Our first dinner at Magic Kingdom was at Liberty Tree Tavern. We’d never eaten here before, and since my wife handled all the planning and reservations for this trip and I didn’t pay quite as much attention as I should have when she was explaining them to me, I had no idea what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised.
We had an early dinner reservation – just after 5PM if memory serves. We arrived even earlier than that, but they weren’t ready to begin seating people. My son had some excess energy to burn and I didn’t, so my wife took him off to play for an extra 15 minutes while I waited inside in the air conditioning. My water bottle had run dry, so I refilled it from the large iced water dispenser in the waiting area. I gratefully accepted a piece of delicious sweet cornbread at some point during my wait.
My wife and son returned just in time for our party to be announced. That’s one of the cool things about Liberty Tree. All the employees are dressed in period-appropriate dress, and your server picks up your reservation and announces to the crowd waiting to be seated that he or she will be seating the ____ family from such and such town. It was kinda cool. She led us through the restaurant to our table, and that’s where I’ll pause for a bit of a detour. Every dining experience on Disney property was just a bit more difficult than we’re used to because at every restaurant, we ate at a table. We always request a booth when we eat out, and will even wait for one if it won’t be too long, because we have a two year old, and it’s just plain easier to block him in against the wall. I don’t fault Disney for not having booths – they certainly would cut down on available seating – but it is something to keep in mind if you have a toddler.
There isn’t a menu as such at Liberty Tavern. The food is served family style, and you get what they’re serving that night. Thankfully the food was both varied and tasty. Here is a picture of the “Bill of Fare” from that night. Something I didn’t notice that night but do see now is the sponsored message at the top of the menu – “Hosted by Ocean Spray Craisins.” Like Disney isn’t making enough money from the park tickets and inflated food prices, our menus get to be sponsored by condiments. Still, the menu was nice to look at, and having no choice in what we would be served actually was somewhat calming after a long day in the park. Truth be told, aside from noticing Mac & Cheese was on the menu, I didn’t pay much attention.
Luckily, our server realized we wouldn’t be spending tons of time enjoying salad, so she delivered the main meal to our table soon after the salad. In the meantime, we had fun (not really) trying to convince our son that he really wanted to stay on his chair, with my wife repeatedly offering to let him sit in her lap.
Here is a picture of the main meal, both the meats and sides. The turkey, beef, and pork were all excellent, although I’d say the turkey was best. The sides were very good, especially the sweet potatoes, mac & cheese, and green beans. The gravy was quite good, and the bread, as mentioned, outstanding. We ended up asking for seconds of nearly everything, and our son ate very well. One lesson we learned during this meal was that keeping a movie from iTunes (Planes) stored on my wife’s iPhone was a lifesaver. We often let our son watch a movie on his iPad when we’re out to eat (I know, we’re horrible parents), but we didn’t want to lug his iPad around the park. I can already see that upgrading to one of the larger styles of iPhones in the future will be helpful – either that or getting an iPad mini.
I wish I’d taken a picture of the dessert – white cake filled with apples, craisins, and cranberries with ice cream. I remember it tasting pretty good, but not so much so that I thought to take a picture, obviously.
I enjoyed our dinner at Liberty Tree Tavern. The food was good and the service was pleasant and attentive. I believe we only had to pay for my meal and my wife’s, as our son was 2, so while the price was a bit high for the quality of food, it wasn’t outlandish for Disney. Compared to the fairly disappointing meals I had at various Disney Quick Service restaurants, it was definitely a better experience. I’d eat there again for the same price, but definitely not if we had to pay the same for our son as we paid for us.