When the Disney Magic set sail in 1998, Disney Cruise Line pioneered a system called rotational dining, which is now a staple of cruising. We shared cursory details about the Disney Cruise Line restaurants in our Disney Cruise Line 101 post but now have a full guide to the dining system.
What is Rotational Dining and How Does it Work?
Rotational dining is used on all Disney Cruise Line ships. With this system, there are three main table-service restaurants. Guests are assigned a different restaurant each night, with a guarantee that they will visit each at least once, since 3-night sailings are the shortest available. On longer sailings, guests visit some restaurants multiple times.
Guests are also assigned a seating time, either 5:45 p.m. or 8:15 p.m. Your party has the same seating time every night — although it’s no big deal if you’re a little late. You can request a certain seating time when you book your cruise or request to change times after boarding, at guest services.
The restaurant and seating assignments will show up in your Disney Cruise Line Navigator app after boarding and signing in. The app will also list your table number, which is the same at every restaurant. When you arrive at a restaurant, you’ll give your table number and be escorted to your seats.
When you “rotate” to a different restaurant each night, your wait staff comes with you. The staff includes a head server (in charge of the entire dining room), your main server, and your assistant server (who handles drinks). You’ll see the latter two the most and they serve a small group of tables each night.
If you’re planning on seeing Disney Cruise Line’s Broadway-style stage shows, don’t worry about dinner times interfering. The shows are performed twice each evening, at approximately the same times as dinner. So if you have a 5:45 p.m., you can see the stage show at 8:00 p.m., and vice versa.
What About Breakfast and Lunch?
Whatever restaurant you are assigned for the final night of your cruise will also be your assigned restaurant for a sit-down breakfast before disembarking the next morning. This is the only time a breakfast location is assigned and attended by your dinner wait staff.
For breakfast and lunch on all but the final morning, there is still a table-service option available. Usually, the upscale restaurant will be open for breakfast and lunch hours (double-check the Disney Cruise Line app during your cruise). It does not serve the same dinner menu. At breakfast, there are classics like French toast, omelets, scrambled eggs, pancakes, Mickey waffles, fresh fruit, and pastries. At lunch, guests can usually get things like hamburgers, sautéed fish, grilled chicken breast, pork ribs, soups, and salads. The breakfast and lunch menus are the same throughout the sailing.
You can also dine at the buffet or poolside quick-service venues for breakfast and lunch.
Do I Have to Pay for Dinner?
Most food and beverages are included in the price of your sailing and you do not need to pay extra.
All alcoholic drinks and specialty non-alcoholic drinks (like milkshakes, smoothies, and lattes) cost extra. Some specialty food items, like gelato from the sweets shops, also cost extra. You can charge these purchases to your room.
What about Palo, Palo Steakhouse, Remy, & Enchanté?
Palo, Palo Steakhouse, Remy, and Enchanté are separate adults-only (18+) table-service dining venues available on Disney Cruise Line ships. Palo is on the Disney Magic, Disney Wonder, Disney Dream, and Disney Fantasy. Remy is on the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy. Palo Steakhouse and Enchanté are on the Disney Wish.
These restaurants require a separate reservation and cost extra. You can make a reservation after booking your cruise, prior to sailing, or after boarding at guest services.
All four of these venues serve brunch and dinner. Note that you will not have your usual wait staff and eating dinner at these venues means skipping your visit to one of the three main restaurants.
Disney Cruise Line requests guests dining at one of the adult-exclusive restaurants dress in formal or semi-formal attire. Dress casual attire with a polished look (such as dress pants, jeans in good condition, collared shirts and blouses, and lifestyle shoes) is permitted. Casual clothing like T-shirts, swimwear, and sports attire is not permitted.
Tipping Dining Cast Members
Although dining is included as part of your sailing, you are still expected to tip your wait staff, as well as your stateroom host. Disney Cruise Line recommends a gratuity of $14.50 USD per night, per stateroom guest (including infants and children) for standard staterooms. They recommend $15.50 for concierge staterooms and suites.
If you are fine with paying the $14.50 and don’t want to worry about physically giving Cast Members their tips, the suggested gratuity will be automatically charged to your stateroom bill. You can also pre-pay gratuities online or with your travel agent and adjust this amount at guest services on board. Pre-paid gratuities don’t cover extras added to meals (like alcoholic beverages) or dining venues outside of the three rotational dining restaurants.
If you want to give a bigger tip and/or physically hand over the gratuity while on board, you’ll have this opportunity on one of the final nights of your sailing. You will receive four envelopes and slips of paper with the names of each Cast Member in your stateroom. Your wait staff might mention these to you during dinner and can answer questions. To use these, you simply put the slip of paper and/or cash in the envelope. You can also add a gift card if you prefer, and a thank you note. You can then hand these over to your wait staff and stateroom host.
An 18% gratuity is automatically added to bar, beverage, wine, and deck service tabs.
List of Every Disney Cruise Line Table-Service Restaurant
Of the three main restaurants on each ship, at least one includes entertainment, and another offers a more upscale experience. The upscale restaurants are all right off the ship’s atrium (or Grand Hall).
In addition to the food items mentioned below, each restaurant offers a selection of wines, beers, and soft drinks, as well as specialty cocktails.
Menus are always subject to change, and some sailings have special menus and food items, like the “Let the Magic Begin” menu, special Alaskan dishes during Alaska sailings, and the Nordic menu during “Frozen” night on the Disney Wonder.
Animator’s Palate (Disney Magic, Wonder, Dream, & Fantasy)
The theming of Animator’s Palate is similar across the first four ships. On the Magic and Wonder, the walls are covered in sketches of Disney characters. Giant paintbrush columns reach up to equally large palettes of paint.
There are color-changing light effects that bring the restaurant from black and white to color during the meal.
On the Dream and Fantasy, the room is already in full-color, with sketches and concept art appearing on screens. There are film reels around the ceilings and giant pencils along with paintbrushes.
There are three different screen-based shows in Animator’s Palate.
- Drawn to Magic: Behold the evolution of animation—from pencil test to ink-and-paint. Follow a hero’s storytelling journey through Disney and Pixar animation, where wishing upon a star paves the way for happily-ever-after. In an emotional finale, the black-and-white interior of the restaurant is transformed with splashes of vibrant color. Join Sorcerer Mickey as he leads the fun! (Disney Magic & Wonder)
- Animation Magic: Try your hand at drawing your very own character—and then watch in wonder as your creation becomes part of the show, dancing alongside some classic Disney characters. You won’t believe your eyes! (Disney Fantasy & 7-night+ Disney Magic sailings)
- Undersea Magic: Immerse yourself in the underwater world of the Disney·Pixar film Finding Nemo. As you dine, enjoy a visit from some of your favorite Finding Nemo friends, via spectacular digital animation and puppetry. You may even share in a conversation with Crush, the totally tubular turtle from the hit movie! (Disney Dream & Fantasy)
Animator’s Palate serves a “savory fusion of Pacific Island foods, Asian cooking and fresh California fare” on all four ships. Appetizers and starters include smoked salmon tartare, wild mushroom risotto, black truffle pasta purseittes, creamy butternut squash soup, taleggio cheese flatbread, and a polenta cake topped with Roma tomatoes and Portobello mushrooms.
The main course selections include Pacific black cod, lemon-thyme marinated organic chicken breast, Angus beef tenderloin, white shrimp pennette pasta, stir fry vegetables, and black bean chipotle cakes.
And the dessert options include crème brûlèe, peanut butter mousse, and an ice-cream sundae.
Rapunzel’s Royal Table (Disney Magic)
Rapunzel’s Royal Table is a unique “Tangled”-inspired dinner experience on the Disney Magic. It replaced the original restaurant Carioca’s.
Guests celebrate Rapunzel’s birthday with the princess, Flynn Rider / Eugene Fitzherbert, and some of their friends from the Snuggly Duckling. The show happens in short acts throughout the meal. Characters perform songs from “Tangled” and visit tables to take photos and talk with guests.
The dining hall is decorated with painted murals telling the story of “Tangled,” 240 lanterns hanging from the ceiling, and hidden Pascal figures.
Starters at Rapunzel’s Royal Table include ravioli stuffed with pulled beef and Portobello mushrooms in a red-wine reduction sauce; fresh ahi tuna tartar prepared with cucumber, mango, and wasabi in a sweet chili-mayonnaise; green asparagus and broccoli soup; and a smoked salmon salad with lemon-parsley dressing.
Entrées are pan-seared sea bass filet in a Champagne-truffle vinaigrette, lemon-and-thyme roasted chicken with buttered kale and baby turnips, grilled smoked pork loin with pork belly and red cabbage, roasted prime rib of beef with baked potato and sweet carrots, and tossed angel hair pasta braided in a basil-pesto sauce with caramelized sea scallops. Vegetarian courses are chili-spiced tofu ramen and vegetable-potato crepes.
Desserts include a birthday cupcake sundae, crème brûlée cheesecake, apple strudel, and a towering chocolate cake.
Lumiere’s (Disney Magic)
The “Beauty and the Beast”-inspired Lumiere’s is the upscale restaurant aboard the Disney Magic.
The ceiling lights feature red roses in glass cloches and a mural of the film’s famous ballroom scene is on one wall.
Of course, Lumiere’s offers a 4-course French dinner. The appetizers include applewood smoked bacon and wild mushroom tart, “Mrs. Potts” French onion soup, duck confit, “Gaston’s” escargots gratinés, and avocado citrus salad.
Entrées include roasted duck breast, grilled beef tenderloin, three-cheese lobster macaroni, and “Lumiere’s” seared sea bass.
The desserts are chocolate mousse, crème brûlée, Grand Marnier soufflé, and a traditional ice-cream sundae.
Tiana’s Place (Disney Wonder)
Tiana’s Place on the Disney Wonder features live jazz music and appearances by Tiana and Louis the alligator. The performances end with a Mardi Gras parade. Just like at Rapunzel’s Royal Table, characters will visit tables.
The menu features Louisiana-inspired Creole and Cajun food including the Creole-infused New Orleans Seafood Pepper Pot (a bouillabaisse with calamari, shrimp, scallops, and cilantro), a Cajun-spiced seabass on shrimp jambalaya alongside a crisp fennel salad and remoulade sauce.
The themed desserts include Tiana’s Buttermilk Beignets, Mama Odie’s Chocolate Bread Pudding, and the New Orleans Banana Foster Sundae.
Triton’s (Disney Wonder)
Triton’s, the Wonder’s upscale venue, puts you “Under the Sea” with blue glass on the ceilings and a mosaic of “The Little Mermaid” characters.
Sebastian the crab figures hold up seashell-shaped lights on the walls.
Triton’s appetizers include duck confit, “Chef Louis” French onion soup, “Prince Eric’s” escargots gratinés, avocado citrus salad, and chilled jumbo shrimp.
For the main course, enjoy steaming braised lamb shank, three-cheese lobster macaroni, roasted duck breast, or porcini mushroom-stuffed pasta in a steaming vegetable broth.
And for dessert, guests can order crème brûlée, chocolate mousse, Grand Marnier soufflé, or a traditional ice-cream sundae.
Enchanted Garden (Disney Dream & Fantasy)
Over on the Disney Dream and Fantasy is Enchanted Garden. This airy restaurant is inspired by the gardens of Versailles. Decorations include trellises, glass flower lights, and a 7-foot fountain featuring a stone cherub Mickey. Similar to some versions of Animator’s Palate, Enchanted Garden uses lights to transform throughout the meal, transitioning from “day” to “night” as flowers appear to bloom.
The market-style menu includes starters like North Atlantic lobster ravioli, an Ahi tuna and avocado tower, and curried carrot and apple soup.
The main courses include roasted pork tenderloin, pan-seared sea bass, Portobello mushrooms, and a marjoram-scented organic chicken.
And the desserts are an almond meringue cake, chocolate torte, steamed lemon buttermilk pudding, and a banana sundae.
Royal Palace (Disney Dream)
The design of Royal Palace is inspired by Disney Princess films like “Cinderella,” “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” and “Beauty and the Beast.” The circular floor plan and other details are specifically meant to recreate the ballroom scene in the animated “Cinderella.”
There are hand-painted art nouveau portraits of Disney Princesses.
The appetizers include pomegranate-glazed duck breast, spinach soufflé, iced lobster and jumbo shrimp, Belle’s French onion soup, and an avocado citrus salad.
Main course selections include Angus grilled beef tenderloin and lobster medallions, Dijon-crusted rack of lamb, and roasted wild boar tenderloin.
And desserts include crème brûlée, peanut butter mousse, or an ice-cream sundae.
Royal Court (Disney Fantasy)
Royal Court is similar to Royal Palace in theming and menu, down to the “Cinderella”-inspired circular floor plan.
You’ll even see the same Disney Princess artwork.
The appetizer menu includes pomegranate-glazed duck breast, spinach soufflé, iced lobster and jumbo shrimp, Belle’s French onion soup, and an avocado citrus salad.
Main course selections include grilled beef tenderloin and lobster medallions, a Dijon-crusted rack of lamb, and roasted wild boar tenderloin.
And desserts include crème brûlée, peanut butter mousse, or an ice-cream sundae.
Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Adventure (Disney Wish)
The largest dining hall on the Disney Wish is Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Adventure. It features artwork and props inspired by the “Frozen” films.
The show features the main characters of “Frozen” and “Frozen II,” as well as live musicians, celebrating the engagement of Queen Anna and Kristoff. Fiber optics in the ceiling make Elsa’s ice powers come to life.
The meal includes Norwegian-inspired dishes, Maelstrom cocktails, and of course chocolate. Click here for the full menu, as well as our video and review of Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Adventure.
Worlds of Marvel – “Avengers: Quantum Encounter” (Disney Wish)
Worlds of Marvel on the Disney Wish has the mostly screen-based show “Avengers: Quantum Encounter” featuring Ant-Man and The Wasp, who are on the ship for a presentation of Pym technologies.
Originally, Ant-Man and The Wasp came out at the end of the meal, but Spider-Man currently visits guests instead.
Worlds of Marvel is split into two dining rooms. Both sides have the same experience and menu.
The menu features dishes inspired by different locations (real and fictional) in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Click here for the full menu, plus our video and review of Worlds of Marvel.
1923 (Disney Wish)
Like Worlds of Marvel, 1923 is split into two dining rooms. One is dubbed the Walt Disney dining room, while the other is the Roy Disney dining room. The restaurant is named for the founding year of The Walt Disney Company.
Display cases inside the restaurant show off concept art, sketches, maquettes, and animated props brought to life.
Different artwork is on display in each room, but there aren’t significant differences between the Walt and Roy rooms.
1923 serves Californian cuisine in honor of the home state of The Walt Disney Company. Check out our review of 1923 for a look at the full menu.
Palo (Disney Magic, Wonder, Dream, & Fantasy)
Palo is an Italian restaurant named for the long poles used by Venetian gondoliers. In addition to the Italian name and food, the decorations are Italian-inspired. Depending on the ship, you’ll see Venetian glass, decorative masks, and paintings of Venice. Being on one of the top decks of each ship, it also has ocean views. On the Disney Dream and Fantasy, Palo has an outdoor deck for dining. A private dining room is also available.
Dinner at Palo includes dishes like the piquant dover sole (fileted table side), garnished with nut brown butter and chopped capers. Desserts include the house favorite chocolate soufflé with vanilla bean and chocolate sauce. View the full Palo dinner menu and dessert menu, available online via Disney Cruise Line.
Remy (Disney Dream & Fantasy)
While Palo is Italian, Remy is of course a French restaurant. It has art nouveau-style décor. Tables are set with Frette linens, Riedel glassware, Christofle silverware, and china created exclusively for the restaurant. Remy from “Ratatouille” is incorporated into the restaurant’s design as well.
Remy has a glass-enclosed wine room with marble flooring and more than 900 bottles of Old and New World wines. After booking their meal and boarding the ship, guests are invited to meet with a sommelier in the wine room to pre-select their wines for the evening. Wine pairings can be added at an extra charge.
Like Palo, there is also private dining available at Remy in the Gusteau Room.
Dishes at Remy are crafted by Chef Scott Hunnel from Victoria & Albert’s at Walt Disney World and 3-Michelin-starred Chef Arnaud Lallement, who also brought Enchanté to the Disney Wish.
Remy’s French dishes include delicacies like langoustine, duck, elk, sablefish, and Kobe beef. Guests can also enjoy a gourmet cheese trolley.
Remy also offers the Remy Champagne Brunch and Remy Dessert Experience on cruises 4 nights or longer.
Palo Steakhouse (Disney Wish)
The adults-exclusive dining venues on the Disney Wish are all inspired by “Beauty and the Beast.” Palo Steakhouse has Cogsworth theming, while the adjacent Enchanté is inspired by Lumiere. Beside them is The Rose, a cocktail lounge.
Palo Steakhouse, like its counterparts on the earlier ships, serves Italian dishes. It also serves steaks “from the American prime cuts and melt-in-your-mouth Australian wagyu to succulent Japanese Kobe and Miyazaki beef.” The signature Palo chocolate soufflé is available for dessert.
Enchanté by Chef Arnaud Lallement (Disney Wish)
Chef Arnaud Lallement of L’Assiette Champenoise in France has created the menu for Enchanté, which also includes the Champagne Brunch and Just Desserts experiences. The dinner menu has a variety of international dishes.
Other Dining Options
Disney Cruise Line ships have various quick-service dining options, too. Not listed here are cafés, bars, nightclubs, and lounges, which offer a selection of drinks and sometimes small snacks.
Poolside Counter Service
On the pool decks, there are various counter-service locations offering quick meals. Duck-In Diner (Disney Magic) and Pete’s Boiler Bites (Disney Wonder) serve things like hamburgers, hot dogs, and chicken tenders. Duck-In Diner also offers shawarma, while Pete’s Boiler Bites has tacos.
Daisy’s de-Lites (Disney Magic & Wonder) is home to salads, sandwiches, wraps, and fruit. Pinocchio’s Pizza (Disney Magic & Wonder), as you might expect, has pizza.
The Disney Dream and Fantasy have Flo’s Cafe, featuring three locations that encompass the same offerings as the Magic and Wonder:
- Luigi’s Pizza
- Tow Mater’s Grill
- Fillmore’s Favorites (salads and sandwiches)
And on the Disney Wish, there’s the Mickey & Friends Festival of Foods, with five counters:
- Mickey’s Smokestack Barbecue
- Daisy’s Pizza Pies
- Goofy’s Grill
- Sweet Minnie’s Ice Cream
- Donald’s Cantina (Mexican fare)
Ice Cream & Sweets
Eye Scream Treats (Disney Magic, Wonder, Dream, & Fantasy) is a poolside counter-service offering standard soft-serve options. Next door is Sulley’s Sips (Disney Wonder) or Frozone Treats (Disney Magic, Dream, & Fantasy), which serve smoothies. On the Disney Wish, Sweet Minnie’s Ice Cream is the equivalent of Eye Scream Treats.
The larger ships have separate sweets shops with gelato and other specialty desserts:
- Vanellope’s Sweets & Treats (Disney Dream)
- Sweet On You (Disney Fantasy)
- Inside Out: Joyful Sweets (Disney Wish)
The buffet on most of the ships is called Cabanas. It is Marceline Market on the Disney Wish. Cabanas has general beachy theming.
Marceline Market is named after Walt Disney’s hometown, and each section is themed to a different Disney IP. It still offers the same buffet standards as Cabanas, and both are on an upper deck, offering views of the ocean or ports.
Room service is available 24 hours a day on Disney Cruise Line. Breakfast items are available from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. and usually include juices, coffee, tea, muffins, donuts, toast, and cereals.
Lunch and dinner are available the rest of the time and the menu usually includes:
- Custom-made sandwiches
- Fresh salads and appetizers
- Burgers, pizza, and hot dogs
- Chef specialties, like grilled salmon
- Desserts, including cookies, ice cream, and nuts
Up-to-date menus are available in staterooms.
To order room service, select “In Stateroom Dining” on your stateroom phone. For breakfast, you can also fill out a Room Service Request Card in your stateroom and leave it outside your door prior to 3:00 a.m. on the morning of the scheduled breakfast.
Castaway Cay Dining
During a visit to Disney’s private island in the Bahamas, guests can enjoy a BBQ lunch (still included in the price of their sailing) at Cookie’s BBQ, Cookie’s Too BBQ, or Air Bar BBQ. The first two are by the family beaches and the third is at the adults-only Serenity Bay, but they serve the same items.
Castaway Cay also has Olaf’s Summertime Freeze, which offers frozen drinks for an extra fee, and multiple bars.
Disney Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point will presumably have similar dining options.
Disney Treasure Coming Soon
Disney Cruise Line’s sixth ship will have 1923, Worlds of Marvel (featuring a new show), and the brand-new Plaza de Coco as its three rotational dining restaurants. Adult dining venues will be the same as on the Wish: The Rose, Palo Steakhouse, and Enchanté by Chef Arnaud Lallament.
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