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Old 09-07-2011, 12:51 PM   #1
Stew_Mouse
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The *Half-Eaten Food Pictures* Dining Review! 8.22.11 - 8.28.11 COMPLETE!

Hello Dis-ers, and welcome to my dining review! First, a warning: if looking at pictures of half-eaten food displeases or disgusts you in any way, then proceed no further. As you can see from the review title, many of these pictures will contain food that has already been bitten, forked, cut or occasionally mauled. Traveling with two energetic little ones and three hungry adults will do that. Proceed with caution!


This is me, Stew_Mouse!

I hit WDW (and a visit to the Dark Side) with my sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew for a week of fun and food. We did a lot of shared little meals and only a few table services. Here was our dining itinerary:



Day One:
Earl of Sandwich
Wolfgang Puck Express
ʻOhana

Day Two:
Starring Rolls
Pizzafari
Boma

Day Three:
Richterʼs Burgers
Butterbeer
Mangino's Bistro & Room Service @ Shades of Green

Day Four:
Columbia Harbor House
Kona Cafe Breakfast
Kona Cafe & Kona Island Sushi Bar Dinner

Day Five:
EPCOT Smorgasbord
Mangino's Bistro & Room Service @ Shades of Green

Day Six:
Caseyʼs Corner
Tortuga Tavern

Mangino's Bistro & Room Service @ Shades of Green
Sunshine Seasons

Day Seven:
Earl of Sandwich
Babycakes


Extra Days:
Bonus Days in Orlando!

Welcome! Glad to have you here!


Last edited by Stew_Mouse; 01-12-2012 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 09-07-2011, 01:09 PM   #2
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Old 09-07-2011, 01:44 PM   #3
Stew_Mouse
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Day One: We are finally here! Earl of Sandwich & Wolfgang Puck Express

This was the first day in Orlando for my family, but I had already driven down a few days earlier from South Carolina. I was able to pick them up from the airport and we drove to Shades of Green and checked in. Then we did the 10 minute walk to the Polynesian Resort to use their transportation. It was a long wait at the bus stop and our first taste of a long week of being hot hot hot! finally, the bus we wanted arrived and we hopped on and headed to Downtown Disney. First stop, Earl of Sandwich and Wolfgang Puck Express!

My BiL and I got sandwiches at EoS while my sister went over to WPE to get some food for her and the kids.

I had The Caprese - Sliced fresh Mozzarella, Roma tomato, fresh basil and drizzled virgin olive oil. - $5.99

This definitely hit the spot for my eternal EoS cravings! It was delicious - the bread was toasted just right, the mozzarella slightly warm and cooling, the vinaigrette was just the right amount of tang. I could go for one right now!

BiL had The Earl's Club - Roast turkey, bacon, Swiss cheese, lettuce and tomato. - $5.99


Side of pasta salad, though I only got a picture of the potato salad in the case. They are the same size. - $1.79

These both must have been good, because it was gobbled up. We were definitely starving at this point in the day.

Wow, I'm glad I got to start the review with some pictures of intact food. Now it's about to go downhill a little bit. Here is what my Sis brought back from WPE, which we dove into before I realized I hadn't taken pictures yet.

Pepperoni Pizza

I did not try any of this, but it seemed to be pretty good. Nice crisp crust.

Beet Salad

I couldn't find a description or price for this one, but it includes beets, two types of greens, goat cheese, walnuts, orange slices and a vinaigrette-type dressing. This was pretty good and fresh tasting, but not that exciting. As you will see, however, the beet salad will redeem itself in the next few days! Sorry I didn't get a good picture of the beets, they were underneath the lettuce.

ETA: I forgot to mention that they accept AAA discount here, but we forgot to use it! 10% off, y'all!

Next up - Day One continued at 'Ohana!


Last edited by Stew_Mouse; 09-09-2011 at 03:26 PM.
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Old 09-07-2011, 01:45 PM   #4
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I am here!
My first reader! I am so honored! Welcome, weswife! Thank you for braving the half eaten adventure!
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Old 09-07-2011, 06:16 PM   #5
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I'm not scared of your half eaten food pics but I don't see any pics from DD, only red x's.

Looking forward to more!
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Old 09-07-2011, 07:22 PM   #6
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great start. looking forward to more. We are eating at o'hana next month. seen mixed reviews recently so hoping you liked it. We love starring rolls for breakfast. it has become our 1st day 1st meal ritual
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Old 09-08-2011, 10:52 AM   #7
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I'm joining! Great start and can't wait to try that Caprese sandwich on our trip!
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Old 09-08-2011, 11:13 AM   #8
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Great start! Pictures of EOS always make me so hungry!
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Old 09-08-2011, 12:32 PM   #10
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sounds like a promising start to a great report..
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Old 09-08-2011, 02:29 PM   #11
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Old 09-08-2011, 09:48 PM   #12
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I'm here! I can't wait to see your pics from 'Ohana!
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Old 09-08-2011, 09:50 PM   #13
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OP-I have this issue too-I always start eating and then think, "Crap, I wanted to take a pic of that!" Oink! Oink!

Case in point:

WPE


EOS Dessert


WPE Dessert


Artist Point Dinner


Seriously, what's wrong with me? Apparently, it is a disease and others, like the OP, suffer from it as well!

Last edited by Rekenna; 09-08-2011 at 10:08 PM.
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Old 09-09-2011, 01:49 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basketlacey View Post
I'm not scared of your half eaten food pics but I don't see any pics from DD, only red x's.

Looking forward to more!
Welcome! Yeah, my sister had the same problem. I'm not sure what the cause of it was, but I hope it's working out now! Let me know if you keep seeing that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DLo View Post
great start. looking forward to more. We are eating at o'hana next month. seen mixed reviews recently so hoping you liked it. We love starring rolls for breakfast. it has become our 1st day 1st meal ritual
Thanks for reading! That sounds like a great ritual. And I do have a lot to say about Ohana, since it was my first time there and I have been reading all the mixed reviews as well. Stay tuned!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TanzUnited99 View Post
I'm joining! Great start and can't wait to try that Caprese sandwich on our trip!
It is delicious! Thanks for reading!

Quote:
Originally Posted by butiflfeet View Post
Great start! Pictures of EOS always make me so hungry!
Doesn't it though? Welcome!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyNicki View Post
Count me in
Welcome! I'm a huge fan of your reviews, so I am so pleased to have you here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigsis1970 View Post
sounds like a promising start to a great report..
Thanks and welcome!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarheel Tink View Post
Joining!
Welcome!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BorkBorkBork View Post
I'm here! I can't wait to see your pics from 'Ohana!
Hey Colleen! So glad you are here We'll have to compare notes when you return from your trip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rekenna View Post
OP-I have this issue too-I always start eating and then think, "Crap, I wanted to take a pic of that!" Oink! Oink!

Seriously, what's wrong with me? Apparently, it is a disease and others, like the OP, suffer from it as well!
Hahaha, thanks for letting me know I'm not alone! It truly is a disease! Although your pictures look like you took some very artful bites. They still look very good!
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Old 09-09-2011, 03:24 PM   #15
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Day One continued: 'Ohana

This was our first time at 'Ohana after hearing A LOT about it on the boards. A couple of friends of mine also told me that they'll even drive all the way down there (9 hour drive from here) for a weekend whenever they can get an ADR! But, I also read the negative reviews on the board too. Needless to say, I was both apprehensive but also looking forward to it. I was most looking forward to the sides, as I love potstickers, wings, noodles and, yes, even the broccoli! One other negative thing was that I did not have much of an appetite that day. On a normal day, I would be drooling over lunch at EoS followed by dinner at Ohana, but I'm afraid I wasn't feeling it that day. I mention this because it totally tampered with my final opinion of the meal.

We ended up getting there about 45 minutes before our ADR. We checked in and the CMs said they'll see about getting us in early if they can but did not give us a time estimate. We had a feeling this meant it wasn't likely, which we were okay with. Just because we arrived early does not mean we expect to be sat early. If I remember correctly, we were seated about an hour later, so from what I hear, that is not too shabby? Right away, the CM who was seating us was super friendly and chatted with us the whole way to the table and got us situated with high chairs and booster seats.

Here was the bread he gave us:

I thought it was okay, a little on the dry side, though I did not put butter on it. I only had about two bites as I did not want to fill up on bread before dinner.

We were seated right as the games were beginning, so it took a little while for the food to get to our table. Our server was pretty nice, though he was the first of many that did something I found to be mildly annoying: Since I was with my sister and brother-in-law and their two kids, I guess it seemed obvious that they were the "parents" of the group. As such, a lot of CMs spoke only to them and would only ask them if something was okay. Not only was I not asked, but I was also not even given eye contact. In the long run, not a big deal, as they weren't rude. In fact, they were often very friendly. I just don't like being ignored. The funny thing is that I am older than my brother-in-law! Has anyone else had this problem? Anywho, back to the food....

The salad arrived....Mixed Greens with Honey-Lime Dressing

The veggies were very crisp and the dressing was coated well onto them- not too much, not too little. However, it was a little too sweet and tangy for my liking. This little bunch was all that I ate.

I remember reading about how the platters of food can sometimes arrive very quickly, but on this night, they were a little on the slow side. It could have been because the games were going on, and our table was one of the ones right on the sidelines. I also noticed that the servers usually brought out each type of food at the same time for several tables at once and since two or three tables next to us were sat after we were, perhaps they were timing it for all of us instead of just our table. Just some theories... either way, we were okay with the speed. I was relieved it wasn't the mad rush that others have experienced, though our table did get piled up with a lot of dishes eventually.

Pork fried dumplings & Coriander chicken wings

Folks, this was a big platter, even by my standards! It was delicious though! The pot stickers were cooked to perfection - crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside. Pot stickers are one of my favorite foods and I can be a harsh critic of how they taste, and my verdict is that these were great! Usually the mixture inside can leave much to be desired, but these were tasty and juicy and not too salty. The chicken wings were also good. I usually like them crispier, so that would be my only complaint. Otherwise, tender and fairly juicy. The sauce on the wings were not too sweet and just the right amount of thickness. The three dipping sauces (peanut, chimichurri and sweet & sour) were brought to our table (sorry, no picture of that), but I didn't think either of these items needed it. The sauces, to me, seemed like overkill on all the food. They were pretty sweet themselves, but I just didn't feel like any of the food needed it. I also forgot what was supposed to go what. Does anyone know?

Pad Thai Noodles

Anyone who eats Thai food, even Americanized Thai food, knows that this is nowhere near what actual pad thai looks, tastes or feels like. However, that does not stop these noodles from being pretty good. I read on disboards that they tasted more like chinese food lo-mein, and having worked for a long time in a restaurant that served that, I would agree. It's a good comfort food and probably a crowd-pleaser, as it does not taste very ethnic to me. Therefore, good for many palates. If it was actual pad thai, I would be thrilled. As it was, I enjoyed them, but nothing to write home about.

Broccoli & Pea Pods, Marinated Sirloin Steak, Asian BBQ Pork Loin, Mesquite Grilled Chicken and Non-Peeled Shrimp

Things were really heating up at this point and, as you can see, my plate was overflowing! Our table was filled with tons of stuff and I couldn't reach the broccoli bowl to get a good picture, so that little bit in the corner of this one is all I can get ya. The veggies were cooked to perfection! Lightly seasoned, easy to chew yet still retaining a crunch. They really got this down, folks! Especially given how much food they have to create at a time and how many hungry mouths that eat there every night. You can also see the non-peeled shrimp there. I had a lot more on the plate earlier, hehehe. The shrimp was easy to peel, but I can see it being a hassle for those that don't like to get their fingers dirty. They were overcooked, though, kind of tough to bite for shrimp. They were pretty big though. The other item in this picture is the sirloin steak. It wasn't tough and had a mild flavor. Not the best steak I've eaten, so I would give this an average mark. I did try the chicken and pork and both were also average. My sister did not like the pork at all, saying it was too dry.

'Ohana Bread Pudding a la Mode with Bananas Foster Sauce

What is this pitiful picture before us?? I wish I had thought to put something next to this tiny, tiny bowl of bread pudding to emphasize the scale in the photo, but maybe the spoon will give you a good idea of the size. Okay, yes, it is all you can eat and we can have as much as we want, but we were jokingly puzzled as to how we could have been served enough pot stickers and wings for 10 people but then had to fight over this delicious bowl of heaven? Oh, this is after we had already eaten some, so there was actually more in there. The little creamer jug next to it holds the bananas foster sauce. The whole table thought this dessert was fabulous, including the sauce. My sister said it helped to cut through the sweetness. I liked the warmth of the pudding and the softness of each bite. We licked it clean. We contemplated asking for more, but were too full. Oh, I know... you feel SO sorry for us, don't you?

Overall, my apprehensive-yet-positive expectations for 'Ohana were met. I can see why people love it: lots of comforting food with great flavor, grilled meats, all you can eat, and a fabulous dessert. However, it does need improvement: all the grilled items needed sharper flavor (after awhile, everything tasted the same), too much waste and noisy. As I mentioned earlier, I did not have much of an appetite that day and that really affected what I thought of 'Ohana. It didn't stop me from eating too much though! Ha! I think that if I were feeling normal, I would have enjoyed it more. I am also going through a phase of not liking meat that much, and that also affected my judgement.

Two extremely wonderful side benefits: we got to see part of the Electric Water Pageant (is that the right name?) and we were seated at a table in full view of Wishes! They played the music as it started and it was lovely! (Though I was told the other side of the table's view was blocked by a pole. )

That's my review of 'Ohana! Let's compare notes - what did you all think, if you have eaten there?

Next up - Starring Rolls & Pizzafari!


Last edited by Stew_Mouse; 09-09-2011 at 03:31 PM.
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