Rainforest Cafe at Downtown Disney

July 1, 2009 by DisGuruMom

Rainforest Cafe at Downtown Disney

Our family of 5 ate here for dinner last Friday night. We had eaten at the Animal Kingdom location several years ago and weren’t overly impressed, but our kids really wanted to eat here, so that’s how we ended up here most recently.

We put our name in at a bit before 8pm and were told it would be a 2 hour wait. We were told we could eat on the deck at the side of the restaurant overlooking the lake with a wait of about 15 minutes. However, we decided to wait it out, since this restaurant is really all about the “show” inside. I hoped the 2 hour wait would not be accurate, but I was disappointed. When we had heard many parties called that didn’t show up during the first hour, I went to the podium to see if our wait might be shortened and was told somewhat abruptly that it would not. The girl working at the podium was also quite adept at completely ignoring anyone who came to ask questions of her unless she was directly adressed. When we hit the 2 hour mark and still had not been called, I went to her to ask how much longer it would be and was told we had already been called. There is no way. We had not left the front of the restaurant the entire time, and trust me- by almost 10pm we were anxious to hear our name called. It never was. She then blamed the young man operating the microphone.

Once seated, our server introduced himself hurriedly and said he would return soon. After this happened a few times, he finally took our drink orders. By this time, it was too late for a full meal, so my husband ordered the nachos appetizer, my older daughter and myself shared the combo appetizer, and the 2 younger ones each ordered a kids meal. One was grilled cheese, and one was hotdogs.

The kids meals were eaten entirely and heartily enjoyed. The nachos appetizer was gigantic and could have been a full meal for almost any 2 adults- if they were in the mood for very processed tasting cheese sauce and a bland chili-like topping along with the usual tomatoes, sour cream, etc. The appetizer combo was also disappointing although plenty large enough to feed the 2 of us. It had calamari which was actually well cooked- not too chewy- but had a very bland frozen food tasting breading on them, chimi cha chas- a southwestern eggroll which also seemed to incorporate the nachos chili, fried cheese sticks which were obviously processed frozen food and terribly bland, and tortilla chips with a spinach dip that had no flavor until we mixed in the bit of pico de gallo that was the garnish.

We did not have desssert, since it was terribly late and we weren’t in the mood to spend more money on mediocre food at best.

Our server was fine but not exceptional. The food was terribly overpriced for the quality. And the overall experience was most certainly not worth the wait. Lesson learned- never go on a Friday night during summer if you’re not willing to endure a long wait for less than average food at a premium price unless you’re REALLY into animatronic animals.

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