2016 was an epic year in terms of new dining opportunities throughout Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland. Let’s take a look back at the new restaurants and dining experiences that debuted within the last year:
- Blaze Fast-Fire’d Piza
- D-Luxe Burger
- Chef Art Smith’s Homecoming
- Frontera Cocina
- Morimota Asia Street Food
- STK Steakhouse
- Amorette’s Patisserie
- Grab-and-go food trucks
In 2017 we can look forward to Paddlefish, Planet Hollywood Observatory, Wine Bar George, the Polite Pig and more to open soon in Disney Springs.
- The Diamond Horseshoe – Table service dining was introduced as an all-you-care-to-enjoy saloon feast. Guests can now enjoy a generous salad and cornbread along with platters of pork, sausage, turkey and braised beef at a reserved table.
- Tiffins and Nomad Lounge – The restaurant and lounge are inspired by the world travels of the park’s creators and can be found in the Discovery Island area. Walt Disney Imagineering describes the interior as “a gallery you can dine in with artwork that is a direct result of travels to Africa, Asia and South America.” The menu features global tastes and the beverage program focuses on sustainable, organic wines and bio-dynamic viticulture, as well as handcrafted cocktails and beers.
- PizzeRizzo – The restaurant formerly known as Pizza Planet was re-imagined as a pizzeria owned by Rizzo in Muppets Courtyard. Hints of the wisecracking Muppet Rizzo and his extended family and friends who have visited PizzeRizzo over the years are hidden throughout the two-story quick-service location.
- Epcot International Food & Wine Festival – The festival was expanded by almost two additional weeks so guests can enjoy more delicious food, culinary events, celebrity chefs, seminars, music concerts and more. The 2017 festival will be a record 75 days and take place from August 31 through November 13.
- Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival – The Outdoor Kitchens were expanded to 13, which made food an even bigger aspect of the annual festival. Each of the kiosks featured an edible garden to showcase some of the foods being served. The 2017 festival will run from March 1 – May 29.
- Epcot International Festival of the Arts – This brand new event at Epcot was recently announced and will run from January 13 – February 20, 2017. It will be held over six weekends and include a trifecta of global masterpieces that combine visual, culinary and performing arts. Guests can enjoy numerous interactive workshops, including the creative process behind plating dishes, at many of the Food Studios.
- Flying Fish – The re-imagined Flying Fish Cafe reopened at Disney’s Boardwalk with an updated sophisticated interior. An all-new kitchen and dining room is featured while the menu focuses on the freshest seafood.
- AbracadaBar – the “curious cocktail lounge” recently opened next door to Flying Fish. According to the storytelling of Walt Disney Imagineering, the lounge was once a secret stomping ground for famous touring magicians, local boardwalk illusionists and the loveliest magician’s assistants of the day.
- Ample Hills Creamery – The ice cream shop is remonescent of a 1930’s Atlantic coastal atmosphere on the boardwalk. It features whimsical, turn of the century decor and delicious ice cream.
- Victoria & Albert’s – This fine dining restaurant was voted the number 2 restaurant in the United States by TripAdvisor’s 2016 Travelers’ Choice Awards. It also took home the AAA Five Diamond award for the 16th consecutive year.
Highway in the Sky Dine-Around
- A progressive dining experience debuted at Walt Disney World Resort that includes stops along the monorail for cocktails, appetizers, dinner and dessert. The dine-around gives guests priority boarding on the monorail for an unparalleled dining journey around the circuit among Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort and Disney’s Contemporary Resort.
- Steakhouse 55 – Afternoon Tea was recently debuted in the Disneyland Hotel at Disneyland Resort. This lovely oasis of elegance features white linens and historic black-and-white photos of Hollywood greats, making it a perfect spot for the rich tradition of afternoon tea.
California Adventure Park
- Festival of Holidays – 14 themed festival marketplaces debuted this year and included dishes inspired by five holidays: Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Diwali, Navidad and Three Kings’ Day.
- Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival – New marketplaces along with culinary demonstrations, appearances by celebrity chefs and seminars were added this year.
I look forward to the new dining experiences that will debut in 2017!
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