Be Our Guest Restaurant is a hybrid quick/table/”heaven help you find a reservation” restaurant in Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom. It was a major addition of the New Fantasyland expansion, opening back in 2012. The location has been exceedingly popular over the last 6 years because you can literally dine in iconic scenes from the Disney animated classic Beauty and the Beast. In an effort to get more people into the restaurant breakfast was introduced a few years ago, in a prix fixe style. We weren’t particularly thrilled with the price per portion, and it hasn’t gotten better over the years. Dinner recently flipped at Be Our Guest to a similar prix fixe style (this change happened on 7/27/2018, to be exact) and this review is from the first night of the new menu.
Let’s preface things by saying there’s set courses with this new prix fixe menu. You have a choice of one of six appetizers, one of six entrees, and then you get a dessert trio. Seems like an okay value considering the average appetizer runs around $10, entree about $35, dessert about $8 and this also includes a $3.50 fountain beverage (or coffee, tea, non-alcoholic/specialty). Naturally we got the entire menu.
As is customary, bread is served. Fortunately the old bread survived.
Escargot – Herb-Garlic Butter and Toasted Gremolata
We received well cooked escargots with a plethora of butter, garlic, and an overwhelming citrus flavor (not the garlicky flavor you want, nor expect). They’re not better than the yearly escargot dish at France’s Food & Wine Festival kiosk, but these are passable.
French Onion Soup – Toasted Cruton, Gruyére, Provolone
This tried and true classic at Be Our Guest continues to reside on the menu, and that’s a good thing. Large onions, a huge amount of cheese, and a great broth make up this wonderful soup that you won’t be disappointed with. Can we get them to bring back the Potato Leek soup at dinner now?
Maine Lobster Bisque – Créme Fraîche and Poached Lobster
There’s actually quite a bit of lobster in the creamy broth, a welcomed surprise. The taste aligns with any lobster bisque you’ve had in the past: a little salty, yet satisfying. There’s a pleasant lobster flavor to the entire soup that’s pretty perfect as well.
Charred Octopus – Citrus-laced Fingerling Potatoes, Pickled Hearts of Plum, and Red Pepper Coulis served Cold
This was our favorite of all of the new appetizers. The octopus is cooked and charred properly, giving a nice firmness to the exterior but a soft inside. It’s not overly fishy and it doesn’t taste nearly as exotic as a less adventurous eater might think. Recommended, especially when soaking-up the delightful, spicy red sauce on the bottom.
Mixed Field Greens – Sunflower Seed Brittle, Heirloom Tomatoes, House Farm Cheese with a Citrus Vinaigrette
A very sizable salad that’s easily shareable between two people. There’s great, fresh toppings on this, including the sunflower seed brittle, which added a nice pop of earthy flavor to the mixture. As for cheese, there’s just the right amount where it doesn’t become overbearing. A solid choice if you want a salad.
Assorted Meats and Artisanal Cheese Selection– Chicken Liver Paté, Shaved Serrano Ham, Chorizo Sausage, Pleasant Ridge Cheddar, Truffle Tremor, and Stilton Blue with Seasonal Garnishes
This is a huge win for Be Our Guest: a well-made charcuterie board. All of the meats and cheeses were tasty and unique making this an excellent starter, and easily shareable to boot.
Center-Cut Filet Mignon – Robuchon Yukon Potatoes, Seasonal Vegetables, and Cipollini Marmalade, with Red Wine Glaze
Going down the menu, this is the best bang for your buck. A sizeable, cooked-to-order filet mignon arrives on top of a pile of well cooked vegetables. There’s a great red wine glaze that adds a great earthy tone to the meat whereas the actual cut of meat was excellent. This was one fo the best dishes at the table, size and taste considered.
Smoked Ricotta and Corn Tortellini – Roasted Corn and Peppadew Relish, Rainbow Cauliflower, and Asparagus with Corn-infused Nage
There’s six tortellini. Compare that to the size of the beef and there’s obviously portion inconsistency. Fortunately what tortellini were in there were good. The multitude of accompaniments felt like they were sitting in broth for a long time, giving a weird crunch yet softness to them. Overall it could be worse, but remember you’re paying one price for any of the entrees. If you don’t care that you paid $55 a person and want some lighter (yes, the pasta is a lighter option here) that’s enjoyable, this is a solid choice.
Spice-Dusted Lamb Chops – Roasted Salsify, Baby Zucchini, Charred Tomatoes, and Royal Trumpet Mushrooms with a Lamb Demi
Chef recommended them medium rare, and so it shall be. These came out immaculately prepared with a great demi sauce that pulled everything together. It’s not a gigantic portion, but you’re getting three excellent lamb chops cooked to perfection. Highly recommended.
Poulet Rouge Chicken – Faro Wheat Risotto, Seasonal Vegetables, Crisp Pancetta, and Garlic Butter Sauce
“Redneck chicken” as our server told us. This chicken was served bone-in leaving for some work to be done. Fortunately that’s not a big issue because the meat was well done leaving a juicy and flavorful chicken. The garlic butter sauce served to only compliment the crispy exterior. It’s solid enough, but not at the top of the list for us.
Saffron-Infused Seafood Bouillabaisse – Seasonal Fish, Maine Lobster, Shrimp, Confit Potatoes, and Baby Fennel
Avoid this like the West Wing. It looks nothing like the images Disney previously showed of the entree and comes out a mediocre pile of weird seafood. The lobster is deshelled and rolled in cracked pepper making for a lobster that makes you want to sneeze instead of dip it in butter. There’s a bar of soap-erm potato, served on the bottom of the dish that soaks up everything and has the most off-putting flavor and texture of any side I’ve ever had in a Disney theme park. The shrimp was crunchy (even after removing the shell!), and the seasonal fish was flaky and tasteless. Literally half the dish was an onion. Overall this was a tremendous flop.
Roasted Pork Tenderloin – Crispy Berkshire Pork Belly, Caramelized Cipollini, Roasted Asparagus, Brussel Sprouts, Cauliflower Purée, and sprinkled with Bacon Dust
Hey it’s a decent entree! There’s pork served two ways here: roasted tenderloin and crispy belly. Very similar to past California Grill entrees. Chef recommended medium for the temperature, this came out a little above but that’s fine because the meat was still exceedingly tender and flavorful. The belly in the middle was crispy, fatty, and fantastic.
Almond Macaron – with Lemon Jam and Raspberries, White Chocolate “Chip” Cup – with Grey Stuff and Crisp Pearls, Dark Chocolate Truffle – filled with Dark Chocolate, Grand Mariner Ganache
The Chip cup is edible, made of white chocolate and filled with the grey stuff! The truffle was good, filled with rich, dark chocolate. The macaron was enjoyable as well. It’s a good dessert trio and we’re glad you get all three and don’t need to pick just one. Also, the printed rice paper below the dessert spread is edible. “Here’s a $55 meal, don’t forget to eat your paper”.
There’s also a kids option available where you can paint Chip yourself!
Kudos to Disney for making the proper changes for the kid’s dessert, including a truffle that’s more like a brownie, a macaron without whole raspberries, and the fun concept allowing smaller guests to paint the little chocolate Chip.
Be Our Guest falls more in line with the other Magic Kingdom table service locations to serve mediocre food at a high price. Heaven help Skipper Canteen to stay above the mess that currently is Magic Kingdom dining. Disney Dining Plan and the restaurant popularity is probably also to blame. This move to a $55 prix fixe menu promoted the location to move to 2 points on the dining plan, which means it’s on the same level at Jiko or California Grill, which it’s really not. On the bright side, Annual Passholder and Tables in Wonderland discounts are accepted.
Luckily, you can piece together an enjoyable meal here as at least half the menu is pretty solid.