A major makeover transforms the restaurant – a sleek, contemporary interpretation of mid-century modern California design, with warm oranges and yellow hues reminiscent of the 1950s. You may not recognize the dining room, but those spectacular views of Walt Disney World Resort are still part of the show.
The new menu features seasonal ingredients and a lighter touch – the popular flatbreads are back, but Chef Brian Piasecki is also using the wood-burning oven for creations such as baked local prawns with charred lemon and savory meatballs with herbed orzo. Look for updates to longtime favorites, such as the Grilled Pork Tenderloin, which is now the Pork Two Ways – grilled tenderloin and lacquered pork belly with goat cheese polenta and mushrooms. The oak-fired filet of beef returns with heirloom tomato risotto, marinated baby vine tomatoes and basil.
The sushi bar expands with a new omakase menu – 12 courses of pristine seafood with no menu, just chef’s choice. The menu might include ama ebi (sweet shrimp) tempura, lobster sashimi, crunchy Japanese bone marrow with sesame beef tartare and red onion marmalade, and spicy-crusted oysters.
With 250 choices on the wine list, there are 80 by the glass, plus 10 varieties of sake and eight kinds of crafts beers and ciders. Also, California Grill has its own list of signature cocktails you won’t find in any other Walt Disney World Resort restaurants.
Little Disney touches like a carpet design inspired by the sketches of artist and Disney Legend Mary Blair will please Disney fans (reproductions of her artwork are on display too). And just off the elevator is a new show-stopping wine display, a work of art housing 1,600 bottles. We expect the two new communal tables for 10 will be prime seating, positioned at the north end of the dining room for optimal fireworks viewing. For outdoor fireworks viewing there are now two areas – one on the northwest side, another new deck on the southwest side.
The restaurant opens daily at 5 p.m. For reservations, visit www.disneyworld.com/dine or call 407-WDW-DINE (3463).
For more about the re-imagined California Grill, check out these posts: