LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL – From re-imagined restaurants to a fun new way to get kids to try something new, Walt Disney World Resort chefs keep dining at the forefront of the vacation experience.
Here’s what’s new:
- Coming by summer’s end: a re-imagined California Grill atop Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Look for a beautiful new dining room and onstage kitchen, and a new menu – Chef Brian Piasecki has been tweaking the menu during renovation, but says he still will focus on creative, fresh, seasonal dishes and top-of-the-line sushi. Designed by the Puccini Group in San Francisco, the spacious restaurant will feature a wall of wines at the entrance and, of course, spectacular views from every table.
- Also on tap for summer, the new Starbucks locations on Main Street, U.S.A., at Magic Kingdom and in Future World at Epcot. Both locations will be designed to fit the theme of their surroundings. At Magic Kingdom Park, for example, cast members will wear a costume consistent with the early 20th century look and feel of Main Street, U.S.A. At Future World in Epcot, the new Starbucks location and cast member costumes will be designed to match the park’s futuristic theme. Both will offer the full complement of Starbucks® signature beverages, artisan breakfast sandwiches and a wide selection of baked goods, including muffins, scones and specialty treats.
- At Epcot, the France pavilion has two new venues, and a third opening this summer. Recently opened are Les Halles Boulangerie Patisserie, with delightful French sweets and savories, and Monsieur Paul restaurant, paying homage to Paul Bocuse, one of France’s most celebrated chefs with upscale French creations. Opening by mid-June in the former bakery space is L’Artisan des Glaces, Artisan Ice Cream & Sorbet shop with 16 different flavors, all made in-house with fresh ingredients (including liqueurs for grown-up treats). And look for a new waterfront eatery by the end of this year at the Morocco pavilion. Spice Road Table will feature various small plates and refreshments” inspired by the cuisine of the Mediterranean. With seating both indoors and out, it’s a welcome addition to the line-up along World Showcase Lagoon.
- One of the most anticipated Disney dining spots is wowing guests in the Magic Kingdom: Be Our Guest Restaurant, with French-inspired cuisine for quick-service lunch and table-service dinner daily (wine on the dinner menu). Step inside the Beast’s Castle to dine in one of three themed dining rooms that immerse diners in the animated classic film, Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast.”
- At Downtown Disney the new Splitsville mixes bowling with good eats from sushi to filet mignon sliders. Look for more restaurants in the line-up at the new Disney Springs, the multi-year expansion of Downtown Disney under construction and expected to be complete in 2016. Disney Springs will double the number of shops, world-class restaurants and other venues, with more than 150 establishments.
- For youngsters, the new Mickey Check for Kids’ Meals is now featured in both quick-service and table-service restaurants across Walt Disney World Resort, making it easier to identify healthier food options in all of the Disney theme parks and resorts. Also for kids, the new “TRYit” dishes throughout the parks and resorts encourage little ones to taste something new. Both are part of Disney’s Magic of Healthy Living initiative. For more information, http://disney.go.com/magic-of-healthy-living/index.html.
Online dining reservations make it easy to book most Walt Disney World table-service restaurants up to 180 days in advance at www.disneyworld.com. Reservations can be made for up to 10 guests (more than 10 requires a call to Disney Dining Reservations). For booking by phone, call 407/WDW-DINE.