Unless you visit Walt Disney World exclusively during busier times of the year, you may have never had the chance to dine at Tortuga Tavern – the quick service restaurant directly across from Pirates of the Caribbean in Magic Kingdom. When you are lucky enough to find Tortuga Tavern open, you never know what you’ll find on the menu. At one point there was Tex Mex on the menu before reverting to standard theme park fare. This time around, they are testing the waters with some barbecue and failing miserably.
You’ll find a Chipotle Barbecue Short Rib sandwich, a Hot Dog topped with Chipotle Barbecue Short Rib, a plain Hot Dog, and Turkey Legs on the four-item menu. Since it seemed like they were pushing the Chipotle Barbecue Short Rib pretty hard, my wife and I figured we’d give the sandwich a shot.
The sandwich contains short ribs swimming in a bath of barbecue sauce and topped with citrus slaw along with a bag of Lay’s Potato Chips for $10.49. To sum it up, this sandwich is garbage. The bun it was served on felt like it was genetically engineered in a factory and almost had a plastic feel to it. My wife was able to peel the top of the bun off with ease and that enhanced the flavor a bit. The short ribs may or may not be good, but they are doused in what seems to be the always terrible Heinz Barbecue Sauce with some chipotle seasoning, so you can’t even taste the meat at all. If this is Disney’s own unique recipe for barbecue sauce then they need to go back to the drawing board. The flavor of the citrus slaw was indistinguishable but did help add a small bit of crunch. We ended up eating the entire bag of chips just to try and erase the flavor of the short ribs.
If you find yourself standing outside Tortuga Tavern in Adventureland, do yourself a favor and circle around to Frontierland and just eat at Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn and Cafe. You’ll thank me later. If you want to see video of my wife and I eating this monstrosity, check out our latest vlog where we also take a ride on Pirates of the Caribbean, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, and try the Dole Whip Pineapple Upside Down Cake!