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Disney Parks Blog Readers Get an Early Taste of the Re-imagined California Grill

Thomas Smith

by , Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

The night before the official debut of the re-imagined California Grill, we hosted our first resort-based Disney Parks Blog meet-up and offered readers an early opportunity to experience the restaurant, taste the new dishes and meet the chefs behind the amazing flavors.

Disney Parks Blog Readers Get an Early Taste of the Re-imagined California Grill

We kicked things off at Disney’s Contemporary Resort with hor d’oeuvres before Chef Brian Piasecki invited everyone into the dining room to taste the food. Some of the choices were Hand Carved Oak Fired Filet of Beef with Heirloom Tomato Risotto, Pacific Coast Halibut with Parsnip Silk and Pork Two Ways – Grilled Tenderloin with Goat Cheese Polenta and Lacquered Belly with Country Applesauce. Everyone had a favorite dish.

During the night, Chef Brian and Chef Jeff Barnes also interacted with readers and talked about the different menu items and flavors while a DJ played background music in the main dining room. Debbie Petersen from Walt Disney Imagineering also talked with guests about the details of the restaurant.

Disney Parks Blog Readers Get an Early Taste of the Re-imagined California Grill

After dinner, the new desserts at California Grill took center stage. And probably the most talked about treat was Pastry Chef Jeff Barnes’ favorite – the Sundae Sampler, a trio with a Coke float, strawberry sundae and caramel corn sundae.

Disney Parks Blog Readers Get an Early Taste of the Re-imagined California Grill

To end the meet-up, the lights dimmed and everyone enjoyed my favorite view of the Wishes Nighttime Spectacular from the California Grill balcony.

Thank you to everyone who attended last night’s event. As always, it was wonderful meeting so many new readers and fans of the Disney Parks Blog. And a few of you asked about making future reservations last night, so here’s the information – visit or call 407-WDW-DINE (3463).

Be sure to keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog for information about our next meet-up opportunity.


  • Can’t wait! We, hopefully, will be in WDW in 3 weeks. We have reservations at California, Artist Pointe and Monsieur Paul’s. As the daughter of a chef and the wife of a former chef, we can’t wait. Though, my husband’s favorite restaurant remains Victoria & Alberts. Some of my dad’s culinary students recently did an internship at Artist Pointe so he is looking fwd to going. My husband and I went back in January, we haven’t been to California since last Oct and we haven’t been to Monsieur Pauls since last February when it was still Bistro de Paris. My dad actually met Chef Paul many years ago.

  • Love the Mary Blair inspired new look! Can’t wait to see it (and taste 🙂 it for myself in a couple of months.

  • Disney has many great upscale resort restaurants on property, but IMO, I wish they all could be California Grills.
    (Sorry, I had to say it. 😉 )

  • Outstanding food. Awesome people. Wonderful CM’s. A fantastic time had by all, even the cool guy at 1:33.

  • Had such a wonderful time. The food was very delicious. Thank You so much.

  • The social media team truly outdid themselves at this event. Many many thanks to all involved. I will absolutely be back – I’m still dreaming of that filet & tomato butter sauce.

  • Thank you again for hosting this wonderful meet-up! Sidney and I had a fantastic evening with good friends and great food.

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