At the pub for a pint of Boddingtons.
There are so many other highlights, almost too many to mention.
“Be Our Guest” the Beauty and the Beast character dining was fantastic. It does feel a little like you are in a set or the actual cartoon, which for me was
a little odd, but the food was incredible. As you can expect with the French setting of the film that the food is very much French in style. It was seriously good. Again, this was a two credit meal. So, you need to plan this or be prepared
to pay a hefty supplement. For most of the meals on your dining plan it is a main and a dessert, but for the likes of this one it is the whole menu. Joss started with a lobster bisque which she loved and George and I both had Escargot. This
was the first time that we had both had snails and we really enjoyed them, lots of garlic butter and crispy breadcrumbs. For main Joss had a risotto of garden peas, asparagus and charred corn with seared scallops. Once again this was another dish
that there was no sharing. George and I both had Beef fillet, heritage carrots, pomme puree and Burgundy jus. The beef was sublime, it melted in the mouth. All the steaks that I had in America were very very good and always cooked exactly
the way you wanted it. There is no choice for dessert with this one, it is a trio of desserts and was a little style over substance, but at the same time was very good. If you have a little princess then it will be right up your street, you even
get to meet the Beast if you want.
At lunch we would have quick serve meals from our meal plan. There really were some standout places that we enjoyed. We had great Asian food from Anandapur local foods café in Animal Kingdom.
The heavens absolutely opened that day and it really felt authentic as we were sitting under the tin roof around the corner from The Expedition Everest Ride and the Kali River Rapids. The staging of everything at Disney is second to none.
great tacos at La Cantina de San Angel from the Mexican pavilion in Epcot. The Mexican soft drinks were really good as well. As Brits it was good, but maybe Americans and Mexicans would say different. The main thing is that we enjoyed it.
We had some super tasty rice bowls from Fairfax Fare at Disney Hollywood Studios, opposite Beauty and the Beast. These were packed full of flavour and perfect for a fast lunch.
Columbia Harbour House by the Liberty Square Riverboat in Magic
kingdom was a real find. It’s tucked around the corner, so isn’t busy at all. There was plenty seating inside and for us that day was perfect as it was really humid and kept raining. The lobster rolls with home chips (crisps)
were epic. Really packed full of lobster meat and the chips were delicious.
George took a real liking to the dragon fruit iced tea from the Starbucks outlets. As you can see from the picture, it was definitely a pick me up!!
at the Animal Kingdom Lodge is a brilliant family friendly buffet service restaurant. It is one of two that we dined in at this property, the other one was Jiko-The Eating Place. I’ll get to Jiko in a bit. But back to Boma. There
was a real hustle and bustle about the place. Fitting in perfectly with the African theme. The food stations are amazing, seeing whole New York striploins marinated and cooked on the open grill, salads, vegetables, seafood, desserts. The
choice yet again was fantastic. The nice thing about all of the themed buffet restaurants was that you get to try so many different types of food that you wouldn’t normally do. Our server that evening was excellent as well, it was as if she
could read our minds.
Back to Jiko. I had read loads of reviews about it before we went and was really looking forward to it. We arrived in plenty time and got changed as it is one of the more exclusive restaurants and really showcases South
African wines as well. Apparently the biggest cellar of South African wines outside of South Africa. I was dubious of this. Again this was a 2 credit restaurant from your meal plan and it was one of our first meals. It should
have been a great experience, but unfortunately was the worst that we had at our time at Disney and Universal.
It took them quite a long time to get us seated and then when they did the service was pretty slow. Our order got taken and Joss
and I went for the Special Celebration Circle of Life menu. One starter, choice of mains and the same dessert. Breads were served with whipped butters and they were superb. Then there was the wait for the starter and the wait and the wait.
They eventually came after we spoke to our server and I think they had missed our check, it had been almost an hour from when our order was taken. The starter was a strange mix of clams, bone marrow and sweet potato. It really didn’t marry
together very well and I enjoyed it ok, but Joss didn’t like it too much. Another long wait for the mains and they eventually came. Joss had a seafood curry which she enjoyed and I had rib of beef on the bone and like all the steaks I had,
it was really very good. Great flavour, tender and cooked how I’d asked. George had a fillet steak which he demolished as usual.
It was really getting late and with it only being our 2nd full day there we were still
recovering from the travel. It was just too late, we couldn’t wait any longer for our dessert, we just asked for the bill. Our server brought the desserts in takeaway boxes and we took them back to our cabin. A slightly strange concoction
of chocolate, mango, celery cress. There were elements of the whole meal that were superb, but there was an awful lot of style over substance and I feel that they were trying to create food that went with the Lion King circle of life story. It
was a real shame as it was a very expensive meal and if it hadn’t been on our meal plan I would not have been please at all. It worried me that this was how the food was going to for all of our stay. Thankfully this was not the case.
Was the meal so bad, were we over tired, was it a combination of the 2? Probably. Thankfully it was our only real experience of poor service and food that didn’t meet expectation. Everything else we experienced was incredible.
You can be cynical and say that of course the service is good as they are aiming for 16-20% tip. But they still have to produce it. We loved America for this and it gave us a taste to visit more of the country.
We started out really unsure
about Disney and the whole experience, but I can safely say that after a tired first few days of charging around and us finding our rhythm, we loved it. We might even return one day. Universal was definitely up there for us and Epcot.
The safari at Animal Kingdom was incredible as well. So much of the whole experience we loved. We just missed out on the opening of Galaxy’s Edge, so we have to go back for that don’t we??
On a final not, it will rain in the
summer time. And it will rain a lot. Not every day, but most. But you know what? You just get on with it, it’s only rain.
Would I recommend Disney and Universal? Yes, certainly would. I’ve come to the
conclusion that that there is something there for everyone.
Would I recommend Fort Wilderness and The Hard Rock Hotel? Hell yes on both counts. They are both brilliant and so different from each other. A perfect mix for the perfect
Just be warned, it is a tiring holiday, it certainly isn’t a rest, but wow! What an experience.