*This dining experience took place in June 2013.
|Check out those lines…|
“Be Our Guest, Be Our Guest, put our service to the test…” Why that’s just what I did recently when I finally made it over to Be Our Guest (BOG) for lunch service. I’ve been trying to visit this location for lunch for what seems like forever (really just a few months), and I was thrilled that I finally had the opportunity to enjoy lunch during their fast casual service.
As a general tip, plan ahead if you are hoping to dine at this location. For lunch BOG is a quick service location, meaning there are no reservations. It is a very large restaurant; however, it’s also hugely popular and popular means long lines and wait times. Additionally, when you come to this location, you will line up outside of the restaurant (which is slightly different from many locations that have indoor lines that accommodate huge crowd) until they clear you to come into the ordering lines. If you’re really hungry, you might want to find another location unless you’re ok with waiting. It also pays to get there earlier or later in the day if you’re hungry. My family and I showed up, for instance, at almost 1 pm and were told the wait time was 35 minutes. Yikes!! Fortunately, our wait time was more like 15 minutes, but still. If you’re hungry, you could have a very rumbly tummy by the time you get in and eat. Also, if you’re heading out during the summer months, it is HOT out there. And I mean hot. Fortunately, Disney is prepared. As of June 2013, they were handing out large Disney golf umbrellas and cold ice water. That’s good because I’m pretty sure suffering from heat stroke does not make a magical vacation or lunch for that matter!
|I’m one hot chickadee in the summer sun!|
Once you are cleared to enter the building, you proceed to another queue. There, you walk past suits of armor that actually talk! You also see the menu displayed on screens between 2 rows of line queues. This is good because it gives you an idea of what’s available while you wait. You can also ask a Cast Member for a paper menu, and they should be able to give you one.
|We are the knights who say “Nii!” Ok, they didn’t say that, but it would be cool if they did!|
Once you get further up in the line, you are met by a cast member who asks you how many in your party. They then give you a plastic RFID rose (love the theming of this) to hold on to while you order and then find a table. Now comes the interesting part for special diets. You are either taken to a Cast Member manned station or a self serve station to order. In both cases, you either tell the CM your special diet or you select it on the screen. At anytime you can ask for a manager and they will come out. But, still…it’s a little strange. It’s rather like what they did for a while at Hollywood Brown Derby, where they used iPads to make interactive menus. In this case, once the special diets are entered, the menus then display what you can and can’t have. For me, I wanted to order one of the kids meals because I wasn’t overly hungry. I wanted the mahi mahi but evidently it’s not safe for one of my dietary needs (I was at a CM booth, I’m hoping to go to the self serve station next time because I actually want to see all the choices). Boo! So, I ended up with the Carved Turkey Sandwich on a GF bun. It was supposed to come with Sweet Potato Wedges and Peach Applesauce. Th e sweet potato wedges are not safe (probably gluten is my guess), so I couldn’t have those but the applesauce was. I ended up getting regular fries…sorry, Pommes Frites, n’est-ce pas?!
|Cast Member manned station|
|More of the menu–the screens cause too much glare with a camera!|
Next up, it was on to find a seat. At lunch, it’s pretty much a free-for-all. There are 3 rooms in which you can dine. The main dining area – ballroom (which is hugely popular) and also the West Wing and the Rose Gallery. Personally, I’d avoid the ballroom unless you are there for dinner. It’s 1) highly crowded and 2) ridiculously loud. It’s much better at dinner, imo. The West Wing is quite dark and some younger children may find it scary. The Rose Gallery is bright and lively and where we ended up–and thankfully not that crowded!!
As we waited, we helped ourselves to the drink station and to the silverware (no plastic forks here! Only the real stuff!).
|View of paintings and the drink station|
|Centerpiece in the rose gallery|
You keep your roses on the table with your receipts and the cast members bring the food to you. They use the same carts that they use for desserts at dinner. In one respect, I’m actually glad that they bring the allergy food in person outside of those carts, because those things carry a LOT of glutenous desserts in them. And while I’m sure they are well cleaned, I just don’t love the idea of it. But that’s just me. And interestingly enough, my food came out really quickly compared to the rest of the family’s! Sometimes, it’s good to be the food allergy person! 🙂
|My receipt, so you can see how it rings up|
|Carved turkey sandwich with fries|
What I love about this location is that everything is served on real dinnerware. It’s like Landscape of Flavors–which has that fast casual vibe. Very nice! I will say, that I was shocked at the portion of my meal. It was quite generous and really almost the same size as the regular adult meals. I liked it especially because I got dessert and a drink included. That’s a bargain!! I’m going to start doing this more..sheesh! First up were the fries. Yes, they were nothing to write home about. They are the regular fries you get at Disney. Good…yes. Special…err not so much. The turkey sandwich came only with tomato and turkey. I imagine this is partially due to the fact that this is a kid’s meal and those usually are filled with tons of condiments. We asked a CM by the drink station for plain mayonnaise which they were happy to oblige. The turkey was the real star of this sandwich. In fact, it was quite moist and flavorful. I was surprised by it. But the thing that made me the most happy….it was an Udi’s bun! hallelujah!!! It seems like they have a variety of bread products at BOG because I’ve been served Ener-G rolls for dinner. So, this was great to have at least variety. And, I personally love Udi’s buns. They even toasted it a little. Overall, the sandwich would have been better with a little bit of greens (like some arugula) and/or some Dijon mustard. Maybe that’s what the adult version includes!
Another fave of the meal was the peach applesauce. Yummy. I’m a huge applesauce fan and this one was delicious. It was really peachy in flavor, and the texture was quite nice. It was the perfect “dessert” after the meal.
|Peach applesauce–looks bland but was delicious|
|Beautiful snow in the windows|
While, I wouldn’t say my meal was anything overly spectacular, I would say that for a quick service it was quite good. It was so much better than typical burgers or fries. And my family really enjoyed their non-special diets entrees (they got the croque monsieur & the steak sandwich). My hope is to go to a self serve kiosk the next time so that I can actually see more of the menu. I also want to try something different. I hear rave reviews about the quinoa salad as a great gluten free option.
Also, as an adult ordering the kids meal, why you couldn’t beat the portion or the price. They had some really good healthful options and the applesauce made for a great addition. Also, where else can you get a complete meal at Disney with a drink for $9?! Love it!
I’m giving this a solid 8 out of 10 for this experience and hope to be back soon to get more details and try something new. Also, gluten free diners will have a lot more choices. Let’s just say dairy free and French food don’t always mix so well!!
In the meantime, what do you recommend? Is there something there I simply must try?
For a full review of dinner (on the opening menu): Check here!