Top 10 Counter Service Restaurants at Tokyo Disneyland

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Wondering where to eat at Tokyo Disneyland? This post covers our favorite counter service restaurants in the park, taking into account theme, food quality, and value for money. There’s definitely an emphasis on theme and ambiance in these rankings, if only because finding delicious food is not much of a challenge at Tokyo Disneyland.

The list includes only quick service eateries, and we’d recommend sticking to this dining category if your time is limited (unless you want to do Crystal Palace for a really filling meal). The counter service scene is incredibly strong at Tokyo Disneyland–arguably better than table service–both in terms of theme and food quality.

After a few recent Tokyo Disneyland restaurant reviews that concluded with us not recommending the spot despite praise for the restaurant, we felt this list was in order to give some context to where you should eat. Additionally, there are several restaurants we have yet to review (and reviews we’ve yet to update), so this provides an opportunity for us to give you something more comprehensive for planning purposes.

With a number of great quick places to eat in Tokyo Disneyland, it can be difficult/impossible to avoid “snubbing” great spots, but here are our recommendations. Click the names of any highlighted restaurant to open their full reviews…

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10. Cafe Orleans – Contrary to its name, Cafe Orleans is probably better classified as a snack spot than dedicated counter service meal. It has some things going against it: namely, portion size and price. However, one taste of these freshly-made crepes and you suddenly don’t care how much you just spent. Beyond that, there’s a serious charm to this spot, and the outdoor seating by candlelight at night with the mellow sounds of New Orleans Square makes for an incredibly satisfying experience. It’s definitely not a spot for a full meal, but I doubt anyone could be disappointed by an Fourth Meal here.

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9. Huey, Dewey and Louie’s Good Time Cafe – Located in Toontown, where a restaurant is usually considered passable if the food is marginally edible, Good Time Cafe scores points for some interesting–and delicious–lighter options. From the bao sandwiches to the Mickey pizza, not only is the food cute, but it’s actually good, and inexpensive. The downside is that you have to eat outside in what can be a chaotic environment. Another upside? Free souvenirs if you take home the food packaging…not that we’d ever do that! 😉

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8. Great American Waffle Co. – Although it’s “just” waffles, the brilliance of Great American Waffle Co. is that it’s a clandestine dessert spot. You suggest “that waffle place” for a late breakfast to the more responsible members of your party, they agree because waffles are a sensible breakfast, and–BOOM–you order one topped with all sorts of sugary goodness. They freshly-made waffles are delicious and the toppings take them to the next level. They are also sufficiently filling to tide you over until lunch. We recommend ordering a waffle, walking to the main stretch of World Bazaar, and waiting for a performance of the Bicycle Piano Man or Tokyo Disneyland Band. Perfect way for a break after rushing around to start the day.

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7. Plaza Restaurant – This one sort of snuck onto the list. It certainly doesn’t wow in terms of its explicit theme, feeling very much like a time capsule of the clean lines and style of 1980s Tomorrowland at Walt Disney World (although maybe that isn’t such a bad thing). It doesn’t really wow in terms of food, either. So why is it #7 on this list? Well, the menu is diverse with some fun and solid choices, which makes it an appealing “compromise” option. Then there’s the ambiance, which is considerably improved upon if you’re able to snag one of the highly-coveted terrace seats that overlook the water and spires of Tomorrowland…oh, and Cinderella Castle.

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6. Captain Hook’s Galley – With only an ordering window and outdoor seating, this is the least elaborate option on the list. However, it’s the place at which we dine the most at Tokyo Disneyland, primarily because it’s easy to stop here for a quick bite. It doesn’t hurt that they have one of our favorite dishes in either park: seafood pizza. We know, the idea of counter service seafood pizza might be about as appealing as quick service steak, but this stuff is seriously good. Stop here for a quick snack (I don’t know if it technically counts as a “snack” when we order 2-3 slices at a time) and you’re sure to be back.

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5. Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall – If you’ve heard of only one restaurant at Tokyo Disneyland, this is probably it. This Alice in Wonderland-inspired restaurant is incredibly popular, and it’s no surprise. Who wouldn’t want to dine in Wonderland? Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall ranks highly mostly due to its unique concept and fun ambiance; we consider the food here to be good, with some items being great. It’s buffeteria style with plenty of variety, but the main draw is most definitely the decor. Dine here right when the restaurant opens or other off-hours to avoid waiting in a long line to get in.

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4. Pan Galactic Pizza Port – This Tomorrowland restaurant is the epitome of 1990s Eisner-era zaniness, and any longtime Disney fan will recognize and (hopefully) appreciate that. The main draw here is the Audio Animatronics alien, Tony Solaroni, who toils endlessly to deliver pizza to anywhere in the galaxy in under a Saturn Day (or it’s free!). In a looped show that’s about 15-20 minutes long, Tony is berated by his boss, works to make pizza, and even interacts with various singing chefs (who I can only assume are Imagineers of the era). The show is glorious in its weirdness, and I mean that in the best way possible. In terms of food, this is one of the best values at Tokyo Disneyland, with personal pizzas that are high-quality and filling at a reasonable price.

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3. Grandma Sara’s Kitchen – When viewed strictly in terms of theme and ambiance, this is the unequivocal #1 restaurant at Tokyo Disneyland. Built as part of the ambitious Critter Country expansion that centered around Splash Mountain, this restaurant is more or less inside the mountain. It’s also populated and operated by Brer characters, which makes for a really cool extension of the story/motifs of Splash Mountain. The comfort food served here is above average, but the real reason we recommend this to everyone is theme and details. Those details are rich, cute, and make it one of Disney’s best restaurants anywhere for virtually all of the same reasons that Splash Mountain is one of its best attractions. Minus the drops, of course, but you can “get” that part of the experience if you so desire by falling down the stairs, I guess?

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2. Hungry Bear Restaurant – This Japanese curry spot in Westernland scores major points for a few reasons: delicious, authentic Japanese cuisine, great theming, and shared bloodlines with Country Bear Jamboree. Thematically, the only thing that could make this old-west town setting better is, obviously, more Country Bears. This is another restaurant that draws huge crowds, and that’s due to the tremendous popularity of the curry dishes here. Japanese curry is quite mild–bordering on sweet–and not what you might envision with “typical” curry. Picky eaters might be hesitant to give Hungry Bear a try because of the all-curry menu, but if can are comfortable eating traditional American stew–this is so much better–you’ll be fine with this.

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1. China Voyager – We’ve only dined at China Voyager twice (as compared to 4+ times for everywhere else on this list), but our last meal there propelled it to the top of this list. China Voyager specializes in “secret pirate recipes” inherited by the grandson of the ship’s cook. Basically, you have Chinese noodles in ramen(-esque?) dishes. We had some excellent noodles on this last trip–from two different ramen museums we visited (one in Osaka and one in Yokohama, the latter of which I highly recommend to any fans of themed design) to side streets stalls in Kyoto, Tokyo, and elsewhere–and I’d put China Voyager up there with the best of them. Then you have the theme. The Coral Landing sub-land of Adventureland draws inspiration from Typhoon Lagoon, and China Voyager encompasses much of this area. The result is a sprawling, detailed, semi-eclectic environment that is inviting both inside and out. If you can’t get enough good ramen, there are also some great spots in the basement of Ikspiari, but I’d rank China Voyager as Tokyo Disney Resort’s best noodles.

Even if you eat everywhere on this list, you’re still skipping some good spots. Plaza Pavilion Restaurant (yes, it’s different) has some great, albeit pricey options. Boiler Room Bites is another great spot for bao buns. Sweetheart Cafe in World Bazaar offers baked goods and more. The list goes on and on. In terms of inexpensive dining, no other Disney park can top Tokyo Disneyland, so make sure you pack your appetite for your day(s) here!

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If you’re thinking of visiting Japan for the first time and are overwhelmed with planning, definitely check out our Tokyo Disney Resort Planning Guide. It covers much more than the parks, from getting there to WiFi to currency and much, much more. For more photos and an idea of what we did day-by-day during our first visit, read our Tokyo Disney Resort Trip Report.

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Your Thoughts

Do you agree or disagree with our rankings? What are your favorite Tokyo Disneyland restaurants? Any restaurants you dislike? Share any questions, tips, or additional thoughts you have in the comments!

5 Responses to “Top 10 Counter Service Restaurants at Tokyo Disneyland”
  1. Ted Knight July 15, 2016
  2. Grace July 14, 2016
    • Tom Bricker July 15, 2016
  3. Cdd89 July 14, 2016
    • Tom Bricker July 15, 2016

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