Larger: http://www.easywdw.com/reports9/bw.jpg. It was a wet one in sunny Lake Buena Vista last night, but the Internet requires even more pictures of the Fountain View Starbucks conversion, so out we go.
Fountain View is the newest Starbucks to arrive at Walt Disney World and the second of six planned locations. We await installations at Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom, in addition to two (extra magical flagship) locations in Disney Springs.
It joins Main Street Bakery at Magic Kingdom as discussed here. Prior to the arrival of the soul-sucking-what-would-Walt-think-Starbucks-corporation, Fountain View served pixie dust sprinkled Edy’s ice cream, which totally can’t be found in literally every single supermarket, gas station, and convenience store nationwide.
I’m not really in the mood to rehash the for/against Starbucks-in-the-Parks argument BUT I WILL BECAUSE ALL I CARE ABOUT IS PAGEVIEWS, BABY. Walt Disney Company remains the biggest money-grubbing media conglomerate on the planet. They would charge a million dollars a night to stay in a tent at Fort Wilderness if they thought they could get away with it. Starbucks continues to be a home-grown American company, versus Nestlé and Anglo-Swiss Condensed Milk Company, which is a Swiss multinational corporation and the largest food company in the world. Starbucks coffee products continue to be higher quality and less expensive than the old Disney/Nescafe products that they replace. Main Street Bakery continues to be a fake bakery facade that serves Starbucks products instead of Nestle products. I don’t find a Starbucks cup any more jarring than a Diet Coke bottle, Edy’s logo, Kodak picture spot, Smucker’s sign, or any of the other hundreds of brands that are strewn around the theme parks. But really guys, can we please keep the real world out of a theme park whose entire existence revolves around selling things to five-year-olds?
Disney attributes lower-than-anticipated sales at Main Street Bakery to the fact that few people realize Starbucks products are available. Fountain View signage is a little more obvious with “Starbucks Coffee” in neon on both sides.
Like Main Street Bakery, there are two identical sides.
The space “feels” smaller than the Bakery, where there are usually 20 – 25 cast members actively moving around behind the counter.
Fountain View had half that.
Like the Bakery, Fountain View is on the Dining Plan and breakfast sandwiches are available all day. Employees are Disney cast members, which initially caused some training delays as Starbucks was less than enthusiastic about sharing some of their proprietary techniques. While you can’t use Starbucks Rewards points at any Disney Starbucks, your purchases do rack up reward points. Both locations accept Starbucks gift cards and Starbucks mobile app payments.
Pricing should be similar to what you’d pay at any other Starbucks. All sizes are available as a snack credit.
Larger: http://www.easywdw.com/reports9/starbucksisruiningmylife.jpg. If $bux isn’t your thing, there’s always the tried-and-true Disney Powerade, Dasani, Minute-Maid, or grapes.
Larger: http://www.easywdw.com/reports9/sbuxgoodies.jpg. Most items are Starbucks, but others are “Disney,” including the Mickey cupcake and sugar cookie with Mickey sprinkles. I ordered a $2.79 Pumpkin Scone. It was a little dry and a little dense or exactly like most Disney pastries.
Seasonal beverages are available, including the popular Pumpkin Spice Latte here in the fall.
In case you want to lug around a pound of coffee or some Refreshers, they’re available too. Larger: http://www.easywdw.com/reports9/refreshers.jpg. Those Starbucks Via Iced Coffee Packets are actually pretty good. You could easily open the package and drop the five packets in a purse or something. Order one of those complimentary cups of water and you have a nice iced coffee for around $1.25.
I am not a coffee drinker and have been to Starbucks outside of WDW a total of maybe three times, but my Venti Light Salted Caramel Mocha Frappuccino Blended Beverage was delicious and quite a bit of drink for $5.49. I assert again that Starbucks has something for everyone, even if you want to be one of those people that “doesn’t like Starbucks coffee” as if they only make one thing. There is no dedicated seating, but Electric Umbrella is only a hundred feet away.
That’s Starbucks. It’s not going anywhere.
Switching gears, we’re back out at the BoardWalk looking at Yacht Club.
As mentioned in yesterday’s menu update, Pooh and Tigger have moved out here to the International Gateway through early October, while their regular meet inside the toy shop is refurbished (again).
Spice Road Table gets taller.
Food and Wine Festival booths went up overnight.
As we learned yesterday, Sommerfest started serving a new menu on the first of the month.
The Currywurst was merely okay – filling, but not a lot of flavor. The Nudel Gratin was better, but not as creamy as you might expect.
I thought I would give the Leberkase Reuben – German Meatloaf, Sauerkraut, Swiss, and Mustard on Grilled Artisan Bread – $9.19 a try.
A quick introduction to speaking German in case you’re a little iffy on how to pronounce something.
According to Wikipedia, Leberkase is “corned beef, pork, bacon and onions and is made by grinding the ingredients very finely and then baking it as a loaf in a bread pan until it has a crunchy brown crust.” It’s a lot closer to an a spongy ham than it is to the traditional American hamburger meatloaf.
The meat was similar to the German Meatloaf Sandwich available during the Flower and Garden Festival.
I was expecting a spicy brown mustard to contrast with the sourness from the sauerkraut, but that was not the case. The mustard was more of a creamy sauce that resulted in what I would characterize as a less-than-desirable texture. The Leberkase is kind of slimy in its own right and the mustard and cheese made for a slippery sandwich. The sauerkraut at Sommerfest is on the mild side and isn’t particularly sour. I’m just saying I would have gone a different direction with the mustard. The Leberkase itself did not have a lot of flavor and was kind of spongy and moist, but it was not as salty as your typical ham.
The bread was freshly grilled after I ordered and the meal was served piping hot. It’s also a ton of food. Otherwise, I’m not real sure what to say about it. The sandwich was not to my tastes, but it wasn’t bad by any means. I was put off a bit by the creaminess of the mustard/cheese mix and ended up eating the meat out of the second half on its own. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed if you like this sort of thing though. I’m sure there will be more opinions as people have an opportunity to try the new items.
The seating situation at Sommerfest remains poor and will only get worse if more people are drawn to the new menu. With the sprinkle outside, there was nowhere to sit and I had to march my sandwich to Liberty Inn two Pavilions away. It was either that or stand under an awning and eat standing up, which I probably would have done had I not required a picture.
Epcot sandwich thing!
A shy Spaceship Earth. Larger: http://www.easywdw.com/reports9/shybig.jpg. One of the tricks to nighttime photography is a tripod and a wired/wireless shutter release. I bought a wireless shutter release a few days ago and tested it out for the first time. This is a 20-second exposure at F7.1 ISO 100. The idea is to place or mount your camera somewhere so it won’t move during the exposure. If the camera moves, even a little bit, the picture will be blurry and most likely unusable. With the ISO set low, you retain as much detail as possible.
With no tripod on my body, I relied on damp trashcans to hold Tom steady and results were mixed.
Just a quick update.
A review of dinner at Coral Reef is incoming. We still have to take a look around Animal Kingdom to check out menu updates and what’s going on over there. And I take the RX100 out to Universal for an update on Springfield and Islands of Adventure.