Not only does Disney World do resorts right, they also know their stuff when it comes to food. When going on a trip to Walt Disney World, you must go in expecting to gain a lot of weight and sort of be okay with it. How can you not with all of your choices?
Disney has a few main types of restaurants: quick service, casual dining, character dining, buffet, and fine dining. I’m a huge advocate when it comes to character dining at Disney World because it is one of the easiest (and quickest) ways to meet some of your favorites. So when I learned that you could meet Lilo and Stitch, my favorite Disney characters, all while eating breakfast at my favorite resort, The Polynesian, I knew I had to go.
So to begin this Ohana review, let’s start with the atmosphere and overall decor of the restaurant.
Lilo & Stitch has always been a unique Disney film, so when I learned that there was a resort that was based off the Hawaiian theme, it was one of the first places I visited.
You step inside and you feel like you’re on island, ready for the days spent on the beach. The theming continues on into Ohana, where you will find yourself surrounded by tiki men, tropical printed carpet and chairs, and cast members in Hawaiian shirts.
In the middle of the restaurant, you will find a large fire pit where your food is cooked (how cool, right?). Once you take your seat, you will notice that the restaurant is surrounded with nothing but floor to ceiling windows that allow you to look out over Seven Seas Lagoon, The Grand Floridian, and Magic Kingdom.
While conversing with your friends or family, you will hear the quiet sounds of Hawaiian music playing in the background, especially the Lilo & Stitch soundtrack. It’s the perfect way to start out your experience.
Now, let’s talk about eating breakfast at Ohana.
Ohana serves two meals a day—breakfast and dinner. I’ve done both, but I’ll start with breakfast since it is the most important meal of the day.
When you go to Ohana to enjoy breakfast, be sure to bring more than one person (and your appetite) with you because it is served family style. What this means is once you are seated, they start to bring out items in massive quantities.
You’ll start with freshly made pineapple-coconut bread and POG juice (passionfruit, orange, and guava) that is going to make you lose your mind before the main course even gets to the table.
Shortly thereafter, they will bring out large bowls containing eggs, bacon, Mickey waffles, sausage, biscuits, and potatoes. You can find the listed menu here.
Unfortunately, you do not get a choice of the food they bring, however, I thought they did a good job including the basics that everyone seems to love at the other breakfast buffets. The best part is that they will always bring more food if you need. So eat your little hearts out.
While you’re eating, you are joined by some very special characters: Lilo, Stitch, Mickey, and Pluto, all decked out in their Hawaiian garb. If you’ve never been to a character breakfast, all you have to do is sit at the table, enjoy your food and conversation until each character comes up to say hello.
Do not go up and try to get their attention. I’ve seen this multiple times and it makes things extremely frustrating for those who they are meeting at that time. They make it a goal to reach each and every table so you will not be skipped.
When they do come around, you are given the chance to take any pictures that you want and have them sign autographs. I had them sign my autograph book (got a problem with that?) and take pictures without feeling rushed. Some characters might even play along with you. For example, when I met Stitch, he grabbed my phone and started taking selfies. It was extremely entertaining. The best part is that Lilo and Stitch are extremely hard to find anywhere else besides Ohana. There’s the potential to meet them at Typhoon Lagoon during the summer, however, it’s not promised. So if they’re your favorite, make sure you stop by to say hello.
In the middle of the meet and greets, the characters take a little break to dance around the restaurant with everyone that cares to join. They get a lot of the kids to join them and put together a parade where they walk and dance around the restaurant together while shaking maracas. I found it to be an extremely cute way to include the kids and characters.
Dinner is a little different at Ohana. The characters go to sleep and it becomes what Disney calls “special and unique dining.” From 3:30 PM – 10:00 PM, you can experience Ohana for dinner.
Much like breakfast, the dinner is a set menu full of Polynesian options. You will start out with what they call the welcome bread, a freshly baked pineapple bread loaf, and you will be in heaven. I also started my meal off with a mojito and loved it. It was a bit strong, though.
Afterwards, you are given a salad, which I nibbled on but didn’t find too special. As you’re munching on your greens, they place large plates of lo mein, veggies, pork dumplings, and chicken wings. Sounds like a lot of food, right? It is.
And that’s not even all of it.
As your going strong on the appetizers, the main entree comes and it will shock you. They bring out skewers of meat, your options being chicken, steak, and shrimp. You can pick a little bit of everything and they will cut it off the tall skewer and give you some to enjoy with all of your appetizers that you probably haven’t even made a dent in. You can find the official menu for everything I just listed here if you’re curious.
All of this food ensures that you will leave in a food coma. But wait… there’s more. Dessert.
At the end of the meal comes the best part, the Ohana bread pudding a la mode. If you don’t have room for this after all the food I mentioned earlier, you’re going to have to make room. You won’t truly experience Ohana unless you try the bread pudding.
The bread pudding comes topped with a large scoop of ice cream and a side of bananas foster sauce (caramel and bananas). At this point, you’re probably going to need someone to roll you out of the restaurant but it’s worth every bite and every penny.
If you’re willing to have a later dinner, try to schedule your dinner around Magic Kingdom’s firework show. We made a reservation the day of and the only thing they had left was a 9 something reservation. At the time, Wishes! went on at 10 so while we were eating our dinner, we got to watch the fireworks out the windows. It only made the experience that much more special.
My Favorite Menu Items
To help you guys out, I wanted to list a few of my top favorite menu items for both breakfast and dinner. There is no particular order.
- Sweet-n-sour chicken
- Lo mein
- Ohana bread pudding
- Szechuan sirloin steak
- Mickey waffles
- Pineapple-coconut bread
- POG juice
So, do you need to make a reservation before going? Absolutely. And I recommend making it sooner rather than later.
The best part about Disney dining is the fact that you can make reservations month in advance so as soon as you book your Disney vacation, check to see if there are any reservations. There are a few restaurants at Disney that book up very far in advance and Ohana happens to be one of those.
Now, if you can’t find a reservation, don’t fret. A lot of people cancel theirs when it gets closer so there’s always a chance you can snag one, you just have to keep checking and be patient. Also, just because you have a reservation, doesn’t mean you won’t have to wait. At Ohana, you typically have to wait 15-20 minutes after you check in. Luckily, your buzzer works in the nearby store so you can do a little shopping to help pass the time.
Overall, I’d say that Ohana is one of the best restaurants at Disney World. The breakfast offers something for everyone in the family and allows you to create memories that you will never forget. The dinner serves endless amounts of mouth-watering food and a romantic atmosphere for those looking for a date night at Disney. On top of that, the prices are reasonable and it’s a restaurant that shouldn’t be missed.
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