It’s no surprise that Disney World attracts large crowds during Christmas time. Who wouldn’t want to spend the holidays with Minnie and Mickey Mouse? Christmas time is one of the best times to go to Disney World, since there are so many things happening at all of the parks and the hotels.
Everything at Disney World always seems to be planned out perfectly down to the smallest detail, and Christmas at the Disney parks is no different. In order to maintain the spirit of Christmas, you can expect that most restaurants will offer a holiday-based menu, filled with scrumptious dishes that are sure to please everyone in your family. In this article, I will be listing six of the best Disney World restaurants to eat at during the Christmas season.
Hollywood & Vine: Minnie’s Holiday Dine
Minnie’s Holiday Dine at Hollywood & Vine Restaurant is a festive character dining option that starts at the beginning of November. Join Minnie and Mickey Mouse, Donald and Daisy Duck, and Goofy at this holiday celebration in a 1930s inspired diner. What makes this restaurant stand out as an ideal place to eat during the holidays is the festive interior décor and holiday-inspired costumes that characters wear, the seasonal music that plays while guests enjoy their lunch and/or dinner, and the buffet food that is filled with classic holiday options. Located at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, this all-you-can-enjoy buffet is a dining experience you will not want to miss, especially if you are vacationing with younger children. In terms of the style of cooking prepared here, American style food is the main cuisine offered.
Some examples of the range of food served at this time of year includes the following platters:
- Cornbread Stuffing
- Sweet Potato Casserole
- Ham with a Cherry Port Glaze
- A large chocolate fountain (for dipping marshmallows and other sweet treats in)
Minnie’s Holiday Dine at Hollywood & Vine Restaurant gets everyone in the Christmas spirit, so be sure to book a reservation and enjoy some delicious food. If you would like to learn more about this restaurant, WDW Info outlines information on Hollywood & Vine Restaurant what you can expect when you come here, along with the special seasonal events that take place throughout the year (including Minnie’s Holiday Dine).
California Grill: Seasonal Flavors with a Gourmet Twist
The California Grill is located within Disney’s Contemporary Resort. If you are looking for a signature dining option that offers some holiday-inspired meals, then you will enjoy this restaurant. With views of the Magic Kingdom park, you feel as though you are dining up in the clouds, which makes for an unforgettable feast during the holidays. Even though there is not a specific Christmas menu, expect to find dishes that have seasonal twists added to them. These are a few items from the dinner menu that have received positive reviews:
Oak-fired Filet of Beef (served with a Butternut Squash Purée, Maple-roasted Squash, Whiskey-Apple Butter, and Parmesan-Farro Risotto)
Grilled Circle Chicken Breast (served with a Yogurt Marinade, Charred Tomato Sauce, Saffron Rice, and Onion)
Braised Pork Shank (served with Goat Cheese Polenta, Mushrooms, Pear, Brussels Sprouts, Chestnut, and a Goat Cheese Polenta)
Black Grouper (served with Herb Basmati Rice, Cashew Chutney, Bok Choy, Rock Shrimp, Baby Shiitake, and a Kaffir Lime-Coconut Nage)
Colorado Rack of Lamb (served with Curry-Potato Samosas, Cucumber Yogurt, Lamb Jus, Courgettes, and Punjabi Eggplant)
Although the plates are on the pricier side, if you are looking for a truly spectacular dining location to spend your Christmas dinner, consider coming to The California Grill especially around the time the sun sets or when the Magic Kingdom fireworks would be occurring. If you would like to learn more about this restaurant, you can view a list of special services offered and the remainder of food left on the menu.
Liberty Tree Tavern: A Family-Style Feast
Located at the Magic Kingdom park in Liberty Square, Liberty Tree Tavern Restaurant is a wonderful choice for dining during the Christmas season. Every day, the restaurant serves feasts filled with comforting and delectable food, making it a popular spot to dine during the holidays. Popular dishes on the menu include:
Patriot’s Platter: This portion is huge, and it can serve more than one person. Indulge in this classic holiday dish that is offered all year long. Roasted Turkey Breast, Pot Roast, and Oven-roasted Pork are served on your plate with savory sauces covering the meats. Mashed Potatoes, Seasonal Vegetables, Herb Stuffing, and Macaroni and Cheese are contained in their own side dishes. Now this is the true definition of a Christmas feast!
Oooey Gooey Toffee Cake: This dessert option is another plate to share with other members of your family. Gooey toffee filling, caramel sauce, and vanilla ice cream sit on top of a moist vanilla cake. This dessert alone will satisfy your hunger.
Our Tavern Keeper’s Favorite: Pot Roast is the main star of this dish, served with Mashed Potatoes and Garden Vegetables. Unlike the preceding dishes, Our Tavern Keeper’s Favorite is meant for one person.
Seasonal Fruit Cobbler: This is another dessert option, where a crispy topping is served on top of fresh baked fruits with a side of ice cream. The fruits that you are most likely to see during Christmas months are berries, so there is a high probability that you will be served a berry fruit cobbler.
You cannot go wrong with any dish served at Liberty Tree Tavern Restaurant, but these are the lunch and dinner options that you would most likely see during a traditional meal served during Christmas. Other options include burgers, fish and chips, salads, and pasta. You can always visit the Disney website for details pertaining to the menu and dish prices, along with reservation options.
Be Our Guest Restaurant: An Unforgettable Ambiance
The Magic Kingdom park houses Be Our Guest Restaurant, a sit-down service dining option that serves American and French Cuisine. Christmas time is all about the inviting and cozy ambiance, and at this restaurant, you can find that here. Step into your assigned dining room, all depicting memorable rooms from the 1991 film Beauty and the Beast. If you are seated in The Ballroom Dining Room, you will notice that you can see outdoors, but in reality, the view is actually a screen of a nighttime sky, and at some points, you will see snow falling, which further adds to the Christmas ambiance. This dining option is a part of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Dining, which takes place on certain dates during the holidays. Indulge in a heaping of delicious food served at this table-side dining area. Some popular dishes from the menu are the following:
- Filet Mignon (served with Seasonal Vegetables, Yukon Potatoes, and Cipollini Marmalade with a Red Wine Glaze)
- Spice-dusted Lamb Chops (served with Baby Zucchini, Charred Tomatoes, Roasted Salsify, and Royal Trumpet Mushrooms with a Lamb Demi)
- Roasted Pork Tenderloin (served with Caramelized Cipollini, Roasted Asparagus, Brussels Sprouts, Crispy Berkshire Pork Belly, Cauliflower Purée, and sprinkles with Bacon dust)
The menu options are the same as the original menu, but these dishes listed above are hearty plates that resemble classic holiday dishes. Dining in any themed restaurant during Christmas time is special, and that stand true for Be Our Guest Restaurant too. Visit Disney’s website for more insight on what Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Dining actually is.
The Crystal Palace: A Holiday Buffet
If you are travelling with children during Christmas time, try to book a reservation at The Crystal Palace Restaurant. Dine in an architecturally stunning building mostly made of glass, and if you are seated in a section of the dining room, you will be able to see Cinderella’s castle. During your meal, Winnie the Pooh and his Hundred Acre Wood friends will pay your table a visit, so make sure you bring your autograph books to collect their signatures! The Crystal Palace is another restaurant that participates in Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Dining. An all-you-can-eat buffet is set up, where guests can choose from several platters of fresh food. Even though the menu remains the same as usual even during the holiday months, the options are still heavenly and serve as great meals for a Christmas dinner. Below is a list of popular dishes that make a reoccurring appearance at this restaurant:
- Roasted Carved Meats
- Seasonal Fish
- Freshly Made Soups
Of course, there are several other options, but these are the main stars of the meal. The Crystal Palace is a popular place to eat at the Magic Kingdom Park, so coming here during Christmas time would be a magical experience! Since there are so many things to do at the Magic Kingdom Park during Christmas time, and if you are interested in partaking in such activities, it would be smart to choose a restaurant that is located in the park and preferably one with a majority of positive reviews. It is highly recommended to book a reservation at The Crystal Palace beforehand, as the dining room fills up quickly, especially during this time of year.
Biergarten Restaurant: A Hearty, Festive Meal
Travel over to the Germany pavilion in Epcot’s World Showcase, where you will be treated to a delicious meal. This restaurant offers some holiday classics at the buffet stations, since it already normally serves filling food that can be found during the holiday months. Some food that you will most likely find here are as follows:
Cheese and Beer Soup: This slightly bitter soup is a classic heart-warming dish that you must try! Even if you are not too fond of beer, it still is very tasty. It also is very filling, so be sure to not fill up on this soup before you try the other options!
Seasonal fish in a mustard and cream sauce: The fish served is usually either salmon or halibut, but whichever fish they prepare for your dinner service, it is cooked to perfection. And the sauce is divine!
Roast chicken: This chicken is very tender and is roasted right on the bone. Again, a great choice to add to your plate.
Beef Rouladen: Are you a meat lover? Then look no further, because this dish is definitely for you. In traditional Beef Rouladen dishes, thin slices of steak are wrapped around bacon and onions. It is a great dish that you should try.
Pork Roast: Visit the carving station, where slices of tender Pork Roast are being served.
As you walk in the dining room, wreaths, lights, Christmas trees, and garland decorate the interior setup, making the atmosphere feel very cozy and festive. It looks just like a Swiss village at Christmas time! The live oompah band is the main form of entertainment at Biergarten Restaurant, and during Christmas time, you can expect them to be playing and singing traditional holiday favorites, along with the classic German songs that they normally perform year-round. So, if you are a fan of fun holiday dinners filled with singing and laughing, then consider dining at Biergarten Restaurant during the holidays.
Disney World offers several wonderful restaurants that you should try going to at least once. If you have never experienced Christmas at Disney World, I suggest that you consider it, since Disney World is the most magical place on Earth and Christmas is the happiest time of the year, and if both are combined, it makes for one memorable vacation experience.
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