Hong Kong Disneyland really is a local’s park. There is a massive community of Hong Kongers who have Magic Access passes (APs) and attend the park regularly. There are a plethora of perks when you are an MA passholder. One of them being the birthday package of coupons you receive during your birthday month. In this package, you get one “buy one, get one” coupon for either Chef Mickey or the Enchanted Garden Restaurant, HKDL’s two big character dining experiences. You also receive a 50% off coupon for afternoon tea at Walt’s Café to use on the month of your birthday. Platinum MA members also get a free birthday cake when using one of the dinner coupons. My fiancé and I are both MA members, and both have our birthdays in July. It means that for the month of July, we decided to pig out and book dining experiences at Walt’s Café, Chef Mickey, and the Enchanted Garden Restaurant.
First, we visited Walt’s Café at the Disneyland Hotel on the 14th of July. Afternoon tea starts at 3.30 PM and finishes at 5.30 PM. If ordering the afternoon tea, guests will receive a tower of sandwiches, savory pastries, desserts, and scones. Guests will also get to choose a hot drink. I’m not a big tea drinker (don’t take away my British passport), so being able to choose any hot drink was a big plus for me as I got to opt for coffee. Also, my fiancé and I tend to avoid set meals as we are both vegetarian and suffer from a peanut allergy, making things a little complicated. However, the staff at Walt’s Café were extremely accommodating and catered our tea set to our dietary needs. It let us substitute the items that contained meat with duplicates of other items.
This was ideal for us and really made the whole lunch. The tea set was as gastronomically pleasing as it was aesthetic to look at. It was clear that the desserts and pastries were crafted with care, without sacrificing flavor. My personal favorite was the English scones (like a sweet biscuit and normally consumed with jam or thick butter). They could have held their own against even my Grandma’s finest scones. The price point for the afternoon tea is 438$ HKD for two (around 57$ US), which I think is worth it regardless. But it felt really worth it considering we had our 50% percent off coupon. The surroundings of Walt’s Café makes dining there worth the price tag alone.
As one might expect with a place called Walt’s Café, the walls are covered with pictures of Walt and early memorabilia from the great man litter the café. The two hours we had almost wasn’t enough, and I’d recommend going to Walt’s Café for any meal just to observe the décor. A real treat.
On my actual birthday (21st of July for future reference), we went to the Enchanted Garden Restaurant also located in the Disneyland Hotel. We had never been to this restaurant before, and we were both incredibly excited. Once again, the décor of the restaurant was stunning, and it really feels like you are dining in a secret garden. We had already booked for dinner, and during the booking process, we ordered my Birthday cake too and informed the Cast Members that it was my birthday, Upon arrival, we were shown to our table where I found a birthday button and various stickers as a little birthday gift. It’s these little touches that really separate Disney from the pack.
The Enchanted Garden Restaurant is a character dining experience, but the line-up of characters that you may encounter changes throughout the seasons. We were lucky to share our evening meal with Mickey, Minnie. Lilo and Stich. To add to this, a lot of the restaurant was “Stitchified” with Experiment 626 popping up in a selection of random places.
The food at the Enchanted Garden Restaurant was exquisite with a plethora of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, European, and American dishes on offer. Even though I don’t eat meat, there was plenty of choices, and I was stuffed by the end. The biggest surprise came halfway through the meal. When all four characters came center stage with serves in tow.
The servers were holding birthday cakes for guests, and the whole room sang Happy Birthday to those whose birthday it was. (Check out my IG: @DisneybyDaniel to see a video of my embarrassed face throughout this experience.) Overall, the Enchanted Garden Restaurant was really something special. The price per guest is normally 618$ HKD (80$ US) per person, and even at this price point, I think the experience you are treated to justifies the price.
The last restaurant on our cavalcade of culinary celebration was Chef Mickey. I have been lucky enough to eat at Chef Mickey before, but that didn’t make the experience any less special. Chef Mickey is at the front of Disney’s Hollywood Hotel and also offers a character dining buffet.
However, Chef Mickey is done a little differently to other character dining experiences. Instead of Mickey taking photos near your table. Mickey walks around the restaurant, saying hello to everyone before settling in his spot at the front of the restaurant. It is here where guests will line up one by one and meet the main mouse.
Because we were there for a birthday, we were able to meet get pictures with Mickey and a very regal looking birthday cake.
The food selections here are similar to Enchanted Garden with a few differences. You still have meals to accommodate different cultures, yet the meal choices are sometimes the same, sometimes different from the Enchanted Garden Restaurant. As mentioned before, both my fiancé and I have a peanut allergy. However every dish has its allergen information printed on a place card in front of the dish. That means it couldn’t be clearer of what you can and can’t eat. That said, every interaction I have had with a Cast Member has been an extremely pleasant one. So, if you have any more questions, don’t be afraid to talk to a Cast Member as I’m sure they will be more than happy to help. The price for Chef Mickey is 549$ HKD per person so just a little cheaper than the Enchanted Garden Restaurant.
I don’t really have any negative things to say about all three of the restaurants we visited in the month of July. All three offered incredibly detailed and personal dining experiences for me and my fiancé. The food was exquisite, as was the general ambiance of each meal. We obviously paid half price due to the coupons we had, but I definitely wouldn’t argue about paying full price on a special occasion.
What are your thoughts? Have you been to any of these restaurants? What’s your favorite character dining experience? Let’s continue the conversation in the WDW Radio Box People Facebook group.
To learn more about Daniel Morris and read his other posts on the WDW Radio Blog, visit his author page.
(All photos are from the personal library of Daniel Morris.)