Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of dining at California Grill quite a number of times, and it’s remained one of my favorite signature dining locations in all of Walt Disney World for years. I love the open kitchen, the fresh flavors on their menu that used to change frequently, and most of all, the breathtaking view of Magic Kingdom and the surrounding area. I love heading to the outdoor observation decks to watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks, as the space offers a spectacular vantage point with no obstructions.
One of the things I really loved was the ability to order two dishes from the list of appetizers on the menu. I’m not a huge eater, and being able to order a flatbread and a salad or even calamari was just the perfect thing, price-wise and portion-wise. I’d probably spend around $45 or so, which wasn’t terrible at all. It was always one of those things where it didn’t make sense to spend $70 or $80 on a dish that I would only eat half of, and it was nice to have other options, so I wasn’t forced to do that. Another point, too, is that if there happened to be a dessert on the menu that I wanted to try, I’d get one appetizer and one dessert. It just made sense.
Over the past few years, it seems that the more guests do things such as what I described above, the faster those options are disappearing, which I find a bit sad. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind a good prix fixe menu on occasion, but I’d sure love for it to be an option as opposed to the only choice for dining at a specific location during a specified time frame. I love choices and lots of them when it comes to dining out during a Disney vacation. We are always looking for different ways to shave off a few dollars here and there, and like everything else, it’s getting more and more difficult.
I also understand that restaurants are in the business of making money, obviously, and when guests aren’t spending a certain amount of money, it may not be as lucrative. I’m certain that it’s far easier for the food procurement folks and the accountants to budget with a fixed menu.
I, for one, wouldn’t mind if California Grill would bring back their a la carte menu, even if there weren’t as many options on it as there used to be back in the day. What are your thoughts on the prix fixe menus at Walt Disney World? Do you love them or hate them?
Senior Editor for the DIS and DCL Fan | Disney Vacation Club Member | Thrilled to have been a '13/'14 Disney Parks Moms Panelist (now planDisney) | Lover of all things Disney; the Magic of Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and Disney Cruise Line | ºoº