Disney parks are popular vacation spots with attractions to entertain and delight both the young and young at heart. Beginning mid to late September and flowing into first week of November, guests of the parks can enjoy the themes of Fall and Halloween throughout Disneyland and California Adventures. Here are some of the highlights from my latest trip to the Disney parks.
Top of the list of foods I tried is the crab corn chowder on offer at the Cafe Orleans located between the Pirates of the Caribbean and the Haunted Mansion. A savory corn chowder is stuffed with sweep lumps of crab meat. It is served as a starter and is too delicious to share.
After the chowder, I decided on a main dish, a Three Cheese Monte Cristo. The cheese was melty, gooey, wrapped in a fluffy bread with a crispy, fried exterior topped with a dusting of powdered sugar and served with a side of berry puree to spread or dip your sandwich into. Fresh fruit is also provided to help cut through the richness of the sweet and cheesy goodness on this plate.
This dish is big enough to split between two people with the addition of an order of Pommes Frites, prepared thin cut with Parmesan, garlic and parsley.
A couple more noteworthy bits of information for the Cafe Orleans. It is the only place in the park that serves all you can drink Mint Juleps, one of my personal favorites for those hot days. Secondly, it is recommended to place a reservation ahead of visiting the park. You might get lucky if you show up at 11 am when they open and nab a lunch walk in, but those few openings will fill up fast. If you are in the planning phase of your next trip, use the Disneyland official park app to set reservations in advance.
If you miss out on Cafe Orleans, the next spot over is the French Market Restaurant. Here there is a cafeteria style of service with ample seating beyond the registers. You can enjoy Cajun-Creole styled meals such as a shrimp Po Boy sandwich or a sourdough bowl with clam chowder and select from many of the seasonal desserts on display. Zombie gingerbread cookies, a spider themed chocolate bundt cake and my favorite, the Halloween dessert trio – worms in dirt (very chocolaty!), salted caramel pumpkin cup with a white chocolate coin featuring Jack Skellington and a wee little bite sized pumpkin pie. Just enough dessert to satisfy a sweet tooth or split between two or three people. Drinks can be served in one of many novelty cups celebrating Halloween in their own special way.
Don’t for get to head over to the Haunted Mansion while you are in the area! The ever popular ride is decked out in a Nightmare Before Christmas retelling that places you in the world Tim Burton created.
You will see familiar characters all along your journey. Keep your eyes peeled for Zero’s antics in the paintings hanging in the hallway, smell gingerbread in the ballroom and see the Hatbox Ghost play tricks in the attic. As you leave, Sally will say her fondest fair wells as the silhouette of Santa Jack crosses the moon.
The Haunted Mansion isn’t the only ride to dress up for Halloween! Take the train from New Orleans Square over to Tomorrowland where space travel is imagined in many fun attractions. Here you can encounter the haunted Ghost Galaxy in Space Mountain. The ride looks normal from outside, and all throughout the queue, but once you’ve boarded your ship, you soon find that all is not as well as it seems!
Survive the high speed escape from the clutches of a paranormal plasma poltergeist and head out to the churro cart near the exits for a sweet reward. Of the many flavor options available this time of year, the one I enjoyed the most was the Caramel Green Apple churro. It is a couple dollars more in price, but the green apple flavor the hot churro is rolled in was exactly like biting into a granny smith apple, tart and a little touch of sweet. The caramel sauce comes on the side for dipping.
Well, this concludes my latest visit at Disney parks! I look forward to sharing my future adventures as the seasons change and new events are celebrated. Keep an eye out for my reviews on Disney’s Winter!