Disney World has tons to offer when it comes to food. They offer options for everyone; from picky eaters to experienced food lovers. Out of all the options available how are you suppose to choose? It is impossible to try everything that is available in one trip. Although Jacob would happily be up for the challenge. My personal favorite table service restaurant is Garden Grill at Epcot, and I believe everyone should experience this unique restaurant at least once. Here are the five reasons why you should give Garden Grill a try.
Garden Grill is located on the top level in the Land Pavilion at Epcot. While you are dining, the entire restaurant rotates just a little. It is so slow that you won’t even notice, but you will notice the constantly changing view. You will even get a view of the Living with the Land attraction. I was a bit worried about the movement, but it didn’t bother me at all. If that still worries you, Jacob is very sensitive to spinning. So much so that he can’t even watch when we ride the teacups without getting sick, much less ride with us. He says it did bother him a bit at first, but he just looked at the interior wall, (which doesn’t move) and he was fine. Trust me, it didn’t affect his appetite any.
Now let’s talk about the good stuff. The food there is mainly hearty down-home type fare. So make sure you are hungry when you show up. It’s family-style dining (or as Jacob calls it, “buffet for lazy people”) where they bring out a whole mess of food to you, and then just keep bringing more whenever you ask. There are rolls and salad, then main courses and sides, then dessert. The main courses rotate seasonally, but you can expect things like roast turkey, corn, mashed potatoes, sausage, pot roast, etc. There is also mac n’ cheese and french fries for the little(r) ones. Everything is cooked fresh, and is delicious.
There is one special thing about this restaurant that you won’t find anywhere else at Disney; it has its own ride! That’s right, if you go downstairs and ride Living with the Land first, you will get to see them growing some of the food you are about to eat right there at Epcot. It’s a fun, relaxing, cool ride regardless of your dining plans. But the fact that they serve the food you see growing on the ride just makes it that much neater. It’s also educational, so your kids can learn about how things grow. The ride and restaurant make a truly one-of-a-kind combo.
Okay, Disney veterans know that the Cast Members are held to a high standard, and generally do anything they can to make your stay magical. That being said, there was just something special about the staff at Garden Grill. They really made us feel welcome there. It had the atmosphere of a family-owned restaurant where the owner knows you and comes out to greet you when he sees you’re there. While there are plenty of great spots to eat, and loads of great Cast Members everywhere, this one really stands out because it feels like home.
You get the chance to hang out Mickey Mouse, Pluto, Chip, and Dale and they do not disappoint. There were a total of six kids with us and each character gave attention to each one, even the baby. Mickey even waited around to let the baby warm up to him. They were fun and engaging. We had a lot of people with us so we were there for awhile and the characters came around more than once. Plus, this is the only place you will get to see Mickey in his farm outfit. See all those awesome interactions in our video.
Garden Grill is a table service, which means you will need a reservation. If you are staying at one of the Disney resorts, you can book your reservations 180 days in advance. I recommend doing it as soon as possible so you get what you want. Your travel agent will be able to help with that. So, what are you waiting for? Book Garden Grill for your next trip. You can thank me later.
Be sure to check out our friends over at The Mouse and the Monorail where we talk briefly about this restaurant, and they give their suggestions of some other favorites, too.