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Old 02-22-2013, 11:39 AM   #16
claryche
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My DS is a little bit younger, but for the past two years we have done just one TS, kinda for the same reason as you. And we have done O'hana breakfast. Great character interaction and one of the cheapest character meals. He also loves Sci-Fi for a non-character meal.
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:55 AM   #17
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Uh, no, I'm gonna disagree. They barely allow 10yo's in there at all and I would not think it would appeal to kids anyway.
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:57 AM   #18
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Uh, no, I'm gonna disagree. They barely allow 10yo's in there at all and I would not think it would appeal to kids anyway.
Agree. I think that would be an awful choice for a 10 year old.
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:59 AM   #19
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If you want to do a TS, but dislike making advance ADR's then consider some of the places that don't require (advance) ADR's. There are a number of them across WDW property, and they offer great food. If it's primarily ambiance-like characters - you seek, then you'll probably do better making an ADR.

If you just want decent food and table service, many of the resorts have one place that either does not take ADR's, or rarely fills up. (call the day you want to go, or night before to see what times are avilable). You can also check via computer. I've had great luck checking in the morning of the day I want. I usually prefer to TS dinners, but I've gotten lunch ADR's too. Sometimes we've even been seated as walk ups.

Some places that don't take ADR's are: Beaches and Cream, The Brewpub at the BWK, and the sushi place at the Swan (no DDP at the Swan or Dolphin).

Other places that do take ADR's but usually have vacancies - that I like - are: the GF Cafe, the Wave, the TS places at the moderate resorts, much of DTD, Olivia's, Sanaa, The Moroccan restaurant in WS, the Plaza, Whispering Canyon at lunch.

To add- many places that fill for dinner have vacancies at lunch. You'll also improve your odds if you are flexible on timing.

I also dislike being tied to ADR's. I do make some, but we also often make last minute additions. It's gotten much easier since they added the no show fee, and the economy is what it is.
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:02 PM   #20
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My kids would pick something that is a unique experience/ different from what we could do at home:
1) Either a character meal or...

2) At Epcot : Coral Reef or Biergarten
At DHS: Sci-Fi or 50's Prime Time
Resort choices:
Hoop De Doo, 'Ohana

We are doing 2 TS on our brief visit in April and DS14 picked Hoop De Doo and DD10 picked Crystal Palace.
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:09 PM   #21
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My kids love character meals. If I were doing just one TS, I'd probably make it a character meal. But that is because we like to meet characters. It takes time, but so does waiting in a 30 minute line to meet characters, and at least here you are sitting and eating at the same time.

We loved Tusker House for lunch, though the day we had lunch there the characters were a bit rushed - my kids LOVED the food. We also really liked Garden Grill in 2006, but since then I've heard it has changed so I can't comment on it now.

All three of my kids loved 'Ohana for dinner (no characters at dinner) - the food and experience was really good, and with a 7:15 dinner we got to see Wishes from our table, which was nice. They also liked the breakfast (with characters).
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:12 PM   #22
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Chef Mickey's, Sci-Fi Drive In
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:12 PM   #23
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mickeyluv'r also has a point about the resort TS restaurants.

Last week, we had reservations at Tutto Italia. But about an hour before, the kids were tired and whining and ready to go. It was raining and they asked if we couldn't just go back to the resort instead. I stopped at guest relations and cancelled the Tutto ADR (freeing up a spot for someone without a reservation - so it is possible to get last minute reservations).

This was our last night and we had the TS credit to use, so I asked about Boatwright's (we were staying at Port Orleans Riverside). There were several openings available - I scheduled one that would give us enough time to get back to the resort and to the main building.
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:16 PM   #24
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It's nearly impossible to pick just one.

I would probably choose Coral Reef, and request a table by the huge fish tank. It would be a very fun experience for you two.

If you want to spend a little more, we loved 'Ohana last year. If you get there right at 5:00 they have a little opening ceremony. The food was excellent and they got the kids invovled with coconut races, getting lays. etc. You also get to see the Polynesian resort, and it's an easy ride on the Monorail to get there from MK.

Dan

Here's the restaurants we've personally eaten at that I've chosen from:
  • Mama Melrose
  • Akerhus
  • Tusker House
  • Hollywood and Vine
  • Crystal Palace
  • Coral Reef
  • Garden Grill
  • Yak and Yeti
  • 1900 Parkfare
  • Sanaa
  • Raglan Road
  • Cinderella's Royal Table
  • Cape May's Cafe
  • 'Ohana
  • Grand Floridian Cafe
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:19 PM   #25
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I'd do -

Tusker House breakfast or lunch
Sci-Fi Dine In
'Ohana breakfast or dinner
Chef Mickey's breakfast
Cape May Cafe breakfast

I love Via Napoli but if I was only doing one TS with a child I would try to do a character meal or something with entertainment for the kids.

For a family splitting a pizza, Via Napoli is really no more than a CS, I'd consider adding that on as a 2nd CS.
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