Where to eat? Lunch at Disneyland's French Market Restaurant
Published: October 5, 2011 at 9:13 AM
Disney, appropriately, has loaded New Orleans Square with restaurants - the Blue Bayou, Cafe Orleans and even its members-only Club 33. Even the Harbor Galley (across from the Haunted Mansion) offers some nice entree salads now, emerging from its long hibernation as a McDonald's french fry stand.
With all these choice, it's sometimes easy to overlook the French Market, which is the first of the land's eateries closed on those rare days when Disneyland crowds are light. But the French Market offers hearty, balanced meals that will keep you well-filled for the rest of your day in the park.
The French Market is one of Disneyland's slide-tray cafeterias. Pick an entree and you'll be served, then pass by the desserts and drinks on your way to pay. My only complaint with the service is the wait you sometimes have to endure between getting your entree and paying, allowing your meal to cool. I'm thankful Disney serves its meals on real plates, which allows them to retain heat during the wait, but it'd be nice if Disney could find a way to minimize that cooling-off time.
I chose the jambalaya and my wife opted for the roast beef.
Seafood & Chicken Jambalaya at Disneyland's French Market: Chicken, shrimp and diced andouille sausage, with a cornbread and vegetables. ($13.49)
Roast Beef Royale: Roast beef in gravy, served over onion-laced mashed potatoes, with a cornbread and vegetables. ($13.49)
The julienned zucchini and peppers made a great complement to the roast beef, but I thought that serving sauteed carrots and jicama with the jambalaya was kinda weird. Jambalaya is, at its heart, a vegetable stew, so vegetables on the side of that struck me redundant.
Not that Disneyland's jambalaya was lacking for meat. If anything, there was too much of it. Even in New Orleans itself, I'ver never had a jambalaya that had this much more meat than rice. (Not that I'm complaining.)
This isn't foodie heaven - it's a quick-service cafeteria after all. Both entrees tasted like something that'd been dished up from a steam tray than meals individually assembled by a chef. Because that's what they were. But they were balanced meals, with tasty vegetables, that left us both satisfied and kept us from feeling hungry for the rest of the day.
Have you eaten at Disneyland's French Market? Share your impression in the comments, or cast your vote on our French Market Restaurant page.