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Happy Villaintines Day from Disney Parks Blog

Try This Smashed Potato From Disney’s PCH Grill Beachside Bonfire Buffet at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel

posted on February 10th, 2016 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


February is National Potato Lover’s Month, a perfect excuse to make this delicious, slightly decadent recipe from Disney’s PCH Grill that could serve as a main dish (add a big green salad and dinner is done).

What’s not to love about a potato that’s baked, then fried and topped off with a little bacon, sour cream and Cheddar? These mini smashed potatoes would also be perfect appetizers for a game day party.

This recipe is from the generous dinner buffet at Disney’s PCH Grill Beachside Bonfire Buffet at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel, and is the perfect side for the kitchen’s smoked tri-tip, ribs, fish tacos, sautéed shrimp, steamed clams and fried chicken, or paired with a mini burger or a hot dog right off the grill. In addition to dinner, you can catch a wave with breakfast favorites at the Surf’s Up! Breakfast with Mickey and Friends at Disney’s PCH Grill, featuring an omelet station, signature flatbreads, parfaits, Mickey waffles and more.

To make reservations, visit Disneyland.com/dine or call 714-781-DINE.

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Mini Smashed Potatoes
Makes 12

Mini Smashed Potatoes
12 miniature gold potatoes, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter
8 cups water
1 1/2 tablespoons coarse salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup vegetable oil

Toppings
1/4 cup sour cream
3 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
4 tablespoons grated Cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon chopped chives

For smashed potatoes

  1. Place potatoes, water and 1 tablespoon of salt in a large pot. Bring to a boil over high heat, cover and reduce to a simmer. Continue simmering for 15 minutes, until potatoes are fork tender.
  2. Drain potatoes and transfer to a baking sheet. Cool for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Place a small plate on top of one potato, and gently push down, until the potato is 1/3 of its original size and just begins to split open on the side. Repeat with remaining potatoes.
  4. Heat oil in a 12-inch frying pan over medium high-heat for 3-5 minutes, until oil reaches 350°F.
  5. Carefully place the potatoes in the hot oil and fry for 2 minutes per side, until golden brown and crispy.
  6. Place potatoes on a baking sheet lined with paper towels to drain. Season with remaining salt and pepper.

To serve

  1. Place smashed potatoes on a large serving platter.
  2. Top each potato with 1 teaspoon of sour cream, 1/2 teaspoon chopped bacon, 1 teaspoon shredded cheddar cheese and 1/4 teaspoon of chives.

This recipe has been converted from a larger quantity in the restaurant kitchens. The flavor profile may vary from the restaurant’s version. All recipes are the property of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S., Inc., and may not be reproduced without express permission.

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#DisneyFamilia: Valentine’s Day with a Latin Twist at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 10th, 2016 by Sarah Domenech, International Public Relations Manager


If you want to celebrate this special day with your loved ones, Maya Grill at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort has a special menu just for the occasion, made especially for you and your familia!

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The first course is a lobster and Poblano pepper bisque (lobster cream, roasted Poblano peppers, corn and cilantro). The main entrée is prosciutto wrapped prawns with sautéed quinoa (jumbo prawns, strawberry-honey dew pico, quinoa, esquites, Poblano peppers, cherry tomatoes). And to finish the special night, postre! A rocky road mug cake with a strawberry cheesecake lollipop and a chocolate covered strawberry will definitely end the night in a sweet way.

Doesn’t all of this sound delicioso? This Valentine’s Day menu is only available for dinner on Sunday, February 14th for a fixed rate of $65 per person. To make dining reservations, be sure to call Disney Dining at (407) WDW-DINE(407- 939-3463) or visit Disneyworld.com.

For from the #DisneyFamilia series, visit the post below:

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Romance is in the Air at Downtown Disney District as Valentine’s Weekend Brings Special Menus, Gift Ideas and Entertainment

posted on February 9th, 2016 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


Whether it’s a romantic dinner, a special gift for your sweetheart, Valentine-themed entertainment or a horse & carriage ride, you’ll find all the makings of a perfect Valentine’s Day weekend in the Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort.

Shakespeare’s celebrated lovers Romeo and Juliet, as portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes, will be on the screen at AMC Theatres in Baz Luhrmann’s “Romeo + Juliet” at 9 p.m. each evening, Friday, February 12, through Sunday, February 14.

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For a Valentine’s dinner, Catal Restaurant offers a special prix fixe three-course menu on Saturday and Sunday, February 13 and 14, featuring such starter options as oysters on the half shell, Manchego salad and more. Petite filet, paella and asparagus risotto are among the entrée options. And dessert choices include strawberry shortcake, chocolate croissant bread pudding, house-made gelato or sorbet.

Valentine’s Day specials at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen on Saturday and Sunday include a seafood lover’s sampler, choice of smoked red bell pepper soup or grilled hearts of romaine salad, then entrée choices of French cut chicken breast, citrus crusted salmon or pink peppercorn crusted filet mignon and, for dessert, white chocolate brownie a la mode.

Tortilla Jo’s offers a three-course prix fixe Valentine’s menu Saturday and Sunday highlighted by a fruta del mar entrée with lobster, scallops, rockfish, Mexican shrimp and PEI mussel; choice of sweet corn soup or endive salad to start; and a dessert choice of chocolate hazelnut crunch or berries and cream.

Kayla’s Cake along the Downtown Disney District promenade is currently offering strawberry shortcake, vanilla bean and banana cream macaroons to take home or enjoy as you window shop through the district. You will find a wide variety of great Valentine’s Day gift ideas ranging from Disney mementos to accessories and jewelry. Fossil is offering complimentary watch engraving with purchase through February 14. Or you can personalize something cuddly at Build-A-Bear.

Somewhere along the way, you should plan on taking your significant other on a romantic horse & carriage ride. The steeds will be departing from 6 to 9 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, as part of a very special Valentine’s Day weekend at Downtown Disney District.

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All In The Details: Exploring Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar At Disney Springs

posted on February 9th, 2016 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Editorial Content Manager


Among all of the recent additions made to Disney Springs, I have to say that one of my personal favorites is Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar, a 1940s era float plane hangar turned bar that’s full of adventure, from the decor that surrounds you, to the creative menu of drinks and light plates that delights you.

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All In The Details: Exploring Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar At Disney Springs All In The Details: Exploring Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar At Disney Springs All In The Details: Exploring Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar At Disney Springs All In The Details: Exploring Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar At Disney Springs

Located in The Landing section of Disney Springs, the theming and backstory of “The Hangar” was inspired by the fictional character Jock Lindsey, a seaplane pilot in the film “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” Although Jock only appeared in a mere one minute of film, our Imagineers used his character as a springboard to develop a fun backstory for this adventurous hotspot.

The story of The Hangar Bar builds out Jock’s character, giving him a past as a seasoned circus pilot-turned adventurer. Later on in his life, he made his home at Disney Springs, falling in love with the place when he flew over the Florida in search of the Fountain of Youth and opened the bar, which is chock full of memorabilia from his past. Once that storyline was established, Imagineers were able to add authentic details to the bar, from collections of aviation parts (see the impressive ceiling fan made of vintage airplane propellers), to a diver bell families can actually dine inside, to Reggie, Jock’s canvas-covered steamboat named after his pet snake.

Check out the video below for a tour at some of the location’s highlights.

For more “All in the Details” blog posts, check out the list below:

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Romance for Your Valentine: Top 10 Date Ideas at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 8th, 2016 by Victoria Lim, Managing Editor, Walt Disney World Public Relations


Ahh…l’amour.

Valentine’s Day, Galentine’s Day, any day you want to dedicate to love, we are celebrating hearts, and cupid and romance. Here are 10 ideas to help you celebrate with us:

  1. Sweetheart Wine Tasting Cruises – Beautiful Italian music, award-winning wines and an array of delicious hors d’oeuvres on board a 40-foot Italian Water Taxi with the BOATHOUSE’S trusted captain and crew through the waters of Lake Buena Vista. Call 407-939-2628 to make a reservation.

  1. The new Ferrytale Wishes: A Fireworks Dessert Cruise – A breathtaking view of the Magic Kingdom Park night time fireworks, “Wishes,” from an exclusive and romantic spot on Seven Seas Lagoon with desserts and drinks. The soundtrack is piped through the boat’s sound system for this magical viewing. Click here for reservations.

  1. The new Brunch at the Top at California Grill – On Valentine’s Day Sunday, try the new Brunch at the Top with your beloved. The menu showcases fresh, market-driven cuisine and toast with a glass of bubbly or wine (the restaurant has more than 1,600 bottles on display). Click here for reservations.

  1. Symphony in the Stars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Party – Sweets and stars collide at Disney’s Hollywood Studios as guests look to the sky January 5 – March 19, for a special viewing of the Symphony in the Stars: A Galactic Spectacular fireworks set to the most dramatic and memorable Star Wars themes of all time. Click here for reservations.

  1. Disney Springs shopping spreeThe World of Disney in Disney Springs Marketplace recently expanded with an additional 6,000 sq. ft. of retail selling space. Try the new handcrafted chocolate at The Ganachery. Or for vegans, Erin McKenna Bakery NYC has savory offerings and an all-vegan and gluten-free menu.

  1. Minnie’s Silver Screen Dine at Hollywood & Vine – Celebrate the magic of the movies and glamour of Hollywood with an epic feast at Disney’s Hollywood Studios from Jan. 4 to March 20, 2016. Click here for reservations.
  2. La Nouba at Disney Springs – As part of the La Nouba’s ongoing evolution, the Cirque du Soleil show continues to bring new acts: B-Boy, commonly referred to as breakdancing, and Aerial Bamboo, a technique mastered by only a handful of performers worldwide. The acts join the recent additions of uproarious clowns and a breathtaking juggling rolla bolla act. For more information, visit DisneyWorld.com/entertainment.

  1. Sushi Bar at Morimoto Asia at Disney Springs – From Feb. 12 – 14, a special Valentine’s Day romantic dinner for two includes a four course, prix-fixe menu starring Chef Morimoto’s signature Peking Duck for two. On Valentine’s day only, a five-course Omakase dinner will be served at the intimate second-level 14-seat sushi bar. For reservations, call 407-939-6686 (MOTO).
  2. Monsieur Paul Proposal-popping and Vow Renewal dinner at Epcot – In the shadow of the Eiffel Tower (replica), indulge in a decadent meal, peer out of the second story windows that overlook the World Showcase Lagoon, toast with champagne, and dessert is served with an extra sparkle on the plate: the big question, and your token of love. Click here for reservations.

  1. Sunset and cocktails at the Polynesian – Sip on champagne and strawberries against the backdrop of the Seven Seas Lagoon and the beautiful new Bora Bora Bungalows. Take a moonlit stroll along the torch-lined waterfront and visit Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto.

How will you romance the one you love, Disney-style?

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Same-Day Dining Reservations Coming to Jungle Skipper Canteen

posted on February 8th, 2016 by Rachel Bshero, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Greetings, adventurers! I have received exciting news from the depths of the jungle – for a limited time, same-day reservations will be accepted at Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen in Magic Kingdom Park.

From February 12 to 27, Walt Disney World Resort guests will be able to make reservations for either lunch or dinner that same day. Reservations are easy to make, just visit jungleskippercanteen.com or call 407-993-1933.

Don’t be left in “De-Nile,” be sure to take advantage of the limited-time opportunity to be able to plan your adventure to the newest restaurant in Magic Kingdom Park!

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Celebrate Valentine’s Day With Sweet Treats at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 5th, 2016 by Rachel Bshero, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and if you haven’t picked up a gift or made plans yet—don’t worry. There are plenty of sweet ways to show you care with specialty treats at Walt Disney World Resort.

Specialty Pops from The Ganachery at Disney Springs Pre-Packed Box of Ganache from The Ganachery at Disney Springs

At The Ganachery at Disney Springs, you’ll find specialty ganache squares and pops decorated for Valentine’s Day—raspberry enrobed in dark chocolate and passion fruit enrobed in milk chocolate. Surprise your sweetie with a pre-packed box of ganache.

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Perhaps your love’s allegiance lies with The Dark Side. Fear not, these Star Wars-inspired chocolate bars, available in both dark and milk chocolate, are the perfect way to say I love you. (I know.)

Chocolate Raspberry Cupcake from Main Street Bakery at Magic Kingdom Park Black Forest Waffle from Sleepy Hollow at Magic Kingdom Park

In my opinion, Magic Kingdom Park is one of the most romantic places at Walt Disney World Resort, though I may be biased because I met my husband there. Romance your valentine with a chocolate raspberry cupcake from Main Street Bakery, or indulge in the Black Forest waffle with vanilla ice cream at Sleepy Hollow.

Lady and the Tramp Cupcake at Disney's Hollywood Studios Chocolate Cupcake with a Strawberry-Marshmallow Center from Epcot

If cupcakes are the way to your Valentine’s heart, Disney’s Hollywood Studios has a cupcake featuring Lady and the Tramp that is paws-itively adorable. At Fountain View in Epcot, you’ll find a chocolate cupcake with a strawberry-marshmallow center, strawberry butter and a ganache drizzle sure to make your sweetie’s heart melt.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Reservations Now Open for Afternoon Tea at Crescent Solarium at Disney’s Beach Club Resort

posted on February 3rd, 2016 by Rachel Bshero, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


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The elegance of enjoying small bites in an elegant solarium with a warm cup of tea simply can’t be beat. I adore afternoon tea, and am delighted to share the introduction of Afternoon Tea at Solarium Gardens at Disney’s Beach Club Resort. Available on select dates (currently February 11-14, February 18-21, March 24-29, May 5-8, June 16-19, September 1-5), guests have the choice of tea services:

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Sea Side Park Tea
First course featuring a selection of Artisan cheeses and seasonal accompaniments, second course petit sandwiches and canapés on house-made breads, third course scones served with clotted cream, lemon curd and seasonal jam, finale of house-made pastries and tea cookies. Accompanied by your choice of loose-leaf tea.

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Sandy Cove Tea
First course featuring petit sandwiches and canapés on house-made breads, second course features scones served with clotted cream, lemon curd and seasonal jam, house-made pastries and tea cookies. Served with your choice of loose-leaf tea.

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Prince Cove Tea
First course featuring house-made charcuterie and cheese plate, second course scones served with clotted cream, lemon curd and seasonal jam, finale house-made pastries and tea cookies. Accompanied by your choice of loose-leaf tea.

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Short Sands Beach Tea
Guests ages 3-9 can enjoy a first course of assorted tea sandwiches (shaped like Mickey Mouse), second course scone served with clotted cream, lemon curd and seasonal jam, finale chocolate chip cookies. Accompanied with special “dark tea” (chocolate milk).

Fellow lovers of afternoon tea, over at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, look for a brand new selection of Twinings teas at Afternoon Tea, exclusive to Walt Disney Parks & Resorts. Keep checking the Disney Parks Blog to learn more about the new offerings at Garden Vue Tea Room sponsored by Twinings® of London.

Reservations are now available and can be made by calling 407-WDW-DINE.

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Downtown Disney District Celebrates Mardi Gras at the Disneyland Resort with Special Music, Menus at House of Blues and Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen

posted on February 3rd, 2016 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


Tuesday, Feb. 9, is Mardi Gras, and no one knows how to do a family-friendly Mardi Gras celebration like the folks at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen and House of Blues in Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort.

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The Ralph Brennan Restaurant Group has deep roots in the New Orleans French Quarter Mardi Gras tradition. The Mardi Gras menu at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen features such specialties as traditional gumbo, red beans and rice, Creole jambalaya, BBQ shrimp and grits and the famous beignets.

Also on the agenda for Mardi Gras at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen is live music from 6-10 p.m. in both the first- and second-floor dining rooms, a Mardi Gras costume contest at 8 p.m. in the Flambeau Room, free Mardi Gras beads for kids and some Bourbon Street specials at the bar.

Over at House of Blues, the all-ages entertainment lineup starts at 7 p.m. on February 9 and features L.A. Vation, “The World’s Greatest Tribute to U2,” and The Who Generation, “A Tribute to The Who.” Special Big Easy-inspired menu items include a fried catfish po’boy or a plate of fried catfish nuggets.

Let the good times roll or, if you prefer, laissez les bon temps rouler!

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This February, Treat Your Love to Something New at Disney Springs

posted on February 2nd, 2016 by Darcy Clark, Disney Springs Marketing Manager


Valentine’s Day is February 14th, but why limit date night to just one Sunday? I’ve always considered Disney Springs one of the very best spots for a fun night out, whether you’re looking for a treat yo’ self-splurge or something more casual and carefree.

This year, there’s even more to love at Disney Springs, with plenty of new options for romance. Read on for a few of my favorite ideas for couples:

  1. Love is an adventure—especially at Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar: with themed cocktails and inventive small plates, I suggest starting with drinks and splitting an appetizer before moving on to dinner. (This is also a favorite watering hole for late night escapades!)

  1. Do a classic date night better, with dinner at one of our new (or newly expanded!) hot spots: by now, you’ve heard the buzz about Morimoto Asia – it’s in the spotlight for a reason. The exquisitely prepared Pan Asian cuisine pairs perfectly with the upscale ambience of the dining room. I also love their curated beverage menu … the sake sangria is perfect for sharing. On Valentine’s Weekend, make a reservation to enjoy a special prix fixe dinner: $85 per person gets you four courses and features the impressive Morimoto Peking Duck dish. If you prefer the flavors of the Americas, visit Paradiso 37. Here, a new expansion added nearly 500 additional seats, many with waterfront views. The updated wine bar is another nice enhancement. Of course, their menu continues to impress and on Valentine’s Day, couples can enjoy a five-course meal (Grilled Filet Oscar or Seared Black Grouper, anyone?) at $39.99 per person.

  1. Be sweet at The Ganachery: An intimate space showcasing sophisticated ganache made in-house, it’s no surprise that this Disney owned and operated chocolate boutique often has a line to get in. Choose your own favorites among 16 flavors, or pick up a pre-selected assortment of treats hand-picked to create the ultimate Valentine’s gift.

  1. Toast to your better half with a Wine Tasting Cruise at The BOATHOUSE: The newest experience at The Landing ships off Valentine’s Day Weekend. February 12-14, you can enjoy an intimate cruise about The Venezia, a breathtaking 40-ft water taxi. Reservations are required and are limited to 10 guests (groups are welcome!); the cost is $150 per person for the one-hour wine-and-hors d’oeuvers-included voyage, departing at 4:30pm. Call 407-939-2628 to book.

  1. Fall in love with “La Nouba” all over again, thanks to brand-new acts: The breakdancing b-boys will get your heart pumping while a you-need-to-see-it-to-believe-it aerial bamboo act brings pure romance. Though the show is dark on Valentine’s Day, there is plenty of opportunity to catch this classic Cirque du Soleil spectacle with the one you love. Visit the “La Nouba” website or call (407) 939-7600 to purchase tickets.

Which date idea sounds most fun to you? (Though really, why pick just one … February has just begun, so if you plan things just right, you may be able to do all of the above this month—that’s definitely something to love!)

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