If you are taking a family vacation to Orlando and are planning to spend a few days at the various Disney theme parks, then you may want to plan ahead and pick a few fun places to eat that can cater to a wide range of age groups. One such place to visit for lunch or dinner is the T-Rex Café Restaurant at Downtown Disney. Opened to the public in the fall of 2008, and conveniently located near all the Disney theme parks, the Café mixes animatronics and fun shopping with a good selection of food for the whole family. Here then is a family’s review of the restaurant.
The restaurant, which uses a prehistoric motif and is housed within a man-made prehistoric mountain, makes great use of life size animatronics in its décor. Diners are seated in tables that are surrounded by dozens of dinosaurs that mimic the noise and movement of the real thing. The animatronics were realistic enough to make an impression on my seven year old, who begged off sitting anywhere near the T-Rex, in favor of a more genteel herbivore.
Build-A-Dino Workshop (by Build-A-Bear):
However, both my seven year old and my ten year old enjoyed the Build-A-Dino Workshop. For those familiar with Build-A-Bear, this store uses the exact same concept, though instead of getting to select and stuff their own teddy bear, visitors get to select, stuff, and customize a cuddly dinosaur. If the dinosaur’s outfit is kept to a minimal, the whole experience should cost you about $30-$35, which when compared to other toys within the theme parks, is a Disney vacation bargain.
With prices for most entrees ranging from $13.49 to $30.99 (Café Menu ), the Café offers a wide selection of food for both lunch and dinner. While the kids menu is not as well designed as the adults menu, the selection is still a lot better than what’s offered inside the parks. Among the entrees enjoyed by my family were the following:
Footprints Flatbread ($14.99)
Offered as an appetizer, but large enough to make a lunch out of, this entrée is the equivalent of a flatbread pizza. The heated flatbread is topped with a variety of cheeses (chedder, parmesan, mozzarella and goat), chicken, and carmelized onions. The whole thing is covered in a balsamic glaze.
Mega Mes-O-Bones ($21.99)
Offered as a main course but large enough to feed two adults for lunch, the Mega Mes-O-Bones is slow roasted and tender plate of St. Louis Ribs with BBQ sauce. Offered with various side dishes, the ribs seemed tastier with the garlic mashed potatoes as the side dish.
While the T-Rex Café, as an experience, is highly comparable to the nearby Rainforest Café, the food as a whole is a bit better, and the kids seemed to enjoy themselves a lot more. Without kids, the visit is still worthwhile, with kids, the experience is a memorable one. For those wishing to make lasting memories out of their family vacations, the T-Rex Café is a must during your next trip to Disney.