By Tonga Princess Diva
While planning our December honeymoon we decided we wanted to celebrate our one week anniversary — yes we were starry eye newlyweds basking in the Mr. and Mrs. glory (giggle)! We began researching Signature Restaurants; scouring to find the most tantalizing menu options, romantic atmosphere, and best bang for our $$$$ buck!
We were on the Dining Plan and fully understood signature restaurants are two dining credits per person. In other words, we knew we would be sacrificing a table service dinner during the week or paying for one of us out-of-pocket the night of our celebration. We set a budget, both money and dining plan credit wise.
Diva Tip: 1) Consider budget including dining plan points, and goal of the meal to avoid eaters remorse, and a set up for disappointment. 2) Loop your server in on our dining plan needs so they know how to the split bill if necessary.
We have found that not all restaurant reviews are created equal. We take a mix of reviews from sources like Trip Advisor, blogs like our very own restaurant reviews here on Tips From The Disney Diva, Disney foodies podcasts like Geekin’ On WDW, and the Walt Disney World website. This gives a well-rounded picture in our opinion. Diva Tip: Consider your parties needs, wants and limitations. Do littles need devices that may disrupt other guest? Are you like me and have a hard time hearing with a lot of background noise making conversation hard? Are you seeking a romantic evening?
We also knew we would be tired after 8 days of park hopping. In other words, we wanted easy travel from the Polynesian the night of our dinner. To us that meant it needed to be on the monorail loop. Our choices quickly narrowed to Le Cellier Steakhouse, Narcoossee’s, Citricos and California Grill. Talk about hard choices! Le Cellier Steakhouse was the first to go. Why? We went there on a recent trip making it feel not so “special” and it was the farthest away. California Grill was next to fall off the short list. I had an inkling it may be a bit over-rated and knew we would have had our fill of the Contemporary Resort having stayed at Disney’s Bay Lake Tower for the first three nights of our Disneymoon. Boy was I reassured by inkling after hearing Michelle’s recent review on the Disney Dream Girls Podcast.
Diva Tip: Whether a special meal or not consider travel mode and time. Especially as your trip is nearing a close when transfers and crowded buses may not feel as magical as they did at the beginning of your trip.
We are down to two choices – Citricos and Narcoossee’s. Can you say nail biter?! Ultimately, it came down to me wanting to catch the fireworks if we were still eating and my husband loves lobster. Narcoossee’s menu is lobster loving diva or devo’s dream! Advanced Dining Reservation (ADR) made! I had 60ish day to wonder if we made the right choice or if we wold have eaters remorse.
At the beginning of our Disneymoon we spent the first day Deluxe resort hopping to see all the Christmas decorations and gingerbread displays. While at the Grand Floridian we decided to enjoy a cocktail and meandered into the Citricos lounge. I will admit, I was a little nervous it would dazzle me and make me question our choice. No worries. I found there is very little separating the lounge and restaurant giving it a less intimate. We also quickly noticed the noise volume. To say the least, it was loud and would not have lent to a romantic evening. I think it gets a bit more traffic due to being in the resort. Diva Tip: Be flexible! No matter how much planning and research you do things do not always pan out. It is okay to adjust ADR’s on the fly!
Keep an eye our for part two where I will share our special evening. Spoiler Alert – We didn’t regret one scrumptious morsel of our choice!
Planning your very own Disneymoon or Disney Trip? Contact Patricia at All 4 Dreams Travel to help you plan our trip!