"Uh-MAH-zing!!!!"- 14 days of fabulous food with plenty of pics!- UPDATED 5/21

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Reviews' started by spincandy, May 10, 2013.

  1. spincandy

    spincandy Mouseketeer

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    Hi, and welcome to my dining review. Thank you for reading along! I wanted to create a review with lots of descriptions and pictures... we used these boards so much when planning our latest trip, and it’s nice to give back :)

    We’re from the UK and we visited Disney from the 18th April for two weeks. This was my thirteenth trip (and I’m glad I only just realised that because it probably would’ve freaked me out a little!) and, though we count ourselves seasoned visitors, we still found plenty new to do and eat! We stayed offsite but only a fifteen minute drive from the World so perfect for us. We squeezed in a wide variety of places, including a few signatures and character meals.

    So I’ll try to be good and split up my post nicely so that it’s easy to navigate! Contents:

    • Introduction- a little ditty about the cast of this review, just so you know where it all comes from!
    • Travelling day- a post with an appalling lack of pictures due to ‘someone’ forgetting to charge up the camera the night before. Airport food, plane food etc etc… nothing exciting, and hardly anything tasty!
    • Paradiso 37’s (including Rainforest café cocktails and Goofy’s munchies!)
    • Gaston’s Tavern
    • Gasperilla Garden Grille
    • Earl of Sandwich, Splitsville cocktails and a quickie Raglan Road
    • Earl of Sandwich (again) quickie
    • Narcoosee’s
    • Afternoon Tea
    • A brief Discovery Cove review
    • Artist Point
    • Coral Reef
    • Munching and boozing around the world at the Flower and Garden festival, aaaand a tipsy TGI’s
    • PF Chang’s
    • Yak and Yeti
    • Blue Zoo
    • PF Chang’s and Planet Hollywood- because there’s nothing better than a double lunch!
    • Chef Mickey’s- because an all you care to (can) eat buffet is exactly what you want following a double lunch!
    • Fulton’s Crab House

    Before I forget, please feel free to ask questions or anything- this place has been so friendly and helpful for us, I want to do the same!
     
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  3. pjew

    pjew Mouseketeer

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    looking forward to your reviews :)
     
  4. vettegirl

    vettegirl Dole Whip Queen

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    Sounds like it was fantastic, can't wait to hear all about it!
     
  5. starousse

    starousse DIS Veteran

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    Looking forward to your reviews.
     
  6. jacksmom

    jacksmom DIS Veteran

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    Can't wait!pixiedust:
     
  7. TigerKat

    TigerKat DIS Veteran

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    Signing on!
     
  8. wiigirl

    wiigirl DIS Veteran

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  9. spincandy

    spincandy Mouseketeer

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    Okay, so you should really get to know the people that will be performing the grueling task of eating at all these delicious places (tough job, I know). I won’t be offended if you completely skip this bit and jump straight to the food porn, promise.

    Firstly, there’s moi. My name is Rachael, but everyone calls me Rach and I’m 26. I’m a med student and a teeny bit of a Disney freak. I really enjoy eating out and trying new foods so I’m kind of in my element at Disney. My favourite foods tend to be Eastern, and I love fresh fish (we don’t get the freshest over here, so you’ll find I order it a lot on vacation). I will also admit to very much enjoying a drink on holiday- so cocktail-lovers throw your questions this way! I don’t eat lamb or pork (for no fancy reason other than I don’t really like them) and I don’t like cinnamon or mint flavours. I have mild IBS (apparently) so greasy food is a no-no (a fabulous excuse to make the boy take me to fancy places over the usual burger joint!).

    Next there’s Matt. He’s 28 and he’s my fiancé. We’ve been together eight years, got engaged at Disney two years ago and will be married there next year. He is much more of a red meat man, and not as adventurous as me, but he’s learning! He lurves a good steak and pint, but he will be driving this trip most of the time so he will spend a lot of his time sampling Disney’s soft drink selection. He’s not a big seafood or pasta fan and, he’ll deny it, but he isn’t a big fan of eating his greens!

    Here's me and the boy:

    [​IMG]

    Matt and I are meeting up with my parents and siblings this trip- they have a spare room at their villa so we’ll be taking it up! That means they join us for some meals and they didn’t even mind having piccys snapped (especially my little sister, who became my little reminder service for taking them!). So here’s a bit about them:

    My Dad is Clive and he’s quite easy going when it comes to food; he enjoys trying new things. He’s on a bit of a health trip at the moment so he picks veggies and fish where he can.

    My Mum is Diane and she’s not the most adventurous when it comes to food. She likes what she likes and she's cool with that. She’s not a big fan of fish but she loves pasta dishes. She will be my partner in cocktail exploration this trip.

    He's mum and dad looking very cheery:

    [​IMG]

    Chris is my 21 year old brother. He’s a burger and fries man. This is his first trip as a legal drinker so he’s reveling in ordering pints. Here's Chris:

    [​IMG]

    Alishya is my four year old sister and she will be the lead on kid’s menu sampling. She is adventurous for a four year old but she uses up a bunch of energy in the parks so most of the time we have to just order what we know she will like and will fill her up. Here's Ali (looking a little bit crazy!):

    [​IMG]

    So next up are the actual reviews, I promise. I tend to wobble on a little so please feel free to remind me to focus! I’ll do my best to describe everything properly, including the feel of the restaurants themselves... mainly so I can pretend I’m back there myself and get over my post-vacation blues!
     
  10. wilma-bride

    wilma-bride <<This space intentionally blank>> Moderator

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    Sounds great, I'm in :thumbsup2
     
  11. poohbear2

    poohbear2 <font color=CC66CC>Disney Think Formula is:<br>HE=

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    Looking forward to your review.:thumbsup2
     
  12. daisymomof4

    daisymomof4 Mouseketeer

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    I'm going to tag along too! Looking forward to it :dance3:
     
  13. spincandy

    spincandy Mouseketeer

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    So, like I said, I don’t have any pictures from day one due to a severe shortage of camera battery. However, I know lots of you are from the UK, and lots of you fly out from Manchester, so I thought I’d start with a very brief review of our experience with airport and airplane food.

    I am a crazy person when it comes to getting to the airport on time; so much so that we arrived at check in an hour and a half before the desk opened. We were the first people checked on to the plane. So we had plenty of time for a leisurely breakfast.

    There’s a couple of options at Manchester for breakfast, and we’ve tried a few of them. We’re a bit conflicted when it comes to breakfast, Matt and I- he’s all about the big breakfast with several courses, me, I skip it most days. So we need a place that suits us both, and Frankie and Bennie’s does that.

    F&B’s has a large breakfast menu with traditional options, continental options, healthy options, and even a breakfast burger. I’m not sure if this restaurant has a particularly wide ranging menu because it’s in an airport or they’re all the same.

    I chose bacon, scrambled eggs and tomatoes with a side of herb potatoes. It was really good and filled me up just about right. The bacon wasn’t too fatty, which I like, and the serving of eggs was super generous. The tomatoes were flavoured nicely, and I just could’ve done with something a bit saucy, like beans, to mop everything up with. The side of herb potatoes was absolutely huge- it would’ve easily served four! I didn’t even make a dent in it!

    Matt had a ‘big breakfast’, which included sausage, bacon, two fried eggs, grilled tomato, fried mushrooms, black pudding and baked beans. He also stole a few of my herb potatoes. He very much enjoyed his breakfast, as always! He didn’t really like his mushrooms though, he thought they were mushy and overcooked.

    Overall, we think F&B’s is a good choice for breakfast at the airport. They have plenty of options and service was very quick, despite it being busy. It satisfied both of us and kept us going until the flight.

    We flew with Virgin Atlantic, as I know many of you Brits do. We upgraded to Premium Economy (something way worth the money and I advise you definitely do if it’s an option) and the food was good. I really don’t do reheated meals and airplane food very well, but I actually stomached the food. On the way out we had roast chicken, mash and veggies and it was edible. We also had a salad to start with and a cheesecake dessert. It kept us going and I didn’t need to break into any snacks! The drink selection was great and I’m so glad they’ve stopped serving only the Virgin rola cola! There’s a little sandwich snack before you land but the filling was cheese and pickle, which I’m not a fan of, so I passed.

    And then we landed… and the food (and the pictures) got a whole lot better…
     
  14. wilma-bride

    wilma-bride <<This space intentionally blank>> Moderator

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    OMG, Rachael (or Rach ;)), I just had a nasty flashback - Virgin Cola :sick:

    I, too, am very glad they stopped serving that stuff, it's dire!

    Looking forward to the rest of your reviews - and, hopefully, some photos :thumbsup2
     
  15. partyof2

    partyof2 Colette

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    Cheese and pickle is a bit of a bizarre choice for afternoon tea. I'd say it's definitely a 'love it or hate it' kind of filling.

    You must tell your mum and dad that they look absolutely amazing and I can't believe they have children in their twenties!
     
  16. MrsB1228

    MrsB1228 DIS Veteran

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    Signing on and looking forward to more reviews! I think Frankie & Bennie's is a popular choice for people flying out of Manchester, it seems to me I've read other reviews of the choices there. :thumbsup2

    I love cheese and pickle sandwiches, but I'm a bit strange, LOL! The pickles have to be the bread and butter variety (sweet) though, never dill pickles. :crazy2:

    Eagerly awaiting the next update! popcorn::
     
  17. spincandy

    spincandy Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for reading along :) And, yeah, that Virgin Cola was ridiculous. I used to pick wine even when I wanted a soft drink, just so I didn't have to touch that poison!

    Aww they say thank you very much! I'm hoping that it's genetic thing and I'll age youthfully too! Yeah, cheese and pickle was not popular with very many people- I was surprised there wasn't more of a 'generic' choice.

    Thanks for joining in!

    Lol! My dad has the pickle bug too- they flew out separately to us and he was gutted he didn't get the pickle option! He was disappointed I didn't smuggle my sandwich into the country for him to nibble on- I assured him it wouldn't have been worth it!

    Thanks for reading so far everybody! I'm hoping to have the next update on tonight- with pictures and everything this time! :happytv:
     
  18. bluejasmine

    bluejasmine DIS Veteran

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    More! More!
     
  19. spincandy

    spincandy Mouseketeer

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    We spent our first day at Downtown Disney; the weather was a bit rubbish in the morning and our bodies were still a bit confused by the time, so we picked a chilled destination. Mum, Dad and Ali headed off to Kennedy Space Centre so Chris joined us for the day.

    We were hungry early and had no plans for lunch so we debated our choices. Chris is very much a fan of places like Planet Hollywood, Rainforest Café and T-Rex, but I wasn’t feeling such a massive meal, I was more in the mood for a Fulton’s- somewhere Chris wasn't feeling. Matt, as usual, didn’t care as long as he got food! We eventually decided on Paradiso 37 in the old Pleasure Island part of Downtown Disney.

    Matt and I have had a couple of drinks here before, but never food. It’s a good looking place with both indoor and outdoor seating. There’s a lively atmosphere with Latin music and cheery servers, but it never becomes too intrusive. I really love the bar here; it’s stacked to the ceiling with a cool display of tequila bottles. (I especially like the voodoo tequila, which has a little glass voodoo doll shaped into the bottom!).

    For those of you who (like me) are tequila fans, they have a massive range here. They may not have the rare breeds the connoisseurs search for but, for the girl who normally just slams whatever the house brand is, there’s plenty. We visited at lunchtime, so I wasn’t really ready to line them up, but we returned later in the trip for a few merry ones, and I can certainly recommend it!

    We took a high table, sort of in the bar area. We had to move the table and chairs about a bit because, at one point, Matt was really squished against the window. This was fine at lunchtime when it was quiet, but probably wouldn’t have been possible on a busy evening, so we would’ve had to ask to move.

    So, drinks order first. Clearly on my first day of vacation I’m going to celebrate with a cocktail, so I ordered a Mai Tai. Mai Tai’s are up there on my list of favourite cocktails, but, looking back, I can’t believe I didn’t order something with tequila in. For those of you unfamiliar with the drink, a Mai Tai is a rum-based drink, which is very sweet and tasty. I can drink most like juice, which isn’t always a good thing! The Mai Tai from Paradiso was very good, very much orange-based, which was nice.

    Chris has never tried tequila, so we suggested he get a strawberry margarita. I had a quick sip of this and it was really good, really tasty. There was definitely a hit of tequila, but it was pleasant rather than overwhelming. Chris drank this really quickly, and said he enjoyed it very much (but would you be anything but happy after a whole margarita on an empty stomach!).

    Poor Matt was our chauffeur for the day so all he got was a Coke.

    Here's the drinks that count:

    [​IMG]

    We skipped appetizers and just ordered entrees. I got the chicken burrito with a flour tortilla, sautéed peppers, squash, red onions, cheese and chipotle sauce; it came with cilantro rice and black beans. It was very tasty overall- there was perhaps a bit too much burrito for the filling, but what I got was tasty. The rice was nice, the cilantro taste was just enough that it made a nice change, but didn’t overpower the rice. The black beans were nice and drizzled with a bit of sour cream, which was nice when the taste got a bit same-y. Here it is:

    [​IMG]

    Matt got the Chicken enchilada with cilantro rice and black beans. He surprised me getting this- it’s pretty adventurous for him, especially when they had good burgers on the menu. He liked the enchilada and thought the filling was adequate. He ate the rice and said it was good, but not his favourite. He didn’t like the black beans at all, but I think that’s more on Matt than Paradiso- he’s not a beans kind of guy.

    [​IMG]

    Chris had a burger, which was no surprise at all. He chose the Paradiso 37 Cheeseburger, which is an 8oz burger grilled and topped with cheddar cheese, onions, lettuce, tomato, borracho beans and Serrano slaw in a toasted bun. It also came with P-37 fries. The fries were good, but no different to other places. He loved the burger and gave it a 9/10. He really liked the bread it was on and said it was cooked perfectly. Here's a shot I managed to grab before he demolished it (as you can see, the margarita stood no chance!):

    [​IMG]

    Overall, we really enjoyed Paradiso 37. It was fairly reasonably priced and good quality. It’s a good balance between those who want to pick something a bit different and those who just want a good burger. The food was tasty and cooked nicely, and we didn’t really have any complaints. Recommended!
     
  20. minushka72

    minushka72 Mouseketeer

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    Signing on to read and drool over your reviews/pictures! Your mom looks like she could be your sister. So very young looking!
     
  21. jesswindsor

    jesswindsor DIS Veteran

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    I'm in, can't wait for all your reviews!!!
     

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