TAHLEQUAH DAILY PRESS —
Situated atop the Contemporary Resort, this restaurant offers the most spectacular panoramic views in all of Disney World, and the food is as good as the mood. We were seated at a window where we had a perfect view of the fireworks display at Magic Kingdom, and our server (Robert, I think) was one of the most attentive fellows to grace our table, anywhere. California Grill’s decor is ultra-modern, and busy but elegant, with chefs working in a central area (California style) so you can watch them if you like. Only the freshest ingredients are used, but the menu can change weekly, but all three of us had something different for all three courses, and everything was exceptional. My son claimed his pork tenderloin was the best he’s ever had. For an appetizer, I had a foie gras pairing (the actual liver and a pate) that was to die for, and my husband had an unbelievably good cheese board. If you eat here, don’t forget dessert: the Banana and Butterscotch “Buzz” and the Honey Crunch Cake will bowl you over. (Note to wine aficionados: You won’t find a better selection!)
Though we’ve stayed at the Wilderness Lodge a couple of times, we never made it to Artist Point until this trip. As you might expect, the setting is the Pacific Northwest, and salmon on a plank is the specialty. But I couldn’t resist trying the buffalo sirloin steak, and it was melt-in-your mouth tender – better than most beef, really. Several people had also raved about the smoky portobello soup, so my son tried it, and the reviews were spot-on.
An evening at Narcoossee’s did at least allow us a glimpse of the posh Grand Floridian Resort. The resort is reminiscent of the elegant eastern seaboard resorts of centuries past – what you might recall from the movie “Dirty Dancing,” only swankier. The restaurant continues the theme; you’d almost expect to view the sea if you glanced out the window. As for the menu, the seafood bisque and the mussels are standouts on the appetizer list, and for dessert, the almond-crusted cheesecake is a good choice. For the entree, we did as advised, and had the surf and turf – a grilled filet mignon with butter-poached lobster tail, potato gratin and green peppercorn brandy sauce. Sensational! You just can’t get lobster like that in Oklahoma.