Thursday, April 17, 2014

Palo Dinner - Disney Dream

My husband and I dined at Palo on the Disney Dream for both dinner and brunch on our most recent cruise.  Two years ago, we also had dinner at Palo on our 10th anniversary cruise.  Palo is an adult exclusive restaurant located on the Disney Magic, Disney Wonder, Disney Dream, and the Disney Fantasy.  Reservations are required for dining at Palo, and there is a $25 dining charge per person.  Men are required to wear dress pants and a dress shirt, while women have to wear a dress or pantsuit.  Jeans, shorts, capri pants, tennis shoes, and flip-flops are not allowed.  

Mitch and I checked out the wine list on Meridian's outdoor deck while we waited for Palo to open.  Meridian is an adults-only lounge located between Palo and Remy, the two adults-only restaurants on the Disney Dream.  We ate at Remy on our anniversary cruise, and had the best meal we have ever eaten.  The dining charge for Remy is $75 per person.  

Palo means pole, and is named after the long poles used in Venice by gondoliers.  Look up when you enter the restaurant to see the lighting inspired by spaghetti and meatballs.  

All of the tables in Palo have an amazing view of the ocean.  

The cuisine is northern Italian, which is right up our alley.  We love our Italian heritage, and cooking and eating Italian food!  

For the bread course, I was served Udi's pizza crust cut into wedges with some basil.  My meal was off to a good start!  You can view my recipe for making rosemary and garlic flatbread with Udi's pizza crust here.  

Our server Alex then brought around the antipasti cart, and made us this beautiful plate of Italian meats, Parmesan with a balsamic drizzle, olives, artichokes, and roasted red peppers.  I could eat antipasti every day of the week!  

I considered ordering the mozzarella caprese, but we make Caprese Salad frequently at home, so I chose the Tuscan white bean soup with prosciutto and parmesan cheese.  It was incredibly delicious, especially the bites with a nice big piece of melted parmesan.  

I also decided to try the Sicilian pesto marinated grilled shrimp on a mussel, crab, and cherry tomato ragu after seeing it served at a nearby table.  These were probably the biggest shrimp I have ever eaten, and everything is definitely better with pesto! 

Before our main courses arrived, we were served a palate cleanser of lemon sorbet with a blueberry.  It was so refreshing and delicious!  

I ordered two main courses, the beef tenderloin Palo for myself, and the wild mushroom risotto with freshly shaved Parmesan and a chianti reduction to share with my husband.  My beef tenderloin was cooked perfectly, and served on a bed of potatoes and spinach.  I enjoyed the balsamic garnish so much, I asked for more balsamic instead of eating the gorgonzola cheese and the barolo red wine sauce that were served on the side.  

I am always tempted to order mushroom risotto at restaurants because of the amazing wild mushroom risotto at Le Cellier in Epcot.  Palo's version did not disappoint, and I wish I could have eaten more of it, but I had to save room for dessert.  

When offered chocolate souffle, I have to order chocolate souffle.  My husband and I discovered our love of chocolate souffle while on our honeymoon in Hawaii.  We ate it at Roy's on Maui and Kauai three times over the course of two weeks, and my husband and I have enjoyed it at Roy's in Orlando as well.   

Palo serves their chocolate souffle with vanilla bean and chocolate sauces, and a small scoop of vanilla ice cream.  Next time, I will be skipping the sauces and asking for more ice cream, because I love the combination of warm chocolate souffle with cold vanilla ice cream.  

We finished off our evening at Palo with a complimentary shot glass full of a mixture of apple brandy, sparkling wine, and lemon sorbet.  It was amazing!  

I had so many gluten free dishes to choose from at Palo.  Only the calamari from the Antipasti, Insalatine & Zuppa portion of the menu was not able to be made gluten free for me.  The cioppino, arugula salad, and mozzarella caprese are options I could have ordered instead of the tuscan white bean soup and sicilian pesto marinated grilled shrimp.  

Alex told me that any of the pasta dishes could be prepared for me using gluten free spaghetti.  On our next cruise, I might order the pasta arrabbiata with spicy fresh tomato and basil sauce, topped with grilled shrimp.  

My husband really enjoyed his grilled tuna served with truffle-infused potato risotto, garlic marinated artichokes, and a tarragon veal jus.  All of the fish dishes could be prepared gluten free.  

The Osso Buco was one of the few dishes that Alex told me could not be prepared gluten free.  From what I remember, the rack of lamb was also off limits, but I could have ordered the baked chicken breast filled with ricotta, basil, and red peppers served with pinot grigio reduction.

Overall, we had an amazing meal at Palo and will be dining there again on all of our future Disney cruises, including our first cruise on the Disney Magic in December.

You might also be interested in:

Palo Brunch

Gluten Free on the Disney Dream

Disney Cruise Line Gluten Free


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