Ever since the opening of New Fantasyland at the Walt Disney World Resort, Justin and I have been trying (and dying) to get into Be Our Guest Restaurant.
We had heard amazing things about the decadent French cuisine, the charming atmosphere, the brilliant theming. So when we finally got a reservation we couldn’t wait to go!
Here’s the thing about our reservation, Justin tried every single day in June to book a reservation exactly 180 days out and always came out with nothing. Finally, he tried one day in July, and was able to get a reservation exactly 6 months later. Talk about anticipation.
The day finally came, and off we went!
When I dine at a Disney restaurant, whether or not I recommend it to a friend (or book a reservation again) depends on three things: Theme, Atmosphere, Food.
I’m going to give you my honest opinion on the four of these things and give you my opinion of my Overall Experience. From there, you can make your own decisions!
Be Our Guest is really beautiful and a masterpiece of Disney Imagineering. The restaurant is divided into three dining rooms: the main dining room which resembles the ballroom Belle and the Beast dance in, complete with gorgeous chandeliers and lightly falling snow outside the windows;
the Rose Room, the center of which is a giant mechanical music box with Belle and Beast dancing together; and the West Wing, a perfect mock-up of the Beast’s forbidden area in the castle, including the enchanted rose and magic mirror.
As a whole, the restaurant is beautiful, candles flicker and dim as if they were real flames, you are lead to each table by a host or hostess with a candelabra.
Every thirty minutes or so, the Beast enters the great hall with a rush of music and welcomes his guests. (I was pretty excited to see him, if only for an instant!) He then adjourns to the study where you can meet your host when you are finished with your meal.
The moment we walked in, I was struck by a beautiful mosaic of Belle and Prince Adam dancing. After that, I was immediately overwhelmed by the number of people waiting. There was very very very little space to wait. No benches to sit on, and we were all smooshed together. I immediately looked at Justin and mentioned that I was put off by the number of people waiting, we had waited 6 months for our reservation and it was clear the intimate dining experience I was expecting was not going to happen. That being said, the restaurant certainly did look nice.
Despite the beautiful décor, I found the atmosphere at Be Our Guest to be similar to any other table-service restaurant at Magic Kingdom Park. The acoustics did not allow for much conversation as they amplified all the noise in the space making it noisy. The main dining room sought to optimize the space available so there was a little more than two feet between each table, in fact the tables were so close together we could easily carry on a conversation with our neighbors as if we were in communal dining.
The Cast Members encouraged us to walk around, which Justin and I did, and we noticed that the other two dining rooms, while not nearly as stunning as the main hall, had tables for larger groups, and much less of them.
The problem with the West Wing dining room, we found, was the attraction of people to take pictures of the enchanted rose. There were quite a few tables very close to the rose that constantly had a row of people standing and taking photos. Not exactly the best dining experience I would imagine.
However, as with all our Disney dining experience, the Cast Members working were wonderful. Our hostess gave sincere recommendations, seemed interested in our days, and went above and beyond to provide great guest service.
Justin and I each ordered the French Onion Soup as our appetizers. Our soups came out quite quickly—almost too quickly. To be honest, I was a little put off by this! I am used to French restaurants where you settle in a bit before each course. French Onion Soup is easily one of my favorite things ever, but I was not impressed. It was not bad, but it was not the best either.
For our entrees I ordered rack of lamb and Justin got the signature dish: a slow-braised pork shoulder. Both we very good, we cleaned our plates. The lamb was cooked perfectly, and the pork tasted like a pot roast. Yum!
For dessert, we finished with The Gray Stuff. The Gray Stuff itself was essentially a fine whipped butter cream dyed gray, with silver crispy candy pieces. It was served over a chocolate torte cookie that was tough and dry.
I wouldn’t say Justin and I had a horrible time at Be Our Guest, but I don’t know if we would go back. In the end for both of our meals we paid $100 (2 glasses of wine, 2 frnech onion soups, the lamb, the port, 2 gray stuffs, tax and tip) and had a wait 6 months to even eat there. Would I say it was worth all that? Absolutely not.
We could have shelled out the same amount of money and possibly a little extra and had an absolutely perfect meal at Monsieur Paul in the France pavilion at Epcot park, or if we wanted to eat off property, Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse!
The restaurant was beautiful, it is definitely a sight to see. But in the future, Justin and I decided we would much rather wait for Quick Service at the same location to enjoy the ambiance.
I should mention that the French Onion Soup drops $2.20 when you have it for lunch. Same size, same ingredients, over two bucks cheaper. Just saying.
Have you eaten at Be Our Guest? I’d love to hear what you thought! Leave me a comment.