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How We Dined at Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano With No Reservations

How We Dined at Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano With No Reservations

Recently my husband and I took an adults-only trip to Disney World (shhhh…don’t tell our kids)! We were able to dine at Mama Melrose with no reservations!

It was sort of a last-minute decision and dining reservations were not made in advance. Plus, my husband hates planning details like that anyway. We were in Hollywood Studios on a busy Saturday night and started to get hungry for dinner but were not interested in the typical park food of burgers and french fries.

Mama Melrose

We happened to be exploring the Muppet Courtyard area when we stumbled upon Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano. And let me tell you….it smelled so heavenly that I whipped out my phone to try for a last-minute reservation (as this is a table-service restaurant), but the only time available was during the nighttime show we had planned to see later that evening.

We had downtime in between some FastPasses so I decided to just go in and ask the hostess if there were cancellations, or what the wait time was like. Sadly there were no cancellations and they do not accept walk-ups for the main dining room. However, she explained there is walk up seating available for the 7 seats at the bar and that it still receives the full menu.

“Okay let’s do this!” The seats were currently occupied though so she quoted me about a 45-minute wait at 5:45 pm, which I thought was totally reasonable. She took my cell phone number and stated we’d receive a text when seating was available. By the time we walked through the nearby Muppet gift shop and took photos with the large Kermit statues we received our friendly text alert. It ended up being just 25 minutes (6:10 pm).

So we sat down at the bar at Mama Melrose, which isn’t a typical “bar” but more like a large countertop overlooking the kitchen and staff.

The bar at Mama Melrose’s

A server immediately came over to greet us with a nice warm bread basket and took our drink order. We then had a moment to look over the menu and ask questions before placing our order.

The Food

Our food arrived in a very timely manner (around 6:35 pm). I had the Shrimp Campanelle and my husband had the Wood-Grilled Chicken and Penne Pasta. Both were amazing and greatly exceeded our expectations! I highly recommend Mama Melrose if you like Italian! We will be making this a must-do from here on out!

Shrimp Campanelle at Mama Melrose’s
Wood-Grilled Chicken and Penne Pasta at Mama Melrose’s


Now I’m sure you are wondering at this point about how the ambiance and service were at the bar and I can honestly say we thought it was kind of fun to sit and watch the hustle and bustle of the kitchen. We sat opposite the pizza station and enjoyed seeing several pizzas go through the wood fire oven.

My husband and I were just happy to have received a chance to eat here at all and enjoy fantastic food that wasn’t typical park fare. We were very pleased with the staff and felt like we were just as important as the rest of the dining room and all our needs were met in a timely and gracious fashion. Zero complaints!

Final Thoughts

I still highly recommend advance reservations to enjoy the ambiance of the main dining room, which is beautifully decorated! (Larger parties and families with children needing highchairs will also definitely need advance reservations). But in our case, as a party of two sitting at the bar, a last-minute “walk-up” reservation worked great!

You can make reservations online or in your My Disney Experience app!

Oh, and did I mention we even made it to our Slinky Dog Dash FastPass end time of 7:20 pm?! So we accomplished a nice table-service dinner and a major attraction in a two-hour time frame! Winner winner Mama Melrose’s for dinner!

Has anyone else dined at Mama Melrose’s and had a nice experience? Or has anyone had a pixie dust walk-up dining experience like we did? Please share!

Amanda Wesche

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Saturday 21st of December 2019

We eat there every year foe past 4-5 years and never had a bad meal. Plenty of food! Great service. My son who is very picky says they have the best spaghetti he ever had.


Tuesday 17th of December 2019

We ate here for the first time a few years ago and go back every time now. The steak is amazing!


Tuesday 17th of December 2019

My husband and I ate there years ago. So i don't recall what we ate. But the food was great and very good. They hive you alot of food to eat too.

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