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Favorite off-site restaurants

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#1 Dianna

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 03:51 PM

What are your favorite off-site restaurants at Disney?

 

We enjoy Outback, Olive Garden (better than my local Olive Gardens), a great Japanese steakhouse that feeds you a ton of food (and a show) that's much better than Disney's Teppan Edo (in Epcot's Japan area in the World Showcase) and a lot less expensive, and... and... eekkk... can't remember the rest.

 

The restuarants mentioned above are very close to Disney, and serve such large portions that we're able to bring half back with us for a second meal.

 

I'll post again when I look over my notes to see where else we've eaten. But in the meantime, what your favorite off-site restaurants?

 

Warmly,

Dianna



#2 Robin Harrison Axelberd

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 08:05 PM

We always have to get Giordano's pizza - YUMMY Chicago-style pizza. Right now you can get a $10 certificate for $4 on restaurant.com. I put in zip code 34747. You have to buy $20 worth of food, but that isn't a problem for us.  :D


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#3 Dianna

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 08:19 PM

Robin, we'll have to try that. We usually stick with Pizza Hut, but we're willing to try others!

 

Dianna


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#4 Kaye Franks Moshtael

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:52 AM

We love Giordano's!  Hubby's home is Chicago, and we don't have them in GA, so he likes the chance to get some good deep dish pizza. We'll have to look up the certificates...thanks for the tip.  For dinner shows, we really enjoyed the Mystery Dinner Theater.  It was a lot of fun, small groups so it was intimate and interactive, not like the huge "Arabian Nights" type shows.  I don't really remember if the food was great, but the show was definitely worth it.  Joe's Crab Shack is pretty good, too. This isn't exactly great cuisine, but if you have younger kids it's worth it to take them to the McDonald's on I-Drive at least once, just so they have the memory of going there.  It boasts the world's largest playplace, but be warned...it's mostly arcade games, so bring quarters. My son is 14 now, so too old for it, but everytime we're in Orlando, he talks about going there when he was younger. It made quite an impression. They have a selection that I've never seen at any other McD's, too.  Pizza, pasta, paninis, etc.


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#5 bless9ings

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:24 AM

Thanks Dianna for starting this topic!

 

Please people who have been to Disney and eat off site, post!  I am trying to put together a cost comparison for our family of 9. 

 

We have always done free dining.  Only two times though.  The first time was when it was first offered in fall of 2005.  We were spoiled with the over 100 restaurants, appetizer, entree, drink, dessert and tip included!  We felt like kings and queens, it was the highlight of our trip!  (11 days of trying many restaurants)  The second time was in 2008.  Yes, we could see the decline in service, food, no inclusive tips and no appetizers!  We did still have fun though!  So, I am listening carefully to anything you vetrens that have gone this way have.  Please share!

 

So I need:

 

Restarants you go to.

 

Prices of what your family spends on food total would be nice.

 

Does anyone buy the discount card for eating on Disney? (or whatever it is, it has been quite a while since I researched it)

 

How long does it take to pack all the kids in and go eat off site and get back to a park?  Does it really save time, even with 7 kids? (19, 17, 10, 8, 6, 4, 2)



#6 Dianna

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 12:09 PM

You asked if off-site would save time, and I'd say yes. Disney restaurants are mostly in the parks or resorts. If you're already in the same park or resort, then it would probably be the same amount of time, except for waiting for your reservation to become available. (In my experience, there was always a wait, even with the advanced reservations system.) If you're not already in the same park, you'll have to drive there, park in the parking lot, take the tram, wait in line to enter, then walk to the restaurant (which is sometimes quite a distance from the park entrance). The resort restaurants aren't as bad because you don't have the park/tram issue, but you can never park "near the door" and walk in.  

 

Then the meals themselves off-property are faster, not because of the pacing, but because the restaurant isn't near as crowded, and you don't usually have to wait for your table.

 

This is just based on my experiences of using the free dining for years, then eating off-property for the last two years.

 

Warmly,

Dianna



#7 Leanne Smith

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 04:24 PM

Were a sucker for the buffets..golden corral has steak on its breakfast buffet...we get in, finish and get to the Parks in notime...we also found a great rib joint..they fire it up right in front of you..real downhome BBQ..huge bar and huge Brownie Sundays for dessert..plus my 3 yr old ordered turtle as an appetizer ...yummmm........"wildside" on 192..kissimmee..by Windsor hills..its was great fun after the Parks..@$100.00for 3 people. And good .
http://www.wildsideb.../menu-kissimmee

#8 Dianna

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 04:44 PM

Oh, I'll have to tell my husband about that one, Leanne. It sounds great!



#9 bless9ings

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Posted 23 February 2013 - 12:17 PM

How long does it usually take from when you leave from a park to get to your off site restaurant to back to Disney property? 

 

I have always figured 2 hours for us for a sit down. (from park or from resort to finish.  I always usually plan the parks for the restaurant or what not)  Sometimes a bit less, but not usually because we go to the character meals and usually stay till we have seen the characters 2 or 3 times.  Once in a while it is only once, but most times we average seeing the characters twice.  We do this rather than doing the character lines.  Plus for us it gives the young ones a lot of entertainment while we are eating.  Its nice because it always seems otherwise that the kids finish eating and we have yet to have eaten.  Plus this is a nice downtime for everyone.  So, I guess I don't mind the time it takes.  I eat slow and I like to relax and talk, so it is perfect for us.



#10 Dianna

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Posted 23 February 2013 - 12:59 PM

Blessings, I don't know - I've never timed it, but it's less time than it takes to go to the parks and resorts, even relaxing during our meals (which we also like to do). That said, we didn't plan our parks around our meals. Many of the restuarants we used to eat at were in the World Showcase, so that would've been too many days at Epcot. I hope that makes sense!



#11 Cristin Golden

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 10:48 PM

Hi, just my FYI...I have 4 kids..so eating IS an issue for us ;)
We usually eat a good breakfast and get to the parks. I BRING lunch..even if its PB&J or whatever..then a fruit for a snack and water bottles. We usually cave in and get one snack..fries, icecream...then leave and go cook at hotel or restaurant for dinner. Then go back to parks or stay and swim at hotel.
If we don't do a snack...we do an early dinner AT the parks (splurge!) and then stay as long as the little ones will last.
We ALWAYS make sure that we take the 2nd day "off" to just relax and swim...and save$$ on food out.
Hope this helps!

#12 Michelle Townes Lofton

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 05:53 PM

We always have to get Giordano's pizza - YUMMY Chicago-style pizza. Right now you can get a $10 certificate for $4 on restaurant.com. I put in zip code 34747. You have to buy $20 worth of food, but that isn't a problem for us.  :D

We love Giordano's too!  They've been offering that certificate for a while now, because we used one Sept. 2011!  


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#13 Robin Harrison Axelberd

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 09:46 PM

We love Giordano's too!  They've been offering that certificate for a while now, because we used one Sept. 2011!  

That is TOO funny! I wonder if they ever offer the $25 certificate (or was it $20?). I thought about checking tomorrow since it will be the first of the month thinking maybe they only release a few at the beginning of each month.







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