Sanaa at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort, Revisited

January 25, 2011 by DisGuruMom

Restaurant Review: Sanaa in Walt Disney World's Animal Kingdom Lodge

Recently, my family made our second visit to Sanaa at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge Kidani Village.  We dined there about a year ago not too long after it opened and were anxious to return to see if it was as good as we remembered.

We had a late lunch reservation for 1:40pm and arrived with time to spare.  At check-in we were given our buzzer and headed out to look over the Sunset Savanna.  We had just enough time to enjoy spotting some of the residents before being alerted that our table was ready.  Waiting to be seated here is not a chore.  In fact, it would almost be a disappointment to have to go to your table if it weren’t for the beautiful view of the savanna that most tables afford.  We were seated right next to one of the large windows and had a perfect view of graceful giraffes and an occasional zebra as well as other birds and beasts during our meal.

Sanaa InteriorSanaa, which means “work of art” in Swahili, is designed to look like an outdoor market.  There are stylized trees overhead with beautiful light fixtures hanging from the limbs.  Tables as well as cozy booths are offered.

Our server was prompt and knowledgeable, even going so far as to point out specific changes to the menu since our last visit.  Our party consisted of two adults and three children including an 11 year old who is by Disney dining standards and adult.

The kids menu choices here are pretty standard options you find at most all restaurants across Walt Disney World – cheese pizza, cheeseburger, and meaty macaroni as well as grilled fish or grilled chicken breast.  These come with two sides or an appetizer and dessert.  Our two youngest kids are not particularly adventurous eaters and chose the pizza and burger – no big surprises there.  They ordered tomato soup with a small piece of cheese toast as a starter.  The soup was actually quite tasty, although they were more interested in the cheese toast.  The burger is the same burger found throughout Disney property – nothing special but well received.  The pizza had what was more like a flatbread crust and was also a hit.

Our family is notorious for splitting a few different items, because – hey – variety is the spice of life right?  On this day that meant the appetizer sampler for two which included samosas, lamb kefta, and roasted cauliflower, a salad sampler which included your choice of three, and Tandoori Chicken – a large wrap-like entree in which delicious bit sized tandoori chicken pieces is served on soft naan bread with minted greens, tomato, onion, and cucumber-yogurt raita.

The appetizer sampler was a hit all around.  The samosas had a touch of spicy heat to them which we enjoyed.  The lamb kefta was, in essence, lamb meatballs in a savory glaze.  And the roasted cauliflower was delicious with a bit of thick roasted tomato sauce.  For the salad sampler, we chose chickpeas with cucumber and tomato, Kachumber (a cucumber and tomato salad), and roasted beets.  All were very good and a nice contrast to the more hearty appetizer sampler.

The Tandoori chicken was a favorite from last year which was revisited this trip.  It is a large entree – especially for lunch.  Although our chicken was a little dry, the flavor was good, and the raita, tomato and greens helped cover the dryness.

Only the kids managed to save room for dessert which was a shame as the dessert menu offers some lovely, exotic choices including mango pudding, chai cream, and several other sweet endings.  The kids dessert choices are tapioca pudding, as well as the more familiar vanilla ice cream, and chocolate cake.

All in all, Sanaa was as welcoming and delicious as we remembered.  It is still somewhat off the radar, and therefore not difficult to secure a reservation for it.  I recommend it as a nice change of pace in atmosphere as well as cuisine.  It is now firmly established as a family favorite, and I know we will make a point to return to in the future.

Sanaa was delicious - Yum!

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