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Apr 19, 2009 08:43 PM

downtown disney or anaheim gardenwalk?


i haven't posted on here in a little over a year, but chowhounders hardly ever lead me astray =)

anyway, DH and i are heading back to socal to visit the parental units and friends for DH's bday. we were planning on going to anaheim to have a bday dinner with his friends.

we were originally thinking downtown disney and then his one friend suggested anaheim gardenwalk, but i haven't heard anything about it. i did a quick search and it didn't find much.

we are in our mid30s and want a place for good group dining, decent noise level (nothing where you have to scream to be heard), and good food.

much mahalos in advance!

bonus ps we're playing tourist for the day and will be going to universal studios (haven't been since DH worked at mel's diner when he was in high school- he was the shakeboy... hahaha) any recs to eat there or at citywalk?

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  1. Not ordinarily a Disney fan, but ate at Catal recently and was very pleasantly surprised. Not inexpensive but the quality was very good and the dishes well prepared.

    1. Well... at the GardenWalk itself there's the Texas Cheesecake Depository (ew); Bubba Gump's Shrimp Company (double ew); P F Chang's China Bistro (only slightly ew, but definitely not "real" Chinese food); McCormick and Schmick's (okay). Any of them can handle dinner in a group as long as it's not a ridiculous group (let's say < 20 and you wouldn't need to rent a room). Supposedly a Bar Louie is open or opening but have never been.

      At Downtown Disney there is Catal, or maybe Ralph Brennan's Jazz Kitchen. Neither is outstanding. You could, however, eat at Steakhouse 55 in the Disneyland Hotel (not bad) or Napa Rose at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel, which is one of the better restaurants in OC. Prepare your credit card, though, because Napa Rose is not cheap.

      If you don't mind going offsite -- and bearing in mind I don't know your budget -- there's Morton's and Ruth's Chris on Harbor Blvd., or you could go to Mr. Stox on Katella, or the Anaheim White House on Anaheim Blvd., or k'ya at the Hotel Menage on Ball and Harbor.

      If you don't mind going even further afield (15-20 minutes' drive from Disneyland once you're out of the parking lot) I have a soft spot in my heart for Park Ave., on Beach and Katella in Stanton, with its Googie bar and good chophouse-in-the-21st-century food.

      Of course there is ethnic food all over the place, both higher- and lower-end, so let me know if you want recommendations like that.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        Don't forget, there's also a Roy's @ GardenWalk, but I find it slightly inferior to any of the Roy's on the islands.

        1. re: OCAnn

          Roy's anywhere is inferior. I've given it too many opportunities to disappoint me, San Francisco, Phoenix, Chicago -- never impressed me and always felt very overpriced for what you got. As I mentioned in my post, Catal was also overpriced but the quality was very good.

          1. re: ferret

            Our last visit to Roy's last week @ GardenWalk was meh, but I was hoping that it was an off night. My experience @ the Newport Beach location have been more favourable than the Anaheim location. Perhaps the further the location is from HI, the worse it gets?

      2. I'd go with Downtown Disney. The Garden Walk is fairly new and from the last time I was there, it was very empty. DD has a better vibe all the way around.

        1. thanks everyone! i think we're settled on the jazz kitchen place... i hope it doesn't disappoint. i'm crossing my fingers it won't be so crowded due to the economy...

          i'm crossing my fingers that the ambiance will be good that it'll outweigh the food, if the food doesn't quite hit the spot.

          i love love love food but sometimes i find that ambiance can compensate where the food is lacking...

          re roy's. i love their molten lava cake....

          i'll report back after this weekend =)