Saturday, October 20, 2012

Dining Dining Dining

Dinner at Garden Grill

I am currently planning meals for our February 2013 trip. We got the free dining special, which makes it all the more sweet. I've made a few changes to our park schedule. In the past, I always put us in the parks that had the Extra Magic Hours. But I'm finding myself getting more and more irritable in crowds (ones of the reasons we go in February), so I've decided to put us in parks without the EMH to see if I could get even smaller crowds. But with this new schedule comes the dilemma of where and what to eat!

I've already got two places reserved. The Garden Grill because hello, it's The Garden Grill. It's our favorite. It's where I first met Mickey Mouse! And Be Our Guest because it's new. It's in the new Fantasyland and HELLO IT'S BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. I mean, come on. I feel lucky to have gotten a reservation!

So that leaves three table service meals. Nothing in Hollywood Studios appeals to me outside of 50s Prime Time Cafe, and I haven't really wanted that in a while. I've heard not so great things about the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater, so I've never gone there. Hollywood and Vine is just meh, and The Hollywood Brown Derby is too hoity-toity, in my opinion. OK I just don't want to spend the two dining credits. ;) So what we typically do is grab lunch at the ABC Commissary (I love everything about that place), and I book a resort restaurant for dinner. However, I can't think of a resort restaurant that I'm very excited about this time, so that means I'll have to research. I already know what I don't want, and that's Chef Mickey's. Blech. Last few times there was so blah and I felt like I was inconveniencing them. It just seems like a terrible restaurant to work in and the employees and even the characters seem miserable. I also don't want Whispering Canyon Cafe, because it's just too loud. And I didn't really like the meal I'd ordered when we went in 2011.

I am considering Kona Cafe again--I did really like my meal and their dessert selection is amazing. I'm also considering Boma. I've eaten there before and I enjoyed it enough. I feel like my culinary horizons will be expanded enough with Be Our Guest, though, so I'll have to think about that.

The problem is that I'm kind of a picky eater. I want to try new things, but it has to be within certain parameters. I don't want onions, mushrooms, weird seasonings, or strange sauces. This limits my menu selections a lot, but it's rarely crippling. I can usually find something, or I can usually ask for them to leave the offending menu items off my dish. But I like to try at least one new place every trip, but we have some favorites as well.

If you have any suggestions for table service meals (especially in resorts), please comment. I would love to hear them.

Counter service meals are way easy for us. In Magic Kingdom, we love Columbia Harbour House. I also truly enjoy Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe. It really depends on what I'm in the mood for (or if one is closed!) for us to decide one over the other. CHH almost always wins, except, as I said, if they're closed.

In Epcot, we usually end up at the America pavilion for some boring old chicken breast nuggets and fries. I don't know... something about being in the midst of all those different foods we can try from other countries makes us run right for the boring stuff. I'm going to try to make an effort to eat lunch at one of the other countries this time. Try something new. As I said, at Hollywood Studios, ABC Commissary wins. And at Animal Kingdom, I have a hard time deciding between Pizzafari and Flame Tree BBQ. Both are super yummy. I guess it'll depend on what we're in the mood for. We typically eat lunch VERY EARLY at Animal Kingdom--I'm talking 10:30am.

Now for the fun part. SNACKS!

This part is easy. Look at these cookies. LOOK AT THEM. Oh my God.

Mickey Cookies

If those babies aren't tempting me, there are Dole Whips of various varieties, those chocolate and candy covered marshmallows, churros, crepes, assorted baked goods from the World Showcase in Epcot, and more. Funnel cakes in Hollywood Studios--why am I just now learning about this? Adam and I always have snack credits left over, and we end up using them to pick up bags of gummies and things to bring home.

Dining at Disney is definitely Adam's favorite part, and it's one of my favorite parts as well. I'm excited for what's in store for February 2013!

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