Disney’s Signature Dining Restaurants are the best of the best dining in Disney World. They are the most expensive restaurants, but each offers unique ambiance, making them great for celebrating a special event like a birthday, honeymoon, wedding, anniversary, or graduation.
But if you’re not a foodie, these fancy restaurants can be a little intimidating.
Maybe there are things on the menu that you aren’t familiar with or even things you can’t pronounce. Maybe you would like to try something, but you don’t want all the extras that come with it. Fortunately, all Disney World restaurants, even the counter-service ones, are super accommodating, and the Cast Members are usually willing to make adjustments to just about anything on the menu.
Today, we’re going to look at five of the most popular Signature Dining Restaurants and what picky eaters might enjoy at each one.
However, before we get into that, I have a suggestion. Before you make your Advanced Dining Reservations, check the menus, which are available on the Disney World’s website. Look for something that you would like to try and think about adjustments you’d like to request ahead of time so you don’t get flustered once you’re at the table. You should also check out the kid’s menu. This will give you a good idea of everything that the chef has in the kitchen. These meals are usually more basic than the regular menu, but the chef can almost always make this in an adult-sized portion.
Let’s take a look at five of Disney’s Signature Dining restaurants and how picky eaters might dine there without leaving their comfort zone.
5. Le Cellier Steakhouse
Le Cellier Steakhouse is located in Epcot‘s World Showcase in the Canada Pavilion. Since this is a steakhouse, you really need to try the filet mignon. However, this AAA Canadian Tenderloin comes with a mushroom risotto, asparagus-tomato relish, and truffle-butter sauce.
While the truffle-butter sauce adds a nice flavor that won’t offend most diners, the asparagus-tomato relish may not be appetizing to some picky eaters. The friendly wait staff is happy to serve your steak plain in this situation. All you have to do is ask.
If the risotto doesn’t sound good either, ask your server what other side options are available. At Le Cellier, diners can enjoy mashed potatoes, French fries, and other things.
4. California Grill
California Grill, sitting high atop Disney’s Contemporary Hotel, is a popular Signature Dining restaurant because of its proximity to the Magic Kingdom. Being right across the street positions guests perfectly to view the Happily Ever After Nighttime Spectacular if you time dinner just right. What’s more, since the Contemporary is on the monorail line, it’s easy to get to and from Magic Kingdom, Epcot, or the other hotels on the line including Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Disney’s Polynesian Resort.
When you arrive at the Contemporary, you’ll be escorted to a private elevator leading to this exclusive restaurant. Once you arrive, you can enjoy drinks in the lounge until your table is ready. If you don’t have dinner during Happily Ever After, you can return to watch the fireworks on the observation deck. Just show your receipt to the Cast Members, and they’ll let you in!
The Contemporary is known for it’s fancy Californian-style offerings, but there are some simpler options and the chef is willing to make adjustments as requested.
Try the flatbread pizza or the filet. If you’re picky, you might want to ask the chef to hold the salsa verde and/or the fire-roasted tomato sauce. If you really want something basic, look at the citrus-glazed chicken on the kid’s menu.
3. Hollywood Brown Derby
The Hollywood Brown Derby in Disney’s Hollywood Studios has a serious old Hollywood vibe. The ambiance is great and would be perfect for a special anniversary or birthday dinner, but being inspired by Hollywood, the food is top shelf.
If you’re a picky eater, consider the Bell & Evans Chicken with bacon mac & cheese. It comes with tomato compote, curly spinach, and mushrooms, but you can ask the chef to leave this off of your plate. There is also a penne pasta option on the kid’s menu, which could be a good option.
If you’re dining at the Brown Derby as part of the Fantasmic! Dinner Package, your dinner comes with a dessert trio with a variety of options including blueberry cobbler and crème brulee. Since this is a fixed dessert as part of your package, it can’t be substituted, but the options are pretty good so you shouldn’t have a problem with it. You’ll also get priority seating for Fantasmic!, which is a nice way to end a special evening.
2. Be Our Guest
Although Be Our Guest isn’t officially a Signature Dining Restaurant, at least not yet, it is one of the more expensive and fancy restaurants on property, so it makes my list. This French restaurant inspired by Beauty and the Beast is located in Magic Kingdom’s New Fantasyland section. Beast’s Castle provides an excellent atmosphere, and guests can wander through the castle to explore the different rooms. After dinner, you can get your picture taken with the Beast himself on your PhotoPass.
If you would prefer, you can order the meatloaf off of the kid’s menu, which is also delicious.
Tiffins is a relatively new restaurant in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. It’s located in the Discovery Island section of the park near the entrance to Pandora. It offers a fusion of African, Asian, and Latin cuisine.
A quick look at the menu could scare away some potential diners, but better examination reveals some great options for the picky eater. The Wagyu Strip Loin and Braised Short Rib provide some of the best cuts of beef. It’s served with rainbow carrots, roasted Peruvian potatoes, and chimichuri. While the chimichurri might be out of the question for some people, the carrots and potatoes are just seasoned, and they’re quite tasty.
For less adventurous picky eaters, the grilled chicken is a good option, and so is the pasta marinara, which are both on the kid’s menu.
Do you think picky eaters can enjoy the signature dining restaurants?