Much has been written about dining at Disneyland, and frankly, quite a bit of it was written by me. I’m like that—from kid meals to churros, no giant turkey leg has been left unturned (rotisserie?). We work up an appetite.
Over the years we have dined at Disneyland as omnivores, vegetarians, gluten-free, and at various levels of healthily snacking. I am fairly certain that we have eaten at every single restaurant, counter, or cart in the park (not counting Club 33 which isn’t open to the public), but there was one location that we didn’t cross off the family to-do list until very recently, and that is the swashbuckling Blue Bayou located within the Pirates of the Caribbean ride.
Why? Basically, it’s not cheap, and just like upscale restaurants on the mainland we didn’t care to drop a lot of cash on a meal that the kids wouldn’t eat, appreciate, or behave through. Also, we are the type of people that actually care about those around us (novel concept, I know), and those people were paying too much money for what my kids would have, until recently, brought to the table (and a five foot radius thereof). So we waited.
And we waited, until eventually, thanks to a well-oiled routine of favorite places to eat and the best times to do so, we kind of forgot about it.
This is the part of the story where I need you to imagine time passing—maybe a nice montage with the seasons changing and the kids getting ridiculously taller. Some music would be nice. Tick tock, tick tock.
Then one day, just around Christmas, we were walking through New Orleans Square, doing how we do, and one of the boys asked something along the lines of what is Blue Bayou? to which we answered, “Four for lunch, please.”
We really should have done it sooner.
Nearly a year before Blue Bayou opened in 1967 Walt Disney is quoted as having said, “In this restaurant the food is going to be the show, along with the atmosphere.”
Once again, Disney nailed it.
The service was great, the food was fantastic, but the atmosphere? You would need a whole team of Imagineers to match anything close to that sort of ambiance, which, luckily, Disney did. Blue Bayou is the pinnacle of Disney’s guest experience, which is a fairly technical way of saying it is very, very magical.
Here’s my point: If you are putting something aside for reasons like special, perfect, or rainy day, make sure that you don’t wait too long. Sure, it might be wonderful when you get there, but it is pretty amazing right now, too, and you only get now once.
The title of this post is taken from the song Blue Bayou by Linda Ronstadt (and friends) which has nothing to do with the restaurant but is too awesome not to include:
Read more from Whit Honea at his site Honea Express and the popular group blog DadCentric. You can follow Whit on the Twitter or Pinterest (his opinions are his own and do not reflect those of Babble or most rational people).