Gluten-free Character Dining at 1900 Park Faire at the Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa - Celiac Disease
Mar 31 2011

Gluten-free Character Dining at 1900 Park Faire at the Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

For our last meal at Disney, we decided to go traditional and go to a character breakfast.  Plus, we knew this would be a huge hit with our daughter.  However, being that most, if not all, character meals are buffets, this had me pretty nervous.

For anyone who is gluten-free a buffet can seem extremely daunting, there is too much risk of crumbs going from one dish to another; a serving spoon used in one dish that it wasn’t intended; or bits of one dish that may not be gluten-free spilling into one that should be gluten-free. I had read lots of good reviews about how easy it can be at Disney, but regardless, I was nervous.

We arrived for our 10am breakfast reservation at the 1900 Park Faire and the Grand Floridian Resort on time.  But since this is a buffet and there are lots of little kids waiting to see their favorite characters, we did have about a 20 minute wait until we were seated.  Every character meal features different characters.  The stars at the 1900 Park Faire were Alice in Wonderland, the Mad Hatter, Mary Poppins, Winnie the Pooh and Tigger.  My daughter dressed in her in Alice dress and was ready to meet one of her favorite Disney characters.

As soon as we were seated, in traditional gluten-free Disney style, the server told me the chef would be right with me after he finished with another allergy-aware table.  I think in under 2 minutes he arrived, which was pretty impressive, considering how packed the restaurant was. He walked me through the buffet and was extremely patient with my questions and pointed out what was safe and what areas were not.  He told me he could make a plate for me in the back so I could avoid any possible cross-contamination and then offered to make me some gluten-free Mickey Waffles (pictured above to the right).  These I could not refuse.  I could not remember the last waffle I had that did not come from the freezer!

I took him up on his offer to make me a plate in the back and he made me a fresh veggie omelette served with hashbrowns, fruit and a plate full of waffles with warm syrup.  I did go to the buffet to get some smoked salmon, as this looked safe and was not next to anything that could cause cross-contamination.  The waffles were great, warm and chewy (in a good way), and I couldn’t resist, but asked for more, and finished those too.

My daughter was able to meet all of the characters, and I had an impressively delicious breakfast that marked the end of our time in Disney.  What started off as my most worrisome meal, ended up being a complete treat and put me in a great mood for the rest of the day.  It is such a pleasant experience to be able to eat without worry and feel “normal” like everyone else at the table.  I will definitely be having breakfast at the 1900 Park Faire on my next visit, and maybe even check out some of the other buffets too.

For more of my reviews on our recent Disney trip, read my intro to Disney World, dinner at Kouzzina by Cat Cora, dinner at the Polynesian’s Kona Cafe, Disney’s quick service gluten-free options, dinner at Epcot’s Restaurant Marrakesh, and my review of BabyCakesNYC at Downtown Disney.

Article Written by:

Kyle Eslick is the founder of Gluten Free Media, as well as the creator of the popular Celiac Support Groups page. Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and now Google+!

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