Dining at Disney Parks is one of the things I most look forward to when planning my trips. I love to try new restaurants, menu items, and experiences! I find that the restaurants throughout the Disney Parks are all works of Imagineering and Culinary magic, and thrill in inspecting the small details that go into the creation of these unique venues. When Disney announced that they would be opening Be Our Guest in time for the Thanksgiving week crowds I did a Snoopy-style happy dance, and then made sure I was up at dawn to make that reservation. After over an hour on hold I snagged an early seating for Tuesday, November 20th.
So, to borrow a bit from Lumiere, It is with deepest pride and greatest pleasure that I welcome you tonight! I invite you to relax and pull up a chair as I proudly present…my Be Our Guest Restaurant Review!
We arrived early for our 4:50 reservation, and were not seated until just after 5; not bad for the second official day of opening. The entrance to the restaurant is down a path and through a large wrought iron gate, you literally feel like you are in the movie. The huge double doors into the castle are equally as impressive, and when you enter it takes your breath away. Beyond gorgeous. Huge murals, heavy tapestries, soft music, I could go on and on. It is simply stunning. We were escorted through the Ballroom to dine in the West Wing. Walking through the Ballroom the primary thing I noticed was how loud the room was. The height of the ceilings cause all noise to just rise and hang in the air, and with few tapestries to absorb the sound it just echoed off the walls and windows. This does not match the ambiance they are going for, which is sad, and something I hope they can figure out. The snow falling behind the windows is breath-taking, and the color pallette of soft golds and whites, crystal chandeliers and marble floor truly reflect the ballroom of the film.
When we entered into the West Wing the volume diminished significantly, which was quite nice. The atmosphere was much more intimate, as the dining room is significantly smaller. It was interesting to note that most of the families seated in the West Wing had small children. I don’t know if this was intentional, but the families dining in the Ballroom were much more varied in age. The West Wing was decorated in shades of deep blue, purple and grey, with torn tapestries, gargoyles, less elaborate chandeliers and of course, the balcony with the enchanted rose, and the music was often interrupted by the sound of thunder. The portrait of the Prince that hung above the fireplace would change to that of Beast during a particular crescendo in the thunder. It was pretty neat. However, my son was not too happy about the repetitive thunder, and would cover his ears each time it occurred. He was quite taken with the rose though and wanted to stand at the balcony rail to look at it pretty much our entire dinner. The lighting in the West Wing was quite low, and made it difficult to get quality photos, for which I apologize.
Our table was simply decorated with red napkins folded into roses, and simple china. My little guy was quite impressed with the napkins. The menus are lovely with an embossed rose on the front cover. Our party of five ordered quite a sampling from the menu. For appetizers my mother and I chose the French Onion soup, which our waiter told us was a specialty of the house. It was quite good, with an adequate amount of cheese, although after the soup I was hardly hungry for my meal. My dad chose the plate of assorted cured meat & sausages and shared it with all of us. It was very good, however our waiter did not tell us what each one of the samplings was, which left us guessing at several of them. My husband chose the garden salad, and was not really impressed. The lettuce was crisp but there was nothing in it to make it special.
I was most excited about our entrees, and anxious to try a few different things. For my entree I chose the Pan-Seared Salmon on Leek Fondue, served with Saffron-crusted Potatoes. My husband chose the Sauteed Shrimp & Scallops. My mom picked the Grilled Strip Steak, served with Pommes Frites, and I cannot for the life of me remember what my dad ordered. My little guy chose the macaroni noodles with marinara sauce. When our food arrive we were all anxious to dig in, and I am sad to say we were just as quickly disappointed. My mom’s steak was covered in a sort of peppercorn crusting, which she found very, very spicy for her palette My salmon was not very flavorful at all, although I thought the potatoes were alright, and my poor husband discovered that the “seasonal vegetables” in his shrimp and scallops consisted of mushrooms. He is allergic to mushrooms, and never in my life have a heard them referred to as seasonal vegetables, so we were a bit shocked by that. We wound up trading food with me eating the shrimp and scallops, my mom eating the salmon and my husband ate the steak. He found quite a bit of fat in the steak and said the texture was pretty tough. He also agreed with my mom that the pepper flavor was a bit much. My mom prefered the salmon to the steak, but agreed with me that the flavor was pretty weak. I, on the other hand, loved the shrimp and scallops and devoured the entire thing even though I wasn’t hungry. My little boy fell asleep waiting for his macaroni and wound up eating it the next day at our resort. My dad rarely meets a food he doesn’t like…
We decided to skip dessert, as we were stuffed, and to tell the truth the cart of mini desserts didn’t really appeal to us. Plus, by this time my little dude was pretty much done. We did try to “try the grey stuff” and were told that that had been discontinued by the chefs. Sad day.
Periodically throughout dinner the narrators voice comes on announcing that the “Master of the House” is making his way through the castle and will be seeing guests in the library following their dinner. Then the Beast pops into the room, bows and leaves. It happens so fast it is near impossible to get a photo of him. So, after dinner we headed to the Beast’s Library to take a picture with him, which was a nice way to end the meal. The photo is on my photopass card, so I will post it when the card comes in. But, in the meantime here is a photo of the hallway where you exit the library.
My husband and I also ventured into the dining room that is used for lunch and snapped a few pictures. It is a cute room, but definitely nowhere near the themeing or detail of the Ballroom or the West Wing. It reminds me a bit of the main dining area of Tony’s Town Square.
Overall, we were both pleased and disappointed in Be Our Guest Restaurant. I was so excited to dine here, and don’t feel that it quite reached the mark. However, I will happily try it again. The decor enough is worth another visit, and I would like to try a couple of other items on the menu. I would also love to take better photographs!
The entire menu can be viewed by clicking here. In addition you can also find many official Disney photos of the restaurant and food on that page.
I hope you found my review helpful, and I look forward to your own thoughts on Be Our Guest restaurant!