We’re reporting to you live from Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort today for this first time since mid-March.
That’s because while the rest of Disney World’s theme parks and hotels will remain closed until further notice, some third-party restaurants and retailers have started reopening today.
We’ve been busy sharing with you our own guest experiences such as parking at Disney Springs, having our temperatures taken, and seeing what some of the recently reopened retail stores have been like inside. Now want to share with you what it’s like to dine at Disney Springs right now. Do note that each location is doing things a little differently!
As a reminder, masks can be removed when sitting and dining at a table service restaurant in Disney Springs.
Table Service Restaurants in Disney Springs
At 11AM, The Boathouse reopened today. We made our reservation over the phone and were given the option to dine inside or outside. Tables were noticeably spaced apart in the main dining room.
The restaurant is also taking walk-up reservations for patio seating and their indoor dining room is limited to 25% capacity. We spotted this sign stating face masks must be worn at all times unless seated at a table.
We sat outdoors where the guest tables had also been spaced apart more than usual. The Boathouse has been using paper menus for some time, but are no longer passing them between guests — our sever even suggested we keep ours as a free souvenir!
The servers at The Boathouse were all wearing masks and gloves. Cutlery was rolled in a cloth napkin while drinks were served in normal glassware with paper straws. We ordered the Jumbo Lump Cake with a side of Truffle Fries.
And the Duck, Duck Razz, of course! Good to note: the bars are not open at The Boathouse yet, but they will make you a drink to go.
We DO love this martini. Can you blame us? Look at that little guy!
Servers were cleaning their own tables in between guests. We asked our server what her experience has been like. She said the restaurant staff was given the choice if they wanted to come back right away, and she was ready to go and is excited to be back. Training packets were sent out a week ago and yesterday team members were brought in for training.
Everyone is being asked to change out their gloves in between tables while cooks in the kitchen have a timer that goes off every 15 minutes reminding them to stop, wash hands, and change gloves.
Frontera Cocina also opened at 11AM today while the staff came in earlier this week for safety training. The restaurant is doing food-to-go and currently accepting reservations. We booked our table in advance on OpenTable and once we arrived, we noticed a new hand sanitizing station for guests and employees at the front of the restaurant.
Frontera Cocina is using both disposable paper menus and digital menus. There’s a QR code at each table that you can scan to view the menu on your smartphone or you may view a paper menu instead. Our server told us paper menus are being thrown out after each use.
Beverages were being served in normal glassware with single-use agave straws. Unlike The Boathouse’s servers, the food runners at Frontera Cocina weren’t wearing gloves.
We ordered the Flautas and the Play with Fire Margarita. Our food was delicious as it always is at Frontera Cocina.
Frontera Cocina is also operating a to-go window where you can pick up eats or sips without the full sit-down experience.
Things were a little different at Frontera Cocina, but the staff was still friendly and the fare was still delicious.
Over at Wine Bar George we saw similar distancing efforts such as markings on the ground to guide the queue for entry.
They also have a To-Go Booth with the full food and beverage menu available for purchase.
The check-in booth at Wine Bar George featured a plexiglass shield for the hosts.
As we were seated we noticed some significant health measures. The restaurant is using digital menus that you access via a QR code. You are also delivered a paper bag to hold your mask and two packaged wipes to clean your hands when you sit down. Standard glassware is used.
George Miliotes was here today! You know him as the “George” part of Wine Bar George. He came and talked to us, telling about how hard it was for him not to be able to smile at customers. Such a nice guy!
We ordered the Burrata and the Saganaki (read: cheese on fire) and they both delighted. We do love us some Wine Bar George.
The servers were wonderful, as always, and took care to follow health measures. We noticed that our server was changing gloves often and he told us that they had undergone a good amount of training.
We had a nice time at Wine Bar George and they have put some thought into following the new health guidelines.
Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill
Our trip to Wolfgang Puck showed us some changes too. We had a reservation, but there was almost an hour-long wait for walk-in guests. We think this is partly due to demand and partly due to the fact that there are fewer, spaced out tables to allow customers to distance.
The restaurant has shifted its menu a bit. Instead of changing menus between lunch and dinner, they have one all-day menu that is slightly reduced. Since the menu is more similar to their dinner menu, they have opted to include more lunch options at the Grab and Go Window outside.
Some more of their health measures include heightened cleaning, sanitizer available at all bus stations, the sanitization of pens between uses, handwashing required anytime a team member enters the kitchen, and the use of gloves.
We opted to try the Bruschetta this time since our server said it was the most popular appetizer, and it did NOT disappoint. Think Caprese salad piled on fresh bread. Yeah, it’s good.
At the To-Go Window, we tried the new Reese’s Cookie, the Banana Pudding Gelato, and the Kakamora Cocktail. Honestly, we’re not sure there is a more perfect dessert.
We’ll be keeping an eye on Wolfgang Puck and the other dining locations to see how health measures develop over the next few days and weeks.
Counter Service Restaurants in Disney Springs
We stopped by Starbucks early this morning and discovered they have a new specialty drink called “Welcome Back!”
It’s a cold drink made from mango, dragonfruit refresher, coconut milk, strawberries, blackberries, and pineapple ginger syrup topped with golden ginger whipped cream!
Instead of guests congregating around the order pick-up window, a friendly Starbucks employee retrieves your order and places it on a table for you to grab while you wait at a safe distance.
Guests were also encouraged to socially distance themselves while waiting in line with some floor decals indicating where guests should stand.
And while Starbucks was selling Reusable Cups today, they aren’t permitting guests to use them at this time. As for payment, they’re still accepting all forms, but we recommend downloading the Starbucks app as a touchless payment option!
We also swung by Joffrey’s Coffee and Tea Company to see how they’re adapting.
There were social distancing markers on the ground to keep guests six feet apart from one another. At Joffrey’s, they fittingly use coffee bean stickers to denote where to stand. There were also designated entrances and exits to keep the flow of traffic moving a certain way.
We were able to confirm that you can walk around Springs with your coffee, you cannot, however, stay and drink your coffee inside of Joffrey’s. They ask that you remove your mask to take a sip or bite, and replace it between sips or bites.
Joffrey’s is still serving a full menu of coffee and donuts when you need a pick-me-up.
You know we love The Polite Pig, so of course, we had to stop by and see how they’re contending with new health measures. Plus, they have a new item on the menu! Like pretty much everywhere, there are stickers on the floor telling guests where to stand.
We also noticed that they had a heightened cleaning protocol. An employee was out wiping down the divider chains while we were there. The interesting touch here was that employees are wearing branded masks!
When ordering, you can opt to use a digital menu through a QR code or you can use a paper menu to be disposed of after use.
A big thing here is that the sauce bar is out of commission. You can still get sauces, but the employees will bring them to you.
We ordered the pork rinds (because they’re NEW) and a gloved employee brought them over to us. Pork rinds and sauce? We’re not sure we’ve had that before but we’re not complaining. They were tasty!
As you can see, all the restaurants we visited have implemented different safety precautions with many following social distancing and sanitation practices. If you have any questions about our dining experiences, please let us know.
What did you think about some of our dining experiences at Disney Springs today? Let us know in the comments below.
From our friends at www.disneyfoodblog.com
Filed Under: Counter-Service, disney merchandise, Disney News, Disney Springs, Featured, Snacks, Table-Service, Walt Disney World, 4 rivers cantina, Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza, Chicken Guy!, Earl of Sandwich, Erin McKenna’s Bakery NYC, Frontera Cocina, gradual reopening, Häagen-Dazs Ice Cream, joffrey’s coffee and tea company, may 20th, phased reopening, Planet Hollywood, quick service restaurants, reopening, STK Orlando, Sunshine Churros, Table Service Restaurants, The Basket, The Boathouse, third party restaurants, Wine Bar George, Wolfgang Puck Bar and Grill, YeSake