by: guide4wdw – Collin
Just last Friday (when this article was originally written: Mid July 2017 – Updated December 2018), we had the opportunity to dine at Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’ Kitchen. To be quite honest, I had heard outstanding reviews of the location, but really didn’t expect an amazing dining experience. I’m happy to say I was blown away by the level of service and incredible food the dining location encompasses. 

First off, we did have a reservation for dinner on July 7th at 6:00pm. We chose to spend that day of our trip at the resort just relaxing and taking in a few final minutes of Disney before flying home on Saturday. However, we wrapped up our time at the resort a little early and decided to head over to Disney Springs. Once we arrived, we decided to try to check in early for our reserved time (nearly 2 hours early), and the staff was more that helpful getting us a table much earlier that expected. After what was likely less that 10 minutes, we were at our table! 

When you walk in the door at Homecomin’ you’re greeted by the smell of classic southern food and a friendly staff. At the check-in counter there’s a bowl of taffy to eat while you wait or take with you after your meal. While that is simply a little detail, it’s one of those things that sets a dining location apart from many others. (In a similar way, The Crazy Crab in Hilton Head Island, which many of you may have likely visited, has a characteristic key lime flavored candy at the welcome counter.) 

Once we were seated, our server arrived and really helped build the experience from the very beginning. As we pondered the menu, and attempted to narrow down our choices (which was extremely difficult because everything sounds good), our server made suggestions and helpful comments that were outstanding  Considering we were first time guests at the location, she made a special effort to share the location’s story and how a majority of the items are actually “Florida fresh,” and locally sourced. For me, that was a big selling point from the very beginning. Personally, if I can support the people around me in any way possible I’d much rather do that that an industry hundreds or even thousands of miles away. However, long story short, our server (Brooke – if you want to ask for her by name) was outstanding and really helped better our overall Homecomin’ experience. She gave truly honest opinion of what was served and really helped build an outstanding customer service experience!

After ordering, the food arrived fairly quickly and everything was brought to us hot and fresh.  All in all, we ordered four meals: Art’s Famous Fried Chicken, Fried Chicken and Donuts, The Chopped Pork Barbecue Plate, and another Famous Fried Chicken. We were fair warned that the portion size was huge by our server (we didn’t heed the warning unfortunately), and she wasn’t kidding. The meals are huge and I wouldn’t have it any other way!  

Art’s Famous Fried Chicken was the crowd pleaser for sure! Honestly, it is the best fried chicken I have eaten in my life. Each piece is breaded and fried to a crispy texture, but the best part is, a majority of the bones have been removed prior to frying (with the exception of the chicken leg), so you can essentially eat everything that is brought to you. Even the larger sections of chicken were cut around the bone making it extremely easy to eat. this particular meal is served with mashed potatoes and cheddar drop biscuits, but the side can be traded out for others on the menu. The macaroni and cheese is a $2 up charge and we’ll share more on that later.   

The other fried chicken dish we ordered came with donuts opposed to the biscuits and was also outstanding. While in that particular meal you do get fewer pieces of chicken (see pictures), the meal is a simple variation of what is the Chicken and Waffles concept. The donuts aren’t incredibly overbearing with sugar, and the sauce that comes with them is equally as tasty! It really offers up that sweet and savory combination that just goes great together. 
The chicken itself is amazing, it is a heavy meal, but a very juicy chicken with a ton of flavor. The sides are just as wonderful. The mashed potatoes are smooth and rich with an abundance of flavor paired with an equally creamy gravy. The Macaroni was outstanding, extremely filling, and is quite a large portion (hence the up charge). Another side we ordered, sweet potatoes, we’re supposedly outstanding as well, but personally I never could stand the taste of that type of potato. I had to pass on that one.

Last, but certainly not least, the chopped pork meal was really surprising. The sauce was quite sweet and the pork was extremely tender. Also worth noting is that Macaroni is included in the original pairing for this item on the menu, so there is no upcharge to order it with this meal.   

No one in our group ordered alcoholic drinks, but I will comment and say that this is one of the few places on Disney property where you can get “real” sweet tea. I’m from the city portion of Kentucky, so going a week without sweet tea is a challenge (lol). If you’re like us, enjoy it while you’re at this dining location and it won’t likely disappoint. 

All in all, this was one of the best meals, if not the best meal, we had during our vacation and I know I’ll be returning at some point in the future (hopefully sooner rather that later!). I understand this sounds like another over-positive review, but once again we paid for all of this out of pocket and I have very few complaints. Yes, as with everything on property it was a little pricey, but that’s to be expected. However, if I could change one thing, the only gripe I could come up with is that the drink prices are really high even by Disney standards. Everything considered, the staff was outstanding, very friendly, and the food was really hard to put into words. It’s true southern cooking at it’s finest! If you go, ask for Brooke if she’s there, and don’t forget to try the chicken! If you want to check out a full menu here’s a quick link -> Menu and Prices

Your Thoughts

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! 

Ready to Plan?

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Last but certainly not least, if you’re starting the planning process, a great place to start are with some of our top planning articles! Looking for dining? Check out Disney World Dining Tips For 2018. Want to start with some more tips? 44 Excellent Disney World Tips for 2018 or Disney World Planning Guide and Tips For 2018 are a great place to begin! Looking to save money on tickets? Check out our friends over at The Official Ticket Center for great deals that even made it into our 2018 Discount Disney World Ticket selections and another great way to help us create more content through your contributions at no additional cost to you! You’ll probably even save money along the way.

Thanks for reading, and be sure to SHARE our new Disney dining “must do” with friends! If you’re booking a vacation and plan on spending some time at Disney Springs, be sure to check this place out!
Honestly, I don’t quite know how affiliated this property is with Disney, but they do take the dining plan and other Disney related discounts if you’re interested! Thanks again!