Thursday, January 21, 2010

Kid Menu Review: Disney World

We went back to Disney World for a few days this winter, and went to eat at a few places. When we went last year, my son was not three years old yet, so we did not pay for his food; we either went to a buffet and he got his own plate or we went to a restaurant and shared with him. On rare occasion, we got him his own kid's meal, but we found that for the most part, the option for kids was Hamburger or Chicken Nuggets, and that was no way to eat for a whole week.

Options for children, in general, seem to have improved, or we just went to better places this time. Here's a short review of the kids offerings at the places where we ate.

Mama Melrose's Ristorante Italiano
Hollywood Studios -- backlot area near Muppets 3D

Seemingly less popular than many of the other sit-down places, we were able to get a table without a reservation for lunch during Christmas week. The adult menu was mostly flatbread pizzas and pastas, and the kids menu was mostly the same. A typical kid's meal included an appetizer, main course, and dessert. Micah had minestrone, pizza, and fruit, but he could have had pasta, grilled chicken, or grilled fish as well. Service was great, and this turned out to be one of our most enjoyable meals at Disney this trip.

El Pirata y El Perico Restaurant
Magic Kingdom -- across from Pirates of the Caribbean

This is a counter service restaurant that serves tacos, burritos, taco salads, etc. It's fairly simple for adults--order a taco or taco salad and you get a shell with meat in it. Then there's a toppings bar to make it your own. Kids menu is pretty straightforward--they can have a taco or a quesadilla, both of which work well with the theme of the restaurant. Micah chose the quesadilla, which was perfectly child-sized and came with a side of fruit. Perfect for a quick lunchtime meal at the Magic Kingdom. We were not disappointed.

Teppan Edo
Epcot -- at the Japan Pavilion

This is your American-Style Teppanyaki Restaurant in Epcot. Just so you know, we have gone here before with and without reservations. Without reservations, during Christmas week, it took an hour to get a table, which is absolutely not bad at all. Now, we were seated with another family, and we all talked about how, when we were kids (the parents) and came to Epcot, this restaurant offered more food included in the meal. They used to include soup and fried rice, and now it is just meat and veggies and noodles. That said, it was just enough food and we did not feel like we needed to be rolled out of the restaurant. The kids menu gave the option for nuggets and burgers, but also had the option for a shrimp or chicken teryaki dish. My son chose shrimp, because it is his favorite, and he seemed to get just a marginally smaller version from the adults. Of all the places we have been, we have consistently been happy here.

Flame Tree Barbeque
Animal Kingdom -- Discovery Island

Really? YUM. Eat here, even if the line looks long. It's a great counter service place serving barbeque ribs and chicken. For the kids, hotdog or barbeque chicken, which is perfectly respectable. My son chose hot dog (haha) which was fine with us. It came with carrots and grapes, so there was something healthful in there. As for my husband and I, we eat a lot of barbeque chicken and ribs and we were very very happy.

So that's it. One restaurant at each of four parks, and in general we were happy with all of the options for our son.

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