Sunset Over the Tree of Life at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Disney Cruise Line Summer Recipe: Tomato Cake

posted on July 23rd, 2014 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


The recipe I’m sharing today is for our Tomato Cake, the perfect appetizer for a light, summer meal. Chances are you already have most of the ingredients in your kitchen, so why not try it tonight? Eating like you’re on a Disney cruise is definitely the best remedy for those days when you’re wishing you could be at sea with us.

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Check out the full recipe below and download our keepsake recipe card here. Enjoy!

Tomato Cake
Serves: 4
Skill Level: Moderate
Time: 6 hours

Ingredients
Tomato Cake

  • 12 plum tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup tomato ketchup
  • 1 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper

Dressing

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp. dijon mustard
  • ½ lemon, juice

Goat Cheese

  • ½ cup goat cheese
  • ¹/³ cup whipping cream
  • ¼ lemon, juiced

Garnish

  • 3 shallots, sliced into rings and halved
  • 1 tbsp. picked curly parsley
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper

For the Tomato Cake

  1. Make an incision in the top and base of each tomato. Blanch in boiling salted water for 2 minutes until the skin starts to loosen. Then submerge in salted ice water. Then peel the skin off each tomato, cut into quarters and remove the seeds.
  2. Season the tomato quarters with salt and pepper.
  3. Layer ¼ of the tomatoes in a 2-inch ring, adding a half teaspoon of tomato ketchup mixed with the ground cardamom between each layer. Work your way to the top of the ring and layer 2 cm over the top; cover with plastic wrap and place onto a plate.
  4. Add another plate on top, placing a couple cans over the top plate to add weight to the “press.”
  5. Refrigerate at least 5 hours.

For the Dressing

  1. Place all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk together.

For the Goat Cheese

  1. Mix all the ingredients together.

Assembly

  1. Remove any of the tomato that has been pressed out over the side of the ring with a knife. Press the tomato cake into the center of the plate, layer the shallots around, spoon the dressing onto the shallots and garnish with the picked parsley. Top the cake with a quenelle of goat cheese and sprinkle with ground black pepper.

For more summer recipes from Disney Cruise Line, click the links below:

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New Epcot Cookbook to Feature All Three Festivals

posted on July 21st, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


You can’t buy a copy until September, but we wanted to give blog readers a sneak peek at the new Epcot cookbook that debuts just in time for the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (September 19-November 10). Instead of an annual cookbook just for that festival, the new book – even the title is still in the working stages – will feature, for the first time ever, recipes from Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, winter’s Holidays Around the World and the springtime Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival.

Here’s a picture of Disney photographer Matt Stroshane and stylist Laurel Ainley as they shot the new food photos for the book. Long days and lots of prep create pretty dishes we hope will make you hungry.

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Meanwhile, here’s a few photos from the book and one of our favorite recipes from this year’s Epcot International Food & Wine Festival to get you started.

Grilled Verlasso Salmon with Quinoa Salad and Arugula Chimichurri
Serves 6

Salmon
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
6 (5- to 6-ounce) Verlasso salmon fillets, skin removed

Chimichurri Sauce
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, including stems, coarsely chopped (about 1 cup)
2 cups coarsely chopped fresh arugula
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup packed fresh mint leaves
3 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
Coarse salt, freshly ground pepper, to taste

Quinoa Salad Dressing
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lime juice
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Coarse salt, freshly ground pepper, to taste

Quinoa Salad
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa, cooked per instructions (makes approximately 3 cups cooked), cooled
1/2 red pepper, diced
1/2 green pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
1 small tomato, diced
1/4 cup corn kernels
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
Coarse salt, freshly ground pepper, to taste

For salmon:

  1. Combine garlic salt, lemon juice, and olive oil in small bowl. Place salmon in large zip-top bag and add liquid, turning fillets to evenly coat.
  2. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Remove salmon from refrigerator at least 10 minutes before cooking.
  3. Preheat oven to 400˚ F. Cover 15 x 10-inch baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray. Place salmon on baking sheet in a single layer, evenly spaced.
  4. Bake 15 minutes or until the salmon easily can be flaked apart with a fork.

For chimichurri sauce:

  1. Place all ingredients in blender or food processor. Blend for about 10 seconds on medium speed or until ingredients are evenly blended. Season with salt and pepper. Store in a sealed container and refrigerate until ready to use.

For quinoa salad dressing:

  1. Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

For quinoa salad:

  1. Mix all ingredients together in large bowl and toss with Quinoa Salad Dressing.

To serve:

  1. Equally divide Quinoa Salad between serving plates, top with salmon fillet and drizzle with Chimichurri Sauce.

Cook’s note: Verlasso salmon is sustainable and farm-raised; you can use any fresh, high-quality salmon in this recipe.

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Disney Cruise Line Summer Recipe: Cajun Shrimp Slaw

posted on July 15th, 2014 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


If you’ve been on a Disney cruise, there’s no doubt you’ve noticed the variety of cuisines available for you to try. Part of the fun of traveling is experiencing new things, which we make possible for our guests in many ways … including dining!

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Today’s dish is Cajun-inspired, so its preparation is simple. Just toss all of the flavorful ingredients together for a delicious Louisiana-style meal!

Check out the full recipe below and download our keepsake recipe card here. Enjoy!

Cajun Shrimp Slaw with Louisiana Sauce
Serves: 6
Skill Level: Easy
Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1⁄2 white cabbage (finely shredded)
  • 5 21–25 shrimp (cooked and peeled)
  • 1 white onion (finely sliced)
  • 
1 carrot (shredded)
  • 
1 tsp. horseradish sauce
  • 
3 drops Worcestershire sauce
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1⁄4 cup tomato ketchup
  • 1 tsp. cajun spice
  • 
6 drops Tabasco sauce
  • 3 tbsp. roasted peanuts
  • 1 lime (juiced)
  • 1 tbsp. curly parsley (chopped)
  • salt and pepper
  • 
1 tsp. picked dill for garnish

For the Cajun Shrimp Slaw

  1. Place all the ingredients into a bowl and gently toss together.
  2. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Chill before serving.

For more summer recipes from Disney Cruise Line, click the links below:

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Disney Cruise Line Summer Recipe: Guava Glazed Barbecue Ribs

posted on July 8th, 2014 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


I hope you’re enjoying our summer recipes series from Disney Cruise Line. If you aren’t sailing with us this summer, you may as well eat like you are!

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Today’s recipe is for our Guava Glazed Barbecue Ribs. The delicious 24-hour marinade is made with a variety of herbs and spices and is the perfect complement to our sweet guava barbecue sauce. These ribs are a must for your next summer party!

You can also download our keepsake recipe card here. Enjoy!

Guava Glazed Barbecue Ribs
Serves: 4
Skill Level: Easy
Time: 24 hours

Ingredients

Marinade

  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 
3 tbsp. cilantro (chopped)
  • 
3 tbsp. oregano (chopped)
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin

  • 1 tsp. cracked black pepper
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar

  • 3 garlic cloves (crushed)
  • 
2 bay leaves

  • 1⁄2 cup water
  • 
1 rack pork spareribs

Guava Barbecue Sauce

  • 1 cup guava puree

  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
  • 3⁄4 cup clear honey

For the Rib Marinade

  1. Place all the ingredients, except the water and bay leaves, in a blender.
  2. Blend until smooth, place into a mixing bowl and add the bay leaves and water.
  3. Pour the mixture over the ribs so both sides are covered and marinate for a minimum of 24 hours.

For the Guava Sauce

  1. Mix ingredients together.

For the Ribs

  1. Transfer the ribs and the marinade to a roasting pan*, cover and place into a preheated oven at 270 degrees. Roast for 1.5 hours.
  2. Remove the ribs from the marinade and place onto another baking tray, brush with the guava barbecue sauce and place back into the oven. Roast for 25 minutes at 340 degrees until cooked through and glazed.
  3. Remove and rest for 10 minutes, then carve.

*Can also be done in a covered barbecue grill.

For more summer recipes from Disney Cruise Line, click the links below:

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Celebrating July 4th With Disney Cruise Line

posted on July 4th, 2014 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Happy Fourth of July! We know that holidays are when many families reconnect and spend time together, which is why we work to make them special for those celebrating onboard with us.

Today, it’s not just our ships adorned with red, white and blue…

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Up on deck, we’re throwing a special party, complete with streamers, American flags and patriotic music, plus a special performance by Mickey and the gang! Kids can get their faces painted, join in on arts and crafts and help decorate the youth clubs in red, white and blue.

We’re even serving patriotic food and beverages, including blueberry muffins with red, white and blue icing for breakfast, an American themed buffet for lunch and additional All-American selections for dinner. Our drinks of the day are “The American” and “BlueBerry Lemon Ice Tea.”

If you weren’t able to join us onboard today, make yourself one of these refreshing drinks and say “cheers” with your family to your next Disney cruise!

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The American

  • 1 ½ oz White Tequila
  • ½ oz St Germain Elderflower
  • Dash of Watermelon Syrup
  • ¼ oz Agave Nectar
  • ½ oz fresh lime juice
  • Garnish- watermelon skewers

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BlueBerry Lemon Ice Tea

  • Exotic Berry Ice Tea
  • Fresh Berries (muddled)
  • Top with Sprite
  • Garnish: Berries
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Disney Cruise Line Summer Recipe: Summer Pudding

posted on July 1st, 2014 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


I don’t know about you, but whenever I think about summer desserts, fresh berries and cream always come to mind. If you’re searching for that perfect treat to bring to your July 4th celebration, I have the perfect one for you. Our summer pudding with berry compote is light and refreshing and has just enough sweetness to be the talk of the party!

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Download our keepsake recipe card here, and be sure to multiply the ingredient amounts if you’re serving several people. Enjoy!

Summer Pudding with Berry Compote
Serves: 4
Skill Level: Moderate
Time: 5 hours

Ingredients

  • 8 white bread slices (crust off, cut into triangles lengthwise—2 slices per soufflé)
  • 11⁄4 cups fresh strawberries (cut into quarters)
  • 11⁄4 cups fresh black berries
  • 1⁄2 cup fresh blueberries
2 cups fresh raspberries
  • 11⁄2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 oz. clotted cream

For the Summer Pudding

  1. Place 3⁄4 cup sugar and 5 tbsp. of water into a large pan. Gently heat until sugar dissolves. Stir a few times. Bring to a boil for 1 minute and then place in the fresh berries. Cook for 5 minutes over a low heat, stirring 2–3 times. The fruit will be softened, mostly intact and surrounded by dark red juice. Set aside.
  2. Line a soufflé dish with plastic wrap. Place 4 triangle-shaped bread pieces around the inside of the soufflé dish with the pointed side facing the bottom of the dish. This creates a bread bowl. Allow the top edge of the bread pieces to extrude above the top of the dish, which will form the bottom of the pudding.
  3. Scoop the berry mixture with juice into the bread bowl, allowing the juice to soak the bread.
  4. Fill and then bend over the top ends of the bread triangles. Pull the plastic wrap together over the top, forming a seal. Repeat for the other 3 soufflé dishes. Place a tray over the top of the souffle dishes for weight and chill in fridge for 3–4 hours.
  5. Place the rest of the berry mixture back on the stove with 3⁄4 cup sugar in a large pan. Heat the mixture until it starts to boil. Simmer for two minutes, let cool and then refrigerate.

Assembly

  1. Release the plastic wrap, flip the soufflé dish upside down and place the pudding in the middle of a plate. Spoon the berry compote over the top of the pudding, letting the berries run down onto the plate. Then decorate with fresh berries around the pudding, some micro-mint to give contrast and a quenelle of clotted cream onto the top.
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Disney Cruise Line Summer Recipe: Seafood Paella

posted on June 24th, 2014 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


This summer, Disney Magic cruisers are in for a special treat as we sail away from Barcelona. Out on the open-air deck, we’re cooking up an incredibly delicious, Spanish-inspired dish – seafood paella!

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Fresh clams, mussels, chicken, chorizo and prawns are just some of the ingredients mixed in with our specialty saffron-infused bomba rice to give this dish an unbelievable amount of flavor.

Even if you aren’t sailing in Europe with us this summer, you can still bring a taste of the Mediterranean into your home with this mouthwatering Disney Cruise Line recipe. You can also download our keepsake recipe card here. Enjoy!

Seafood Paella
Serves 8
Skill Level: Moderate
Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/3 pound chicken tenders (3⁄4” dice)
  • 1 tsp. paprika spice

  • 4 garlic cloves (crushed)

  • 1⁄2 pound chorizo sausage (5” slice)
  • 1⁄2 cup olive oil
  • 13⁄4 cup paella rice

  • 1⁄2 Spanish/yellow onion (finely diced)

  • 1 1⁄2 cups fish stock

  • 1 1⁄2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 1⁄2 cups tomato juice
  • 2 beef tomatoes (seeded, skinned and finely diced)
  • 1 tsp. saffron threads

  • 3⁄4 cup green peas

  • 3⁄4 cup tiger shrimps (peeled)
  • 3⁄4 cup scallops (10–20)

  • 3⁄4 cup squid (1⁄4” slice)

  • 3⁄4 cup mussels

  • 3⁄4 cup small clams (like littleneck clams)

  • 3⁄4 cup lobster tail (3⁄4” slice)

  • 1 tbsp. salt ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 tbsp. flat-leaf parsley (roughly chopped)

Saffron Aioli

  • 1⁄4 tsp. saffron threads

  • 4 garlic cloves (crushed)
  • 2 tbsp. white wine

  • 3⁄4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice

Red Pepper Rouille

  • 1 roasted red bell pepper (peeled and deseeded)
  • 1 garlic clove (roasted)

  • 1 tsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1⁄2 cup mayonnaise
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper

For the Seafood Paella

  1. Toss chicken tenders with paprika spice and one chopped garlic clove in a bowl. Chill for 4 hours.
  2. Sear both sides of the scallops, then set aside. Sauté the chorizo, chicken and lobster in 1⁄4 cup of olive oil. Once cooked medium well, place onto a paper towel and set aside.
  3. Pour the remainder of the olive oil into the pan and bring to temperature to gently sauté the onion and the rest of the garlic. Once the onion is transparent, add the rice.
  4. Gradually add the HOT chicken and fish stock (a little at a time while continually stirring). Then add the tomato juice and chopped tomatoes. Once the rice is 3⁄4 cooked through, add the scallops, chorizo, chicken, lobster and remaining ingredients (except the flat parsley, clams and mussels). Continue stirring.
  5. Once the stock has been absorbed and the rice is cooked, stir in the peas and flat parsley. Lay the clams and mussels on top of the rice and cover with a clean napkin.
  6. The heat of the paella will open the shellfish.

For the Saffron Aioli

  1. Place the saffron threads into the white wine and reduce by half, let cool, then mix with the remaining Ingredients.

For the Red Pepper Rouille

  1. Blend the roasted red bell pepper, roasted garlic and red wine vinegar in a food processor. Mix with the mayonnaise and season with the cayenne pepper.
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Savoring the Flavors of the Mediterranean with Disney Cruise Line

posted on June 19th, 2014 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


Savoring the Flavors of the Mediterranean with Disney Cruise Line
One of the Disney differences you’ll find when sailing with us is that we use the destinations we visit as inspiration for our menus. Last week I shared with you how Disney Wonder guests are enjoying a special Taste of Alaska this summer, and today, I want to tell you about the flavors of the Mediterranean Disney Magic cruisers are experiencing.

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Just like in Alaska, we use locally sourced products while sailing in Europe. Depending on where we are in the Mediterranean, we have themed menus like “Kouzina of the Greek Isles” and “Bella Italia” that feature culinary offerings specific to those countries. One of my favorite Mediterranean-inspired dishes is our braised osso bucco “Milanese” with gremolata, saffron risotto and bone marrow-reduction.

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Specifically on cruises that visit Greece, we serve spanakorizo me garides, a delicious jumbo shrimp with sun-dried tomato orzo pasta. Another popular Greek dish is our roasted dorade on spanakorizo, a short-grain rice with cinnamon, spinach and feta cheese.

Throughout the summer, I’ll be sharing recipes for some of our guest favorite dishes so you can make them at home. Today, I’ll leave you with the recipe for our Italian-inspired Potato Gnocchi with Cep Mushrooms. You can also download our keepsake recipe card here. Enjoy!

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Potato Gnocchi with Cep Mushrooms
Serves: 4 Guests
Skill Level: Moderate
Time: 50 minutes
Ingredients:
Homemade potato dumplings
1 white potato
1 egg
1⁄2 tsp. salt
2 cups plain white flour 3 qt. water

White Wine Cream Sauce
18 fl.oz white wine
3 shallots (finely diced)

1 stalk celery (finely diced)

1⁄2 leek (washed and finely diced)
11⁄2 cups heavy cream

11⁄2 cups vegetables stock

2 tbsp. chives (finely sliced)

1 tbsp. unsalted butter

Garnish
11⁄2 cups cep mushrooms

2 tbsp. white truffle oil

1/3 cup fresh parmesan (shaved)
1 tsp. picked thyme

4 tbsp. unsalted butter

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. ground black pepper

Homemade Potato Dumplings:
Place potato in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 15–20 minutes or until tender. Drain and mash. Place 2 cups mashed potatoes in a large bowl (save any remaining mashed potatoes for another use). Stir in the egg and 1 teaspoon salt. Gradually beat in flour until blended (dough will be firm and elastic). Turn onto a lightly floured surface; knead 15 times. Roll into 1⁄2-in.-wide ropes. Cut ropes into 1-inch diagonal pieces. Press down with a lightly floured fork. In a thick-bottomed pan, bring water and remaining salt to a boil. Add gnocchi in small batches; cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until gnocchi float to the top and are cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and place into salted iced water. Then drain and keep on a wet cloth.

For the White Wine Cream Sauce:
Melt the butter in a thick-bottomed pan; sauté the shallots, celery and leek. When shallots are soft (no color), add the white wine and vegetable stock, then reduce by two-thirds. Add the heavy cream and reduce by one-third, season with salt and ground black pepper and pass through a fine strainer.

For the Garnish and Assembly
Sauté the mushrooms in butter; season with salt, ground black pepper and thyme. Set aside. Mix (dress) the gnocchi with the white wine cream sauce and place into a serving bowl. Place the sautéed mushrooms onto the gnocchi, garnish with the shaved parmesan and lightly drizzle the truffle oil on the gnocchi.

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Meal in a Bowl From Jolly Holiday Bakery Café at Disneyland Park

posted on June 10th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


It’s “just a salad” on the menu, but the Roasted Vegetable and Whole-Grain Salad at Jolly Holiday Bakery Café at Disneyland park is really a complete meal: deliciously sweet roasted veggies, protein-packed spelt and barley, fresh greens and a drizzle of basil vinaigrette make this a hearty lunch or supper.

Chef Craig Orrell shows how it’s done – give yourself plenty of time to chop and roast the zucchini, yellow squash, onion and red peppers. And throw in some cloves of garlic to roast for the vinaigrette. It’s the sort of prep you can do on a Sunday night and enjoy this salad more than once throughout a busy week.

Roasted Vegetable and Whole-Grain Salad – Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe at Disneyland Park
Serves 8

Basil Vinaigrette

  • 2 cups fresh basil, packed
  • 2 tablespoons roasted garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Whole Grain

  • 1 cup barley
  • 1 cup spelt
  • 6 cups vegetable stock

Vegetables

  • 1 large zucchini
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 large yellow squash
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • Coarse salt, freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 small heart of romaine, chopped
  • 1/2 small head iceberg, cored and chopped
  • 14-ounce bag spring lettuce mix

For basil vinaigrette:

  1. Place basil, garlic, vinegar, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped.
  2. With processor running, slowly stream in oil, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides. Process until well combined. Remove from blender and set aside.

For whole grains:

  1. Bring vegetable stock to a boil in a large pot. Stir in barley and spelt; reduce heat to low, cover and cook 1 hour, or until grains are tender, stirring occasionally.
  2. Remove from heat and drain in colander. Toss with half of vinaigrette in a large bowl. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

For vegetables:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Cut zucchini, bell pepper, squash, and onion into 2-inch pieces. Toss with oil, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Spread on baking sheets and roast 10 to 15 minutes, or until tender. Remove from oven and cool.
  3. To serve, toss lettuces with remaining vinaigrette. Top with grains and roasted vegetables.

Chef’s note: To make roasted garlic for vinaigrette, preheat oven to 400°F. Peel away outer layers of garlic skin, leaving cloves intact. Using a knife cut off 1/4- to 1/2-inch of top of cloves, exposing individual cloves of garlic. Rub head of garlic with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, wrap in foil and roast until garlic is soft, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Squeeze roasted garlic from skins.

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A Disney Cruise Line Cocktail You Only Can Savor at Palo

posted on June 10th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


What a pleasure to head to the top deck of the Disney Magic for dinner at elegant Palo, where Italian specialties are beautifully prepared in the onstage kitchen. From a plate of beautiful charcuterie served with warm bread from the pizza oven to a sweet finish of chocolate soufflé, Palo is a leisurely dining experience not to be missed (ages 18 and older).

We can easily recommend the house-made pastas (the lobster ravioli with mascarpone cream is divine), the grilled seas scallops, the garlic-roasted rack of lamb … Palo’s diverse menu has something for everyone, and the chef will happily accommodate vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free requests.

Here’s a new pre-dinner cocktail that we couldn’t resist. It’s one to sip slowly, with a sublime sweetness from the berries and a little tartness from the aged balsamic vinegar. Make sure you use aged balsamic for a more intense, complex flavor.

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Balsamic Grande Cocktail
Serves 1

  • 5 fresh strawberries, divided
  • 1 1/2 ounces agave nectar
  • 1/2 ounce balsamic vinegar (aged 8 years)
  • 5 ounces Grey Goose Vodka

Muddle strawberries with agave and balsamic vinegar in a mixing glass. Add vodka and ice; shake and strain into chilled martini glass.

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