Review of River Belle Terrace Meal Package
A few weeks ago I saw Fantastic ! for the first time since returning to Disneyland Park. It was a very moving experience as I had not seen her in over two years since the COVID-19 pandemic closed the parks. I arrived two hours early to get a seat (which is pretty standard for getting there early) only to find that unlike the old days you are no longer allowed to sit during the show and you have to stand. I noticed that a few of the middle sections were marked off and people were sitting in those sections. So I asked a cast member how these sections could sit. These sections are reserved for customers who have Fantastic ! Meal packages. Although it was a bit painful to stand for so long to wait and watch the show, I was just excited to finally see the show after so long, and continued to stand.
When the show started, I got a little frustrated because there were so many people standing in front of me who were much taller (I’m 5’2), and I was on my tiptoes, leaning to the left and to the right, trying to see Mickey. on Tom Sawyer’s Island. I had to be that person and lift my phone up high and watch the show through my phone screen. That’s when I decided I wanted to try one of the dining packages to get the reserved seats and see if they were really worth it.
Short answer? Yes, it’s really worth it!
Currently, you can choose from three different locations that offer the Fantastic ! Dining packages: Blue Bayou, River Belle Terrace and Hungry Bear Restaurant. I had a lunch reservation at River Belle Terrace last weekend, and it was one of the best experiences. I chose River Belle because Blue Bayou is the most expensive of the three and Hungry Bear is fast service, so I chose the mid-priced option with table service. It was also my first time dining at River Belle, so I got to try some of their menu items for the first time!
I was able to check into the Disneyland app five minutes before my reservation and was seated within ten minutes of checking in. They tried to seat me inside, but I asked if I could sit outside since it was such a beautiful summer day. All tables are covered with umbrellas and you have a view of the river, so if you’re ok with the weather in the shade, I highly recommend eating outside! The servers will introduce you to their usual menu once you are seated, and if you are interested in the Fantastic ! Meal package, you will inform them immediately and they will bring you another special menu.
I started with the strawberry-pistachio salad. I didn’t think it was anything special; the leaves were a bit wilted and the whole thing was a bit bland. It wasn’t completely awful but it wasn’t the best. For my entree I chose the Cuban sandwich which is actually a regular menu item. The plate came with toddlers and homemade baked beans; the whole plate was delicious! The meat in the sandwich was so tender and flavorful, and the green sauce was to die for! I’m also normally more of a fried girl, but these toddlers blew my mind. They have a Cajun seasoning that just makes you want to keep eating them! The baked beans were a perfect addition to the meal, although nothing special.
The Fantastic ! the dessert is very interesting and visually cool. It is a chocolate dome surrounded by fruity pebbles. They give you a tiny pitcher of hot condensed milk which you pour over the dome to melt the chocolate. Inside reveals mango sorbet, pickled berries and raspberry cake. A big problem with this dessert is that the condensed milk isn’t hot enough to melt the chocolate dome, so you have to use a fork or spoon to open the dome and get the rest of your dessert. The berries were really good, but personally I wasn’t a fan of the sorbet or the raspberry cake. Again, it’s visually really cool, but because I felt stuck, I had to go to the park and find another dessert to satisfy the sweets craving.
One important thing to note is that if you don’t see an item on the Fantastic ! menu that is on the regular menu that you would like to order, ask your server usually they can do it for you without problem. River Belle Terrace offers both lunch and dinner and for lunch you can get the standard package which is $50 per adult and $35 per child. For dinner, you can choose between the Standard package or the Premium package ($75 per adult; $45 per child). The Premium package requires you to get a reservation for the restaurant at 7:15 p.m. and be able to watch the show from your table! Lunch reservations start at 11:00 a.m. and end when dinner starts at 4:00 p.m.
Once you have received your bill, you have the option (subject to availability) between the 9:00 p.m. viewing and the 10:30 p.m. viewing. Your server will give you an old fashioned FastPass and you will meet in a designated area to be taken to your seating section. Guests at River Belle Terrace meet near Harbor Galley. For my 9:00 p.m. show, I was told the line started at 7:30 p.m., but when I got there, several people were already lined up. However, I had a very good place and was in the second row; with everyone seated, it’s definitely easier to see the whole show and it’s more comfortable!
As stated before, I highly recommend the Fantastic ! Meal packages. Although I have yet to experience those at the Hungry Bear Restaurant or the Blue Bayou, I do know that I have had excellent dining experiences at both locations and in the seating areas for Fantastic ! for both looked great too! I had a great first experience at River Belle Terrace, and for the most part the food was really good and the service was probably the best service I’ve ever had at a table service restaurant in Disneyland.
If you want to book a Fantastic ! Meal plan on your next trip to Disneyland, be sure to let your Academy travel agent know!
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