One Night Stay on Property Before Cruise...Where Should We Eat Dinner?

Discussion in 'Disney Restaurants' started by Little E, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. Little E

    Little E Mouseketeer

    Apr 3, 2016
    Hi Dis friends! We are WDW vets who are taking our first Disney cruise at the end of March this year. We are flying in to MCO in the afternoon and staying at PO Riverside for just one night and then transferring to our cruise ship at Port Canaveral the next day.

    We will not have any park tickets, and we are looking for a yummy place to eat dinner the one night we are on property, to give us a little taste of WDW. (Side note: we are a bit skeptical about a Disney cruise, and I fear we'll all be sad that we'll suffer from the "so close to the parks but so far" we want as much Disney as we can get.)

    We want to go to a restaurant we have not visited before. The peeps I am traveling with include my DH and DS 17 and DS 14. Both boys are not wildly adventurous eaters, but they both like steak, chicken, pizza, and pasta. My hubby and I like all of those things plus we like seafood too. We want a TS meal, and we want to experience a new-to-us restaurant. I know this limits us to Disney Springs and the on property resorts.

    Here is the list of places we have visited not at the parks, and thus want to avoid:

    The Wave (we loved!)
    Citricos (we loved!)
    Chef Mickeys (one and done for us)
    Beaches and Cream (we loved!)
    The Boathouse (it was ok but not awesome)
    Whispering Canyon (we loved!)
    Wolfgang Puck (one and done for us)

    We do NOT want character dining, but we are ok with just about anything else. So, my amazing Dis friends, what are your recommendations? We need to make our ressie pretty darned quick!

    In advance, thank you so much!!!
  2. serenitynow

    serenitynow DIS Veteran

    Mar 10, 2005
    Shula’s Steakhouse
    OneinThree and soccermom54 like this.
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  4. wdw&sonny

    wdw&sonny DIS Veteran

    Sep 24, 2008
    To AKL for Sanaa, Jiko or Boma then hang out on the Savannah for a bit.
    To Polynesian via monorail, then 'Ohana and explore the resort and watch HEA from the beach.
    To the Boardwalk area for dinner at Yachtsman then watch Illuminations.
    To Disney Springs via POR boat for Morimotos and boys do The Void!
    To Fort Wilderness for Hoop Dee Do Review and explore resort.
    MonaMN likes this.
  5. NYCgrrl

    NYCgrrl DIS Veteran

    Jul 13, 2017
    OK, a cruise after a day at WDW. No parks. Older kids like steak, chicken, pizza, and pasta.
    DS, Boardwalk (maybe) or resorts preferred.

    Depending on the day you arrive Enzo's Hideway's Sunday Supper @ DS. Lively mixed crowd, Italian comfort food, relatively reasonable cost for a family of 4. Dissapointed our13 y/o DGD that we'll bypass this venue for CA Grill's brunch this trip. Which is not to say she doesn't enjoy the brunch just life is filled with hard choices;).
    Nice eats at the Enzo and Mario franchise, no matter what day of the week you arrive.

    Morimoto Asia or Street Food depending on your likes, mood (just how frazzled will you be after traveling to WDW?) and cuisine preferences.

    Homecomin' is well homey enough and might just be the ticket for your hungry menfolk. You could well enjoy it too:).

    Chicken Guy! had lines out the door when we were at DS this past December. No idea about seating and such or even food but you can always sit by the lake's ample amount of benchs near the Landing and enjoy the water traffic. Grab a dessert at any of the appealing sweet shops and take in the various buskers throughout the Springs.

    Keep in mind that many of the TS restaurants at DS are listed at and often have availability when MDE does not.


    Trattoria al Forno haven't eaten here but apparently well regarded by many.

    ESPN Club. Great for the sports-minded with the regular fare such as burgers and chicken wings.

    FF - friendly staff welcoming to kids of all ages; a must do for our 13 y/o DGD, phenomenal by Disney standards and even out of the bubble desserts and a wide variety of entrees.

    Boardwalk Bakery - hefty, well made sandwiches and salads as well as baked goods.

    Boardwalk area still has "street entertainers" most days but a little more intimate than DS.
  6. PlutoIsHerFav

    PlutoIsHerFav Mouseketeer

    Oct 20, 2014
    I am just popping in to say you will NOT be disappointed by the Disney Cruise! They are amazing and I know cruises aren't for everyone, but it'd be really hard not to love your experience! Have fun!

    We love Raglan Road in DS. If you want something more "Disney" though, I'd vote for one of the Boardwalk options or maybe the Spirit of Aloha dinner?
  7. Little E

    Little E Mouseketeer

    Apr 3, 2016
    @NYCgrrl Please pardon my ignorance...what's FF?

    Thanks, everyone, for your ideas so far! I have lots to chat with at dinner with my guys! Keep the ideas coming!!
  8. Yolanda Murphy

    Yolanda Murphy Earning My Ears

    Jan 11, 2019
    NYCgrrl likes this.
  9. CynBeth

    CynBeth DIS Veteran

    Apr 17, 2011
    Boma at AKL.
  10. need2travel

    need2travel Mouseketeer

    Aug 30, 2009
    How about Narcooses at the Grand Floridian-you can watch MK's fireworks from there as well.
    Jiko at Animal Kingdom Lodge is a good one too, seeing the animals on the savannah is a nice bonus.
    Or just take the boat to Disney Springs for Raglan Road-great entertainment.

    Enjoy your cruise!!
  11. Deb & Bill

    Deb & Bill DVC-Trivia Contest, Apr-2006: Honorable Mention

    Mar 20, 2000
    Jiko might even be better. But I'd do the Boathouse for the baked crab stuffed lobster.
  12. gharter

    gharter DIS Veteran

    May 3, 2004
    I'd vote for Jiko and then relax on the Savannah.
    Flying Fish on the Boardwalk and then enjoy the activities on the Boardwalk.
    California Grill followed by fireworks is always a good option.

    I can't imiagine you will be disappointed on the Disney Cruise. There is So much to do, without ever leaving the ship.
    Our kids adored the kid areas, especially the teen club.
    need2travel likes this.
  13. Oneanne

    Oneanne DIS Veteran

    Apr 21, 2014
    Highly recommend Flying Fish at Boardwalk. Then you can also stroll around the Boardwalk, do some resort hoping and see a bit of Illuminations.

    Hope you have a wonderful time!
    need2travel likes this.
  14. Little E

    Little E Mouseketeer

    Apr 3, 2016
    This is why I love the Disboards so much...I so appreciate all the advice!

    We are staying at PO Riverside. Check my work here when using Disney transportation...if we decide to eat at a restaurant at one of the monorail resorts, we should take a bus from PO Riverside to MK, then transfer to the monorail, correct? No park ticket needed to ride the monorail?
  15. NYCgrrl

    NYCgrrl DIS Veteran

    Jul 13, 2017
    You are right. No park ticket needed for your route into various resort restaurants:).
  16. daisyx3

    daisyx3 DIS Veteran

    Dec 30, 2009
    We did a cruise when my youngest was 17 and he loved the teen club, I'm sure you all will love it.
    DH did the same thing last summer the night before a cruise, one night on property without parks. We ate at Kona that night because we knew there would be so much food on the cruise so we didnt want a big heavy meal.
  17. MonaMN

    MonaMN DIS Veteran

    Nov 21, 2014
    I like the idea of a monorail tour... maybe make a dinner reservation at Grand Floridian, but stop first at the Contempo Cafe for a snack, stop at the Poly for a Dole Whip, then make it over to GF for dinner - assuming you have enough time. From there, either get an Uber/Lyft/Minnie Van back to POR or just go back to MK for the bus.
  18. kastoney

    kastoney Disney foodie served with a side of sarcasm

    Jul 18, 2010
    If you want to do signature, California Grill and Jiko are unquestionably our favorites. Their food is consistently amazing and never disappoints. If you want to go that route I'd suggest an uber vice trying to swap busses at a park. Much more convenient and normally only 10-15.

    Since you can take the boat, I'd consider going to Disney Springs to feel like you are closer to the parks. Homecoming is questionably our favorite restaurant there. Amazing southern food done right. If you like Asian food, Morimoto Asia is also very good.
  19. Sugardimples

    Sugardimples DIS Veteran

    Sep 21, 2001
    I would go to Splitsville. Fun atmosphere, good food, a different kind of experience.
  20. LovesTimone

    LovesTimone Christmas Day 2017

    Apr 29, 2009
    Since your arrival is in the afternoon, and without hickups along the way...late planes and such...and if you are using DME sometimes it takes up more time than you thought it would to get to your resort, and check in and luggage....

    I would stick to the easiest routes:

    Depending on the weather - pool time and food court and to bed early so that you are well rested for the cruise...

    Boat Ride to Disney Springs and munch around, check out the food trucks, Earl of Sandwich, The polite Pig is getting great reviews, then after dinner, grab ice cream at Ghirardelli, watch some entertainment and call it a night....

    You are gonna love the cruise... If you can have a date with your DH for Brunch at Palo's ... so wonderful... we still talk about that meal 5 years later... amazing...
  21. Disneypapa

    Disneypapa OKW owner since 2002

    Feb 11, 2008
    At Disney Springs I recommend the House of Blues or Raglan Road
    Wilderness Area either Hoop De Do Review or Whispering Canyon at the Lodge

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