Cafe Orleans is a table-service restaurant in the heart of Disneyland’s New Orleans Square. Most of the restaurant is outside, looking out onto Rivers of America, Frontierland and different passersby. Cafe Orleans offers Cajun-Creole fare and ranges in price from about $15-$30 (per entree). The restaurant offers an Annual Pass discount. This review will offer our thoughts on the restaurant’s ambiance, cuisine and value as well as photos of the restaurant.
We’ve been to Cafe Orleans several times over the years and have always come away either liking or loving our experience. Residing in New Orleans Square plays a big role in that. Sitting inside of one of the greatest theme park land’s ever built certainly adds to the ambiance and allure of a place. Cafe Orleans plays off of that and adds to it.
More than half of the seating at Cafe Orleans is outside. The restaurant has a slew of umbrellas that line the patio, covering tables and chairs. While there isn’t much of a theme outside, the restaurant is smart enough to let the park do the talking. Directly across from Cafe Orleans rests the Rivers of America and Tom Sawyer Island. Catching the River Boats passing by is a common occurrence while having a meal. If that’s not enough, Haunted Mansion, Big Thunder Mountain and Splash Mountain are off in the distance, jazz music is just around the corner and this is one of the best areas for people watching. Sitting outside at Cafe Orleans is Disneyland bliss, as long as it doesn’t get too hot.
Inside of Cafe Orleans isn’t a bad place to have a meal either. The wood and windows offer warm tones and there is a little bit of theming to make you feel like you’ve stepped into an old restaurant. There is some stained glass and a few other nice touches. That said, if given a choice then the outdoor seating is a much better option. Either way, it’s one of the best ambiances in Disneyland.
Moving on to the food, here’s a look at the menu. The options, especially the entrees, have changed a good amount over the last few years. I’m always a fan of restaurant’s going that route as I think it keeps the menu pretty fresh and generally ambitious.
The Pommes Frites at Cafe Orleans are Disneyland of legend. They are (thinly cut) french fries with parmesan, garlic and parsley on them. Pommes Frites also come with a delicious cajun spicy remoulade. The fries alone are absolutely delicious. The flavor shouldn’t be as good as it is, being simply french fries with a few ingredients on top, but they were delicious. When you add in the sauce, it became one of my favorite items I’ve eaten at Disneyland. The sauce has a nice flavor and wasn’t very spicy, if you worry about that kind of thing. The remoulade blended well with the Pommes Frites. I could have eaten about three orders of these and been happy. They are a perfect appetizer.
We also tried the Seafood Gratin as an appetizer and liked it pretty well. This included Lump Crab, Shrimp, Spinach, and creamy Tarragon Dressing served with Seasoned Croutons. Honestly, I was impressed by the amount of seafood fit into the bowl. There was a generous amount of crab and shrimp. The Gratin was very rich though and, despite a small size, is very shareable. Overall it’s a nice option but I enjoy the Pommes Frites far more.
Again, the entrees have changed quite a bit over the last few years. What used to be a crepe heavy menu now doesn’t feature any crepes. The one mainstay on the menu has been the Monte Cristo.
The Monte Cristo includes Sliced Turkey, Ham and Swiss fried in a light batter, dusted with Powdered Sugar and served with Berry Purée. It’s an absolutely delicious sandwich and all of the flavors work really well together. The downside? It’s an extremely heavy sandwich that becomes too rich for me. Sharing this between 2 or 3 people, along with a few other options is the way to go. The Monte Cristo is truly delicious but it’s so much.
On the current menu, we’ve also tried the Bourbon Street Chicken (sorry, we remembered the photo after it was already cut up). I thought this dish was good but not great. The chicken was cooked well and had good flavor but I thought the bourbon sauce didn’t blend as well as I would have liked. The vegetables the dish came with were delicious. At $21 for this entree, I thought it was a decent option.
For dessert, we always order the Mickey Beignets. They have never disappointed. The dough is light and fluffy. Combining that with the powdered sugar on top made for a sweet, melt-in-your-mouth pastry. The Vanilla Creme Anglaise (this wasn’t served the last time we were here and I do not know if it’s still available) that we dipped the beignets into was equally delicious and added a little substance to the dessert. The other dip was a Fruit Coulis which we both liked but not as much as the creme.
Overall, we really enjoyed our meal at Cafe Orleans. The entrees may have left a little to be desired but that was more than covered up by excellent options for the appetizers and desserts. The location and atmosphere were phenomenal, as we dined and relaxed in the middle of the hustle and bustle. The prices are surprisingly affordable with most entrees hovering around the $20 mark. Considering the location and comparing the food to other theme park restaurants that seems more than fair. That makes Cafe Orleans one of my favorite restaurant in Disneyland.
Cafe Orleans Rating – 9/10
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Categories: Restaurant Reviews