So what should the next Red Rose Taverne be? One of the nice things about overlays is that it allows parks to bring a new theme to its restaurant line-up relatively quickly, with minimal downtime. There's no expensive new location to build (or rebuild) — just develop some new menu items that can be produced in the same kitchen, design new signage and maybe additional decoration, and you're ready to open. And if the theme fails to hit with visitors, the park can just as swiftly return to the restaurant's previous theme.
Tying an existing restaurant to an overlaid new theme probably makes the most sense as a promotion for a new film, which is why Disneyland's Tomorrowland Terrace became Galactic Grill when Star Wars: The Force Awakens came out. And why Village Haus changed now, with Disney's new live-action Beauty and the Beast about to debut. But if parks were open to trying to boost sales at established restaurants by switching them up with existing franchises, opportunities abound.
More than a few Disneyland fans would be thrilled to see the park switch Redd Rockett's Pizza Port into a Toy Story Pizza Planet, especially if that meant re-opening the Tomorrowland arcade across the way with a Pizza Planet theme. Or maybe Cafe Orleans or the French Market Restaurant could become Tiana's Palace, from The Princess and the Frog.
What if Universal Orlando switched Cafe 4 at Islands of Adventure to an Avengers-themed Shawarma Palace? (This needs to go into Disney California Adventure's future Marvel land, regardless.) Should Epcot's Les Chefs de France commit to its occasional Ratatouille flirtations and become Gusteau's?
Obviously, switching to a franchise with an established culinary element helps here. Disneyland's Galactic Grill was a stretch, as the only restaurant reference in the Star Wars universe to that point was the Mos Eisley cantina, which Disneyland couldn't do because of its no-alcohol policy. (We'll see if that policy survives the opening of the park's Star Wars land in 2019, I guess.) But The Grey Stuff at the Red Rose Tavern is as much a slam-dunk as Butterbeer in The Three Broomsticks and a Krusty Burger in Springfield.
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