The moment you step inside the new Tiffins restaurant at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Walt Disney World, something just feels different. Gone are the feelings of sweaty outdoorsy-ness that playfully permeate a day at the theme park, and instead, you are welcomed with a five-star dining experience.
The atmosphere is both classy and exploratory: actual antiques and artifacts from different parts of the world line the walls, and the lights are dimmed to a romantic glow — at least if you’re there in the evening. There are a few main dining rooms to traverse, and all of them contain a very different identity, depending on what kind of cultural delights fill the space. This is all thanks to Executive Designer and Vice President of Creative, Joe Rohde, whose fingerprints are all over the Animal Kingdom park.
Check out a full walkthrough of the restaurant below:
The Nomad Lounge, attached to Tiffins, is a wonderful place for guests to settle down, soak in the air conditioning, and refresh with a beverage. It also has its own food menu so the casual bar-goers will have something to soak up the liquor.
So let’s talk about the food. How is it? The short answer is: phenomenal. Each dish is crafted lovingly and carefully with just the right amount of bold eclectic flavor to quench anybody’s palate. Without a doubt, this may very well be the most adventurous and exotic menu on Disney property.
I started my meal off with the marinated grilled octopus with artichoke barigoule, saffron aioli, and lemon-caper olive oil.
And I accompanied that appetizer with a sustainable seasonal fish Crudo with roasted corn salsa, finger lime, and smoked sea salt.
For an entree, I had the Berkshire pork tenderloin with pork and masa tamale, hominy succotash, and red mole sauce.
And my guest had the pan-seared duck breast with leg confit, hen of the woods, parsnip puree, truffle reduction, and peach gastrique.
All of the dishes were absolutely incredible, each containing its own flavor and identity. There simply isn’t one that I would recommend over the other, considering the purposeful originality with which each plate was prepared. The prices are a bit steep but well worth the price of admission.
I had the opportunity to speak to a few guests both before and after our meal, and there didn’t seem to be an unsatisfied diner in the house. In fact, one of them let me take a look at their whole-fried sustainable fish with fermented black bean sauce, som tam, and peanuts. Really wild stuff — if you’re into eating something with a face.
Overall, my experience with Tiffins at Disney’s Animal Kingdom park was a spectacular one, and the presence of a restaurant like this at a more laid-back theme park changes the atmosphere quite a bit. I have no doubt that guests will be dressing up and planning a trip to the park specifically to enjoy the daring cuisine.
Here are some more shots of various foods from Tiffins:
And here is the menu, for your viewing pleasure:
So what do you folks think? Are you ready to take the leap and traverse the menu at Disney’s newest (possibly greatest) restaurant? Let me know what you think in the comments below and, as always, stick with Inside the Magic for all things Disney!