On any of my trips to Disneyland I've got a handful for can't miss, sure fire treats that I absolutely gotta have and usually more than once. This post isn't about counter service restaurants or table service restaurants – we can get to those later – but good things you should be able to pick up quickly on the fly but usually can't because the blasted line is so long.Here are the three best Disneyland treats.
!. Let's start with the Dole Pineapple Float from the stand in front of The Enchanted Tiki Room. Please note that I said “float” not “whip”. Whip is just soft serve pineapple ice cream. The float puts the same pineapple soft serve ice cream in cool sweet pineapple juice and gives you a little umbrella with a cherry on top to boot. It's the best of two worlds. Let's face it. It's usually is pretty warm in Southern California. Is there anything better on a warm day in Disneyland than a pineapple float? The answer is “No!”. Some will till you an ice cream cone from Gibson Girl might be better but I tend to be on the lactose intolerant side – rich ice cream can give me problems, the gentler soft serve kind usually doesn't. You want to beat the heat in Disneyland? Get a float then go in and watch the birds sing in the Tiki Room where the air conditioning is second to none. Now that's a tropical paradise. Note: the wait for pineapple treats inside the waiting area of the Enchanted Tiki Room is usually shorter than those waiting outside the show's holding area. Get a float. See the show.
2. I never skip on my vegetables while within the confines of Disneyland. I'm usually good for at least one serving a day of grilled asparagus from the Bengal Barbque. Granted, the asparagus is wrapped in bacon but the vegetable is still there, isn't it?
It's called the Safari Skewer and is available only at the Bengal Bar B Que in Adventureland. You can get beef skewers and chicken skewers but for my money (about 4 bucks), it's all about the bacon wrapped asparagus skewer. Like most people, I pass through the crowded Adventureland a couple of times a day in Disneyland. If I look over and see the line is short for those waiting for skewers then I'm jumping in – every chance I get. The skewers are not a food item that is made offsite somewhere then brought in (like may are in Disneyland).
The skewers are constantly being grilled up fresh. There is some good and bad in this. When all is right with the world, the asparagus pieces are perfectly cooked, tender, and fresh tasting. The bacon is equally well cooked and what you imagine that perfect piece bacon tastes like. Put a squeeze of lime on your skewer and you just might have a piece of nirvana. But there is also a chance you might find the asparagus to be tough, stringy, and woody, tasting like you are chewing on one of the branches from a shrub in your yard. Or the bacon might be under cooked, greasy and flabby with the consistency of bacon flavored chewing gum. If you get a skewer like this – don't give up. Eat it and come back and order another one at another time. Trust me – you will get that perfect Safari Skewer and once you do, you will be back again and again.
3. The Little Red Wagon that has been serving up Corn Dogs at the Disneyland Hub for what seems like forever makes the best corn dog in the world. Oh, you can get corn dogs now at the Stage Door Cafe in Frontierland or the Corn Dog Castle over in DCA, and they may all look the same, but taste wise – what the wagon serves up just can't be beat. These aren't the corn dogs that you pull from your local grocery stores frozen food case and where every one looks the same. Disneyland's corn dogs a sometimes hideously deformed monsters of grease and delight. The corn dogs are served with either potato chips or the healthy option of sliced apples.
Somehow I get the feeling that if you told your cardiologist that you chose the healthy option of apple slices with your calorie and fat laden corn dog, he'd still find a way to give you the lecture of your life if not flat out kick you all the way out to the parking lot. Actually, there is a huge advantage in ordering apple slices with your corn dog. Cuts down on that queasy greasy feeling you carry around with you for an hour or so after eating the corn dog.
So those are my three treats I never miss out on. Some people will tell you about the infamous Turkey Legs but except in very small quantities, I don't particularly care for them (with each carrying enough salt and fat to last the average person about 3 days). And some will tell about the humble churro which is available from a vending cart found just about everywhere in sight. Churros are weird. If they are hot and fresh, not bad. If they go 30 seconds past their optimal shelf life time then, well, you can poke an eye out with that thing.
The pineapple float, the corn dog from the Little Red Wagon, and the bacon wrapped asparagus skewer would probably make up my perfect Disneyland meal and all 3 are served up within about 100 yards of each other. Logic dictates to grab all 3 then sit down have yourself a feast. Practicality shoots holes in that plan because of the length of time it takes to work your way through each line. Ah, the advantages of having kids comes up once again.