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Old 03-17-2013, 10:09 AM   #1
Saratoga Goofy
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Best Character Meal?

We are going at the end of May with a group of first timers (ages 3, 6, 12, and 17), what's the best character meal? We want good food, but more importantly great character experiences?
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Old 03-17-2013, 10:49 AM   #2
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Our favorite is the Crystal Palace in MK. It is a buffet so everyone has options and the character interaction is great. It is pooh, piglet, eeyore and tigger.
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Old 03-17-2013, 11:05 AM   #3
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Tusker House or 'Ohana. Great in both categories.
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Old 03-17-2013, 11:16 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Saratoga Goofy
We are going at the end of May with a group of first timers (ages 3, 6, 12, and 17), what's the best character meal? We want good food, but more importantly great character experiences?
These are some of our favorites:

GG dinner-Epcot-our review with photos-- http://www.disneydiningreviews.com/g...ille-epcot.htm

Cape May breakfast-BC resort-our review with photos-- http://www.disneydiningreviews.com/c...beach-club.htm

1900 Pk Fare breakfast-GF resort-our review with photos-- http://www.disneydiningreviews.com/1...-floridian.htm
Check out our yummy photos and reviews from our Disney trips @ www.disneydiningreviews.com
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Old 03-17-2013, 11:35 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Saratoga Goofy View Post
We are going at the end of May with a group of first timers (ages 3, 6, 12, and 17), what's the best character meal? We want good food, but more importantly great character experiences?
One of our favorites is Cape May for breakfast (no characters at dinner). The buffet has a lot of variety, the food is very good, and the characters are cute dressed in beachwear. We also love Ohana breakfast .

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Old 03-17-2013, 11:47 AM   #6
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I think that it also is worth looking at which characters your family would be most interested in seeing.

I love the Mouse, don't get me wrong, but you can see various versions of him throughout the parks. However, it's harder to find Pooh and his friends so we went with Crystal Palace. Had great food and a great time with Pooh, Tigger, Piglet, and Eeyore.
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Old 03-17-2013, 11:51 AM   #7
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Best Food (quality first, then variety):
. . . Tusker House
. . . 1900 Park Fare
. . . Ohana
. . . Garden Grill
. . . Garden Grove
. . . Akerhus Royal Banquet
. . . Cape May Cafe
. . . Hollywood & Vine
. . . Crystal Palace
. . . Cinderella Royal Table (since new menu)
. . . Chef Mickey's

Best Character Interaction (time with guest first, then friendliness):
. . . Tusker House
. . . Akerhus Royal Banquet
. . . 1900 Park Fare
. . . Garden Grill
. . . Ohana
. . . Garden Grove
. . . 1900 Park Fare
. . . Chef Mickey's
. . . Cape May Cafe
. . . Hollywood & Vine
. . . Cinderella Royal Table
. . . Crystal Palace (barely enough time for a photo)

Best Atmosphere (surroundings and ambience):
. . . Cinderella Royal Table
. . . Tusker House
. . . Akerhus Royal Banquet
. . . Ohana
. . . 1900 Park Fare
. . . Garden Grill
. . . Crystal Palace
. . . Hollywood & Vine
. . . Cape May Cafe
. . . Garden Grove
. . . Chef Mickey's

NOTE1: Results are listed from best to worst. Overall, Tusker House
wins due to best food and the length of time the characters stay at
each table. A close second is 1900 Park Fare. By far, Chef Mickey's
is the loser, due to mediocre character interaction and almost terrible
food quality. The very distant second worst is Cinderella Royal Table,
due to the brief time at tables for charcters and the new menu.

NOTE2: Characters
. . . 1900 (Breakfast): Alice, Mad Hatter, Mary Poppins, Pooh & friends
. . . 1900 (Dinner): Cinderella, Prince Charming, Lady Tremaine, Step Sisters
. . . Akershus Banquet : Belle, Snow White, Aurora, Jasmine
. . . Cape May Café : Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Goofy
. . . Chef Mickey : Mickey, Minnie, Chip-n-Dale, Goofy
. . . Crystal Palace : Pooh, Tigger, Eeyore, Piglet
. . . Hollywood and Vine : Disney Junior Characters
. . . Ohana : Lilo, Stitch, Mickey, Pluto
. . . Tusker House : Donald (outside, only), Mickey, Gooffy, Daisy, Pluto
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Old 03-17-2013, 11:59 AM   #8
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Obama and crystal palace!
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Old 03-17-2013, 12:00 PM   #9
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Haha. Autocorrect said Obama. Clearly I meant Ohana!
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Old 03-17-2013, 12:29 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by misstheworld View Post
I think that it also is worth looking at which characters your family would be most interested in seeing.
I agree with misstheworld.
You will find different characters at different restaurants.
You should go to the character meals with characters you want to see.
I am not a picky eater, I like the food at all of the character meals.
Only one I haven't tried is Mickey's Backyard BBQ.

For example: 1900 Park Fare at Grand Floridian:
Breakfast: Alice, Pooh, Tigger, Piglet, Mary Poppins, Mad Hatter
Dinner: Cinderella & her Prince, Ugly Stepsisters and Step Mother.

Also at different restaurants characters dress differently depending on the theme of the restaurant.

Tusker House in Animal kingdom (safari clothes), Cape May Cafe @ Beach club (Summer Beach clothes), Ohana breakfast @ Poly (Hawaiian luau clothing), Chef Mickeys @ Contemporary (Chef uniforms), Garden Grill @ Epcot (Farmer clothes)

Also plan to spend an hour give or take at your character meals, because it takes time for all the characters to get to your table especially at a busy time.

If you are looking for better quality food, I would suggest Cape May Cafe breakfast @ the Beach Club, or Tusker House breakfast in Animal Kingdom, and 1900 Park Fare @ GF for breakfast or dinner, or Garden Grill dinner in Epcot

If you are looking to dine with Princesses, Akershus in Epcot costs only 1 dining plan credit. A nice alternative to dining at Cinderella's Royal table.

I would suggest going to allears.net click on Walt Disney World then on Dining.
You will find a menu on the left side of the page. Look for "Character Dining". Go to "character meal locations" and you will find a list of characters and restaurants. That way you can find the characters you want to see, and check out menus of all disney restaurants on that site.

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Old 03-17-2013, 01:30 PM   #11
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Can't go wrong with either Cape May or Ohana breakfasts!

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Old 03-17-2013, 01:43 PM   #12
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We love 'Ohana. Character interaction is excellent, the atmosphere is awesome (love the leis they hand out upon arrival ), the food is sooooo good (and brought family-style, right to your table, which is so much more relaxing than a standard buffet), the Polynesian is gorgeous, and many tables have a view of the castle. Its a family favourite.

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beginning at post 87.

Stitch is a real little rascal, which adds a nice element of fun to the meal. On our most recent trip, he ran around picking boogers from his nose and wiping them on unsuspecting guests. The kids LOVED it.

We have also had the most amazing character interaction here with Pluto. On our first trip in 2009, he was quite the silly dog:

I also love that Mickey is at this meal. Because the more time with Mickey, the better in my book!
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Old 03-17-2013, 05:35 PM   #13
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My favorite is Hollywood and Vine, but with the age range you have, I don't think it's best. SO, my next best recommendation is Tusker House. The characters play with the kids doing conga lines and stuff like that. The food is good and it's a buffet, so you can try all different stuff. They have African cuisine and "regular" stuff for the less adventurous There's a 'kids buffet' with chicken nuggets and choices like that, but both kids and adults can pick foods from anywhere.
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Old 03-17-2013, 06:40 PM   #14
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Tusker house is great for breakfast. If you are lucky you can time a meal to end around park open then you have an advantage since you are already in the back of the park. The food is rather good and the characters a come by and visit (even when is just two adults).

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Old 03-17-2013, 07:47 PM   #15
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I think that would have to do with your choice of characters.
I always find the interaction to be better at meals with face characters, such as the princesses as they can talk.
I would have to pick 1900 Park Faire for dinner as my favorite! The food is some of the best, the ambiance is amazing, and for characters you get Cindy, Charming, and the Tremaine family, who are the real stars of the show, they're great!!

I like to get an ADR right around five pm right after it opens for dinner as the wait isn't as long and everything's fresh!
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