Tag Archives: Animal Kingdom

G & M’s Top Disney Picks

Having written my last blog post, I asked G and M to name their favourite meal whilst we were at Disneyworld.  It came as no surprise to me that neither could narrow it down to just one meal, so instead they each listed their top 3 (which were exactly the same) and I thought I’d share them with you.

Afternoon tea at Citricio’s Lounge – Grand Floridian

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Our afternoon tea at the Grand Floridian was a surprise for my Mum, who is celebrating a special birthday in September and was one that the children and I had successfully kept from her for months.  We arrived at the hotel via monorail from the Magic Kingdom and it was only when I suggested we got off there that my Mum had any idea of what was going on.  The children both opted to have the “Mrs Potts Tea” and were treated to 3 tapioca rolls filled with turkey, ham and strawberry jam, followed by a small plate filled with a variety of allergy-friendly cookies and fresh fruit.  M chose to have apple juice to drink, whilst G had water and both were served from their own individual tea-pots, which they loved and took the chance to pour more to drink at every opportunity.  We were well looked after by Chris, the on-duty manager and David, our waiter and the children both rated this as their most favourite meal of all.

20140818_143459Mickey waffles – Tusker House (Animal Kingdom), The Mara (Jambo House) and Chef Mickeys (Contemporary Resort)

We didn’t order these for our first breakfast at Disney, but instead waited until the character breakfast we’d booked at Tusker House.  Chef Renee confirmed that they were gluten-, dairy-, egg- and soya-free and only contained a small amount of potato starch.  The kids were over-the-moon to be given the opportunity to eat such a treat and I don’t think I’ve ever seen M consume so much for his breakfast.  They ate these marvellous Mickey waffles with lashings of maple syrup and strips of crispy bacon.  Elsewhere they were also given fresh berries to enjoy alongside them.  I know G liked them, despite her assertions the other day that perhaps they weren’t in her top 3: after all, repeated requests for seconds and 1 breakfast of 5 Mickey waffles would seem to disapprove her statement!

Hoop-dee-doo Musical Revue – Wilderness Lodge

hoop dee doThis was my wildcard dinner reservation, but one I’m really glad I booked as both children had a brilliant time and loved every minute of the meal.  This is a dinner show, where the audience is entertained by the antics and songs of the 6 performers both on stage and with some audience participation, whilst enjoying an all-you-can eat dinner of fried chicken, BBQ ribs, green salad, baked beans, mashed potato, corn and cornbread.  M and G were treated to plates overflowing with food, including grilled chicken, ribs, corn, tapioca rolls and a baked potato for G.  Instead of the strawberry shortcake offered for dessert, they were given coconut ice-cream, strawberries and allergy-friendly chocolate cookies.  Not only was the food delicious, but they clapped and cheered along with the show and took the opportunity to play the washboard and dance around the dining room.

 

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The Triumph of Disneyworld

jamboWe were off to a great start, thanks to the fantastic Virgin team and the successful delivery of my on-line grocery order thanks to gardengrocer.com.  Not willing to leave anything to chance that first day, I had booked dinner at our hotel for the evening of arrival rather than facing the challenge of finding somewhere to feed M and G safely whilst struggling with jet-lag.  I had left it a little late to book and we ended up with a table in the delightful Jiko restaurant at  Jambo House, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge.  Not my first choice for our first evening as  I was afraid we wouldn’t enjoy the delicious menu as much as we could when we were slightly less travel-weary, but needs must and I looked forward to seeing what exactly was on offer for M.

No words are going to be able to adequately express just how amazing that first meal at    Disney was.  I am so used to restaurants struggling to come up with a complete meal for M when we eat out in the UK, that I fully expected to encounter similar problems at WDW.  I couldn’t have been more wrong.  Our server knew about M and G’s allergies and quickly     requested that Chef Tom came to the table to discuss what he could prepare for their       dinner.  SAM_1906He was happy to cook any meat or fish that they wanted and suggested what sides could be safely offered too.  Despite not having sweet potatoes in the restaurant, he went to the other hotel restaurant to find out if their sweet potato fries would be safe for M or not and, when the answer was sadly no, prepared a beautiful dish of plain rice, seared scallops, carrots and green beans for him instead.  Both children enjoyed their meals and fell asleep at the table as soon as they had finished their main courses, before dessert became an issue.

excellenceWhat’s even better is that this experience was not a one-off.  As promised, every booking at Disney was annotated with their food allergies and as soon as we were seated, the serving staff were made aware that we would need to speak to the chef.  During our 2 weeks, G and M enjoyed breakfasts, lunches and dinners unlike any they’ve eaten out in the UK.  We tried a variety of restaurants across the 4 Disney parks and the numerous resort hotels and had equal success everywhere.  Even the counter service restaurants had allergy information to hand and managers who knew exactly what would be safe for both children to eat.  There was no skimping on meals and they were able to enjoy puddings almost everywhere too.

My thanks go to the fantastic staff at WDW – Chefs Tom, Renee, Ricardo, David, Dave, Duane & Brian and serving staff Jamal, Sheldon, Chris and David as well as the others whose names I forgot to note down

the brilliant restaurants – Jiko (Jambo House), Tusker House (Animal Kingdom), Coral Reef (Epcot), Cosmic Rays (Magic Kingdom), Mexico (Epcot), Fulton Crabhouse (Downtown Disney), Mara (Jambo House), Raglan Road Irish Pub (Downtown Disney), Citricios (Grand Floridian), Hoop-dee-doo (Wilderness Lodge), Backlot Express (Hollywood Studios), Fairfax Fare (Hollywood Studios), Crystal Palace (Magic Kingdom), Chef Mickeys (Contemporary Hotel), Sunshine Seasons (Epcot) and the many others we never got round to trying

and to Disney itself for the huge efforts it has made to welcome those with food allergies to its resorts and to make their stay as special as it can possibly be.

It truly is a magical place and one we will definitely be planning to revisit in the future.