Though it may not initially seem like it, Walt Disney World has truly come into its own in recent years as a real food lover’s paradise. If you count yourself as one of the many who love eating their way around the Walt Disney World parks and resorts, there are some big changes taking effect right now and very soon that you should know about.
From the removal of a popular menu item at one of the Magic Kingdom's most popular quick service restaurants to the controversial decision of end breakfast at an Epcot mainstay, if you are planning on having a meal at Walt Disney World in the near future, here are 6 changes that have either already happened or are coming very soon that all guests need to know about!
1. The end of Sunshine Seasons breakfast
Ever since the Garden Grill debuted their character-based breakfast offering, we figured that the days were numbered for breakfast at nearby Sunshine Seasons, which has earned a reputation as one of the best quick service restaurants to eat the most important meal of the day at on property. Though guests can still enjoy breakfast currently, Orlando Parks News has learned that starting in January, guests will no longer be able to enjoy breakfast at this dining location.
Interestingly, it seems like this dining change will coincide with the Soarin’ refurbishment, which is also scheduled to kick off in January. Though it might seem a little unfortunate that The Land is losing so much in the next few weeks, the silver lining here is that guests looking to take an early ride on Living With the Land (which Epcot still features as a tier 1 FastPass+ selection, by the way), will be able to do so without the usual congestion caused by the usual 1-2 punch of Sunshine Seasons breakfast service and Soarin’ every morning.
2. Gaston’s Tavern gets a menu change
While the décor at Gaston’s Tavern has amused guests since this location opened back in 2012, one thing that has never really caught on is the food. While Disney had likely hoped that LeFou’s Brew would become the next Butterbeer, this drink lacks the narrative connection that Butterbeer has and simply fizzled out, (pun intended). However, one menu item that did develop a cult following was the pork shank served here. And even though fans queued up at lunchtime to sample this succulent menu item (which was previously called 'The Next Turkey Leg'), Disney has decided to remove it from the menu at this particular location, which was the only one that offered it.
It its place is a new beef stew menu item, which is fairly bland and certainly not unique among other offerings at the Magic Kingdom in the same way that the pork shank was. Though fans have taken their outrage about this menu change online, Disney is unlikely to change their minds about this, which means pork fans will have to get their fix elsewhere.
3. A new table service restaurant to debut next year at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Last week Disney confirmed plans to convert the back half of Pizzafari into a new table service restaurant: Tiffins. This new signature table service restaurant will open at Disney's Animal Kingdom in Spring 2016 alongside the Rivers of Light show and the nighttime version of Kilimanjaro Safaris, essentially completing Disney’s short-term plan to make this a full-day park next year (their long term plan, of course, involves the completion of Pandora: The World of Avatar).
This restaurant will celebrate the art of traveling, and feature a diverse menu featuring items inspired from several places that inspired the creation of Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Tiffins will be open for both lunch and dinner, and will feature waterfront views from indoor and outdoor seating areas. Though we don’t know anything about specific dishes or prices, considering Tiffins will be a “signature” dining experience, guests can expect this one to rank somewhere between Be Our Guest and Le Cellier in terms of cost, and those who enjoy using the Disney Dining Plan can assume that meals here will be in the two-credit range.