By Jennifer Stuart
Animator's Palate is one of the main rotational dining rooms on the Disney Wonder. Although all Disney Cruise ships have an Animator's Palate restaurant, there are some significant differences between the classic and larger ships. Animator's Palate is located at the aft of Deck 4. The restaurant is a tribute to Disney animation.
Atmosphere and Theming
As you enter you see lots of black and white sketches showing both new and classic Disney animation.
The ceiling is a series of painter's Palates held up by paintbrushes and the artist theming is carried through the table markers and plates. One of the things that Disney Cruise Lines does so well is the very cohesive theming throughout the dining rooms.
The stand out appetizer here is the black truffle pasta. I would consider ordering 5 of these and just making them my main course. I have ordered this on more than one cruise and it is always a hit. The disappointing appetizer is the set appetizer platter for animation night. We didn't really care for any of those items.
All the mains have been good, with the penne bolognese being most popular with our pasta-loving teen (the pesto garlic bread was good too). The beef tenderloin was a standout as well.
Desserts are really a strong point for Disney Cruise Line. We have yet to have a dessert that we didn't like, and some of them have been really excellent. Our favourites at Animator's Palate were the chocolate decadence and the sticky date pudding.
Insider tip: Even though it is not listed on the menu, you can always order a preminum Mickey bar. Just ask your server and they will be happy to get you one.
Kids meals are often the standards you would expect such as mac and cheese, chicken fingers, burgers and pizza with a couple of healthier or more adventurous options to round things out. Don't feel bound by these menus. Our picky eating teen didn't like anything on the adult menu and our servers brought him a double portion of mac and cheese from the kids menu in a big regular bowl rather than the kids plate. If you have an adventurous younger eater, they can order from the adult menu too.
If you have Animation Night on your cruise, be prepared for a slightly different pace to dinner. Everything is a little more rushed so that they can fit in the animation, but it is so much fun and definitely a highlight that we still talk about years after our first one.
When you sit down there will be an animation template at every person's seat to draw on (see above). Instructions are on the mat. When you are done creating, your server will take your drawings away for a little behind-the-scenes magic. Once the drawings are out of the way you will receive the set appetizer plate. There is a more abbreviated menu tonight to accomodate the animation (see sample menus below). Near the end of the meal a movie will play, incorporating the figures drawn that night into classic Disney clips. It is a lot of fun to look for your drawing!
Below are the sample Animation Night menus. You will notice that there is slightly less choice than the regular menu.
We always enjoy our Animator's Palate dining nights. Animation Night being the most memorable one. This is easily our kids' favourite of the three main dining rooms on the Wonder, probably because of the fun and colorful atmosphere. There is always something to look at. This is a fun family dining experience rather than a more formal experience.
If you enjoyed this post you may be interested in some of our other Disney Cruise Line posts.
Photos and Video by Jennifer Stuart
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