REVIEW: Lunch and Most Alcoholic Beverages from Sebastian’s Bistro, New Table Service Restaurant at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
Today was the grand opening of the new “Old Port Royale” at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, and with it, we have a new table service restaurant in Sebastian’s Bistro. Caribbean Beach was once home to Shutters, the former sit-down experience for the hotel, but that was removed in the remodeling process. This new restaurant located on the waterfront was set to be called Shutters until it was decided it needed an IP attached to it. Thus, Sebastian’s Bistro was born.
Sebastian’s Bistro is located just to the side of the pool area by Old Port Royale, along the water’s edge.
There’s a bight, open appearance to it thanks to the many windows, but it looks like it will be pretty dark at night. They are still awaiting the arrival of the chandeliers that will hang above guest, which isn’t going to help.
Some cute and colorful art adorns the walls.
Some guests said it was a little plain inside, but I thought it was rather pleasant and the ability to watch the world outside (and eventually the Disney Skyliner) from your table adds some kinetic energy.
OK, let’s get to the food and drinks…
The menus are held in this binder via magnets. We managed to separate them by accident a few times. We give it a week or so until these are gone from the restaurant.
Marauders Snack (Tostones, Arepas, and House-made Crackers with Black Bean Hummus, Guacamole, and Pico de Gallo – $15.00
If you have $15 burning a hole in your pocket and you really want to waste it, look no further than this dish. It is incredibly small for the price and nothing in particular really stood out (the arepas were OK, but it’s just such a small portion of everything and not a lot of food overall for a dish at this price). The quality wasn’t bad, but I couldn’t tell anyone that they would feel good about ordering this. If you want to blow $12 on something, we do have an alternative for you…
Caribbean Pull-Apart Rolls with Guava Butter, Mango Chutney, and Jamaican Jerk Oil – $12.00
I wasn’t sure about paying $12 for bread, but this is the best thing we had at Sebastian’s Bistro and one of the best appetizers on property. The pull-apart rolls are buttery and delicious, and the pull-apart aspect is perfect for spreading the accompaniments on.
All three spreads were great, but we all ended up fighting over the Guava Butter and the Jamaican Jerk Oil, and suspect that your party will do the same. If you get one thing at this restaurant, this should be it. Yes, I’m recommending $12 bread, and it might even be better than our beloved Parker House Rolls from Ale & Compass.
Grilled Jerk Chicken Wings with Cilantro-Lime Crema and Carrot Ribbons – $12.00
$12.00 in this case will get you 6 chicken wings, so still better than Nomad Lounge pricing I guess. These will not let you down though, offering a unique sauce you won’t find elsewhere at Walt Disney World. It brings a good amount of spice, but also a lot of flavor. The accompanying Cilantro Crema only enhances the experience, making these another viable appetizer option for you.
Crab Cake-topped Burger with Lettuce, Tomato, and Horseradish Mayonnaise served with choice of French Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, or Jicama Slaw – $20.00
The most ordered entree at lunch per our observations, it’s good thing that this burger delivers. The crab cake on top is sizable and flavorful, elevating a relatively standard burger. The horseradish mayonnaise compliments everything nicely and the bun was solid. It’s a good size burger for the price. The Jicama slaw is particularly good if you like a lot of spice and don’t want to overdo it with french or sweet potato fries. Or just get the fries, I’m not telling you what to do.
Island Curry “Eggless” Salad Sandwich on Multigrain Bread served with choice of French Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, or Jicama Slaw – $14.00
I applaud coming up with creative vegan options, but this thing is a disaster. Curry replaces egg in this “egg salad” sandwich, but it is so incredibly bland that it may make you think twice about your life choices. Even the Sturgeon and the Ray, they have to urge to throw this entire sandwich away since it offers almost nothing of value. I’ve had some surprisingly amazing vegan dishes at WDW, this is not one of them. At least the sweet potato fries were good.
Kale and Mixed Green Salad with Grilled Fish and Dijon Vinaigrette – $18.00
Entree salads at non-signature Disney World restaurants can be scary sometimes, but this one is particularly enjoyable. The sustainable fish on both this and the sandwich below is Cobia, which sometimes is known as a Crabeater. You would think Sebastian would frown upon this, but between serving his own kind and $12 bread, this crustacean has no moral values. Anyway, the dijon vinaigrette was tangy, matching well with the salty kale and complimented by the crunchy tortilla crisps. The fish was cooked perfectly to boot, making this a winner.
Grilled Sustainable Fish on Brioche Bun with Watercress, Pickled Onion, Tomato, and Roasted Garlic Mayonnaise – $18.00
As good as it was on the salad, I thought the Cobia was even more fantastic on the sandwich. The garlic mayonnaise is the star of the dish, working nicely with the pickled onions over the grilled fish. The soft and crispy brioche bun should not be forgotten in the equation either, as it elevates this sandwich to outdo a number of similar options around WDW.
This dessert, it’s a mess. A wolf in sheep’s clothing, this is a bad counter service dessert disguising itself as a table service offering. It is quite small, the presentation leaves a lot to be desired in the current landscape of picturesque desserts, and the taste is a total disappointment. Also, no, that is not a Pringle on top, it is white chocolate. The chocolate ganache inside was way too solid and lacked any flavor, dragging down the entire dessert far beyond our already low expectations that were set when it reached the table. Skip.
Guava-Rita: Herradura Reposado Tequila, Sweet-and-Sour, and Guava with Pomegranate and Lime Juices – $11.25
The guava-rite, a guava margarita, was way too sweet and had an artificial flavor that was hard to overcome. It tasted like drinking a scented candle (disclaimer: please do not drink a scented candle, it is not something we have actually done).
Gold Medallion: Cruzan Disney Select Single Barrel Rum, Beefeater Gin, Bols Apricot Brandy, and Orgeat (Almond), with Orange and Lime Juices topped with Soda Water – $11.50
My personal favorite, it’s exactly the kind of drink I expect to have at a tropical bar. I like fruity drinks and I’ve had a lot around Walt Disney World, but this is one of the best.
Barbados Lily: Tito’s Handmade Vodka, J.D. Taylor Velvet Falernum, Guava and Lemon Juice – $12.50
The Barbados Lily, much like the Guava-Rita, is just way too sweet to enjoy, even if you like really sweet cocktails.
Caribbean Mai Tai: Bacardi Gran Reserva Maestro de Ron Rum, Plantation Original Dark Rum, Bols Orange Curacao, Orgeat (Almond), and Lime Juice – $12.50
A good take on the Main-Tai, this wasn’t overwhelmingly sweet like many of the other beverages. A solid choice.
Hoist the Colors: Cruzan Mango and Guava Rums, Bols Blue Curacao, and Odwalla Lemonade with Pomegranate Juice – $10.50
This reminded me of quite a few drinks I’ve had from The Cove Bar (now Lamplight Lounge). A super sweet concoction that is just unsweet enough compared to the others above to make it barely drinkable. Another hard pass.
The Lost Cargo: Buffalo Trace Bourbon, J.D. Taylor Velvet Falernum, Lemon Juice, Maple Syrup, and Angostura Bitters – $12.50
Bourbon lovers will enjoy this drink that is well crafted.
Jamaican Old Fashioned: Appleton Estate Reserve Blend Rum, Pure Cane Sugar, and Angostura Bitters – $12.50
A little sweet for an Old Fashioned, this one will do the trick if you’re a fan of the classic version.
We certainly had more success than we did failure at Sebastian’s Bistro, but the margin is thin. You can go here and have a really fantastic meal if you choose wisely, but there are some real duds as well. The seaweed isn’t always greener just because it’s a newer restaurant in an age of Disney-operated successes at resort hotels such as Ale and Compass, The Wave, and Sanaa. We’ll see how dinner goes, but as of right now, Sebastian’s Bistro is a meh on the WDWNT “hit, miss, or meh” scale.