What If: Disney Parks Edition HYPE! Thread!!!

tcool123

Well-Known Member
For today’s question, we’re gonna be listing our top 4 favorite dining locations. These can be within the parks, or resorts, or elsewhere on property (Disney Springs, Downtown Disney, etc).

Honorable Dishes:
I can't say the whole restaurant is my favorite however specific dishes are amongst my top recommendations:

- Chicken and Waffles at the Grand Floridian Café: Surprisingly delicious as they come with a spicy honey drizzle, but it is only available during Breakfast and Lunch. I also don't care for the theming of the Grand Floridian, and rather spend less time there.
- Loaded Mac n Cheese at Steakhouse 71 - Lounge: One of the best mac and cheeses I've had while in my time up here in Orlando, and the Orange Sherbet Sunrise Cocktail was a refreshing delight.
- Banana Split at Beaches and Cream: I have yet to actually eat their food, but their banana split was delicious! It was a hefty serving and the price was very reasonable, it was a perfect treat to end off my first Valentine's Day date with my boyfriend.
- Tostada de Pollo at Choza de Margarita: The best Mexican-style tostada I have had hands down, and recently I discovered if I go into the nearby Cantina de San Angel to top it all with some of their red sauce it is even better. Much like the last entry this is a kiosk, and I simply can't say this is my favorite restaurant.
- Buffalo Chicken Grilled Cheese at ABC Commissary Lane: Everyone, I would like to give a round of applause to Hollywood Studios for getting decent, and great tasting food in this case. The sandwich is cooked with some sort of garlic butter, while the buffalo sauce isn't too salty and plenty of chicken to be had. Also the fries are top notch Disney fries as they are steak fries, and a perfect vehicle for utilizing the provided dipping sauce.
- Buffalo Chicken Chips at Trilo-Bites: Hands down my go to meal/snack at Animal Kingdom. Dinoland is often ignored while talking about food, but I find that the quality of this dish is consistently high. I however can't say in good faith that a kiosk is my favorite restaurant because it isn't. This is also a great value because for under $10 you can get pretty full from this.
- Waffle Fries at The Polite Pig: In my opinion the best waffle fries, and it is honestly a vehicle for the incredible sauces that the Polite Pig maintains. I have to go back one day and commit to a meal, not just fries.
- Croquetas de Pollo de Pepe/Jaleo: Son las croquetas de pollo más ricas que yo comido, bueno después de las croquetas que cocina mi abuela, jajajaja!

Top Four:
4. Blue Bayou - Monte Cristo and a Mint Julep while watching the boats sail by, name a more relaxing time while escaping the crowds in Disneyland.

3. Crystal Palace - I know what you may be thinking, tcool this is a character meal, they're typically overpriced and lackluster. Well that's only have true! While this remains to be overpriced, the restaurant received an updated menu for the 50th with many items sticking around afterwards. This updated menu is very tasty and an improvement over what they had there in the past, I recommend giving it a shot. I will add that there is bias with it being a tradition in my family that our first time in a year visiting MK with everyone present to eat at Crystal Palace.

2. Chef Art Smith's Homecomin' - While for the most part many of the Disney Springs restaurant tend to disappoint, Homecomin' is the exception. Whenever I am able to snag a reservation I will gladly be there to enjoy those Thigh High Chicken Biscuits which is honestly one of my favorite meals I've had on property.

1. Boma: Flavors of Africa - I am not the biggest fan of buffets, but Boma is just different. The theming is top notch - which is to be expected with it being housed at Animal Kingdom Lodge, and you can meander throughout the property afterwards to help in meal digestion while admiring the safari. Breakfast, Lunch, or Dinner it doesn't matter every meal is a homerun here.

The Former "Greats":
A bonus section of where I used to hold these restaurants in high regards, but in recent visits a serious slip in quality has occurred.

Trattoria al Forno: Before we went to Beaches and Cream for dessert, my boyfriend and I celebrated Valentine's Day here with dinner. I was extremely disappointed with the quality and portions provided for the entire experience. I had eaten their twice less than a year prior, and both times left thinking how it was one of the best restaurants on property. This is no longer the case! Between the bread changing to be small knots, overcooked calamari, and tough chicken I have decided to not return. I can't remember what my boyfriend had, but he said it was mediocre as well.

Sebastian's Bistro: Before Covid it was all a la carte, but now it is a family style. My body cannot digest some meats, and I simply can't justify the price to eat just chicken. That said it is an excellent restaurant, and is one of the best on property - just no longer one of my favorite. The guava butter and onion jam for the bread in particular are standouts.
 

TheOriginalTiki

Well-Known Member
Banyan beef+Chieftain chicken+"safari" (bacon wrapped asparagus) skewers at Bengal Barbecue. I absolutely LIVE by this combo and it's one of the things I'm looking forward to the most on my upcoming trip, more than A LOT of the actual attractions haha. Bonus points for the ability to straight up eat your skewers in the Tiki Room. Most people think of the Tiki Room as a Dole Whip spot, I think of it as my Bengal dinner show ;)

Countdown Chicken Fusilli at Pizza Planet - The most maligned dining spot in the resort has one of my favorite lunch options. This chicken pasta has never disappointed. Ingredients always taste fresh, portions are always large, and the parmesan flakes they use as a topping are to die for. A true "diamond" in an otherwise rough location.

Grilled cheese and tomato soup at Jolly Holiday - Not gonna lie, there's been times where I've gotten this and it's been too filling/rich for me depending on the day. It's definitely NOT a dish you're going to want to indulge in when the weather is hot or you're not already super hungry. On a cool day/cold night after a long time going around the park hungry, this combo can be an absolute godsend. Just be prepared for something that's super filling.

Bread bowls at Royal Street/Little Red Wagon corn dogs/Coke Corner hot dogs - I couldn't decide so I'm just going to shout out all three. The park has some really simple, basic theme park options that get absolutely propped up by a combination of fresher ingredients, really generous portion sizes, and in Coke Corner's case an abundance of atmosphere. Legitimately don't know if it's possible for me to go through the day without getting one of these.

Honorable Yesterland mentions

Blue Ribbon Bakery cinamon rolls - I'm sure there's still decent cinnamon rolls to be found at Jolly Holiday, but MAN do I miss Blue Ribbon and its ginormous rolls that felt like they were as big as my whole face. It was my family's go to breakfast snack during my teenage years while waiting for rope drop.

McDonalds Fries Cart - Just a complete icon. I still miss it to this day. Big Thunder Trail doesn't feel the same without the sweet, sweet fries smell wafting over the area. Obviously not unique Disneyland food, but I think everyone can agree they were the FRESHEST McDonalds fries you could possibly get and just the sheer gimmick of eating them at Disneyland was a treat I'll never forget. Some major, MAJOR childhood nostalgia with this one.

Apple fritters at the Mint Julep Bar - THIS is the one I take personally. The beignets...are fine. In my opinion they are nowhere NEAR as good as the original fried dough treat. These fritters were basically HUGE donut holes with an apple filling, and also came with a delectable apple dipping sauce. It's honestly super frustrating to me just how much the beignets have over-shadowed this location. I can only hope Tiana's will bring a return to my dearly missed fritters.
 

spacemt354

Chili's
I got a Tegan Top 4 question of the day

Top 4 Favorite Disney Resorts?

For myself it's:

4. Yacht & Beach Club - cheating from the start, I do think these resorts count as one as they share many of the amenities (such as Stormalong Bay, that put this on top)

3. Wilderness Lodge - Something about being in the woods in Florida is odd but charming. And given the way Disney resorts at least state-side have been going, I don't think something with this much meticulous detail will ever be built again.

2. Polynesian Resort - this is more for nostalgia, but it's hard to beat the combo of Ohana with Trader Sam's for me plus the convient Dole Whip and tropical music, one of the most relaxing resorts on property

1. Grand Floridian Resort & Spa - while there have been some changes that I don't like such as the removal of the band, it's hard to top this resort at WDW. From the location on the monorail to the dining options and the theme, it's the whole package when it comes to resort stay.
 

Dark PerGron

Well-Known Member
Top 4 Favorite Disney Resorts?
4. Fort Wilderness Campground- Staying with my friends in a cabin was one of my highlight trips. We went for two weeks and for half a week we just explored the campground. It’s not for everyone, but I adored being deep within the natural world like that.

3. Wilderness Lodge- The rustic feel of this resort is amazing! This is the first hotel I remember ever staying at once my family bought DVC and before that it had just been the All Stars, so this one’s theme and wonder really ingrained itself and it’s a hallmark of what a Disney resort can be.

2. Polynesian Village Resort- I have a fascination with both Americana tiki culture as well as real Polynesian cultures, and this resort scratches both itches. I love the tropical aesthetic, the kitsch, and the respect in the architecture itself.

1. Like you needed to ask
 

TheOriginalTiki

Well-Known Member
I'm just going to rank all the ones I've actually stayed at.

4. Disneyland Hotel - Yes, I know. Unpopular opinion. For me beyond Trader Sam's (which is just as accessible via Paradise Pier) this just doesn't have a ton going for it. I'm willing to bet it's because I still remember all the cool stuff that put this resort on the map back in the day. Fantasy Waters, the marina, the waterfalls and koi ponds. All DEARLY missed. Even the current pool as retro-cool as it is doesn't hold a candle to my beloved Neverland Pool. As it stands I think this place is extremely over-priced and coasting on basic nostalgia.

3. Paradise Pier Hotel - The price point right now aint great, but when I was staying there with family during my teen years it was definitely a desirable budget option that offered pretty much all the perks of the resort's other two much more expensive options. I'll always have a soft spot for the lobby and glass elevator. It's absolutely no frills when it comes to dining, but I think the beach theme doesn't get enough credit for being super charming. It definitely needs an update, but a lot of the decor has looped back around to being nostalgic for me.

2. Disney's All Star Music Resort - A resort that absolutely blew my expectations out of the water. I LOVED staying at this place! The food court is limited but generally more options than Paradise Pier, and the price point hasn't skyrocketed the same way Disneyland's budget option is. There's actually a few really nice out of the way fountains and other small thematic features that elevate it. The bus system isn't great just because the resort is so far out, but it definitely comes in handy when going to Animal Kingdom so I think the proximity to that kind of evens out the location.

1. Disney's Port Orleans Riverside - Simply can't be beat. My one beef is the resort is so HUGE that the transportation is even worse than the All Stars even though it's much more centrally located. This is absolutely the most thematically immersive resort I've stayed at, with the Sasagula storyline extending all the way out to Disney Springs. Let's face it though, Yee Haw Bob MAKES this resort and once he inevitably retires it will lose a lot of value. It'd be like Fort Wilderness without Hoop De Doo. For the time being though, my memories of staying here simply cannot be matched.

I'll give a special shout out to Cabana Bay, which would probably rank at #1 above all the Disney resorts. Transportation is just SOOO much more manageable at Universal, on top of the embarrassment of riches Cabana Bay has like the waterslide and lazy river, the bowling alley, the multiple different bars each with their own unique drink menu. It's truly a place that you could easily spend a weekend "staycation" at without even going to the parks.
 

ThemeParkPriest

Well-Known Member
Yeah, I've only stayed at a total of 3 official Disney-owned resorts, so:
4. Holiday Inn (probably?) near Disney Springs--has transportation and decent (albeit unthemed) pool; beats out B Resort (which I stayed at during COVID)
3. Disneyland Hotel--it was good for what it was at the time (early in my childhood)
2. Port Orleans Riverside--I stayed there when it was Dixie Landings, but it had quite a bit of charm to it
1. Caribbean Beach--my family stayed there when I was young. I have fond memories of the colors, quick service cafe, and bus transportation. The Skyliner would make it even better now.
 

spacemt354

Chili's
I've only ever stayed at the Grand Floridian and the Polynesian.

But if I'm allowed to list resorts I haven't actually stayed at...

1. Grand Floridian
2. Animal Kingdom Lodge
3. Contemporary Resort
4. Uh... maybe Wilderness Lodge?
Yeah of course! You don’t have to just rank where you’ve stayed
 

Disney Dad 3000

Well-Known Member
I got a Tegan Top 4 question of the day

Top 4 Favorite Disney Resorts?

For myself it's:

4. Yacht & Beach Club - cheating from the start, I do think these resorts count as one as they share many of the amenities (such as Stormalong Bay, that put this on top)

3. Wilderness Lodge - Something about being in the woods in Florida is odd but charming. And given the way Disney resorts at least state-side have been going, I don't think something with this much meticulous detail will ever be built again.

2. Polynesian Resort - this is more for nostalgia, but it's hard to beat the combo of Ohana with Trader Sam's for me plus the convient Dole Whip and tropical music, one of the most relaxing resorts on property

1. Grand Floridian Resort & Spa - while there have been some changes that I don't like such as the removal of the band, it's hard to top this resort at WDW. From the location on the monorail to the dining options and the theme, it's the whole package when it comes to resort stay.

4. Boardwalk - Y&B club pool is better for sure (though bring back the clown facade at BW please!), but I just dig the BW, early mornings on the veranda off of the main lobby, secluded spots in various spots of the resort, the wackadoodle lobby chairs, and I love walking out of the resort into one of my favorite hang out locales in "the World"
3. Wilderness Lodge - amazing layout/views (from lobby to pool and vice versa) and backstory down to even the stream that runs from the lodge to the pool, at Christmas this place is next level beautiful,
2. Animal Kingdom Lodge - AKL and WL are almost tied for me because they are so freaking similar, but the setting and animals at AKL puts it over the top, that and both the AKL and Kidani pool areas are fantastic
1. Polynesian - everything you said, plus monorail, the main pool, kids play area is top notch, the beach, great vantage point for fireworks (not on the beach), and just the total vibe of the place
 

D Hulk

Well-Known Member
Full disclosure, I’m not a resort kinda guy. I’ll take a drunken hostel, a tent, an overnight bus, guest house stays, sleeping under the stars, prison, anything over a resort hotel. Resorts are dull, they’re expensive, and they make me anxious on a strange, primitive level. Yeah, I didn’t grow up with WDW. So, be warned, it’s a weird list.

#4 - Disneyland Paris Hotel
I haven’t stayed here. Heck, I haven’t even been inside it. Even so, the flagship Parisian resort remains one of my favorite overall Disney hotel experiences. It utterly defines the park’s entry sequence, as you must pass through the gorgeously quaint hotel gardens and through a vaulted arcade under the lobby, all leading to a dramatic reveal of the Main Street railroad station. Which in turn leads to a reveal of the greatest Disney castle of them all. Plus the exteriors have that same immaculate design quality as the park - it’s the only Disneyland Paris hotel designed by Imagineers, not starchitects. It would be lovely to stay here, I’m sure.

#3 - That One AirB&B in Urayasu
The one with the dozens - nay, hundreds! - of stuffed Disney plushies lining every possible surface, all staring dead-eyed at me as I slept. It was terrifying! The results of a super spur-of-the-moment Japan trip done on a ridiculously tight budget…like, I was in the air 24 hours after I started planning. So lodging was limited. Wonderful anyway, actually closer to DisneySea by foot than all but the best WDW hotels to their parks. Not to mention local Japanese neighborhood conveniences like a grocery store, and a totally chill nearby izakaya pub. This sort of real country experience is much more interesting to me than hiding away on-property.

#2 - Hotel Miracosta
Yup, I’ve stayed here! (Not on the same trip.) Miracosta is to date the only Disney hotel located entirely within a park…and that park is none other than DisneySea. How could this not be the best Disney hotel in the world?! It duplicates and improves upon Paris’s entry sequence, with another arcade passageway under the lobby leading to a perfectly-choreographed Mt. Prometheus reveal. Within the park, MiraCosta’s ornately detailed facades add scale, immersion, and just a wonderful sense of place, setting the tone for the entire day. Every room looks into the park! I would doze off at night with the window cracked, listening to Mediterranean Harbor’s music loop. I watched maintenance crews sweeping up after midnight. I freaking watched Fantasmic in a bathrobe while sipping a Kirin! And it was cheaper than the WDW moderates, at least it was when I visited. Also, a 10-minute “from bedroom to Sindbad’s Storybook Voyage” commute.

#1 - My House
Conveniently located in the mountainous foothills of Los Angeles County, with 20-40 minute commutes to the following theme parks: Disneyland, DCA, Knott’s Berry Farm, Universal Studios Hollywood, and Magic Mountain. Traffic permitting, of course. From certain WDW resorts, it’d take you longer than that getting to Magic Kingdom! And of course, I am more comfortable at my own home than I am anyplace else. Fun personalized decor, bear-infested yard, okay neighbors. Sing all your praises of staying in the Disney bubble for a week+, I just love curling up back in my own cozy bed after an overstuffed park day. The food’s good here too!
 

tcool123

Well-Known Member
Like you needed to ask
Jambo House or Kidani Village - which savannah do you prefer most ;)

Top 4 Favorite Disney Resorts?
I have stayed/toured all but one Disney Resort at WDW - just conceptually I simply do not care Old Key West it's so just bleh. I could just drive three hours to see the real thing from home instead of the artificially made one here in O-Town.

Also I’m sorry to the Disneyland hotels they simply aren’t giving the same way the WDW Resorts (or the similarly constrained USF) do. Grand Californian is my favorite of the trio, but feels like a simply more cartoonish Wilderness Lodge.

Honorable Mention:
Treehouse Villas - Completely weight down by the fact I simply dislike Saratoga Springs thematically, outside of these villas.

Beach Club - After touring the property I was impressed by this resort. I lump it with all the generic fancy Americana hotels, but the little details win it a mention! Walking distance to the Boardwalk and of course the beautiful sand bottom pool with the faux lazy river. Being able to watch a Disney movie on the beach or being able to enjoy a stroll and sit on a swinging be ach as you watch the waves roll by. Beaches and Cream is the cutest lil corner of deliciousness, and the DVC Villa Recreation Room is such a vibe.

4. Toss up between Polynesian Village, Port Orleans - French Quarter or Coronado Springs: I need to revisit and spend more time at each (not Poly more so French Quarter and Coronado Springs)They each have their merits and appeals.

3. Wilderness Lodge: There’s just something different about roasting marshmallows here, and the grounds for the property are simply wonderful. The views across the lake are gorgeous, and the tiny details throughout the resort are amazing. My favorite is the geyse in the lobby feeding into a river, then waterfall, then the pool, and “back into” the lake. The abandoned train yard theme is intriguing as well, and allows cool set pieces.

2. Caribbean Beach: Hammock on the beach watching the skyliner goes by, the island hopping you literally do to get to Sebastian’s Bistro and other parts of the resort, and of course the convenience of the Skyliner. IMO one of the best - if not the best, themed pool on property. This does the Caribbean right
(looking at you Sapphire Falls 👀)

1. Animal Kingdom Lodge: I like animals, it has the best theming hands down on property, the best sit-down dining option, some of the best recreation on property, and the Safari Views.
 

Dark PerGron

Well-Known Member
Jambo House or Kidani Village - which savannah do you prefer most ;)
Definitely more of a Jambo House fan for the resort itself, but as long as I’m on the Sunset Savannah I’m cool with either hotel. Something about going to AKL and not having giraffes on my savannah is unacceptable to me haha
 

OSUPhantom

Well-Known Member
Back from across the pond!

Top four Disney resorts:

4. Wilderness Lodge - I’ve only stayed at Cooper Creek and while I know they are relevantly new it was beautiful. They did a great job with the whole property and it takes a lot for my to want to stay somewhere besides my top 2.
3. Polynesian - I’ve stayed here once and it was actually a non-parks trip so we spent a lot of time by the pool. It has such a classic Disney feel it’s hard not to love it.
2. Beach Club - This is where my family first stayed when we started going to Disney so it holds a special place in my heart. The pool is enough in itself but it’s location really keeps it as one of my tops.
1. Boardwalk - The boardwalk is just such a beautiful and well themed area that is wonderful to walk around. It’s a sucker for turn of the century nostalgic vibes and it’s perfect for that. The recent DVC room renovations also are very nice and the ability to walk to Epcot and DHS just can’t be beat.
 

JokersWild

Well-Known Member
I honestly haven't stayed at too many hotels. My family likes to stay at the same ones so, while I've visited the vast majority of them I haven't spent a night at most of them. Of the ones that I've stayed at:

Honorable Mention - Aulani, but only because I didn't actually stay here. I don't expect anyone else to mention this resort so I figured I'd give it a shout out. I visited Aulani for an afternoon when I was in Hawaii last summer. It's really great. The details throughout are top notch and the amenities are really a step up from a lot of Oahu resorts.

4. Pop Century - We used to stay here pretty exclusively when I was younger and it's a great hotel for what it is. I'm sure it's a lot better now that it has a skyliner station.

3. Tokyo Disney Celebration - While not as flashy as the other TDR resorts, this pair of hotels certainly gets the job done. While I prefer the Discovery Tower and its DisneySEA-inspired decor (including a ton of maquettes of various DisneySEA ride vehicles,) the Wish tower is great too with a bunch of MSEP-inspired topiaries in its courtyard. Couple this with a VERY consistent shuttle service to each park, top-notch customer service (the cast members will literally greet you at the entrance and bring you into the lobby,) and affordability it's a real winner. Also Mickey Mouse tells me what floor I'm on when I take the elevator, which is something I wish every elevator did.

2. Polynesian - Ok, I haven't stayed here either, but went to a party in one of the bungalows and that counts for something dammit. I've spent more than enough of my life at this resort that it'd be an insult to not put it on this list. Self-explanatory. This is probably the best resort on property.

1. Port Orleans French Quarter - Once I got my family out of staying at value resorts, French Quarter was what we've settled on for the past, like, decade. It's small size and general peacefulness it pretty unique for a Disney hotel. The theming is a great and it's pretty conveniently located.
 

spacemt354

Chili's
Got another one for today

Top 4 Fantasyland Rides
(can include any rides throughout the world located in a Fantasyland)

4. Peter Pan's Flight (WDW)
Has the old school charm and effects, just wish it was a bit longer

3. Pinocchio's Daring Journey (DL)
Really surprising how much I enjoyed this

2. Matterhorn (DL)
The classic coaster

1. Casey Jr Train (DL)
Just pure bliss
 

Dark PerGron

Well-Known Member
Top 4 Fantasyland Rides
Full disclosure I’ve only been to WDW and Fantasyland is my least favorite land in any park down there, so take these opinions with a grain of salt.

4. It’s a Small World- I like this one more for the history behind the original than I do the attraction itself. It’s not a must do for me in any capacity, but if I have friends that have never been or haven’t been in a while, it is on my list of important rides to do at least once in your life, so that’s gotta count for something.

3. Peter Pan’s Flight- Another one I appreciate the idea of more than I do the execution of. I do like the old classic dark rides in concept, and I’ll do it if I can manage an early or late ride but it’s also something I never really feel the need to do. One time we did have a CM at a MVMCP walk us through the exit to get on the ride without waiting which was neat.

2. Journey of the Voyage of the Under the Sea of the Little Mermaid: The Ride- I can never get this ride’s name right, but I do enjoy it enough. It’s a relaxing ride with a pretty short wait usually and I do love the little mermaid’s music so I can at least enjoy it for that.

1. Mickey’s Philharmagic- It’s cheating because it’s a show and not a ride, but for me, it’s the only must do in Fantasyland. I love music and 4D shows in general, so I enjoy this one, plus it’s a relaxing air conditioned break and the chairs are pretty comfy to sleep in. I know most people prefer the hall of presidents for a nap, but I find PhilharMagic less interesting and the perfect napping spot
 

Brer Panther

Well-Known Member
Favorite Fantasyland rides? Let me see...

4. Alice in Wonderland - Never been on it since I've never been to Disneyland, but it looks like a neat ride.
3. Peter Pan's Flight - I wish the lines weren't so dang long, but it's charming and one of the most unique rides in all of Disney World (at least ride system-wise).
2. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train - I'm not a huge roller coaster fan, but I love the dark ride sections and it's not too rough to scare me away.
1. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh - Incredibly underrated and gets way too much flack just because it replaced Mr. Toad. I love Winnie the Pooh and the attraction is a rare example of a "book report" dark ride done right.
 

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