The Garden Grill – One of the Best Breakfasts on Disney Property
Breakfast offerings at Walt Disney World tend to be a subject of concern to most guests traveling to the parks. If you’re on the Disney dining plan, it’s tough to convince yourself to make a dining reservation for a breakfast offering. However, at the same time, Disney Character breakfasts tend to be some of the most memorable portions of any Disney World vacation. The Garden Grill is one of our top picks for Disney breakfast offerings! Today, we’re taking a closer look at why I consider this location a hidden gem of Disney World.
I know many of you may be thinking, “Garden Grill? That’s been around for years!” If you’re one of those people, you’re completely correct! However, it wasn’t until 2015 that the dining establishment became a bit more welcoming of guests by offering up breakfast as a meal time dining reservation. To be quite honest, many returning guests still have no idea that the location is open for breakfast and far fewer consider it a “must-do” character meal during their time in Epcot. In my opinion that should change, but on the flip side, if no one knows about it it’ll be that much easier for me to grab a reservation! (lol).
What’s On the Garden Grill Breakfast Menu?
To be quite honest with you, table service breakfast locations at Walt Disney World tend to generally offer the same things with a bit of variation by means of select items at locations such as Tusker House or even Boma. Of course, this is a bit of a generalization, because many dining locations such as Crystal Place or even Chef Mickey offer a vast variety of items on a seemingly all encompassing buffet. There’s one thing that those other locations don’t have that this one does, it’s in Epcot! If you’re looking for something that’s typical breakfast fair but with a subtle yet enjoyable twist Garden Grill should be on your Disney dining reservation list. The menu is simple, but nonetheless highly enjoyable! Here’s a closer look at what it involves:
Chip’s Sticky Bun bake
Fluffy Scrambled Eggs
Bacon And Sausage Links
Hash Brown Potato Barrels
Mickey Shaped Waffles With Chocolate Hazelnut Drizzle
All of the food is truly excellent and in endless quantity as a family style dining location. The offerings are great for kids, but at the same time something adults can enjoy as well, which I see as a huge perk of scheduling a table service breakfast in the parks.
What Characters Come to Your Table?
Garden Grill is far easier to get a reservation for that Akershus in the Norway Pavilion (typically – your results may vary), and still features characters that kids and adults alike will enjoy. It’s not the same princes character arrangement, but instead debuts Mickey, Pluto, and Chip and Dale. Character interaction is a huge bonus here. As a result of being a fairly small dining location, by comparison to many of the buffet offerings, the characters tend to spend more time interacting with guests and taking all the time you need (to a reasonable amount) or want to spend with each and every character.
What Does It Cost?
There’s no hiding the fact that this isn’t necessarily a cheap dining offering, but you are at Walt Disney World and that price increase tends to come with the territory. As true as that may be, if you consider this meal could potentially replace both breakfast and lunch, the cost of $32 per person is somewhat reasonable in the grand scheme of things. Especially when you consider it’s $2 less per person that Crystal Palace at Magic Kingdom. Dining at Disney isn’t cheap, but if you plan on eating on property, chance are you’ll be paying more that you typically would for meals. So, in my opinion, paying a few dollars extra for something that could cover two meals is more that worth it in the big picture from a cost perspective. It may not be the ideal solution for everyone but certainly something I would consider. If you want help planning your meals or times, we always recommend Destinations to Travel (clickable link) to help you plan every aspect of your vacation (or as much of it as you’d like for them to free of charge).
The Cast Members Set It Apart!
If you’ve read many of our articles here on the site, you’re likely aware of how much weight I put in the value of quality cast members in creating a memorable Walt Disney World experience. A great cast member can make or break a meal, or create an experience that you will truly remember forever. The cast members at Garden Grill are second to none based on my experience. They’re polite, attentive, and make a genuine attempt to get to know and interact with guests on a semi-personal level. By the end of the meal you feel like you’ve created a new friend, and often times they go above and beyond to make sure that there’s at least one moment that sets your meal apart from a meal anywhere else.
Location, Location, Location!
Given that Garden Grill is located in the Land Pavilion of Epcot, it’s one of the most convenient in-park table service breakfast locations in that particular park. In my opinion it’s a win-win opportunity if you can secure a reservation about 2 hours after the park opens. That way, if you get to Epcot when the park opens, you can head straight to Test Track or Soarin, fastpass whichever one you choose, and successfully experience a few more of the less popular attractions like Living with the Land, The Seas With Nemo, Journey Into Imagination with Figment, or even the Pixar Short Film Festival before heading to your dining reservation. It’s the perfect combination of getting a ton of attractions done while making the most of your time before the crowds start to file in for the day.
Additionally, when you eat a few hours into the day, you can use your breakfast reservation as a brunch so that you may not need to catch a lunch as well later in the day. In some cases, eliminating that extra meal can more that make up for the cost of the table service breakfast. When you set up your day in that fashion you can snack your way around the countries of the World Showcase in the afternoon or possibly plan a second table service or quick service meal for dinner later that night. As always, your situation may very and what works for you may vary. For us, breakfast at Garden Grill is a great addition to Our Tried and True “Epcot in a Day” Touring Plan.
A Unique Atmosphere
Believe it or not, as you dine at Garden Grill, the restaurant itself is designed in a way that it slowly rotates. It’s not quick moving by any stretch of the imagination, but at the same time a clever feature designed to give guests a closer look at the many external features of the locations atmosphere. As the seating area slowly spins, it gives guests the opportunity to view sections of the Living with the Land attraction below. It’s not the most picturesque view, but at the same time an incredibly unique environment that many guests don’t enitrely expect upon arriving for their reservation. Kids love it, adults find it interesting, and it’s one more thing that sets Disney apart from all the rest.
As always, if you have thoughts, concerns, questions, or even some tips of your own to share, don’t hesitate to reach out to us on Facebook or your favorite social media platform. Give us a follow while you’re there, and we’ll keep the conversation going in the future. We’re not the largest Disney community, but we’re one that’s there and one that listens. Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day wherever you are!
A few short years ago, I was sitting in a college apartment trying to figure out what was "next" and came up with this idea to share my accumulated knowledge of the Disney Parks and Resorts with others. The end goal was to help others make the most of their Disney experience and it's been quite the journey!