Your Ultimate T-Rex Review
Spoiler: comets wiped out the dinosaurs. You can google this if you don’t believe me. What you may not know is that you can see a recreation of this extinction-level event if you just look up at the ceiling. Of course, for this trick to work, you have to be eating at the right restaurant. Today, let’s talk about the most unusual and touristy eatery at Disney Springs. Here’s a review of T-REX.
With a name like T-REX, you have a strong idea of what the theming is. Here there be dinosaurs. And I’m talking giant, almost life-sized dinosaurs. Several audio-animatronics are on display at T-REX and basic dinosaur models are also part of the background.
The marketing of T-REX sells it as “a hands-on prehistoric experience.” In layman’s terms, the dinosaurs yell or scream or whatever hideous sound that is. Basically, they’re dinosaurs, and they never sound happy. They will recognize human movement and react to your presence. They will also perform routine movements at designated intervals. When you eat at T-REX, you will feel as if you’ve stepped back into the prehistoric world.
The interior of the restaurant is extremely dark. That style serves a couple of purposes. The first is to augment the bright backlit colors of a couple of sections of the restaurant. These areas have an oddly bioluminescent quality that may remind you of Pandora – The World of Avatar. The colors inside T-REX are really cool.
The second purpose is the infamous ceiling meteor shower. Every 20 minutes, a rumbling sound emanates from various parts of T-REX. The dinosaurs begin to cry out in fear of an unfamiliar sensation. They instinctively understand that something is bad is happening. At this point, the ceiling lights up with a comet strike that will grab everyone’s attention. It’s also absolutely impossible to talk during these sequences, so keep that in mind if you’re in the mood for meaningful conversation.
The meteor shower is a huge deal to kids. T-REX is a family-friendly eatery that caters to children. As we’ll discuss in a moment, it sells an entire line of toy merchandise onsite, and the purpose of the theming is to entertain kids. T-REX feels like an extension of the theme parks in its attention to detail and usage of audio-animatronics. The people that planned and constructed its design deserve a ton of credit. Even at a highly competitive area like Disney Springs, T-REX stands out.
Do your children love Build-a-Bear stores? Do they love dinosaurs? If you’ve answered yes to either question, you’re in luck. And even if you didn’t, you still may be in luck. The right side of T-REX is a merchandise area. Part of this section is a Build-a-Bear Workshop, only with a unique selling point. Instead of bears, you build dinosaurs.
Kids can pick their favorite type of dinosaur and then style it as they see fit. The designs definitely tend toward the cute side, but that’s a smart choice. You don’t want to buy a stuffed animal that also scares the stuffing out of your kid. T-REX calls these critters Friendosaurs™, and it’s been my experience that a kid will clutch them like their favorite birthday present for hours after the Friendosaur™’s creation.
Here’s the shock about T-REX. This place is unmistakably touristy, and it skews extremely young. You may expect the food to be on a par with Chef Mickey’s or other burgers-and-nuggets meals at Walt Disney World.
Well, you’re in for a pleasant shock.
T-REX has one of the deepest menus at Disney Springs. You can look at it online if you don’t believe me. The restaurant sells eight different appetizers and 21 (!) different entrees. This is a calculated choice. Disney Springs is a place where locals and tourists alike hang out. Oftentimes, the two types of parties meet. Whenever I visit friends who live in Orlando, we inevitably agree to hang out at Disney Springs. It’s a place where compromise choices win out at restaurants.
Having a deep menu increases the odds that the food will appeal to everyone. The locals generally have foods that they haven’t tried before, while the tourists can eat silly-sounding foods such as Omnivore’s Delight and Pork-asaurus Sandwich. In other words, Orlando folks know they’ll get a good meal while out-of-towners know that they will feel extra special tourist-y at T-REX.
Personally, I recommend the Supersaurus Sampler as the appetizer of choice. The only catch is that it’s intended for a group of four. If you have a smaller party than that, it is WAY too much. I generally travel in a party of five, and to the best of my recollection, my group has never finished the entire sampler. Part of that is because I also get the Mozzarella Sticks for myself. To me, Mozzarella Sticks are the world’s perfect appetizer, and T-REX has a solid recipe for their version.
As for the entrees, T-REX is (fittingly) a carnivore’s dream. The Bronto Burger is the kind seen in the opening segment of The Flintstones. The Mega Mes-O-Bones is one of the most protein-rich entrees at Walt Disney World. And the Boneyard Buffet functions as T-REX’s greatest hits. It has a heapin’ helpin’ of spare ribs and rotisserie chicken, enough to fill the gigantic restaurant plates. Also, while I realize that they’re not the healthiest side, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that the Waffle Fries at T-REX are divine. Give me them over Raptor Rice any day of the week…and yes, Raptor Rice is an actual side available here.
For dessert, there’s only one choice at T-REX. Well, technically, you have your choice of four, but you’ll choose poorly if you don’t select Chocolate Extinction. The name tells you everything about the dish. It’s chocolate fudge cake buried in ice cream and whipped cream. As if that’s not enough, it also has hot fudge and caramel sauce in every crevice and Butterfinger crumbs sprinkled on top for good measure. I suspect that Chocolate Extinction, not a comet strike, is what actually killed the dinosaurs. But they died happy, I’m sure.
An Important Pro Tip
MickeyBlog loves to offer pro tips about ways to enhance your enjoyment of a Disney trip. Admittedly, some of them are better than others, and a few are ones that you’d probably just figure out on your own. The pro tip I have for T-REX, however, is important. Depending on how you time your trip, it can actually save you money.
T-REX is one of the properties at Disney Springs that a third party owns. That third party is Landry’s Inc., the company owned by Tilman Fertitta of Billion Dollar Buyer. This business has a special offer available to anyone. They have a rewards program known as Landry’s Select Club. It’s not free to join, but that’s a bit misleading.
For $25, you receive membership in Landry’s Select. You also receive $25 in credit to use at Landry’s restaurants. You also receive an additional $25 credit during your birthday month. Let’s say that you’re born in September like me (it’s cold in January, my friends). If you plan to visit Walt Disney World in time for the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival next September, you’ll get another $25 added to your Landry’s Select account.
That’s $50 in credit for the cost of $25. And you’ll receive that birthday month bonus each year. The only rule is that you have to spend it during the month in question. For a one-time cost of $25, you get a recurring $25 bonus to spend at Landry’s restaurants. This seems like a good time to mention that Landry’s also owns and operates Yak & Yeti Restaurant and Rainforest Café. That’s a total of one Quick Service and four Table Service restaurants where you can use these Landry’s account credits.
Plus, you accumulate reward points each time you eat at these places. So, you can earn free meals the way that you ordinarily do with a reward program. Finally, Landry’s throws in another bonus. They give Landry’s Select members priority seating at their restaurants. Even if you don’t have an Advanced Dining Reservation at a crowded restaurant such as Yak & Yeti at lunch, the cast members will do everything that they can to seat you quickly.
I’m always in awe of how quickly we get seated thanks to this program. And we feel like VIPs every time. Landry’s employees treat their loyal customers like royalty. PS: The Landry’s Select program is even better if you have Landry’s restaurants close to your area. This program is for more than just Disney fans.
T-REX isn’t the best place to go if you’re in the mood for refined conversation. You will have to repeat yourself too much for that. The noise levels here are on the level of jet airplane. For that reason, it’s also not a great place to go when you have a headache. When you’re looking for a place that’s wildly entertaining, especially to children, and has great food, however, T-REX is one of the best choices at Walt Disney World. We go so often that our friends in Orlando sigh whenever the discussion arises about where to eat at Disney Springs. To us, there’s only one answer. T-REX is the best kind of tourist trap. We love it so.