*This dining experience took place in July 2017.
Dinner at Beaches & Cream Soda Shop
Beaches & Cream Soda Shop, located at Disney’s Beach Club Resort, is a small tucked away table service restaurant that serves ice cream, floats, milkshakes, and burgers in an old fashioned soda shop atmosphere. It has long been one of my favorite places to grab a non-dairy and gluten free ice cream sundae. Recently, we decided to stop in for dinner on a whim when a reservation opened up. Brandon had never been before, and I was craving one of Beaches & Cream’s famous No Way Jose sundaes.
One of the things that I love about Beaches & Cream is the theme. It’s truly a hidden gem on Disney property with unique theming and great food. The restaurant is set to look like an old fashioned soda shop near the beach.
The restaurant is bright and colorful, and I love all of the unique decorations and touches inside. You’ll feel like you stepped back in time the moment you walk in.
Seating in the restaurant is very limited. It’s a small space, with only 3 booths, about 6 tables, and a counter. So, reservations are definitely recommended if you decide to visit. You can try walk-up, but the wait can be really long at peak times.
I’ve done walk-ups before and just sat at the counter, which is a really fun and unique experience. It’s perfect if you’re just ordering ice cream.
And, ice cream really is the most popular dish served at Beaches & Cream. The decorations and theming reflect that too.
But, my favorite part of Beaches & Cream is the food…well, the ice cream to be exact. Of course, you can order meals here too. They serve burgers, sandwiches, and just about anything you’d expect at your local soda shop. I usually just come here for ice cream, but on this visit, we ordered dinner too.
Beaches & Cream does have an Allergy-Friendly Lunch & Dinner Menu that you can use to order. I personally like to ask for both a regular menu and allergy-friendly menu so that I can compare the two. The allergy-friendly menus are not perfect and often will not include items that are easily modified to fit your special dietary need. So, it’s worth asking a chef or manager about options.
Beaches & Cream always is a bit odd to me when it comes to handling special diets. I think it’s because the restaurant is small and functions a bit like a cross between a table service and quick service location. Typically a manager or lead cast member will speak to you about options. I’ve had a few experiences were servers tried to navigate my requests, but I would recommend asking to specifically speak with a manager.
There’s good reason for this. I’ve had some hit or miss experiences here, and my friend Alexis from Alexis’s Gluten Free Adventures actually had a scary experience here in 2016 when the server tried to make her sundae from the contaminated ice cream in the front of the restaurant. Always trust your gut and speak up if you’re concerned about safety.
The cast member who assisted me was really good on this visit. She talked through options with me and let me know that I could order other sandwiches gluten free off the menu. I also asked about fries and was told I could get baked French fries but that they might take a bit longer to make.
I decided to get the Turkey Club Sandwich with Lettuce, Tomato, Bacon, and Mayonnaise on Toasted Gluten Free Bread with Baked French Fries. The sandwich was made in the back of the restaurant using Udi’s Gluten Free bread. This was made both gluten free and dairy free.
Overall, I really liked the sandwich. It really wasn’t anything special. But, the taste was good, and it was a hearty portion. The baked French fries were also very good. They were thick cut steak fries, which is a nice change of pace from the thinner fries most Disney restaurants serve. Brandon even tried some of the baked fries when I was done eating, and he said he thought they were just as good as the regular fried ones.
For dessert, I had to order my favorite non-dairy ice cream sundae — the No Way Jose Sundae. This can be made both gluten free and dairy free by using non-dairy ice cream. Beaches & Cream currently offers the following brands on non-dairy / vegan ice cream:
- Tofutti – available in chocolate and vanilla flavors
- Rice Dream – available in vanilla flavor
- So Delicious – available in coconut flavor
The regular dairy filled No Way Jose Sundae comes with both chocolate and vanilla ice cream, so I always get the chocolate and vanilla Tofutti.
It’s also served with a peanut butter sauce and chocolate syrup (not fudge) for those who are dairy free. If you can have dairy, you will also get whipped cream too.
As you can see, the sundae is huge! The one I got was also filled with peanut butter sauce and chocolate syrup. If you love the combination of peanut butter and chocolate, this sundae is a hands down must order.
I always end up just getting this sundae because the a la carte sundae options actually end up costing more than the pre-priced sundae. At $9.50 this is pricey, but oh so worth it!
If you want to recreate this at home, check out my recreation on my YouTube channel. It’s super easy and so delicious!
While I think the food is good, Beaches and Cream Soda Shop really shines when it comes to desserts. Both Brandon and I enjoyed our meals, but we raved about the sundaes. And, we both said we’d go back again — just for dessert. Of course, either way, Beaches and Cream offers a really unique dining experience at Disney with some of the best gluten free and dairy free ice cream options around.
Have you been to Beaches and Cream Soda Shop? What’s your favorite thing to order there?