Eating Disney food is a huge part of the vacation for many Disney guests. International cuisine, delicious bar food, signature dining and traditional theme park meals are not to be missed at Walt Disney World. But did you know that Disney isn’t all of your favorite Disney restaurants? it’s the truth! Let’s talk drinks, theme park fare, dining reservations, and more but with a non-Disney spin because some of these delicious places aren’t actually owned by Disney.
T-REX at the Market, Disney Springs
Want to stroll down the prehistoric side for a dining experience? If you have a dinosaur enthusiast in your family, dining on a T-Rex at Disney Springs Marketplace is a no-brainer. This store and restaurant is similar to the Rainforest Café in that it provides an immersive dining and shopping experience for guests, placing them in the middle of the Jurassic period.
However, you might be surprised to learn that this excellent themed spot is actually owned by Landry’s instead of Disney! The Landry family of restaurants owns places like The Chart House, Bubba Gump, Salt Grass Steak House, and Joe’s Crab Shack. Other amazing Disney World Laundry locations include Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria at EPCOT World Showcase and Yak & Yeti at Animal Kingdom’s Asia.
T-REX is a great place to dine alongside playful animatronic dinosaurs while enjoying classic bar food like burgers, nachos, sandwiches, and appetizers. I’m a huge fan of the Supersaurus Sampler split. This appetizer sampler can be shared among 4 people and rings in at just under $33. Filled with cheese meatballs, spicy Nashville boneless wings, chili con queso, caprese flatbread, and mozzarella sticks, this is a delicious starter you should consider.
Remember to check out Landry’s Select Club before your Disney vacation if you plan to eat at the Landry’s owned restaurant at Disney World. You might get a welcome coupon, and you’ll collect points for food dollars you spend on vacation at Landry’s restaurants and outside of Walt Disney World.
Yaks and Yeti in Asia, Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Did you know that one of my favorite spots for affordable, shareable meal options at Disney’s Animal Kingdom is also not owned by Disney? it’s the truth! Yak & Yeti Restaurant is located in Asia near Expedition Everest. The beautiful decor and delicious menu make this one of my favorite table service spots in the garden. If you want dumplings, fried rice or noodles, this is a must-visit place. Another place owned by Landry, you can collect Landry bonus points while eating. Don’t miss the Yak & Yeti during your visit to Animal Kingdom, they are delicious!
Tutto Italia Restaurant at the Italy Pavilion, EPCOT World Expo
If you’ve ever indulged in the creamy pasta at Tutto Italia Ristorante after a full day of Disney experience, you know how this comfort food hits the spot. Securing an advanced dining reservation at this relaxed table service restaurant is something I do regularly. Calamari Fritti with delicious marinara makes my family’s favorite appetizer dish. The fettuccine made with homemade pasta, topped with a creamy white sauce, is fantastic and pairs perfectly with the grilled chicken.
Believe it or not, the Tutto Italia restaurant is actually owned by the Patina Hospitality Group. Founded in Boston, Massachusetts, Patina believes in crafting high-quality cuisine from the freshest ingredients to provide an immersive culinary experience for guests.
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Polite Pig at Town Center, Disney Springs
You’ll likely smell a Disney Springs restaurant before you see it. That’s right, I’m talking melt-in-your-mouth barbecue at Polite Pig. Located between the Disney Springs Market and downtown, you’ll find smoked pork barbecue that you can smell right out of a lime parking garage.
This is one of my favorite Disney restaurant locations for great Disney vacation barbecues. Polite Pig is the best restaurant to enjoy appetizers like glazed chicken wings. Another great starter is the Slider Trio that allows you to sample Southern Pig’s Roast Pork, Low and Slow Brisket, and Fried Chicken in small chunks to decide which is your favourite. As far as sides go, the macaroni and cheese at this place is one of my favorite Disney Mac’s!
3 Disney Restaurants: Places to Have a Disney Dinner Without the Crowds
♬ original sound – Brittney 🙃
Polite Pig is actually owned by a group of Florida chefs who have a passion for grilling. James, Julie and Brian Petrakis provide delicious quick service style meals perfect for a shopping day lunch.
Related: Tusker House and Kona Cafe will be releasing major updates!
Joffrey’s Café, various locations across Walt Disney World Resort
All caffeine lovers who frequent the most magical places on Earth are familiar with Joffrey’s Coffee. You’ll find Joffrey’s Coffee kiosks at every Disney park, thank God, because after days of playing magical extra hours, falling rope and running to the attractions, we need all the help we can get. This brand has become synonymous with Disney World vacations since its introduction at the parks in the ’90s, but believe it or not, this is a Tampa, Florida-owned company and not a Disney-owned brand.
These days, you’ll find Joffrey’s Coffee in a coffee maker set in a Disney resort room, at the Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney Springs, and Disney water parks. Starbucks is good in the real world, but when I’m on a Disney vacation, Joffrey’s Coffee is the best restaurant option for delicious coffee on the go. No matter who owns this delicious coffee company, we need all of our iced coffee to get you through your days in the gardens!
RelatedJoffrey’s recipes for adding a boost to your day
San Angel Inn Restaurant, Mexico Pavilion at EPCOT World Expo
At the beginning of the world’s premiere states, you’ll find one of my favorite spots for fine dining—the San Angel Inn Restaurant. At this Palmas Restaurant Group-owned venue, you can dine under the stars alongside a Mayan temple while guest boats cruise past the dining space of Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros. Their Tostadas de Pollo, Totopos Con Queso and Carne Asada are to die for, so don’t forget to try them when you dine at this place.
Morimoto Asia at The Landing, Disney Springs
Looking for a delicious dining option at a Disney Springs restaurant? Try Morimoto Asia for great Asian street food from a walk-in window or for a table service dining experience. Be sure to secure a reservation in advance to dine at this place, which is owned by the Patina Restaurant Group. The Duck Ramen, Beef Lo Mein Noodles, and Pork Dumplings are some of my favorite foods at this Disney Springs spot!
How many of these places are on your list of favorite Disney restaurants?