Slightly Delayed Dining Review - with Pictures - updated 3/2 Sunshine Season and Jiko

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Reviews' started by Flossbolna, Jan 8, 2009.

  1. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    When I wrote my last dining review (Our Quest for American Food) in 2007 I was not expecting to back within one year. Now I am planning my third winter trip to WDW in a row and will be back in just a little over two weeks time. I guess, this is an experience which a few people around here had before me. :rolleyes1

    I actually started to write the dining review for the 2008 trip shortly after the trip on my computer, but never got around to post the first installment. Now planning for our 2009 trip, I am really regretting not finishing it. Now I came up with the idea that doing a dining review is actually a great thing to channel the pre-trip-anxiety into something productive. And hopefully it will set me into the perfect mood to continue with my dining review for 2009 directly after our trip!

    In the fall when the winter was looming over us, my friend Carola and I remembered how great it was to escape the grey and cold days of February in Germany and enjoy sunny Florida. Also, Lufthansa (the German airline) had just started direct flights from Frankfurt to Orlando. So after a few phone calls, we decided to fly over the Atlantic just to stay at WDW and booked our stay from January 29 to February 7 2008 at the Animal Kingdom Lodge.

    A brief introduction of the cast of this review:

    Magdalene (that's me), 37, I am a lawyer, normally based in Nuremberg in Bavaria, but at the moment living in Berlin. I am the Disney-fan (you might have guessed from the fact that I am the author of the dining review) and therefore the planner of the trip. I love good food (sometimes a bit too much), I enjoy cooking and experimenting. I can be very adventurous with what I eat, but there are certain things that I absolutely hate: onions, red peppers, shellfish, cilantro and braised meat. So I am picky, but not because something might be exotic, but because I don't like the ingredients (or the method it was cooked). I am not so much into desserts. I like sweets, but rather as a treat inbetween than after a meal. Appetizers however, are just my thing!

    Carola, 36, another lawyer, but now working as a tax expert. We met in law school and this is our third trip to WDW together. I still don't really understand after three trips together, how she chooses her food. There are some things I know: she likes chocolate and nearly everything sweet, she likes mashed potatoes and braised meat. However, just as me, she enjoys good food, so for both of, dining is part of a relaxing holiday!

    This is a picture of the two of us (I am the one with blond, curly hair) just before we went on the Keys to the Kingdom Tour (which was fantastic by the way)

    [​IMG]
     
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  3. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    So how did we plan our dining? We had a few places that we wanted to revisit: Boma and Jiko at AKL, since we were staying there and really liked those restaurants. California Grill, because Carola wanted to have the cheese board again. And Kona Cafe, I really love the Polynesian and wanted to have a reason to eat there and the food was great there last time. We also had a place that we had discussed both last trips and never made it there: Le Cellier. Besides that: we wanted to eat at places that are “different” for us. Remember, we are from Germany, so typical American food is exotic for us! In the end there was not so much room for new experiences...

    These are the ADRs we ended up with:

    1/30/08
    Boma 6 pm
    1/31/08
    Teppan Edo 12 pm
    2/1/08
    Artist Point 5:30 pm
    2/2/08
    Liberty Tree Tavern 1 pm
    California Grill 8:30 pm
    2/3/08
    Le Cellier 5:30 pm
    2/4/08
    Boma 9:15 am
    2/5/08
    Kona Cafe 5:30 pm
    2/6/08
    Jiko 8:30 pm

    As you see, we decided to become signature restaurants girls, eating at three of those. And without telling too much beforehand: we didn't regret those choices. :thumbsup2

    Besides those table service restaurants I will also be reviewing our counter service food as we go along through the days. I have plenty of pictures, which I hope you will enjoy! I still like looking at my own food pictures!

    This is an index to the reviews on this thread:

    1/30 Breakfast at Mara (AKL)
    1/30 Lunch at Backlot Express (DHS)
    1/30 Dinner at Boma (AKL)
    1/31 Lunch at Tepan Edo (Epcot)
    1/31 Dinner at Sunshine Season (Epcot)
    Bonus post: pictures of Backlot Express
    2/1 Lunch at Flame Tree Barbecue (AKL)
    2/1 Dinner at Artist Point
    2/2 Breakfast at the Mara (AKL)
    2/2 Lunch at Liberty Tree Tavern (MK)
    2/2 Dinner at California Grill (CR)
    2/3 Lunch at Columbia Harbour House (MK)
    2/3 Dinner at Le Cellier (Epcot)
    2/4 Breakfast at Boma (AKL)
    2/4 Dinner at La Cantina (Epcot)
    2/4 Drinks at Victoria Falls (AKL)
    2/5 Breakfast at Mara
    2/5 Dinner at Kona Cafe
    2/6 Snack at Sunshine Seasons
    2/6 Dinner at Jiko
     
  4. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    We had arrived at MCO the evening before with a three hour delay – the entertainment system of our plane was not working and had to be replaced before we were allowed to start the flight from Germany to MCO! :scared1: (We thought this was bad, but the flight back was even worse!! :scared: ) Therefore we got to bed much later than expected.

    We still had a pretty early breakfast from Mara at our hotel, the Animal Kingdom Lodge) on our balcony. I went down to get the mugs and something to eat and ended up with two kids meals: waffle with bacon and grapes. A drink was also included. This was our breakfast table:

    [​IMG]

    And this is a close up of the kids meal:

    [​IMG]

    We thought this was a great deal! The waffles were fresh and the portion size was just right for me for breakfast. We ended up getting this a number of times for breakfast.

    I really liked the Mara, we never ate a lot of meals there, but found it to be convenient for our needs. Most of the time we took the food back to our room and sat on the balcony. They told me, it was ok, to take the tray with me, mousekeeping would remove it. I never found it too crowded, but I was never there for breakfast after 8 am.

    I also very much like the décor:

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    It also has nice outdoor eating area:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  5. luckytobeme88

    luckytobeme88 DIS Veteran

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    very nice! I will be folllowing you for sure..;)
     
  6. TigerKat

    TigerKat DIS Veteran

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    Count me in!:thumbsup2
     
  7. MickeyNicki

    MickeyNicki It is pretty darn sad when a valet picks you out a

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    I'm in!
     
  8. dvc at last !

    dvc at last ! DVC Member 2006!

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    I am in...
    waiting for more !

    I love Boma for dinner !

    :cool1:
     
  9. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    Welcome to my first four readers!!! The next update will be online momentarily! :goodvibes

    We love Boma as well, it is our only must do for every trip!
     
  10. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    We spent the morning at DHS and got an early lunch from the Backlot Express. This was our first time trying a counter service restaurant in this park and we were pleasantly surprised. we got a salad an a sandwich and shared both. We felt that this was plenty of food and really liked both dishes, but the salad was so good that I actually made a point of coming back one day just to eat the salad!

    the salad was the South West Salad with mixed greens, crisp corn tortilla, black bean relish, grilled sweet plantains and chimichurri dressing (according to allears.net this now includes chicken, we had it without chicken):

    [​IMG]

    The sandwich was the grilled vegetable sandwich. We liked it, but for our taste it was too much cheese and too few vegetables.

    [​IMG]

    As I said before, I went back to Backlot Express and we are already talking about getting lunch there again in a few weeks time.
     
  11. John's Mom

    John's Mom Jambo Wildbunch Gang

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    Count me in! :goodvibes Can't wait for your Boma and Jiko reviews!
     
  12. luckytobeme88

    luckytobeme88 DIS Veteran

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    OMG, that salad you had in DHS looks like it has chicken on it.
     
  13. wdw1972

    wdw1972 DIS Veteran

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    That Mara kids' breakfast looks perfect for me! I'm staying concierge the next couple of times, but that almost looks good enough to leave the lounge for :rotfl2:
     
  14. Shell0616

    Shell0616 Mouseketeer

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    Count me in! Great reviews so far...:goodvibes
     
  15. TigerKat

    TigerKat DIS Veteran

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    Backlot has a great grilled turkey sandwich!:goodvibes
     
  16. 5infam

    5infam DIS Veteran

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    I'm in too - We have ADR's at a few of the places you visited, so I am looking forward to what is coming!!:thumbsup2
     
  17. medicgirl911

    medicgirl911 Free dining here we come!!

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    Can't wait to read more!
     
  18. Wendi2000

    Wendi2000 DIS Veteran

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    Looks yummy so far!!!
     
  19. PNO4TE

    PNO4TE I used to be the DIS Musician and a Jamborini...

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    I'm in! :wave2:

    How nice to put a face (or two) to you now, Floss... or may I call you Magdalene?
     
  20. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

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    Welcome! I already wrote the Boma review, just did not get around to post it. But it will be up sometime today hopefully! :goodvibes

    You are right, it looks like chicken, but these are the plantains. They were really delicious. In my opinion the salad does not need any chicken at all!

    The quality of the waffels varied a bit, but most of the time they were really nice and fresh. I love warm breakfasts (we don't have those here in Germany), but I don't want that much food in the mornings. I will see what I can get at Captain Cooks at the Poly this time...

    Thanks! I am glad that people are enjoying my reviews! :goodvibes

    Grilled turkey sounds good, too. Perhaps we will get to try it this time! :thumbsup2

    I am planning on finishing my reviews before we leave in two weeks time, so hopefully they will be of use for you! :goodvibes

    Welcome to my report!

    Yes, it was yummy! To be honest, I only ever had one meal at WDW that I really found unacceptlable, that was the salad at the counter service in Mexico at Epcot :eek:

    Hi Elin, glad you came over here! You are welcome to use my first name :goodvibes Floss is actually the town where my parents live (and Bolna was the name of our dog). When I signed up for the disboards I combined these two and did not think about that floss actually is an English word connected with dental hygiene :scared1: But then there is also candy floss, so that's ok :goodvibes
     
  21. TinkerBelle_325

    TinkerBelle_325 Magical Musing Meg

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    Great Reviews so far :thumbsup2

    I see that you're going to Disney again in just 2 weeks!

    You will LOVE the Polynesian :) It's my all time favorite resort.
     

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