Just Home and a few Thoughts about DDP

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Plan' started by Luv4Mickey, Dec 21, 2010.

  1. Luv4Mickey

    Luv4Mickey Mouseketeer

    Mar 27, 2006
    Okay, so we hadn't been to Disney in almost 3 years and it's been 4 since we used the DDP. Wow, how things have changed! I knew the obvious things such as the tip is no longer on there (always gave more), appetizers are extra, etc. What I didn't know is that almost all the table services have the EXACT same food! Each place you have a choice of a chicken pasta, NY Strip steak, fish, and maybe one or two other things. BUT, all of it is the same with very little variety. Very disappointing. One of the reasons we liked the DDP so much was the variety, and being able to experience places we wouldn't normally go to.
    Make sure you check out menus online before you go so that you are prepared for this. I understand Disney's business plan by doing this and offering the "free" dining so much now. It makes it very cost effective for them, but disappointing for the rest of us.:mad:
  2. PrincessTiffany

    PrincessTiffany Is there anything better than Free Dining and Fast

    Jul 12, 2007
    We just got back and did 9 days of the DDP. We did 1900 Park Fare, Akershus, Liberty Tree Tavern, The Crystal Palace, Ohana, Coral Reef, Tusker House and Chef Mickey's. So we had buffets, family style and menu ordering and we didn't have any of the same meals offered.

    All of our food and service were really good, sorry you were so displeased.
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  4. catne

    catne DIS Veteran

    Mar 1, 2008
    agree with PP...we find plenty of variety. Sure, it's possible to see similar offerings on menus, especially if you limit yourself to the steak-house type restaurants. But there is plenty of variety by choosing other restaurants. For example...the menu at Raglan Road looks nothing like the menu at Biergarten...or Tangierine Cafe...or Kona Cafe...or Cape May Cafe or La Hacienda or Rose & Crown.

    Now if you just choose Kona Cafe, Grand Floridian Cafe, The Wave, Le Cellier, Coral Reef, Turf Club, Captain's Grill, and Olivia's...sure the menus are similar (as in a couple of beef choices, a chicken choice, a pasta choice, a fish choice or two.) However, even with the similar protein entrees the sauces and flavors are different at each place.

    Have been to 39 Disney table service places in the last 3 years...some similar dishes but lots more variety than is often reported on here.
  5. disneydreamkate

    disneydreamkate DIS Veteran

    Jan 27, 2008
    Our last trip we ate at 'Ohana, Boma, Crystal Palace, Tuskerhouse, Cape May, Chefs, Sunshine Seasons, Columbia House, POR Counter Service, and Pecos Bills. We had a large variety of foods. :confused3 We plan on sticking with some old favorites this upcoming trip, and trying new restaurants as well. I'm sure we will experience the same wonderful variety as last trip. I think much of it has to do with research and planning beforehand.
  6. clanmcculloch

    clanmcculloch DIS Veteran

    Feb 20, 2009
    I understand that you were disappointed in the variety (like everybody else I see this more as a preference and choice of restaurants thing but I respect your opinion), but what's really confusing me is your assertion that this is a DDP problem. People using every level of dining plan as well as those paying OOP all order off the same menus.

    Excellent advice to check out the menus ahead of time to be sure you're booking ADRs at resaurants that offer foods you'll enjoy!!
  7. NMW

    NMW DIS Veteran

    Aug 8, 2004
    I'd be intersted to know what restaurants you dined at that all had similar food. Is it possible that you picked restaurants with a similar theme? I think the food at say Tutto Italia, Raglan Road, Wolfgang Puck, Chefs de France, Le Celliar, San Angel Inn, Biergarten, Akershaus, 'Ohana and Jiko are all pretty different (just to name a few on the dining plan).

    What places did you dine at?
  8. larryz

    larryz Rogue Five DIS Lifetime Sponsor

    Apr 16, 2006
    We ate at Hollywood Brown Derby, Liberty Tree Tavern, Tokyo Dining, Biergarten, Tangierine Cafe, and Roaring Forks, and didn't have any problems with similar food choices (well, except for Roaring Forks, but even there, for multiple breakfasts, there were ways to break up the monotony of scrambled eggs, bacon, pancakes and shredded potatoes).

    All in all, I'd say we were really pleased at the taste, quantities and presentation of our meals on the free dining plan, but part of that has to do with the variety of restaurants we chose for our TS dinners. As mentioned by a PP, if you hit the primary TS restaurant in all the resorts, you're going to get similarity. That said, each deluxe resort has a "specialty" food service venue offering something completely different than the main restaurant. Example, Artists' Point vs Whispering Canyon Cafe at WL, Yachtsman's vs Cape May at YC/BC.

    I definitely agree with your bottom line: Time spent pre-trip will pay off in ensuring your culinary adventures rival your theme park experiences.
  9. beatlesblonde

    beatlesblonde When will the madness end?

    Jul 25, 2008
    I agree with some of the other posters, the lack of variety has nothing to do with the dining plan but more in the choice of TS restaurants. We were there last week on the DDP (had free QSD but upgraded to the DDP) and ate at Crystal Palace (breakfast), Biergarten, Nine Dragons, Yak & Yeti, Mama Melrose, Hollywood & Vine, and Sci-Fi. All great meals and all different styles of food.
  10. MyTwoPrincesses

    MyTwoPrincesses DIS Veteran

    Sep 1, 2009
    Where did you go? With our trip planning, we make sure to hit a range of restaurants with very different menus. In November 2009, we enjoyed very different meals at Biergarten (German Buffet), Rose and Crown (we enjoyed the Cottage Pie), Coral Reef (Sea Food), Sanaa (Indian Flavors), The Wave (Upscale Fresh Foods - wonderful sustainable fish), Akershus (breakfast), and Sci Fi (diner food). In March 2011, we plan to go to Biergarten, Chef Mickey's (D), Crystal Palace (B), Ohana, Sanaa, Kouzzina, Cinderella's Royal Table, and La Hacienda de San Angel. All of these restaurants have very different menus.

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