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Feb 27, 2008 01:13 PM

Birthday Dinner in Disneyland

Anyone have any good suggestions for restaurants in or very near to Disneyland that I could take my family to, to celebrate a child's 6th birthday? We'll have 3 kids in tow and no car, so we'd have to stick to restaurants either in the Disneyland Resort, or within close walking distance of the resort. I want to make this dinner fun and memorable, so atmosphere is important (and of course, a good selection of eats for kids and us adults wouldn't hurt either!!). Thanks!!

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  1. Well, there's Blue Bayou in the Pirates of the Caribbean building... you could go to Goofy's Kitchen, where it's a buffet and you can have character dining... or perhaps Tortilla Jo's?

    In the immediate vicinity, I like Marri's and Carolina's for Italian food.

    Make sure you take the birthday kid to Disneyland City Hall for his/her birthday pin!!

    9 Replies
      1. re: Scotty

        Birthday kids (and adults) get a round pin that says "Happy Birthday" and their name written on it. Then all day long, the Disney cast greet you by name...and you get your free tortillas from CA Adventure.

        1. re: OCAnn

          Last time we went with someone who it was their birthday, it was just a round sticker now with the name.

          Catal in Downtown Disney has good food for kids and grownups at reasonable prices. There are lots of windows where you can look at the people walking by. When I had my bday there, they wrote happy Birthday around the edge of some ice cream! If you go, make sure you point out someone has a birthday. Haven't been to Naples in awhile, but thats good too.

          Recently went to Blue Bayou. If you haven't eaten there its good for the atmosphere of sitting there, food is horrible and expensive. I will never do that again.

          1. re: LisaN

            When did you go? Maybe they ran out temporarily. My BIL had his 40th this past wknd and he got a pin.

            1. re: OCAnn

              Do you tell the ticket taker or go somewhere else for the pin? I can't believe that I have not heard about this pin before (esp. as a native SCAL)

              1. re: Scotty

                You get the button at City Hall. They have a couple other buttons (honorary citizen, first timer, etc)

                No one else ever complains about this, but there's a definite odor at the Blue Bayou coming from the pirate waters. I much prefer the outdoor seating at Cafe Orleans.

            2. re: LisaN

              Honestly, I can't stand Catal. The food is really mediocre for the prices, but I guess sitting out on the patio can be nice on a summer's eve.

              I know it's much nicer, but if the kids are behaved, Napa Rose is another option.

              1. re: Emme

                somehow my brain lept way over the 6 year old part... i second the other recs for Blue Bayou, if only for the entertainment factor of eating "in" a ride and watching the boats go by.

                1. re: Emme

                  I love Catal's cheese platter and blue cheese stuffed dates with prosciutto...with a bottle of red night! (double entendre)

        2. I was going to suggest Blue Bayou also for probably the best atmosphere @ D'land (for kids & adults alike); however, the menu is a bit limited.

          Another fun option for kids (but not necessarily adults), would be Rainforest Cafe (the animal noises, when combined w/crying kids, can get annoying). Lots of menu choices, very thematic, a bit loud and average food. And if you go during peak times, you can expect a wait of 1-2 hours.

          I think on your birthday, you get a free stack of tortillas from D's CA Adventure from their tortilla making machines. Everyone, everyday, gets one fresh free sample though.

          Lastly, you can do a Build-a-Bear birthday, and eat just about anywhere else...The Jazz Kitchen (good for adults & kids, but less "fun" than Rainforest), or Tortilla Jo's (better than Rainforest IMO).

          Last, but not least, you can always do the gospel brunch @ House of Blues on Sunday.

          2 Replies
          1. re: OCAnn

            Now, I thought I had heard that Blue Bayou was the one "good" restaurant in Disneyland, in terms of food. Am I misremembering?

            1. re: Papuli

              To be completely honest, I don't remember the meals @ Blue Bayou...we usually go for the atmosphere and some cool, quiet respite.

              As for food, Mr OCAnn gets the Monte Cristo (his tradition); me, I like the service more than the food. So, IMO, it's good in that you're not standing in line, but the food isn't particularly memorable.

          2. Like the others suggested, Blue Bayou is great for the atmosphere, but it is a somewhat quiet restaurant. I would recommend Goofy's Kitchen since it is set up for kids, they have the characters roaming from table to table for picture opportunities, and it's a buffet so you can just get your own food. Plus it's in the Disneyland Hotel, so you won't have to walk far.

            Obviously not dinner, but you can also have Disney birthday celebrations during the day at the Plaza Inn. More details from the Disney website here:

            4 Replies
            1. re: kingkong5

              We did the birthday cake decoration thing at Plaza Inn a few years back. If the kiddies like Mickey and Minnie, it can be fun. The cake is more like corncake than a fluffy sponge cake (at least at that time), but it's kind of fun to decorate it.

              I think it's probably best to stick to inside the park. A bit too much hassle to take 3 kids through Main St and out to even downtown disney for food (you need to do the hand stamp, and the bag check coming back in). I think Blue Bayou may not be that interesting for a 6 year old as I remembered it as being rather dim/dark.

              Plus if the kids don't go to Disneyland often, they may rather go to a casual place and maximize the time on the rides. I know when my son was 6 years old he really didn't care to sit still and preferred fast food such as burgers, pizzas and hot dogs.

              If you insist on outside park I think Rainforest is probably best for the 6 year old. Lots to see and the food was decent.

              1. re: notmartha

                If you're going to Rainforest, though, you wouldn't walk, that would take forever. Take the monorail to Downtown Disney and it drops you off adjacent to Rainforest -- and you can get your hand stamped and go back in through that gate instead of waiting (and doing the bagcheck business).

                1. re: Das Ubergeek

                  Forgot about that. It was a good 15 minutes wait last time we tried it, but it beats walking with kids in tow.

                  1. re: notmartha

                    I think it all depends on the season & time of day. The last time we tried, we whizzed right through.

            2. If your focused on kids then do a character meal, either at goofy's kitchen, ariel's grotto, although I think its only for lunch and breakfast. For adults, you should try going to Napa Rose in the Grand californian hotel, and try the chef's counter... Both, I would say Bayou is fine, its really the only great standard restaraunt.

              I think the Monte Cristo is overrated, but a lot of ppl love it. The pommes frites at Cafe Orleans is delicious if you like fries. And since your staying onsite, I'd encourage you to go somewhere around disneyland: Ariel's Grotto, Goofy Character Dining, Lilo And Stitch or Blue Bayou but the Bayou is really just for the view. And please do take them to Plaza Inn for the birthday thing, it looks so fun and make sure you that you sign up ahead of time. For Dessert, there is riverside seating for Fantasmic if your interested. Oh and if their into star wars make sure they go to the Jedi Training Academy...okay so I drifted off topic cuz I love Disney...haha sorry

              2 Replies
              1. re: christof

                Definately Goofy's Kitchen!! A huge winner with our kids.....

                1. re: SusieS

                  I have never been myself but I have several friends whose kids swear by Rainforest Cafe located in Downtown Disney

              2. Go to the buffet restaurant in Downtown Disney at the California Hotel (Storybook Cafe?). Perfect. (We've gone often with kids). Get there early.