*This gluten free dining experience took place in September 2018. Notes about dairy free options and modifications are included in this post.
Breakfast at Ale & Compass
Ale & Compass, formerly known as Captain’s Grille, is a table service restaurant located at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort. Renovated in 2017, it offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner in a casual setting. On this particular occasion, I decided to stop by for breakfast before heading to Epcot for the International Food & Wine Festival to check out the gluten free offerings at the festival.
Ale & Compass has a theme and atmosphere that is modern nautical chic. Everything is fairly simple and elegant.
I do really like the tables and most of the seating — although I was not as much of a fan of the booths. The booth seating in some areas of the restaurant are quite low and uncomfortable to sit in. The restaurant is also a bit dark inside. My recommendation is to ask for a seat near the exterior windows of the restaurant for a lot more light and brightness.
I was seated near the middle of the restaurant. It wasn’t all that busy. But, I did find that table spacing was quite close — making it a bit more “cozy” when you dine (which can be a good and bad thing).
Like most Disney restaurants, Ale & Compass does carry an allergy-friendly breakfast menu. When I visited back in July, the menu was fairly large. But, when I stopped by this time, I noticed it had been really reduced. My guess is that they are trying to encourage guests to dine at the breakfast buffet that is newly being offered at Ale & Compass.
On my last visit, I spoke with a chef about gluten free options and was able to get the Eggs Benedict gluten free. On this visit, I knew I might be eating a lot at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival later in the day, so I decided to just get the American Breakfast which is marked as safe for Gluten/Wheat, Fish/Shellfish, Peanut/Tree Nut, and Soy Allergies. Interestingly, it does not mention dairy free, as you can easily modify the dish to be dairy free too.
If you are dairy free, I recommend speaking with a chef directly about options. I do know that the American Breakfast, Allergy-Friendly Mickey Waffles, and even a modified version of the Breakfast Protein Bowl can all be made dairy free.
On a side note, this is the first dining experience I’ve had since the new “straws only upon request” policy. I have to say that they definitely did not think about the glasses used at Ale & Compass for beverages without straws. I found it actually a bit more difficult than I would have thought without a straw due to the shape of the glass. So, if you think you need a straw, do make sure to ask!
My entree, American Breakfast came with Eggs Any-Style (I got them over-easy), breakfast potatoes or fruit (I chose potatoes), bacon, and a grilled tomato. When I asked my server about gluten free toast, he said he could include that in the dish as the regular non-allergy friendly version had a toast option.
Overall, I thought this was a perfectly fine breakfast. It wasn’t anything fancy. But, all of the flavors tasted good, and everything was well cooked and seasoned. I do like that the breakfast potatoes are a combination of potatoes. The bacon was also very hearty, not the normal stringy bacon that you find so often at Disney restaurants.
For toast, I was served Udi’s Gluten Free bread, which is both gluten free and dairy free. I also asked for Earth Balance vegan buttery spread too. There wasn’t anything to write home about this — though I was surprised they only gave me one slice of bread for my entree, instead of two. Typically, Disney does serve two pieces of special diets friendly bread with breakfast entrees.
Ale & Compass serves a solid, but just OK breakfast. The different breakfast entrees I have tried haven’t been anything to write home about. But, they definitely were filling. Probably the biggest negative of breakfast at Ale & Compass is their limited a la carte menu. While I haven’t tried the breakfast buffet yet, I’m guessing that it is pretty similar in options that you can find on the a la carte menu. Ale & Compass is the only non-character breakfast at the Epcot area resorts. While it may not be anything special, it’s definitely a great option for those who want a low-key and quiet breakfast to start the day.
Have you been to Ale & Compass? What did you think of the breakfast options?