Recently I had the opportunity to dine at Citricos at the Grand Floridian with Panda and Pete. I had no idea what to expect because I had never been to this restaurant before. My family wasn’t the type to dine at the Grand Floridian except for 1900 Park Fare breakfast when I was a kid. Walking into this, I had no idea what to expect other than that I would see hints of Mary Poppins throughout the restaurant.
Before we get into the details, I want to say that this was the best meal I have ever had at Walt Disney World as of right now. This could change since there are still so many places I’ve never eaten at here. As much as I loved this experience, I know I wouldn’t go back unless it were for a special occasion like an anniversary due to the price tag attached. Now that we got that out of the way let’s jump into the meal.
I ordered the Wild Mushrooms Arancini ($14), a plant-based option for my appetizer. I ordered this for all of us to share because we were all intrigued by it. This dish comes with Truffle Aïoli, Watercress, and Champagne Vinaigrette. I was blown away when I took my first bite. The mushroom flavor pulls through, and adding the truffle aioli to it takes it to another level. Because of that vinaigrette, the watercress was better than I thought.
I wasn’t the only one that had that reaction. Panda and Pete were also taken aback by this dish. They enjoyed the flavors that came through, and we all agreed it was the perfect way to start the meal.
Panda ordered the Sweet Corn Bisque ($15), and so did Pete. When Panda tasted his first spoonful, he audibly gasped due to how amazing it tasted. Pete absolutely loved the soup and noted that you really have to like the flavor of corn to enjoy this dish. The only thing they didn’t like about it was the pickled fennel.
Pete ordered the Berkshire Pork Belly ($18). This was the only food item that was middle of the road. The standout in this dish was the Boniato and Plantain Croquette that came with it. He said that the Bacon & Eggs at Steakhouse 71, formerly known as The Wave, was way better than this.
Of course, for my entree, I ordered the plant-based option, House Made Rigatoni ($36), but I was thinking about ordering the chicken dish; this just seemed more interesting to me. This came with Bolognese, Seasonal Vegetables, Roasted Hen of the Woods Mushrooms, and “Egg Yolk.” Yes, you read that right, vegan egg yolk. I asked our server what it was made of and found out they used yellow tomato to create it.
After my first bite, I knew this was the best dish I had ever had. The bolognese sauce was out of this world. Even Pete said it was the best red sauce on property. The seasonal vegetables were a mix of radishes, carrots, and zucchini. I could easily tell those were all fresh.
I know the word plant-based or vegan can scare many people, but I promise you, it’s phenomenal, and you should try it. This is also the most creative plant-based dish I have ever seen at Disney World. It felt like the culinary team took the time to develop this dish and make it so different from what we see at other restaurants.
Pete ordered the Guava Barbecued Short Ribs ($52) and was in awe of this dish’s flavors. He even suggested they put the guava barbecue on the pork belly because it would make the dish much better. This came with Aged Cheddar Creamy Grits, Roasted Poblano, Curtido Slaw, and Brussels Sprouts. Apparently, the grits were off the wall amazing, and so was the entire dish.
Panda ordered the Oak-grilled Filet Mignon ($56) and likes to order steak well done, no pink. When his dish arrived, you could tell it was cooked how he wanted. Panda said it tasted amazing, and Pete confirmed that it did. It’s great to see a steak still hold up when it’s cooked very well done. It takes a good chef and team to make that happen. The filet came with Potato Purée, Broccolini, Cipollini, Bordelaise. He mentioned that the potato puree was perfect and could stand on its own.
We ordered all the desserts that were on the menu to see which ones were the best. We concluded that the Apple Rose ($13) and the Blackberry Tartelette($12) were the best. The other sweet treats offered are the Orange Blossom Flan ($13) and Chocolate Torte ($14). None of us at the table are fans of flan due to the texture, and the chocolate torte, according to Pete, was too much dark chocolate for his liking.
This was such a wonderful meal filled with fantastic food. Citricos is hands down the best dining experience I have ever had. I highly recommend checking this restaurant out if you are coming to Disney World for a special occasion. Now go and watch our full dining review below!
Hi, I'm Erica, and I write about all things Disney. Before working for The DIS, I was a theme park performer at SeaWorld, but I also performed at Disney. I have such an immense love for theme parks to the point I studied them in college.