I think the start of the day at Disney’s Animal Kingdom is something pretty special.
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Since the entryway intentionally helps you meander a bit through the tree-lined pathways, there is an air of peacefulness about it you just don’t find in the other parks. And If you do find yourself here in the early morning hours, you’ll need sustenance to help energize you for a full day of touring.
New Breakfast Menu at Pizzafari
Pizzafari in Discovery Island (heading on the pathway towards Africa) is one of the only places that offers a hot breakfast in the park. In the past (and as recently as our last visit in June), we were unimpressed — to say the least — with Pizzafari’s breakfast options.
But the morning menu recently underwent a refresh, so we were interested to give the new offerings a try.
Yes, we’re here to check out the new menu. But it’s practically impossible to walk into Pizzafari and not take some time immediately to notice and enjoy the brightly colored artwork that covers pretty much every inch of the place! Below are just a few of my favorite murals (and this barely scratches the surface).
You can learn a little more about the themeing of each room by checking out one of our earlier Pizzafari reviews.
I keep promising myself that one day I’ll take the time to conduct a full-on Hidden Mickey search here. It’s gotta be packed to the brim! But here is a teeny glimpse of one in the meantime…
The wall paintings are so bright and vivid that it’s almost easy to miss some of the other details, from the small carvings on the rafters in the individual rooms to creatures lining some of the walls.
Fans of Disney details know the rules: look up!
And don’t forget your chair ;)…
…especially since it’s finally time to sit down and eat!
The refreshed breakfast menu adds a few new choices joining some long-standing items. The new Breakfast Burrito, Breakfast Croissant, and Ancient Grain Hot Cereal find their place among classics like the Bounty Platter and a few smaller breakfast options like cold cereal and toasted bagels.
We thought we’d give all three new arrivals a try!
The Ancient Hot Grain Cereal looks like a simple oatmeal, but is actually aninteresting mix that supplements the oatmeal with barley and quinoa, all topped with a salted caramel crumble.
It is dense like a pure oatmeal, but the creamy base as well as the texture variety from the quinoa lent a nice lightness to it. That said, it is completely filling – I think you could go on this one easily until lunchtime.
The base itself has a creamy, milky taste, but the burst of flavor really comes from the salted caramel crumble on top. The topping, including the caramelized sugar, helped pick up on the cinnamon spice in the cereal blend. It gave the base a nice, not-overly-sweet boost, and my only request for a change would be some more of that topping to disperse further throughout the bowl.
The Breakfast Burrito offers the most standard fare of the new items: the tortilla is filled with scrambled eggs, sausage, peppers, cheese, and salsa. The portion is pretty good!
The bits of red, yellow, and green pepper raised and complemented the fennel and spice of the sausage enough to make it interesting and flavorful. My two critiques here would be that I didn’t notice very much cheese, and my friend and I both noticed that the tortilla itself was, unfortunately, stale or overcooked at the ends (either way, it was hard).
The Breakfast Croissant has a lot more going on than the name implies. Provolone cheese and egg whites are topped with spinach and a vegetable chutney. The croissant itself is a multi-grain, and it comes with a side of breakfast potatoes.
The provolone and egg whites come together in a delicious melty-cheesy blend, and I liked the choice of the more mild flavor of provolone (over, say, a cheddar), which worked well with the multi-grain.
But what really made this dish unique was the vegetable chutney, which included onions and yellow, red, and green peppers along with bits of cranberry and golden raisins for a sweet, tart, and spicy mix. Even though the multi-grain croissant had a nice flavor (less buttery than a traditional croissant with a focus on the grains) and made a fine sandwich bread, I ended up eating a bit of the base alone with the chutney almost like a brie.
And I have to give a mention to the updated breakfast potatoes – shredded potatoes and more cheese (this time, cheddar) cooked together with a nice helping of black pepper. Yum! Much better than the old version.
New Bloody Mary Menu at Dawa Bar
Even though we’re spending the morning in Discovery Island, you may be interested to know about another new addition to Animal Kingdom morning options: the new Bloody Mary menu available from 9:00 – 11:00 am at the Dawa Bar in Africa.
Check out the various twists of the Discovery Island Bloody Mary, Dawa Bloody Mary, Asian Bloody Mary, and the African Bloody Mary!
Have any Bloody Mary fans had a chance to try any of these variations? We’d love to hear your thoughts!
Even though pizza is clearly the headliner at Pizzafari, I personally prefer this spot for breakfast, especially in light of the new additions to the breakfast menu. There are enough familiar options to appeal to those who prefer more traditional breakfast items, along with some more creative dishes for those who like to change it up.
Add to that the fact that many guests have breakfast before entering the parks, and you get to enjoy a beautiful atmosphere in a restaurant that is often largely empty until lunchtime. Not a bad way to start your day at Animal Kingdom at all!
Which new breakfast item would you like to try at Pizzafari? Please let us know with a comment!