REVIEW: Lamplight Lounge Small Bites and Drinks Shine on Pixar Pier at Disney California Adventure

Lamplight Lounge is a brand new table service restaurant and lounge on Pixar Pier at Disney California Adventure Park. This location replaces the previous tenant, Ariel’s Grotto, which housed character dining on the lower level and The Cove Bar on the top. The Cove Bar was famous for well-made drinks and lobsters nachos. While this location doesn’t do character dining anymore, there’s more than enough character to the restaurant with countless Pixar sketches, concepts, and art adorning every wall and surface. Tom stopped in during the special Pixar Pier Premiere event and tried the new offerings at the upstairs lounge, offering drinks and small bites.

How cute are these coasters? There’s a LOT of different designs floating around the restaurant, lots of very cool concept art.


The Drinks

There’s a wide variety of drinks on the menu. We opted for quite a few non-alcoholic (mocktails) and a few alcoholic. After all, we needed a drink to survive the event.

Over Budget – Grey Goose Vodka, Liquid Alchemist Passion Fruit, fresh Lime Juice, Agave Nectar and Ginger Beer – $13.25

This is Pixar Pier’s idea of a mule, and it’s a darn good one. Served in a glass that even looks aged, this drink is heavy on the vodka which is a good thing for the price tag. The passion fruit doesn’t play as big a factor as we would have liked, but behind the lime juice you’ll taste the lingering passion fruit. It’s a great drink and mixed well.


Scream Canister – Bacardi 8 Anos Rum, Cream of Coconut, Pineapple and Orange Juice with a mist of Angostura Bitters – $14.25

Fans of Nomad Lounge at Walt Disney World will enjoy this drink, it’s very similar to the Leaping Lizard cocktail… even down to the garnish! It’s a little thick due to the fresh pineapple juice, but the concoction is expertly mixed to mask the rum (but there was so much rum that it could only go so far) behind just enough coconut. It’s fruity and will go perfectly against the warm California summer.


Mocktails (non-alcoholic)

Falling with Style – Odwalla Lemonade with Mango Puree – $6.50

Odwalla lemonade is back and with a vengeance! Mixing it with the mango puree, you would expect a thickness, but it wasn’t present. The lemon and mango flavors complement each other well. Very drinkable and relaxing.


2319 – Frozen Strawberry Puree, Cream of Coconut, Pineapple Juice, topped with Coca-Cola – $6.50

Cold, refreshing, and topped with cola. A little weird, right? Fortunately all of the ingredients combine together and actually work well. We didn’t expect it to be a smooth and bubbly experience, yet here we are. Plus, I mean, you can scream “WE GOT A 2319!” once you receive it, so that’s a huge plus.


Infinity Fizz – Powerade Mountain Berry Blast, Apple Juice, and Cherry Pearls – $7.00

You can check out a video of this thing bubbling on our Twitter. Overall it’s a tasty beverage that your kids will love ordering, the effect is really cool!


Mint to Be – Simple Limeade, Watermelon and Berry Puree, and fresh Mint topped with Soda Water – $6.00

No-jito! This one is a little thick, but nonetheless refreshing with a great fresh mint flavor.


The Food

Potato Skins – crispy Yukon Gold Potatoes with Brown Butter-Caper Yogurt, Smoked Paprika Aïoli, and Manchego Cheese – $14.00

These potatoes were fried very well to give a great outer crunch but keep the inside nice and potato-y. Unfortunately they’re pretty bland and need the outside sauces to make them work. Once the sauces mix with the skins, though, these are incredible. We’re unsure how to really feel about ‘build it yourself’ potato skins, but these are darned tasty and would go great with a cold beer.


Carne Asada Roll – Grilled New York Strip Steak, Roasted Fresno Chili Salsa, Escabèche, and Crema – $17.00

There’s steak in the sushi roll with a nice and fresh salsa. We really weren’t sure what to expect with this one, but we found a solid light choice. The ingredients tasted fresh, something you can easily eat and still feel perfect enough to walk a few miles around California Adventure.


Deviled Eggs and Toast – Creamy Egg Salad, Toasted Almond Romesco Sauce, Dill, Manchego Crisp, and Toast – $12.00

As far as deviled eggs go, these are pretty much par for the course. We’re blessed at Walt Disney World with two things: size, and numerous great locations for deviled eggs. Guess it comes with the southern territory. Regardless, the romensco sauce below the eggs and toast adds a much needed flavor-boost to the entire dish. While these aren’t bad, fans of deviled eggs may look elsewhere for better quality, even if these are some of the only deviled eggs you can find at the Disneyland Resort.


Crispy Piggy Wings – Pork Drumettes with Chili-Ginger Glaze, Toasted Sesame Seeds, Cilantro, and Slaw – $17.00

The show-stopper! These piggy wings are very similar to what’s been being served the past two years at the International Epcot Food & Wine Festival, and these are JUST as good if not better. A great, flavorful sauce covers the crunchy skin over the piggy wing. Inside is tenderly cooked pork that slides right off of the small bone. The slaw on the side added a great complement to the piggy wings, but even if you don’t want the slaw these wings are fantastic. There’s not a huge portion for the price, but you are certainly paying for the quality here.


The Decor

As an added bonus here’s a bunch of images around the Lamplight Lounge bar section, giving great nods to Pixar movies and the past Paradise Pier.

Outside dining area.

The main bar upstairs.

Some Paradise Pier references..

And, of course, the great views of the IncrediCoaster.

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Cove Bar
Cove Bar
3 years ago

Did Tom find out if the secret drink menu is still available?

3 years ago

Is the infinity fizz soda? Like is it carbonated?

Tom Corless
3 years ago
Reply to  Pixarpeirfan