My girls and I were fortunate to be among the first guests to experience the all-new Artist Point Storybook Dining at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. Here’s a full review of the setting, the menu, the service and the character interaction.
Disney’s Artist Point has always been a favorite for my wife and me. We would visit the restaurant as a respite from the noise of the parks and other restaurants. It was usually a quiet place with delicious food. A few months back, Disney announced that our quite date night locale would be transformed into a character meal experience. Here’s what my girls and I experienced.
The decor still fits the Craftsman feel of the Wildness Lodge and brings a bit of the outdoors inside with faux tree branches, and heavy metal chandeliers with boxed lighting.
As you enter, you’re informed that you’ll meet The Queen after dinner in this little alcove on the left. The Magic Mirror is looking over your shoulder, always keeping watch for the queen. It would be terrific if the Mirror actually interacted with guests.
Many guests were concerned when they saw the menu listed here on my site a while back. Many felt is sounded to “frufru” for their children’s picky tastes. Debbie used to live on chicken nuggets, so I can feel the pain with you there.
The kid’s menu offers smaller versions of the same offerings the adults receive. Most kids will chose the grilled chicken. We used the front of the menu and the crayon provided to get the various character autographs.
The restaurant offers a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages that you can purchase at an additional price, or you can accept soda, tea, coffee or water at no upcharge. We opted to try all the non-alcoholic beverages and regretted that decision mostly.
In the Clouds $4
Blueberry Monin and Cotton Candy.
When it is delivered to the table, it s a glass containing cotton candy. The server then pours the blueberry monin over the floss to create this drink. We felt that it tasted like a somewhat warm grape soda. It was the most tolerable drink of the specialty drinks for all 3 of use.
Transformation Potion $5
Lemonade, Blue Potion.
After we stirred the drink, we found that it tasted like a very watered down, light lemonade. The taste was not off-putting, but it didn’t really draw you in or make you want more. It wasn’t worth the upcharge.
Stone Fruit and Berry Breeze $5
Herbal Tea Infusion.
Through the Forest $5
Wildberry Monin, Lime Juice, Mint.
We were split on this offering. Debbie and I found the fresh mint overwhelming, but Jordyn consumed most of the drink. She felt it was like an odd limeade. If you like Mint Julips, you’ll likely enjoy this drink.
Winter Squash Bisque
Caramel lollipop, Granola.
The bisque was quite good and we loved the little cauldrons that the bisque was served in. It was a light squash flavor, so picky eaters might want to try it to see what they think.
Chiccken, Blak Truffle, Stone Fruit Preserve.
All three of us enjoyed this appetizer. It tastes somewhat like a chicken biscuit. I liked it better with the preserves. I even asked the server if we could buy a jar of the preserves, but was told that I couldn’t. We could receive the recipe from the chef, but I doubt I’d spend the time to create it myself, only to have it turn out tasting like cardboard from my lack of skill.
Wicked Shrimp Cocktail
Soy, Miso, Avocado, Thai Chili, Greens
Debbie and I are not shrimp fans. Neither of us like the texture of shrimp. Jordyn said it was delicous, but only at the shrimp. She didn’t bother with the greens. There is no type of dip for the shrimp.
The entrees are not served “family style,” instead each guest orders their own dish. We chose the prime rib, chicken and snapper.
Royal Prime Rib Roast
Horseradish Mashed Potato, Hay Smoked Carrots, Popover, Jus.
This dish was absolutely delicious! It held up the tradition of providing quality food at Artist Point. The Prime Rib was cooked to perfection and seasoned to please my palette. The smoked carrots tasted like having a campfire in my mouth. The popover was tasty and the left over preserves from the appetizer was a terrific topper. The horseradish in the potatoes added a smoky flavor, but was a little out of sync for my butter flavored potato liking. I told the girls this meal had an “oaky, nuttiness.” If you don’t prefer horseradish, you might request this with roasted potatoes.
Bashful’s Butter-poached Snapper
Root vegetable risotto, Wild Mushroom, Citrus Butter Sauce.
Debbie ordered this dish without any mushrooms. The presentation leaves a great deal to be desired, but the dish was flavorful, and the fish was flaky and delectable. Debbie just pushed the greens to the side.
Brother’s Grimm Roasted Chicken
Confit Potatoes, Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Apples and Chestnut Butter.
Jordyn ordered this dish and she was delighted with her selection. The photo doesn’t tell a good story, but it was cooked exactly as it should be. The chicken was tasty and not dried out like many restaurants do with poultry. The potatoes were a terrific part of the dish, but there weren’t enough of them. We found one small sliver of apple.
The desserts were served in such a way that each member of the party received their own desserts, but they were placed upon the leafs. For some reason, our party of 3 received 4 of each dessert.
Sponge Cake, Chocolate Gems and Buttercream Icing
This green tinted dessert is topped with a dopey hat. In the first photo, I had it backwards. It was quite good. The cake was light and fluffy and the icing wasn’t overly sweet. The chocolate gems added a crunch to the dessert.
White Chocolate-Apple Mousse, Sour Center
Fairy Tale Gooseberry Pie
The Hunter’s Gifts to the Queen
Cracked Maple Popcorn, Ganache Heart
Snow White, Dopey and Grumpy move about from table to table throughout the meal. Each of them visited our table once. The Queen is available at the end of the meal at the special setting I mentioned above.
As the characters appear, each of them have a special presentation to the guests.
During the holiday period, Snow White appears wearing a special bow in her hair. She was her usual, chipper self and wanted to let us know that we’d get some of her special gooseberry pie later in the meal. We did a little Disney Bounding. I was tributing the Queen, Debbie was honoring Snow White and Jordyn had a Grumpy colored jacket.
Several years ago, my friend Melissa made some terrific masks for Debbie to attend a Villains event that was offered. Debbie kept them as special memories of the event and brought along the Snow White mask. Dopey loved the mask!Grumpy
When Grumpy was asked why he always has a sour demeanor, he pointed at his oversize nose. Like, “Hey have you seen this thing?” It brought laughter to all the area. This was the first time we’ve met Grumpy when he wasn’t with other dwarfs.I told him I enjoy riding his Mine Train, but wondered with the other 6 Dwarfs get credit for the work when they are sleeping, sneezing and goofing around while he works. He appreciated that someone understood him.
He signed our menu for us!
She is commonly referred to as “The Evil Queen.” She would usually correct you to tell you that she is just misunderstood. She wanted to know if my girls knew who the most beautiful person in the kingdom was.
Find someone who looks at you like the Queen looks at me!
The Queen also signed our kids menu with the purple crayon. We left wondering how many people had the characters do that.
A few questions asked of me on Facebook earlier in the day
- Will they accommodate food allergies. Yes, the professional chefs will accommodate any need.
- What about picky eaters? I’m pretty picky, but the majority of the food was quite good. You can request the ubiquitous chicken tenders.
- Is there a photopass photographer? The Queen does have her own imaging specialist from Photopass. The other characters mingle and do not.
- Is Tables in Wonderland accepted? It was not.
- Do Annual Passholders receive a discount? Yes 10%
- Will the food selections change seasonally. The answer we received was no.
- Do the characters appear at all meals? No, only dinner.
The cost of the meal was $55 per adult, BUT, it is currently only 1 Table Service on the Dining Plans, so that is a terrific value. I highly recommend this character dining experience!
I want to personally thank Mindy Nelson, who is our resident Magic Maker for Mouse Class Travel specializing in dining. When I needed to adapt our meal date and time, she was able to do that for me in record time. The benefits to booking with us never end!