*This dining experience took place in November 2014 and includes my gluten free & dairy free dining review along with a review that includes: gluten, corn, dairy, tomatoes, apples and peanuts.
Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort has several dining options available to guests, including Las Ventanas which opened earlier in 2014 as a table service location that serves breakfast and lunch. The restaurants at Coronado Springs are not owned and operated by Disney and therefore aren’t my most favorite in terms of accommodations and offerings. However, I was able to safely dine at both Las Ventanas and Pepper Market while staying at Coronado Springs during the 2014 Food Allergy & Celiac Convention held at the convention center.
Blog reader and friend Kathleen was at FACCWDW coordinating the teen area at the event. She did a fantastic job with the area and offered so many great resources for teens and college students. She’s doing fantastic things at her college as a food allergy advocate and hosts her own blog at: http://soulfoodheals.com/.
I was so thrilled when she and her mom invited me for breakfast on the morning after FACCWDW, because it gave us a time to chat and catch up. Kathleen and her mom totally had the same idea as I did by going to Las Ventanas as a quick service breakfast wasn’t appealing to any of us.
When we arrived, we let the server know that we had special dietary needs. He then brought out the manager on duty who went over some options with us. While I would have loved to have seen a Disney chef, I was glad that the manager spent some time to discuss options with us and to ensure safety.
While the menu did note several dishes could be made gluten free (including steak and eggs, Huevos Divorciados, and Ventanas Breakfast) which was nice. Everyone at the table decided to go for the Ventanas Breakfast which seemed the easiest and best option for special diets. It came with two eggs any style, choice of peppered bacon or grilled ham, and green onion potatoes.
The manager advised us that the potatoes were made with extra virgin olive oil and contained no dairy, and the eggs short of scrambled could be made dairy free (my guess is they have pre-packaged beaten eggs, though I am curious how they can’t make scrambled eggs on the fly. Seems not that hard!). The manager also mentioned that they had gluten free bread, and both Kathleen and I wanted to see what brand so we could determine if it was safe to eat or not.
The brand used was Hilltop Hearth and was certified gluten free. It was also dairy free. Here’s a list of the ingredients from the box. Both of us ordered the toast dry, since they didn’t have any non-dairy butter options.
The breakfast itself was OK, nothing spectacular. I asked for my eggs to be cooked over-easy, but they were hard cooked, so someone missed that memo. I asked if I could have both pepper bacon and ham, and was served both. I love bacon, as you all know, so I was happy to see pepper bacon in a restaurant! The potatoes sadly were missing the scallions, but tasted OK. I can’t say that I loved the bread served but it wasn’t terrible either. It had a slight after taste, and I wonder if it was due to the chickpea flour or soy flour.
Overall, I think the meal was OK – solid and at least safe. It wasn’t as amazing as some of my favorite Disney restaurants, but it was a great option while staying at Coronado Springs. I also really enjoyed the company and found that to be the best part of my meal! Thanks to Kathleen and her mom for inviting me!
I can’t say that Las Ventanas will be in my regular rotation but I’d definitely go back again and see what other options might be available.
Have you been to Las Ventanas? What did you think of the special dietary options there?