It’s likely that if you’ve been to Disney World, you’ve dined at places like Chef Mickey’s, ‘Ohana, and Be Our Guest. But we’re going to let you know about some restaurants you probably haven’t visited, but should.
Almost everyone who visits Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge knows about BOMA and Sanaa, but they miss out on what we might call the BEST restaurant at this resort. Jiko serves up delicious African fusion dishes in a relaxing and quiet atmosphere that is perfect for date night (or any night, in our opinion).
Now, Jiko isn’t a place to take picky eaters, though — the food here is adventurous, with dishes like a Duck Confit and Honey Raisin Flatbread and Braised Wild Boar. Jiko is one of the most unique restaurants in Disney World and a dining experience here is what we would refer to as next level.
Cape May Cafe is our character breakfast experience secret. If you’ve tried to get breakfast reservations recently for places like Chef Mickey’s or Topolino’s Terrace, you know that those reservations are HARD to get. But everyone seems to sleep on Minnie’s Beach Bash breakfast at Cape May Cafe at Disney’s Beach Club Resort, and that’s just a shame.
You’ll get pretty standard breakfast fare at the buffet here (bacon, sausage, eggs, omelets, Mickey waffles, etc.), and get a chance to meet Minnie, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy. But Cape May Cafe also has Salted Caramel Beach Buns — and those alone are worth making this a must-visit on your next Disney World trip.
When people visit EPCOT, they usually make reservations for places like Le Cellier, San Angel Inn, or Biergarten. But most folks walk right by the China Pavilion and Nine Dragons. It’s not a typical Chinese restaurant you might expect to find in Disney World, though. No, Nine Dragons has some spicy food that is genuinely spicy.
If you like to set your mouth on fire, the Spicy Mala Beef entree will leave your mouth numb, but in a good way. But there’s more to the dishes here than JUST heat — even those dishes with less spice pack loads of flavor.
There are SO many great dining choices in Disney Springs that people seem to miss the fact that there’s a restaurant here by celebrity chef José Andrés, the man who is often credited with bringing the idea of small plates to the U.S. This is high-quality Spanish tapas, with many small plates aimed at those with more adventurous palates.
This is a great place to go to try some great wines (the wine list is HUGE) and a variety of dishes on small plates. It’s also a great alternative to Wine Bar George (which is often way busier).
Sure, everyone talks about the signature dining experience at Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, but they totally miss the unassuming Grand Floridian Cafe, which offers up its own share of delicious food, especially for breakfast. We’re fans of the Buttermilk-fried Chicken and Waffle.
You can get a variety of other tasty dishes here, too, for lunch and dinner, like French Onion Soup, a variety of delicious salads, Buttermilk-fried chicken, and more. Don’t skip out on the Lobster ‘Thermidor’ Burger, though — which is a burger WITH LOBSTER ON IT.
Die-hard Disney fans know that Trail’s End is a great place to go to get a LOT of food for a good price. Of course, you’ll need to travel to Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground to get there, but you’ll be rewarded with family-style skillets loaded with delicious food that will satisfy the whole family.
If you do happen to eat here, bring a healthy appetite — you’re going to need it.
Although Disney Vacation Club members frequent Olivia’s Cafe at Disney’s Old Key West Resort, most other guests don’t really know about it. If you love fried chicken, this is one of the best places in Disney World to get it. But you can also get delicious seafood dishes like Shrimp Fritters and Crab Cakes.
Whatever you do, make sure you leave room for dessert: the Key Lime Tart is a guest favorite here, and for good reason.
Did you know you can get legitimate Louisiana-inspired food in Disney World? All you have to do is head to Boatwright’s at Disney’s Port Orleans — Riverside Resort to indulge in some Jambalaya, Shrimp and Grits, and a Chef’s Platter intended for the most hardcore of Carnivores.
The flavors here are bold and spicy, and if you want to experience a little piece of New Orleans in the heart of Disney World, this is where you want to go.
It’s a shame that the only people who’ve probably only eaten at Maya Grill are those guests who’ve stayed at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Not only is the restaurant themed around a Mayan Temple (and it’s such a cool theme), but the food has a Latin and Caribbean flair, with an extensive list of wines from Mexico, Argentina, and Chile.
We also will tell you with a straight face that Maya Grill has what might be the best churros in Disney World.
The Morocco Pavilion at EPCOT is seriously underrated, not just because it’s one of the most relaxing spots to chill in the park, but also because it’s hiding a great restaurant, Spice Road Table. One, this location is on the water, with a great view of the lake. This is also a great spot to view Harmonious (and a dining package is available).
Most of the dishes here are small plates, meaning you can try a variety of Moroccan-inspired foods, including Naan Spreads, Dolmas, and Grilled Lamb Kefta.
There’s a lot of great dining in Disney World that many guests are unaware of, so we hope this list gives you an idea of more unique places to eat. Even better? Because these are well-kept secrets, you’ll be able to score dining reservations for these locations much easier than the more popular spots.
Ready to make that reservation? Head to the Disney World website or the My Disney Experience app or call 714-781-DINE (3463) between 7AM and 9PM. You can make reservations as early as 60 days in advance of the first day of your trip.
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What’s your favorite underrated Disney World restaurant? Let us know in the comments!