Foodie Friday #18 Restaurant Review Edition

HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAPPPPPPY NEW YEEEEEEEEEEEEEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

fireworks

I hope you had a wonderful and safe new year!  I ran another half marathon today so I am eating all the carbs right now.  Mmmm no guilt!

I was going to do a New Year’s food post but I really dont like all those weird New Year’s foods so instead Im going to do a review of the new restaurant at Disney Springs, Morimoto Asia!!!  Settle in because, it was delicious!

First up, making reservations!  Since this is a brand new restaurant at Disney Springs I decided to play it safe and make a reservation.  It was just me but I really didnt want to have to wait for a table.  Right now OpenTable accepts reservations for this location and I heard that Disney Dining will be taking advanced reservations but at the time I booked this was not an option so I cant say for sure if this is true.

Getting to the restaurant you have a few options:  I took the bus from a Disney resort but you can also take a bus from Magic Kingdom or Animal Kingdom (not available at Hollywood Studios and Im not sure about Epcot).  If you dont want to take a bus you can walk from Saratoga Springs Resort or take a boat from Old Key West, Saratoga Spring, or Port Orleans.  Last option is driving but thats if you have a car, or taking a cab.  All of these will drop you at different places around Disney Springs and you will have a small walk to get to the restaurant.  For those of you that remember Mannequins, Morimoto Asia is in that old location.  For those that dont know Mannquins, and Im truly sorry you dont, its across from Raglan Road restaurant.

When you arrive, you already know you are in for a trendy treat.  The exterior and interior decorating are on point.  I mean just check out these chandeliers!

chandeliers

When I walked in the hostess promptly seated me at a table that seats just two, which is fine I always feel awkward being 1 person at a table for 4.  I was seated on the first floor and got to see everything!  The restaurant wasnt packed but wasnt empty either.  Granted my reservation was at 8:30pm so it was pretty late, but still.  Something that was interesting to me was that almost everyone there didnt look like a tourist.  I felt like I was at home in a semi-fancy restaurant.  This was a really nice change from fanny packs and flip flops at most restaurants at Disney!  The waitstaff and hostess were dressed very well which was nice.  My server was a little slow and not as on his game as I would like but this restaurant is only about a month old so I ignored this.  It will probably take a while for all the servers to know the ins and outs at such a fast paced restaurant.

roaming magician

In addition to the elegant ambiance and “upscale” guests there were roaming entertainers.  The above is a magician but there was also a female comedian dressed to the 9’s.  They didnt come to my table but people were requesting them left and right.

Fair warning…this place was PRICEY!  Like…$45 (including tax and tip) for just me and I had no alcohol.  The food was excellent and inventive but I still think it was pretty pricey.  This restaurant is from Chef Morimoto of Iron Chef America fame which always means a higher price tag anyway.  I do think the food was worth the price point but its also too bad because that means I wont come here often.  I have a hard time spending a lot of money on food…dont know why…I would rather spend my money on other things than food.

Alright enough of that lets talk about food 😀  I was going to order a drink but decided against it, I dont like to drink alone and I was already exhausted.  Alcohol makes me sleepy and I wanted to make it through the entree without falling asleep.

pork bao

I started with the Kakuni pork bao.  There are 2 in a serving which was enough for a starter but would not be enough for an entire meal.  The buns were perfection; soft, warm, and enough flavor to nicely compliment the pork.  The pork was fall apart in your fingers tender and exceptionally juicy.  The only thing I think I would do differently next time is ask for easy mayo.  This spicy mayo is in fact spicy, it adds a nice kick to the bao but was a little much for my taste.  Overall this starter was delicious and got me excited for my entree!

indonesian style duck fried rice

For my entree I ordered the Duck “Nasi Goreng” (from the menu “indonesian style duck fried rice, shrimp chips, mango papaya slaw, sunny side egg”).  Truth be told I wanted to order sushi but the rolls available were pretty standard run of the mill and I like specialty rolls.  When I saw this fried rice (although there were a few things on the menu that piqued my interest) I decided I had to try it out, after asking the server if it was spicy.  He said it was not spicy at all, but I think he needs to learn the definition of spicy because for me this was almost too hot to eat.  I didnt eat that salad on the side, I did try the shrimp chips but the texture was too weird for me so I didnt eat them either.  This rice was extremely flavorful in an unexpected way.  I didnt know what to expect from “indonesian” style but had in my head curry, this was very different from curry flavor but I dont really know how quite to explain it.  The duck was tender and flavorful and was perfectly complimented by the rice and fried egg.  I wasnt sure about the egg at first but it really added an extra dimension to the dish.  I wasnt able to finish the rice I was so full so sharing a starter and then having your own entree is plenty of food for sure.  I think I would have even been full just from the entree, but being Disney I had walked about 10 miles that day so I needed some extra fuel dang it!

morimoto asia

Overall my experience was pleasant, the food was inventive and I really enjoyed myself.  I wish I had room to try dessert because they had some unique options available.  I will go back, just not as a staple (like Be Our Guest I try and go there every-time we are at Disney).  I would definitely recommend Morimoto Asia if you want a more elegant dining experience without the dress code.  Also a great place to grab a cocktail (the menu had some cool drinks on it that I wish I had been able to try) and enjoy some kid free time.  That was really key for me, there were no screaming kids so it truly was a nice escape making me really feel like I was somewhere other than the buzzing shopping hub that is Disney Springs.

Well that had way more words than pictures, but the food speaks for itself 🙂  I really enjoyed eating here and the next time we are at Disney I may have to bring Joe, but it will definitely have to be for a special occasion, because I can only imagine how much money we will spend.  If you do have the budget for it the Morimoto Peaking Duck is supposed to be absolutely phenomenal…and at $48 is better be!  If you try it you must report back stat!!!

CHIME IN!!!  Have you been to the new Disney Springs?  Do you like asian cuisine?  Have you tried Morimoto Asia?  Whats going on with you?

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