BOO Dining Review- It's Halloween season at WDW!- UPDATED 12/17 CALI GRILL/COMPLETE!

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Reviews' started by Smiling Cheshire Cat, Sep 25, 2012.

  1. Smiling Cheshire Cat

    Smiling Cheshire Cat DIS Veteran

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    Thanks so much, he is a cutiepie.

    I hope you have a great time at Chef Mickey's.
     
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  3. Smiling Cheshire Cat

    Smiling Cheshire Cat DIS Veteran

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    THE PLAZA

    After our big breakfast at Chef Mickey's we decided to skip lunch and have an early dinner at the Plaza before Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party. We just got in the door before a torrential downpour happened!

    We eat at the Plaza almost everytime we visit WDW since we genuinely like the food. Even though it is a small, sometimes noisy restaurant, we like the atmosphere better than the CS places at MK and it really isn't that much more expensive when we have the TIW card.

    The Plaza really isn't known for it's great service. We've eaten there enough to be able to judge the accuracy of this statement. I can't say we've ever had great service there. My expectations are low based on previous experiences. This time our server was Jasmine. I remembered having her before since she does share the name of a Disney princess. But this time she was much better than my memory, still not great service but good enough.

    Brian had complained most of the day with his stomach because of his gluttonous behavior at breakfast.:rolleyes2 So he decided to just have soup. He ordered what Jasmine called potato soup, but he was even more pleased to see this, what I would call Loaded Potato Soup, with cheese, bacon, and chives on top.

    [​IMG]
    potato soup from the Plaza by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    I tried a bite of this and it was delicious. And I considered it a bargain for Disney food at $4.49 for the bowl.:)

    Chase ordered the Club Sandwich, no turkey or tomato. So I guess that makes it a ham and bacon sandwich. He always orders this when we eat at the Plaza and it has never failed to please him. Plus the french fries are awesome.

    [​IMG]
    Club sandwich from the Plaza by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    I got the same thing I always get too. We are so boring.:blush: The Strawberry Chicken Salad is one of my favorite things to eat at MK. I love the vinagrette. I always thought it was a strawberry vinagrette, but Jasmine told me it was raspberry. Whichever fruit it is, I totally love it and wish I could get it at home. I also love the fresh tasting cucumber. I like to imagine they were grown over at the Land pavilion.

    [​IMG]
    strawberry chicken salad from the Plaza by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    Since we were trying to wait out the rain, Brian decided to order dessert. He ordered cookies and cream ice cream expecting a scoop in a bowl, but was pleasantly suprised when this little beauty was delivered to the table.

    [​IMG]
    Oreo sundae from the Plaza by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    Chase and I had major ice cream envy so Brian was kind enough to share. This was SO very good. We've had Plaza Sundaes before, but I think this one, with the cookies and cream ice cream, was the best we've ever had.:lovestruc

    This was one of our best experiences at the Plaza and there's no question we will be back, hopefully sooner than later.:thumbsup2

    Next up: Le Cellier lunch, Canadians really do make the best burgers!
     
  4. jabead

    jabead DIS Veteran

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    Great review of the Plaza, Rachel! :thumbsup2 Your salad looks and sounds delicious and that sundae...WOW!!! :cloud9: We haven't been to the Plaza since 2006, and I'm thinking it's about time for a return visit. ;)
     
  5. DonaldDoleWhip

    DonaldDoleWhip DIS Veteran

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    The strawberry chicken salad and oreo sundae look great! I've never been to The Plaza, but maybe it would be worth a try sometime. :goodvibes
     
  6. emmysmommy

    emmysmommy DIS Veteran

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    Plaza Restaurant is one of my newer favorites. We've only ordered burgers but I would love to try something new so the soup and your salad are some great alternatives! I still might have to order a side of fries though since I LOVE their fries. ::yes::

    Ice-cream is a great way to wait out a storm!! :thumbsup2
     
  7. TigerKat

    TigerKat DIS Veteran

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    The Plaza has the best fries in the world!!!!
     
  8. partyof2

    partyof2 Colette

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    I should know better than to read dining reviews on an empty stomach, I'm sitting here drooling...

    I'm intrigued by the Loaded Potato soup, it looks fantastic but I really hate potato soup ha.

    I think the food at The Plaza looks amazing and it's the perfect lunch spot - I think I'd try most things on the menu.
     
  9. Roma

    Roma Mouseketeer

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    I totally discovered The Plaza by accident on my second trip to WDW. My aunt and I were starving and needed to eat ASAP so we just walked up and asked if we could get in (for whatever reason it didn't occur to me that you should probably make ADRs here too). Those fries are out of this world good. We still talk about how we haven't had a fry that has compared since.
     
  10. kelleigh1

    kelleigh1 <font color=purple>Disney Baby<br><font color=gree

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    I've yet to try The Plaza and it's not on the list for our upcoming trip, but this is the 2nd review I've seen there that has me drooling. It is definitely going on the list for our next trip.
     
  11. Smiling Cheshire Cat

    Smiling Cheshire Cat DIS Veteran

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    Thanks Barb. It does sound like it is time for your family to make a return visit to the Plaza. We really enjoy eating there!

    The salad is one of my favorites and the sundae was so yummy. While the Plaza's not fanciful dining, we've consistentely gotten good food there.

    The fries are so wonderful at the Plaza. I always steal a few from Chase. :thumbsup2

    I can't agree with you more!

    I know what you mean, reading Disney Dining reviews while hungry is almost as dangerous as going to the grocery store on an empty stomach.:lmao:

    If you don't like potato soup, I'm not sure you'd like the Loaded Potato Soup. I would stick with the salad or the sandwich and fries.


    I'm so glad you like the Plaza too. It seems to be unanimous, the Plaza fries are the best!

    Glad you enjoyed the review of the Plaza. It is so hard to narrow down dining choices isn't it? Luckily there's always a next trip.:thumbsup2
     
  12. Smiling Cheshire Cat

    Smiling Cheshire Cat DIS Veteran

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    LE CELLIER LUNCH

    After a late night at MNSSHP we slept in and didn't make it to EPCOT until around 11:00 am. The F&W booths were already very crowded. I was glad to be heading to Le Cellier to eat in the cool A/C.

    We got there in time to hear the Canandian National Anthem. Some of the girls were really good singers. I looked over at Chase and he was acting like he was singing too. I'm thinking he was just faking it. :upsidedow

    Our server this time was Tamara. I have to say she was the best server we've ever had at Le Cellier and probably wins for best server of this trip. I think I've come to expect the servers at WDW to provide information and education about the menus and the food and Tamara did not disappoint. Tamara brought us this delicious assortment of bread, with the pretzel being our favorite of course. I can't say I cared much for the other bread, which Tamara described as a multi-grain, but Brian and Chase liked it. Is the pretzel bread larger than it used to be or is it just me?

    [​IMG]
    bread from Le Cellier by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    We've visited Le Cellier on several occassions and have tried the steaks, but we actually like the burger better. So now we always book for lunch. This saves some strain on my pocketbook and eliminates some of the stress of looking for an ADR for dinner which can be difficult to find. After some debate I talked Brian into splitting the burger with me. Chase also ordered the burger, but wanted his own. We ordered ours medium well and it was cooked perfectly. I love the crispy onions on top and this one had just a hint of the barbecue sauce which was just perfect for me. I shouldn't forget to add that the fries and pickle were great compliments.:thumbsup2

    [​IMG]
    Burger from Le Cellier by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    Brian also decided he wanted a side of mac and cheese. I love mac and cheese that is baked in the oven, but this was heavy on the cheddar flavor. Tamara told us she warns parents that want to order this for their kids that it is not like the mac and cheese kids normally like. Brian loved this and ate the whole thing. For me and Chase just and couple of bites would do since I like my mac and cheese more creamy.

    [​IMG]
    Mac and Cheese from Le Cellier by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    Since I was anticipating my dinner later at Jiko, we decided to skip dessert. Once again, we had an enjoyable lunch at Le Cellier. We will return and probably order the burger next time.:rotfl:

    Up next: Finally, dinner at a place that has been on my wish-list- JIKO
     
  13. sushi candy

    sushi candy Foodie

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    We actually sang along when Le Cellier opened for dinner but we were Canadians too, lol. The Mac and cheese looks super yummy! I was really curious about that on the menu but never had a chance to order it,
     
  14. jabead

    jabead DIS Veteran

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    I too am a big fan of the Le Cellier burger, Rachel! ::yes:: For us, the steaks there have been a hit and miss, but the rest of their food, including the burger, has always been great! :thumbsup2
     
  15. emmysmommy

    emmysmommy DIS Veteran

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    Love the Le Cellier review with something that is not steak!! ;) You review of the burger is definitely tempting me to expand my horizons.... I almost tried something new but chickened out! Glad it was a solid meal!
     
  16. DonaldDoleWhip

    DonaldDoleWhip DIS Veteran

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    I think you're right about the pretzel bread - those pieces are definitely thicker than the previous breadsticks (the sourdough, pretzel, and multigrain were all uniform in size). The pretzel bread got bigger when the other two got smaller. :laughing:

    That burger looks really tasty - hopefully it won't disappear when LC lunch becomes 2 TS!
     
  17. Smiling Cheshire Cat

    Smiling Cheshire Cat DIS Veteran

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    I didn't know they sang at dinner as well. It is a nice way to acknowledge their country. If you like sharp cheddar, I bet you would like the Mac and Cheese, Rosey.

    We've only ordered the steaks at Le Cellier once, but I think you can find better steak at other places at WDW, like Shula's.:thumbsup2

    Looking forward to your Le Cellier review, Brenda. I think it is coming up next in your report.:cheer2:

    I thought that pretzel bread was bigger and it was also tastier than I remember. Love the salt!

    I've been wondering the same thing about how the lunch menu will change when Le Cellier becomes a 2 TS restaurant. I will be sad if the burger is removed, but if I were on the dining plan I wouldn't want to waste 2 credits on a $15 meal. I hope it is popular enough to stay around.
     
  18. Smiling Cheshire Cat

    Smiling Cheshire Cat DIS Veteran

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    Sorry I've been AWOL for a few days. I've been having trouble getting my photos uploaded on Flickr but I think I'm back on track now.:thumbsup2

    JIKO


    After reading so many excellent reviews of Jiko, I was most excited for this meal. Chase looked over the menu and said in his sticky, picky voice that nothing sounded good to him and he would get some chicken tenders over at Mara.:rolleyes1 This has worked out excellently for me because it gave me a chance to have a nice private dinner with Brian.:)

    We were seated very quickly at a table for two. Our table was one of those where one side in a bench that is shared with other diners. I don't really like these tables when you are hoping for an intimate dinner, but I guess they are space savers.

    I had read many reviews that described excellent service at Jiko, so I think I will blame those reviews for my discontent with Patty A. She was very efficient, but either not knowledgeable of the menu or just didn't want to be bothered with my questions. Patty brought us this basket of bread. I can't say I loved the tandoori butter. I think I like my butter sweet or salty, but not spicy.

    [​IMG]
    Bread from Jiko by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    We decided to start with the African Spiced Fire Roasted Chicken Flatbread. I'm a big fan of the flatbreads at WDW and am on a mission to try most of them. This one was excellent. I love the sweetness of the bacon, the texture of the arugula and just the little bit of heat. I asked Patty what gave it the little kick, but she said she didn't know. Maybe it was the peppadews?:confused3 I would order this again, and at $10 it is one of the rarities in Disney dining- a good deal.:yay:

    [​IMG]
    Chicken flatbread from Jiko by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    Brian and I also split the Jiko salad. Typically when we split salads the kitchen will do it for us, but we were on our own this time. I'm guessing that Jiko changes the ingredients of their salads based on what is in season because the desciption I had printed out for AllEars was different from this salad (BTW, Allears has the current description now.) We loved this salad! It has sweet blueberries and grapes and crunchy celery and pinenut brittle. I didn't love the lemon yogurt smear on the side but it didn't mess up the taste of this wonderful salad.

    [​IMG]
    salad from Jiko by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    For our entree we decided to keep pacing ourselves and split the Sikhumbuzo's Peri Peri Chicken. This dish had lots of different flavors and textures. The chicken was spicy and tender and the potatoes had a sweetness to them which I guess was the mango sambai. I loved it, but Brian said he thought it was just okay.

    [​IMG]
    Sikhumbuzo's Peri Peri Chicken from Jiko by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    As for dessert, I was stuffed by this time so I let Brian choose. Here is a copy of Jiko's dessert menu.

    [​IMG]
    Dessert menu from Jiko by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    And here is Brian's choice, the Madagascar Cheesecake. Brian's mom used to grow rhubarb so he was excited to try this. I liked the cheesecake and the chocolate crust, but wasn't a fan of the rhubarb compote or the dehydrated rhubarb on top of the cheesecake. Brian loved it!

    [​IMG]
    Madagascar vanilla cheesecake from Jiko by Smiling Cheshire Cat, on Flickr

    We've been lucky so far on this trip. Even though our service wasn't as engaging as I'd liked, we had a good meal at Jiko's and will return our next stay at AKL.

    Next up will be some pictures of Halloween goodies!
     
  19. sushi candy

    sushi candy Foodie

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    I think it's great you got to share an intimate dinner, Rachel. I think it is a shame though that your server wasn't knowledgeable. The flatbread looked amazing. I looked up peppadews and they are sweet piquant peppers from South Africa so I think you are right. :)

    My husband also loves rhubarb. His mom would boil it down like apple sauce and serve it on a crepe. The dish is called palachinkies. I think they are Czech in origin.
     
  20. DonaldDoleWhip

    DonaldDoleWhip DIS Veteran

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    Glad to see the food at Jiko was enjoyable for the most part - sorry your server wasn't very informative. I loved that Madagascar Vanilla cheesecake, including the rhubarb. And the peri peri chicken was one of our favorite dishes at Jiko, primarily because the flavor profiles were so authentic. :thumbsup2
     
  21. jedijill

    jedijill <font color=red>Chiefs fan living in Bronco countr

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    Fantastic reviews. Can't wait to try The Plaza in a couple of weeks and I need to get back to Jiko some of these days. I haven't been there for awhile.

    Jill in CO
     

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