I’ll be releasing a series of Grand Tour styled races where competition is fierce, but there can only be 1 victor. Like Grand Tour, my categories will be pretty specific, leaving only 2-5 in a category to battle! For my first article, I’m pulling a couple of my very favorite Disneyland drinks. It shall be a battle of the best nonalcoholic julep in the park. So without further ado, here is the Battle of the Disneyland Juleps!
In the Disneyland park, there are 2 juleps: the Jungle Julep and the Mint Julep. This was an extremely tight race and the victor surprised even me! I swore one was locked in for victory, but I was wrong.
Let’s begin with the classic: the Mint Julep
The Mint Julep has long been my favorite nonalcoholic beverage within the Disneyland Resort. It is oh so refreshing after long hours in the SoCal heat!
- The flavor is really subtle. It doesn’t hit you hard with flavor that lingers for a long time on the palate. It isn’t too rich or overpowering.
- This is one of the lightest drinks to order in the scorching heat. It quenches your thirst almost as well as water but actually has flavor.
- The garnish is nice. There’s nothing quite like a mint and lemon muddle to uplift and revitalize the spirit. As an added bonus, it freshens breath!
- It’s portable. You can bring it with you throughout the park, and because it comes with a lid it’s really convenient and you don’t have to worry about splashing. Likewise, because it’s a full liquid, it isn’t going to freeze your hand off or melt if you wait too long to finish.
- There’s an option for free refills. If you are dining at the Blue Bayou or Cafe Orleans, you can order the mint julep with your meal and have free refills as if you had ordered a soda. Believe me when I say that you will certainly want a refill… or three!
- It can get really watered down sometimes. I always take care to order mine without ice. Since the location is popular, they speed up the process of making juleps by having a pitcher ready to pour. Ice will sit in the pitchers and melt, which will dilute the flavor. When they add more ice to the pitcher, that ice will melt in your drink and further water down the flavor.
- Occasionally, they over garnish the drinks. If you get too much mint muddled, it will quickly overpower the light flavor of the drink and you’ll end up with a mouth full of in-your-face mint bitters.
- It always leaves me wanting more. I can drink 3 of these (and have been known to do so on the annual occasion when I splurge at Cafe Orleans and allow myself a Monte Cristo) and still want another refill. The light, subtle flavoring makes you forget exactly how much sugar you’re consuming per serving. It’s dangerously delicious!
- The line for the Julep Bar tends to get really long because it’s also the only location in the park to pick up the delicious Mickey beignets. Because the counter is so small and the menu is so popular, you can end up waiting longer than a Dole Whip! This is especially true on holidays and when new mugs have been released.
The Challenger is newcomer Jungle Julep:
Shortly after its release, the Jungle Julep became a fast favorite! Prior to my battle-specific purchases, my instinct was to declare this a no-contest victory for the Jungle Julep in the Battle of the Disneyland Juleps. I’m sure it has nothing to do with my strong emotional attachment to my favorite attraction, the Jungle Cruise…. ;)
- It is delicious! Indescribably good!!
- I know people want to Let it Go, but in this instance… Frozen is what it’s all about! The slushy like consistency makes this a great go-to on those SoCal scorchers!
- It’s a nice fruit punch flavor: grape, pineapple, orange, and lemon combine to make this tropical fruit flavor, and each is subtle enough not to be overpowering. It’s an odd sounding combination but it works!!
- It’s so Insta! This drink is beautifully colored and the garnish is adorable. It makes for some great #instagram posting material!
- The consistency is really nice! It’s a frozen slushy, but still maintains a decent amount of liquidity. The melting rate is usually really decent, too. It stays slushy and doesn’t all melt and become watered down sugar the way a lot of other slushes do. Likewise, even at the bottom, the julep still maintains the same flavor as the start of the drink.
- It’s heavy and rich. Order this with a glass of water, because you’ll need it! This drink is a thirst causer, not a thirst quencher.
- It’s not as portable. The garnishing is not very top-friendly, so this drink stays open while you walk. If someone bumps into you, the rest of the day you’ll be wearing this drink. Likewise, that attribute makes this less kid-friendly.
- It’s near an Adventureland choke point. It’s right across from the Indiana Jones attraction, so it can get very crowded over there. Also, because it’s one of the cheapest places to grab a snack, the line at Bengal Barbecue can get long sometimes. There is also limited seating available here.
- If you do choose to gulp this drink down too fast, you will feel like Young Anna the first time Elsa’s powers got out of control. Brain freeze!
Head to Head:
- This is neck and neck, folks. There is no clear flavor winner. They are 2 very distinctly different flavors and each has its own incredible merit. Draw.
- This is another tight race. Each location offers fantastic dining options alongside the drinks. The Julep Bar has more seating available, and depending on the time of night, you may be able to listen to Fantasmic while sipping your drink, but the Bengal Barbecue has shorter lines. Julep Bar takes a slight lead in this category.
- The Jungle Julep is a clear winner in this category. Despite the draw of the top being available on the Mint, the Jungle Julep is just so Instagram friendly. The color really pops!
- The Mint Julep clearly wins here. While both of them are great options on a hot summer day, the Mint Julep is less frigid in the cooler winter evenings. Likewise, the lighter and subtler flavor make it a drink that doesn’t linger with you and require you to grab an additional drink to quench the thirst caused by the rich flavors in the Jungle Julep.
Both drinks have more pros than cons, and both drinks are even in their individual pro versus con races. In the head to head comparison, the flavor category is a draw, and the Mint Julep just barely snagged 1 more categorical victory than the Jungle Julep, and has therefore taken the victory in the epic Battle of the Juleps!