Saturday, June 4, 2011

In Praise of a Bowl of Soup

Don't get me wrong. Mrs. DisneyTraverler and I love to go the Blue Bayou when we make our trips to Disneyland. The ambiance and experience of eating in that magical setting is second to none. But the expense and limited menu selections (almost none of it appealing to the aforementioned Mrs. Disneyland Traveler) make our visits to the Blue Bayou only an occasional event. Save a couple of bucks and walk over across the way from the Blue Bayou and go to the Cafe Orleans - pretty good food and the Pommes Frites (that's garlic fries in English) are to die for. Strangely enough, we also enjoy the other table service restaurant in Disneyland as well - the Big Thunder Bar-B-Que once Disney got wise and figured out it was over-charging everyone when the all-you-can fixed menu outdoor restaurant first opened and people chose to stay away in droves.

And that leads us to the last of the table service restaurants (excluding the members only Club 33), the Carnation Cafe, a Main St. fixture thats been around almost as long as the park has been opened. It features a pretty standard breakfast and lunch menu that is limited but is always good. And the price is extremely reasonable, right in line with the better counter service dining facilities in the park. And you'll have a pretty good chance to meet "Chef" Oscar who probably doesn't do a whole of cheffing but greets everyone with warmth and charm. He is the longest serving castmember in the park going on 55 years now. We always visit the Carnation Cafe on our trips.

As mentioned, the food is quite good and the service is excellent. We usually go for lunch having made the reservation in advance. The  actual hours of operation seems to fluctuate with the season - generally opened for breakfast when the park opens a closes when it starts to get dark. Great sandwiches, nice big featured salad, excellent pot pies, and a very generous helping of meatloaf are all present on the menu. But it all starts with a bowl of soup, loaded baked potato soup to be exact, the best soup I have ever had anywhere, anytime. Mrs. DisneylandTravel probably agrees and we generally don't agree on anything. Yeah, the amount of calories contained in that delectable bowl of goodness would throw your family doctor into fit if he/she found out, buts worth it. So good. We have several must do's when we hit Disneyland but enjoying that bowl of soup is somewhere near the top.

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