For many guests, one of the Disney parks’ most memorable aspects is the food’s quality and diversity, setting it apart from your average theme park experience. From Dole Whip to Churros, California Grill to the Blue Bayou, the dining experience accompanying your attraction hopping can be an integral part of your vacation. So, what happens when your dining expectations are met with an unfamiliar dissatisfaction?
Over the Christmas break, I had several family and friends visiting the Disneyland Resort area during what is our long summer school holidays. One element of the feedback they all consistently shared was a significant deterioration in the food quality throughout the Disney theme parks and shopping district. Being that the west coast is much closer for Australians like me than the east is – which requires a second flight – I have not heard the same feedback about Walt Disney World though this could simply be due to the much smaller sample size of returning friends from Orlando.
Between them all, almost every note-worthy dining experience was mentioned, including signature restaurants, dining packages, snack staples, and Downtown Disney classics. Yet, the only exception to the overall abysmal reporting was the dessert party which was described as “good enough.” Now, I know what you might be thinking, what sort of experience do these people have? That’s a good question, as it can substantially impact one’s ability to have realistic expectations. While a few were admittedly first-timers, the list included my close family, who have spent almost as much time in the parks as I have and are well acquainted with where the Disney culinary bar is usually set.
Due to my absence in the parks these holidays, I thought it might be an excellent opportunity to check in with my fellow Disneyland Dis-ers to see your thoughts. What has your dining experience been like recently? And Walt Disney World goers, I am also curious to hear from you. Any change in the quality of the fare you’ve enjoyed on-site?
Zoë Wood is a travel writer from Sydney, Australia. Since her first visit to Disneyland at the age of 6, she has spent her years frequently visiting Disney Parks and traveling around the world.
Join Zoë as she lets you in on all the tips, tricks, anecdotes, and embarrassments that arise from her family adventures.