Monday, June 15, 2015

Trail's End Restaurant Dinner - Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort

Last night, my family had dinner at Trail's End Restaurant at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort.

Trail's End serves American favorites at an all-you-care-to-enjoy buffet for breakfast and dinner, but lunch is a la carte.

We arrived about 15 minutes before Trail's End opened for dinner, so we spent some time relaxing on the rocking chairs on the porch.  

When dining at a buffet for lunch or dinner, I prefer to make advance dining reservations for when the restaurant first opens, so there is less of a risk of cross contamination, but I will also ask for food from the kitchen.  

Chef Sergio quickly came out to give me a tour of the buffet.  The chili and soup of the day were not safe, but there were plenty of gluten free options on the salad bar.  The only foods I took directly from the buffet were the smoked pork ribs, pulled pork, and brisket from the carving station.  The ribs were not worth eating, because they were mostly bone, and the meat was tough and hard to chew, but the brisket and the pulled pork were very good.  

The gluten free cornbread with honey butter is the same amazing cornbread you can get next door at the Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue, and at Whispering Canyon at Disney's Wilderness Lodge.  It is also available at Trail's End for lunch.  

The fresh catch of the day on the buffet had bread crumbs on it, so Chef Sergio offered to bring me salmon with honey butter on it from the kitchen.  He also said he had Amy's gluten free macaroni & cheese if I was interested, but I passed on that option.  

I did take him up on his offer to make me a gluten free pizza with pepperoni, and I asked if I could get some of the gluten free chicken tenders with sweet chili sauce I had at the Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue on New Year's Eve.  The pizza was so good, I ate way too much of it, considering all the other food I had.  I usually don't like pizza with sauce, but it was pretty subtle tasting, and there wasn't too much of it.  Before Sergio made the pizza, he said it was either OMG...It's Gluten Free or Udi's, but the crust didn't taste like any Udi's pizza I have had at home or at Disney.  

My chicken tenders were a little overcooked like they were at the Hoop-Dee-Doo, but I still enjoyed them smothered in sweet chili sauce, which had a nice spicy kick.  

My daughter Emma told me the mashed potatoes on the buffet were really good, but I was too full to try them, even before I had dessert.  I wasn't able to eat the baked beans last night, because there was a cross contamination issue while they were being prepared.  Chef Sergio offered to make me some vegetables in the kitchen, but I didn't come to Trail's End to fill up on veggies.  

One of the reasons we did make advance dining reservations for Trail's End on a Sunday night is that I was hoping to have one of Chef TJ's famous dessert towers.  Chef TJ was working at the Hoop-Dee-Doo next door, but Chef Sergio told me that he could still make me dessert.  Chef TJ delivered the dessert tower, and finished it off by pouring chocolate sauce on the strawberry at the top, so it drizzled down onto everything else.  I was worried it would topple over when I started to remove the strawberries, OMG...It's Gluten Free Fudge Brownies and bananas, but it was held up with a wooden skewer that was firmly anchored in a glass jar that contained strawberry sauce, and what I think was a half an apple.  

I ate my brownies with the banana slices and some vanilla soft serve from the ice cream machine at the buffet.  They also have chocolate soft serve that is gluten free.  My dessert tower also included Mickey sprinkles and gummy worms.  

Overall, my whole family enjoyed dinner at Trail's End Restaurant, and I thought Chef Sergio and Chef TJ did an amazing job.  My gluten-eaters raved about the fried chicken, mac & cheese, and the cornbread.  With our Tables in Wonderland discount, all four of us were able to eat for $100, and that is with adult pricing for my twins that are now 10. Trail's End is definitely the least expensive all-you-care-to-enjoy dining experience for dinner on Disney property.  The only downside is that we all ate way too much food, which made walking back to the car along the beautiful trails at Fort Wilderness a less than ideal experience, but we all had our step goals to meet for the day.

You can read more about Trail's End Restaurant, view their menus, and make advance dining reservations on Disney's website here.

What are your favorite gluten free dishes at Trail's End Restaurant?


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