" very different, but yummy.


This is very sweet without any detection of alcohol, from which it is made. We love it!

Aladdin started with the Kiss Before Shrimp:

Sauteed shrimp with chilli lemon butter and sliced baguette. This was good. The sauce was very spicy and garlicky which we love...the shrimp itself was just OK. The bread dipped in the sauce was heavenly, but with the shrimp, just good.

Belle had the Tart Art:

This is an asparagus and goat cheese tart with some lemon and baby peas...she loved it!

This is Herc's soup:

I believe this is a potato leak soup, and he liked it.

I had the Mighty Mussels:

I loved the scallops last time we came here. We weren't allowed to order appies for 2, even if we were sharing? I wanted those scallops again, but went with the mussels instead. They were good. These are certainly not the best mussels I've ever tasted, and a bit small, but they tasted fine and the sauce was rich and tasty. I wasn't blown away, but...good.

This is Aladdin's Mighty Mixed Grill:

Nothing great or gross about it. Just grilled meat.

Belle chose the Fish & Chips:

She declares this "very, very good! This dish is exactly what the environment calls for. I was so in the mood for this and it was perfect!"

Hercules went with the Keen Eye for the Shepherd's Pie:

This seemed a little blander than the one Belle had last year. From what I am reading, it sounds like sometimes this dish is beautifully seasoned, and sometimes...not. I'm afraid we hit this particular dish on an "off" day, but usually this is the best thing on our table at RR. So bottom line, this dish was a little disappointing.

I think this is the Lambo:

It was very good. This was neither the best nor the worst lamb shank I've ever had. Next time I would maybe try the Lambo Italiano for some different flavors.

Aladdin's Dunbrody Kiss:

He liked it very much, and says it didn't taste boozy at all.

Belle's Meringue (Pavlova):

This is a soft meringue blob with vanilla ice cream and raspberry sauce. Belle loves this and orders it every time we eat here.

Herc's Strawberry and Apple Crumble:

Good. He liked it fine.

Ger's Bread and Butter Pudding:

This dessert is absolutely scrumptious, especially with the sauces poured on top. I still think I prefer 'Ohana's bread pudding, but this dessert is up there as one of the best on-property for me.

All things considered, we are really big fans of the entertainment and atmosphere at RR. It doesn't really remain on our list of "must-do's" but we all agree that if we should decide to spend an evening in DTD, we'd make an ADR to enjoy some appies and some drinks while watching the entertainment...and then we'd head over the Ghirardelli's for dessert. Now that would satisfy everyone and make for a nice evening downtown!

Food is hit or miss here, with nothing standing out at all (though Belle really loved hers). But the atmosphere is great! Which causes great discord with the rating system, especially since we don't all agree! Let's say that Aladdin and I unanimously agree this place rates a:

Solid 3/5. Belle gives it a 4. Herc is at school...I will ask him when he comes home.
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Last edited by iloveeeyore; 01-25-2013 at 09:45 AM.
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Old 01-14-2013, 04:39 PM   #239
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Great Food review so far, I have really enjoyed reading along.
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Old 01-15-2013, 12:37 PM   #240
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Enjoying the reviews, glad things have picked up again! I was also torn about our experience at Raglan Road. We liked the entertainment, although I think it was a little bit louder than I expected. My DH also had the mixed grill, that's a lot of meat!
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