Hungry Bear Restaurant is a counter-service restaurant in Tokyo Disneyland’s Westernland. Hungry Bear specializes in Japanese curry, with several different kinds paired with rice. This review includes our thoughts on the restaurant as well as photos from our latest visit.
A restaurant themed to the old west that showcases Japanese curry is a bit of an oddity. At least, that’s what I thought until we dined there. For those unfamiliar, Japanese curry is quite a bit different from Indian curry, which seems to be more popular. Japanese curry is closer to a stew, with a thicker consistency and closer to a taste of stew than the curry you may picture. As a whole, Japanese curry is far more mild than Indian curry although it still does have a little spice. Because Japanese curry is more ‘stew’ like, the food doesn’t feel out-of-place in Westernland even to a westerner like me. This is comfort food even if you haven’t had it before.
It probably goes without saying at this point that Tokyo Disneyland’s Hungry Bear Restaurant is far different from Disneyland’s version. Not only is the food different but the location is different, across the walking path from the water instead of right on it. If you are familiar with Magic Kingdom, Hungry Bear sits in the same location Pecos Bill would. This puts the very large restaurant next to Country Bear Jamboree, making for an excellent ‘dinner and a show’ combination. Yes, I was just looking for an excuse to bring up the Country Bear Jamboree.
Once inside of the restaurant, there are several rooms to eat your lunch or dinner in. The color scheme changes some between rooms and details differ to an extent. Hungry Bear Restaurant has rich wood tones throughout and murals all over.
The props around Hungry Bear Restaurant are a highlight and add a good amount of character to the restaurant.
Hungry Bear Restaurant is one of the more popular restaurants at Tokyo Disneyland. Much like Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall, I would recommend going to this counter-service restaurant at off hours. Either get there before noon, eat in the mid-afternoon, or after 8. There is plenty of seating no matter what time of day but the line to get your meal will take a while if you go during prime hours.
The only thing on the menu (outside of dessert) at Hungry Bear Restaurant is curry. Here’s a link, that you may have to run through Google Translate. There is Vegetable, Beef, Pork Cutlet, and Chicken Curry. Like just about every restaurant at Tokyo Disney Resort, Hungry Bear Restaurant offers set meals which have an entrée, side and drink with them. You can also order single entrees without any trouble. We opted for the beef (known as the Hungry Bear Curry) and Pork Cutlet Curry.
I preferred the Hungry Bear Curry which had a beef patty and some vegetables in it. The meat was cooked well but the star of the show was the curry itself. There was a little bit of heat and a ton of flavor packed into this curry. It was fairly rich and very filling. I opted for the set meal and they came with the corn chips seen at the top of the picture. These were almost an exact replica of Bugles which you can find at your local convenient store. They were fine but the curry was so filling that I hardly ate any.
The Pork Cutlet Curry was also good. In fact, I prefer the actual pork cutlet to the beef patty. The pork was juicy and the breading on the outside was crisp and full of flavor. Overall, I like the Hungry Bear Curry better because of the other vegetables along with it. I also think the beef mixes better with the curry flavor than the pork did. Having said that, I don’t think there is a bad choice here. While on the subject, I should mention that Hungry Bear Restaurant is one of the few places at Tokyo Disney Resort that has a vegetable based entrée with the Vegetable Curry. I’m far from an expert on diets or dietary needs so I’m not sure if the dish is actually vegan-friendly but I’m insightful enough to note that there isn’t a hunk of meat on that plate…
The Hungry Bear Curry is around $12 while all of the other entrees hover around $8. Hungry Bear Restaurant was the best value of any counter-service restaurant we went to at Tokyo Disney Resort, and possibly Disney restaurants as a whole. The meal is completely filling and extremely well made. I thought my food was table-service food quality. As I mentioned, there is a little spice to the dishes so it might not be for everyone. In fact, Melissa wasn’t a big fan of Hungry Bear Restaurant. She agreed that the restaurant had a nice ambiance and the food was well made, it just wasn’t her kind of food. I’m a more adventurous eater than her and she isn’t a fan of spice. This ended up being my favorite Tokyo Disneyland counter-service restaurant while Melissa liked a few others more.
Overall, I couldn’t recommend Hungry Bear Restaurant enough. The food is delicious and a great value while being in a beautiful restaurant that pays tribute to the Country Bears and old west. While less popular and more subtle than Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall, I would ultimately recommend Hungry Bear Restaurant before that restaurant.
Overall Rating – 10/10
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Categories: Restaurant Reviews
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