‘Ohana Breakfast Review at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

It’s been a while since we visited the Polynesian Village Resort and we’ll take this opportunity to head upstairs for breakfast at ‘Ohana on the morning of March 30th, 2017. In the near future, hopefully I will find some time to write my DVC Studio review, theme park view room review, Bungalow review, Kona breakfast review, Kona lunch review, Luau review, Concierge review, Oasis pool bar review, and Trader Sam’s review.

‘Ohana (note the apostrophe placement and the lack of an ‘s’) serves two popular meals – breakfast with seating from 7:30am to noon and dinner with seating from 3:30pm to 10pm. Demand has increased the hours considerably from what they would have been a couple of years ago. But popularity does come with what are usually longer-than-average waits to be seated. You’ll typically see the waiting area and Tambu Lounge jam packed with people waiting. I’d budget 20 minutes to be seated and be happy if it’s any faster than that. We waited about 15 with an 11:30am reservation, which is one of the last available.

I last reviewed the dinner experience here.

I feel like “E oli” at the end of the Good Morning, Welcome! paragraph is a typo advertising e. coli. The meal otherwise runs $32/adult and $19/child ages three to nine.

Here’s dinner, which is sans characters at a cost of $43/adult and $24/child.

And Kona breakfast if you were considering your options.

The meal begins with what may be the best part, at least food-wise, in the Hawaiian Welcome Bread with coconut and pineapple. It was fluffy and naturally sweet from the chunks of pineapple, in addition to the frosting glaze.

A small plate of fruit was delivered shortly thereafter, but three pieces of watermelon only go so far among four people. One thing I appreciated about the restaurant was that the serving dishes were all the proper temperature – the leaf plate here was ice cold, while the syrup pourer thing that arrived with the Mickey waffles was warm. Nice touches.

Tambu Lounge is actually open from 7:30am through midnight these days. Nothing says breakfast like Monarch 151, Mom always used to say.

The popular “POG” juice, which is a mixture of passion fruit, orange, and guava juices, is complimentary as are soft drinks, tea, sodas, and “regular” coffee. The Press Pot is quite good if you’re in the mood for an elevated serving of caffeine.

The meal is served family-style, which means a skillet will arrive with just about everything offered. This may be a big selling point for those that don’t want to deal with buffet lines and crowds, but there’s obviously less variety. I thought the food was on par with Disney character buffets.

The bacon was your standard issue – much more greasy than crispy.

I’m a Mickey Waffle guy and these were prepared very nicely – soft, thick, and fluffy with a sweet malty character that’s further enhanced by the warm syrup.

We ended up getting two skillets and I thought the eggs in the first skillet pictured above were a lot better than the second. I’m not sure if “real” eggs are involved.

The second helping was soft and slimy with little flavor while the first tasted like they had been freshly prepared. So at least some of this is going to come down to luck and may be why reviews run the gamut from being “the worst breakfast ever” to “AH.MAZE.ING.” The breakfast potatoes were also seasoned and prepared well on the first go-around and under-cooked on the second. It’s possible that they don’t want you to ask for a third.

Rounding out the options are sausage and biscuits. The sausage is pretty basic – mildly spicy with little snap. I’d budget the carbs on more of the Welcome Bread – the biscuits might have been better with some honey or a more interesting butter spread than what’s provided.

Overall, I would rate the food that we received as “just fine” – quick service quality in quantities much larger than you’re probably going to eat.

But the main event is of course the characters with the kids enjoying the parade around the restaurant. Maracas will be shaken.

Matthew and family were nice enough to invite me along to their breakfast.

It’s way less awkward going to character meals with a child than it is when you are a party of four grown(?) men. You can see how much fun Bruin is having and that’s something that should probably be emphasized more during these reviews. There’s a reason they’re so popular.

Lilo and Stitch receive top billing with Mickey and Pluto joining them.

I suppose that it’s possible that other characters would appear in very rare circumstances, but it should be Mickey/Pluto in their Polynesian finest.

Lilo and Stitch (in particular) were once common sights in the Parks, but are now much rarer.

Lilo doesn’t meet anywhere else other than potentially Typhoon Lagoon.

Stitch is only here and Town Square at Magic Kingdom, in addition to meets at Typhoon Lagoon during the hotter months.

I did not receive the memo on the Buzz Lightyear shirts.

The tables that line the windows are particularly scenic.

Speaking of Mother, whenever I mention ‘Ohana, she always goes on about this one time we ate dinner there 20 years ago and sat at this exact table waiting for the fireworks to start, only for 8,000 kids to come over and largely block our view.

There are otherwise some fun Polynesian details around the restaurant, though it’s not one of Disney’s more ornately decorated spaces.

A lot of areas are potentially on the darker side, making photographs more difficult to take. That’s another benefit of being near the windows. Only Stitch had a PhotoPass photographer with him.




Polynesian Village is a beautiful resort to visit and with an 11:30am reservation, you have about two hours at Magic Kingdom before it’s time to head over. You might remember that I started my day with Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Jungle Cruise before hopping on the monorail over as part of this post. The later reservation also affords far fewer people inside the restaurant. By the time we left at 1:10pm, or about 65 minutes after we were seated, there were only three other occupied tables in the restaurant. It was a nice respite from the heat of the day and the crowds inside Magic Kingdom. After breakfast, you can enjoy looking around the resort a bit and perhaps grab a Dole Whip at the Pineapple Lanai. If you like Lilo and Stitch, ‘Ohana is probably on your short list. If you’re kind of “eh” on them, then Crystal Palace is a lot more convenient and offers much more variety. But the overall experience is a lot of fun and you’re certainly not going to leave hungry given you like anything that’s offered.

Comments

  1. Jenny says

    Love the review- considering for our next trip. I’ve got to say tho- that pic with you and that nice family reminds me of when George Constanza photobombed Krugers family on Seinfeld…. 😜

  2. Laura S. says

    Thanks for the review, Josh. I had breakfast with my family at Ohana in October on our departure day. We really enjoyed it. I like that you are served at your table. I have not been to a character breakfast buffet, but I have been to other buffets. My son is two, so normally my husband and I take turns going up to the buffet. We don’t get much time to sit and talk. This isn’t as much of an issue if someone has kids who are old enough to get their own food from the buffet.

    The food was fine. I would say slightly better than what you get as a free breakfast at a mid tier hotel like Hampton Inn. I enjoyed it, but it isnt as good as you would get ordering an individual meal at another restaurant.

    The characters are definitely a highlight. We managed do a lot of jumping in and out of big cumbersome chairs to pick up our son and then get a picture with the characters with the light on our faces. Luckily, we were on the aisle and had room to move. We also had a good spot to watch the kids parade around. I would request an aisle seat unless sitting by the window is important to you.

  3. John says

    Thanks for the report and wonderful pictures. ‘Ohana is a must for us to have breakfast at before heading to the Magic Kingdom and the Happiest place on earth.

  4. Emily C says

    We walked through the Polynesian for the first time this past February, and I have to say: every family in the ‘Ohana waiting area looked miserable. We had a very late breakfast at Kona Cafe and it was divine, quiet, calm, and the food was incredible. Keep the reviews coming, please!

  5. Monica Missaghi says

    I had a single day at Disney four years ago with my then-four-year-old daughter, and this breakfast was how we started our her very first ever Disney visit. I did not disappoint. To be honest I remember very little about the food (I have a very vague memory of being neither strongly impressed nor repelled), given how I was intent on making it over to the Kingdom for RD. But what I do remember – and was worth the price – were the leis given out to guests (my DD got one for her head and one for her neck, she (and every other kid there) looked adorable, the lovely view from our windowside table, the parade, and the utter and shining delight on her face on meeting the characters.

    Highly recommend for those travelling with little ones.

  6. Sally says

    Hello Josh! Just wanted to say thank you again for all your reviews. I LOVE your sense of humor ( that Buzz shirt comment had me laughing out loud ) and reading your blog brightens up my day!

  7. VaCamm says

    ‘Ohana…So much YES ! Thank you for brightening my day by showing amazing photos of my favorite breakfast on WDW property.

  8. Lisa says

    Are POG juice and coffee included in the meal price? its been a few years since we did that meal but it was included (and much enjoyed) then.

  9. dusty cheatham says

    josh thanks for the review . don’t think I have ever read one for breadfeast here. the pic was darling.

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