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  • Writer's pictureNick Burgess

A Guide to The Best Restaurants in Disney Springs

The old joke in my house is that my favorite Disney theme parks are: 1. Epcot, 2. Disney Springs, and the rest don't matter. Why? Because we love to eat! Disney has mastered the art of unique food, both inside and outside of the theme park, and nowhere is that more on display than Disney's mixed-use dining and shopping area, Disney Springs.


Today, let's take you through the best places to eat in Disney Springs, as ranked by someone that's tried nearly all of them and has some (sometimes controversial) thoughts.


The Best Restaurants in Disney Springs

#1: Morimoto Asia: For the Sushi Lover

As a sushi fan, to me it doesn't get much better than Morimoto Asia. Crafted by Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, is a must-visit for anyone craving high-quality Asian cuisine. The restaurant offers a fusion of Chinese, Japanese, and Southeast Asian dishes in a stunningly modern dining room, along with a really unique upstairs dining area that reminds you of more traditional Asian restaurants.

Signature dishes include the Morimoto Peking Duck, Mongolian Filet Mignon (at some of the highest restaurant prices I've ever seen!), and an exquisite selection of sushi and sashimi. For a unique experience, try the tasting menu, which allows you to sample a variety of flavors. This restaurant has also been flagged by the MICHELIN Guide as one of the region's outstanding restaurants!


#2: Wine Bar George: Not for the Kids

Wine Bar George, led by Master Sommelier George Miliotes, is a paradise for wine enthusiasts. With over 130 wines available by the glass, bottle, and ounce, this establishment offers an unparalleled selection. Accompany your wine with small plates like the Crispy Mac & Cheese, or our personal favorite, the Saganaki on Fire. This is literally a block of cheese that's set on fire in front of you, eliciting envious looks from others in the restaurant.

The pro tip here, and why we included this important note in the title, is that this restaurant is really not for kids. It's a more elevated dining experience than you'll find at most of the other restaurants in Disney Springs, and it doesn't have any "Disney magic" that you might find in other areas. If you're looking for a good choice for the kids, look elsewhere.

#3: Frontera Cocina: Authentic Mexican Cuisine With a Twist

Frontera Cocina, led by celebrity chef Rick Bayless, offers authentic Mexican dishes with a modern twist. The menu features a range of tacos, enchiladas, and signature dishes like the Cochinita Pibil and Carne Asada. The restaurant’s vibrant atmosphere and high-quality ingredients make it a standout choice for those craving Mexican flavors, and the meals are absolutely delicious. Almost as delicious as the signature cocktails that tend to go beyond your standard margarita.

The other critical note on this restaurant is that it's a pretty big footprint. That means that this restaurant is great for big parties! We traveled with my in-laws and Frontera Cocina fit our 10-person party in with no problem.


#4: Raglan Road Irish Pub: Authentic Irish Fare and Entertainment

As the restaurant that your family might most enjoy, Raglan Road Irish Pub brings the spirit of Ireland to Disney Springs with its lively atmosphere, authentic Irish cuisine, and nightly live entertainment.

They have the British staples like fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, and bangers and mash, but the magic here is in the performances by talented musicians and dancers. The pub also knows how to pull a pint, so don't be shy about ordering that Snake Bite while you watch Orlando's version of The Lord of the Dance.


#5: Jaleo: Drinks and a Drone Show

Jaleo is an underrated dining experience in Disney Springs, and for good reason: it's expensive! This isn't you typical full meal you'd expect at Disney with Texas-sized portions. Chef Jose Andres has inserted his signature Spanish style into this table service restaurant, which means this is a tapas-style dining experience. For $79 each, you can experience a 13-course prix fixe menu tapas meal (drinks not included) that contains everything from olive-filled olives (seriously) to Iberian jamon. But the real selling point for this experience? It's a waterfront restaurant.


At time of publishing, Disney has rolled out a new nighttime show in Disney Springs that contains hundreds of drones over the water creating the outlines of your favorite Disney characters. This is currently only running during Summer 2024, but the demand has been so crushing that these waterfront seats are in extremely high demand. 

I'll add a quick note here: with the variety of courses and types of dishes at Jaleo, it could be tough for someone, like myself, with food allergies. The first time you visit, dig into the menu to determine if this could be a good choice for you.

#6: The Boathouse: Waterfront Dining and Amphicar Tours

The Boathouse offers a mix of American cuisine with a focus on fresh seafood. Enjoy dishes like coconut shrimp, lobster rolls, and an extensive raw bar while overlooking the serene waters of Lake Buena Vista. For an added bonus, take a ride in one of their vintage amphicars for a unique tour of Disney Springs from the water, though I personally find this activity to be one of the more overrated experiences at Disney. If you're not dying to do this one, skip it.


#7: Gideon’s Bakehouse: Cookies To Wait In Line For

It's not really a restaurant, but it does belong pretty firmly on this list. If you have a sweet tooth, Gideon’s Bakehouse is a must-visit. Known for its half-pound cookies and cakes, this bakery is a favorite among dessert lovers. The cookies come in a variety of flavors, each loaded with chocolate chips, nuts, or other delectable add-ins.

Be prepared for a long line, as these treats are incredibly popular, but the wait is well worth it. And when we say "long line," we mean like "Magic Kingdom waiting to see a character" long. If you're looking for an alternative, Summerhouse On The Lake has half of their restaurant dedicated to grab-and-go cookies, and the line tends to be much shorter. Then you can go check out the live music or the drone show, cookie in hand!


#8: STK Orlando: A Modern Steakhouse

STK Orlando blends the charm of a traditional steakhouse with the energy of a chic lounge. The menu features a variety of steaks, seafood, and sides, all served in a stylish setting. Don’t miss the rooftop dining area, which offers beautiful views of Disney Springs. This is a perfect spot for a romantic dinner or a night out with friends.


The downside? It's STK. If you've been to a big city (Miami, New York, LA, Atlanta, Dallas), you've seen an STK. It's not different here, so don't think this will be a new restaurant experience for you if you're an out-of-towner. It's good food, but a bit boring.

#9: Earl of Sandwich: For the Picky Eaters

​If you have a cranky child who is over it, done, fed up (sounds like me after a day following my wife around Hollywood Studios), then this might be your best bet. A very easy grab-and-go sandwich shop with outdoor seating, the variety is enough to where you won't get bored, but simple enough for the picky eater in your life that just wants the white bread and ham special. Mercifully for the parents, they also serve booze. You're welcome.


Considered But Not Included

Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’: Southern Comfort Food

Here's the restaurant I'm going to catch some heat for: Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’. Will this be on every other Disney Springs best-of list you'll read on the internet? Definitely. So why isn't it on mine?

This restaurant is aggressively southern, with dishes like fried chicken, shrimp and grits, and Hummingbird Cake. That means that this restaurant is also heavy handed with salt and butter, two turn-offs of mine when it tastes like I'm eating a salt lick with the other horses in the stable. My in-laws, lovers of Southern food themselves, adore this place, so I definitely won't call it bad. It's just not for me.


Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza: Custom Pizzas Made to Order

Chalk this one up to a fat "who cares." LeBron's own Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza offers a quick and delicious option for pizza lovers, but it's no different to what you have at the strip mall at home. You can customize your own pizza with a wide range of toppings, or choose from their signature creations. The interactive assembly-line format allows you to see your pizza being made fresh, and the fast-casual setting makes it a convenient stop while exploring Disney Springs. If a grab-and-go pizza and some live music is your thing, then Blaze might just check your boxes.


Conclusion

Disney Springs is home to some of the best dining experiences in the Walt Disney World Resort, and is one of my favorite areas to visit when we make the trek to Orlando. Whether you’re looking for fine dining, casual bites, or a place with live entertainment, there’s something for everyone. Be sure to check out these top restaurants on your next visit to Disney Springs to enjoy a memorable culinary adventure.

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