A few weeks ago, I found myself strolling through Disney Springs with some friends and that all too familiar stomach grumble began to kick in. It was around lunchtime, and it was time for a game time decision: where to eat?
To give you some background, I love me some Morimoto Asia. Not only do I think it’s one of (or the) best restaurant on Disney property, it ranks very highly on my favorite restaurants in the real world too, not just WDW. So when my friends finally landed on Morimoto for lunch, I was psyched.
In our party of four were three Morimoto believers: we had all eaten there before, had our favorite menu items, and all have had exceptional experiences. We were with one Morimoto rookie. He’d never been, but he’d heard all about it.
We went to the host stand and they said it would be about twenty minutes for a table. We saw a few empty high tops in the bar area, and asked if we could sit there and enjoy lunch. She said the bar was open seating so we helped ourselves.
Since we were sitting in the lounge area, the bartender was our waiter. I’m not sure if this had an effect on the quality of our service, but it felt like he was not as familiar with the intricacies of the menu. I asked him if the dinnertime desserts (CHURROS!) would be available during lunch hour and he wasn’t sure. More notably, our Morimoto fledgling friend has an adverse reaction to MSG, and when he asked our waiter if the food had MSG in it, our waiter did not know what MSG was. He quickly grabbed his supervisor and we were surprised to find out that most of the food does have MSG in it. I equate MSG to enhancing the flavor of lower quality Asian cuisine- and was shocked that a high-end restaurant like Morimoto would use it. The supervisor said they could make rice with egg instead of MSG, but there were not a plethora of options otherwise.
We put our food orders in: I ordered the Kakuni Pork Belly Bao: two steamed buns of braised pork belly, lettuce and spicy mayo. I was really excited to order this because I am a huge fan of the steamed buns that the China pavilion showcases at the Food and Wine Festival in Epcot. I was incredibly disappointed to see that when the buns came out, more than half of the meat on each bun was completely fat. It prompted me to google: is pork belly really fatty? Answer: yes. However, this seemed more that just a little fat – half of the bun was inedible. Fortunately, I ordered an old standard, the crab Rangoon- which did not disappoint. I would be lying if I didn’t say the bao left a sour taste in my mouth- I ended up not even ordering the churros!