Ultimate Beaches and Cream Review 2020
One of my hidden gems among Walt Disney World restaurants just went through a significant renovation. At my first opportunity, I revisited the new version of this place and am happy to say that it’s better than ever. Here’s an extremely positive review of Beaches & Cream Soda Shop.
About the Restaurant
You’ll find this restaurant right beside Stormalong Bay, the pool at Disney’s Beach Club Resort. You walk through the lobby and past another eatery, Cape May Café. Then, you go outside for just a moment, and the check-in desk is about 75 feet in front of you. Yes, it’s that easy to find.
For many years now, frequent guests at Beaches & Cream have been reluctant to discuss the place with others. It was an open secret that the restaurant possessed so few tables that nobody wanted the word to spread about its greatness. Alas, in the social media era, people can’t stay quiet about the best places to eat.
In recent years, Beaches & Cream has become one of the most difficult Advanced Dining Reservations to book at Walt Disney World. The tight quarters and lack of tables couldn’t meet the massive demand here. So, Disney shut down the place for a few months and expanded it.
New and Improved
Beaches & Cream has always resided beside a meeting area at the resort. However, this space wasn’t used regularly, and so hotel management correctly decided to give these quarters to Beaches & Cream.
I’m going to skip ahead just a bit here because the start of my meal came with a fair amount of information. Before I could be seated, the person at the check-in desk asked whether we’d ever eaten at the restaurant before.
My wife and I laughed as we’ve had at least ten meals there. We instantly became this cast member’s favorite customers. He detailed all of the changes that had occurred. The pride in his voice was unmistakable as he showed off the new space, almost as if he’d been in charge of the entire process.
Remarkably, we would receive two more tours of the place. First, our server bragged about it. Then, she told the manager on duty about us, and that woman came over and gave us supporting math about the renovations.
Apparently, under the new Beaches & Cream setup, Disney expects throughput to go up by a factor of eight. I know that sounds unreasonable, but as we counted the number of tables, we checked the math. It seemed reasonable.
In fact, our server came back and expressed confidence that once the word got out about the new space, Beaches & Cream could serve 1,200 in a shift. Anyone who ate in the old building has their jaw on the floor at that statement.
That version had three, maybe four booths, about eight flat-tops, and single seats at the counter. I never counted, but I would guess it had a maximum customer level around 50. Now, Beaches and Cream can host 200 at once, no problem.
About the Service
Sure, the new, expanded area is beautiful, but you’re likely wondering whether the food has changed any. I’m happy to report that any updates are for the better.
From the moment we sat down, we felt like the most important customers in the room. Our server was quite possibly the most dedicated one that I’ve ever had at Disney. She spent the first five minutes boasting about the changes.
Before we even ordered our drinks, the waitress had inundated us with positivity. She took time to talk about how excited she is to work for Disney right now, bragged about the stock price, and enumerated ways that Robert Iger is a genius. This woman missed her calling as a PR person at Disney.
More impressively, she genuinely cared about our orders. She worried that we might choose the wrong foods and thereby ruin our first visit to the new Beaches & Cream. It was important to her that we pick only the appetizers and entrees that she recommended.
But How’s the Food?
Our meal order wasn’t anything unusual, as this joint is where we seek comfort food. We’d had a long day of airports and TSA searches. We wanted something basic. Our server politely tried to steer us toward other options, but she eventually sussed out that we’d looked forward to burgers at Beaches & Cream all morning.
However, this woman wasn’t done helping. I have an onion allergy that places me in an awkward position at Disney. When I notify someone of this, corporate policy forces the chef to leave the kitchen and come ask me specifics about what I can and can’t eat. I’d rather not go through the rigmarole. So, I generally don’t bring it up.
Somehow, my server sussed out the situation anyway. She went out of her way to verify that part of my order wouldn’t make me sick. Leaving our table for a moment, she checked with the kitchen staff to ensure that an order of tater tots would cook in a different fryer from onion rings. Those special touches are what elevate Disney.
As for the meal, Beaches & Cream never disappoints. We’ve legitimately never had a bad burger there, and this visit was no exception. In fact, the ingredients seemed fresher than ever. If it’s true that people eat with our eyes first, our admiration for the new space enhanced our appetite and enjoyment of the meal.
Also, those tater tots didn’t disappoint. We chose them as an appetizer, and some more came with the meal. I love them so much that, in remembering them, I now need tater tots as part of my next meal.
The Tastiest Desserts
Throughout our meal, the bell repeatedly rang, as at least eight people ordered Kitchen Sinks. Since we were a party of two, we couldn’t justify that endeavor, although we made a mental note to try to persuade the rest of our group to come back later.
Instead, my wife settled on the new Cookie Fries. We’d actually just watched a couple of YouTube clips suggested that they weren’t very good. Still, we wanted to make up our own minds on this genius concoction. We’re glad that we did, as the dipping sauces blend perfectly with the cookies to create a dazzling finish to our meal.
Our server also thoughtfully wrapped up Brownie À la Mode for us to take back to the room. We stored it in our mini-fridge and snacked on it later that evening. I regret that we didn’t have it hot, as the flavors hinted at previous perfection.
Overall, we had one of our best Beaches & Cream experiences ever. I would describe the food as an 8.5 out of 10, but the service was as good as Disney can provide. Everyone at the restaurant has stepped up their game to match the new surroundings.