Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall is a counter service, buffeteria-style restaurant in Tokyo Disneyland’s Fantasyland themed to the Queen of Hearts’ Castle from Alice in Wonderland. It is likely the most popular restaurant in Tokyo Disneyland, with waits to get inside very common for prime dining hours. Thanks to fun theming and excellent food, Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall is a restaurant that is well-deserving of its hype.
The cuisine here is a mix of items, none of which will be unfamiliar to American palates, although nothing is your standard burgers and fries fare, which is nice. As far as Tokyo Disneyland goes, the portions here are on the large side, but still a bit small by American standards (expect for desserts, some of which are quite large). To us, this isn’t a big deal–trying the awesome snacks at Tokyo Disneyland is such a big part of the experience that we don’t want to fill up at meals!
Unlike many attractions and restaurants at Tokyo Disneyland that are direct lifts from the Magic Kingdom or Disneyland, Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall is unique to Tokyo. If for that reason alone, we highly recommend everyone visit it. Fortunately, it’s also one of the coolest and best counter service restaurants at Tokyo Disneyland, giving you two reasons to visit. In terms of exact location, Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall is between ‘it’s a small world’ and Haunted Mansion in Fantasyland. You’re unlikely to miss it, though, as the ‘hedge maze’ and forced perspective castle on top of the restaurant are both pretty eye-grabbing.
If you’re planning on dining here (and you absolutely should), we recommend going on a weekday during an off-hour. If you dine here during a busy time of year or on a weekend, plan to line up 10 minutes before the restaurant opens, or at around 3 p.m. This is the main restaurant in Fantasyland and it has a really fun, ‘kawaii’ theme, so it’s packed during prime dining hours. Besides Cape Cod Cook-Off, it’s definitely Tokyo Disney Resort’s most popular restaurant.
Due to its popularity, there are a lot of Cast Members working the restaurant. There’s at least one outside managing the line (if there is one), plus the normal staffing inside, and additional Cast Members to escort guests to seats (during prime hours, you cannot seat yourself). The plus side of this is that it’s never difficult to find a table inside, as guests are not allowed to loiter about or save tables.
Upon entering through the castle wall, guests immediately encounter a doorknob-face threshold and a bunch of card people (I’m guessing these all have proper names–sorry, we’re not Alice in Wonderland fans).
These characters, and characters throughout the restaurant, make for excellent photo ops.
As you can probably tell, it’s a very vibrant restaurant.
More cards line the path towards the buffet line, with the Queen of Hearts overhead and a sign reading “Let the Banquet Begin!” Unlike the “Let the Memories Begin!” sign that cluttered up the Magic Kingdom Train Station for a few years, this is pretty cool.
Close-up of a card-person.
Another close-up. I’m sure the Cast Members wondered if we were ever going to go order…
The buffet line area is really cool. Details galore, including the checked floor, heart stanchions, and pots and pans hanging from the ceiling.
You’ll also notice some murals along the wall, featuring scenes from the film (all of which include the Queen of Hearts, I believe).
All of the restaurants at Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea have displays with very accurate representations of the items available. This is great for visual folks like myself who normally just order whatever on the menu has a photo. (Yep, total sucker for marketing prominence.) Of the items we didn’t try, the “Flank Steak with Gravy” looked the best. Saw it on several plates other guests had, and it looked delicious.
The seating area continues the whimsy, with booths in the center of the restaurant looking like hedges outside the Queen of Hearts’ Castle and with details, like this Cheshire Cat figure, lining the walls of the ‘maze.’
Booths along the outer edge of the restaurant have stained glass windows featuring characters from Alice in Wonderland.
We prefer the window seats. You (obviously) can’t see outside, but the windows are gorgeous and offer a nice ambiant light. Plus, once you get past the initial hedge-look of the inner seating area, it’s really not all that detailed.
Flower light fixtures are a nice touch and the restaurant is fun overall, but to some degree, it feels decorated as opposed to themed. Let’s take a look at the food we’ve had at Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall…
Sarah ordered the “Grilled Swordfish.” This would have been a moderately good entree for a table service restaurant. The swordfish had great flavor, was tender, and perfectly cooked. Sarah liked it so much that she wouldn’t even split it with me (the original plan), and I can understand why. This item is highly recommended.
I had the “Fried Seafood Assortment,” which included fried shrimp, fried fish fillet, and scallop cream croquette. It was all very…fried. The breading was pretty thick, but there was a substantial amount of seafood in each item, too (normally thick breading means the opposite). I liked this all, but it was a lot of fried, rich food. In a perfect world, we would have split this and the Grilled Swordfish for a perfect balance, but Sarah doesn’t like fried food. I’d recommend this to anyone who does.
Sarah also ordered the “Vegetable Soup with Heart-Shaped Pasta.” She liked it–I’m not really a fan of vegetable soup, so I’m not a good judge. It tasted exactly as expected.
This is called the “Heart-Shaped Meat Patty with Tomato-Brown Sauce.” I’m not really sure what that means, but it reminds me of Salisbury Steak. One of our friends who visited Tokyo Disneyland with us ordered this, and really seemed to like it. We’ve heard good things about it from others, too, but it certainly doesn’t look appetizing.
While we have really positive things to say about the entrees at Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall, the desserts are just as much of a highlight here. On each of our visits, the desserts were different, but both times there were single-serving items and large choices. This cake serves 2-3 people…or one person who really likes cake.
We also ordered this smaller, dessert for one on our first visit because it included a collectible Queen of Hearts dessert tray. The dessert was good (light but flavorful) and the tray was one of the cooler “location” merchandise items in a park notorious for lacking in that type of merchandise (most of it is generic, character-driven stuff).
During our Christmas visit, most of the dessert menu was filled with Christmas-themed desserts. Like the previous dessert, this one was light and delicious. It arguably could serve two people, but it was so delicious (almost like Tiramasu) that one person may want it all.
Overall, Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall is a must-do restaurant at Tokyo Disneyland. It’s quite possibly the most hyped-up restaurant there (certainly one with which US Disney fans are most familiar), and it’s certainly deserving of much of this hype, as it’s a very cool restaurant. However, while many of the restaurants at Tokyo Disney Resort offer immersive themes that transport guests to another place, it seems more like this one is just very impressively decorated with a great Alice in Wonderland motif. This isn’t to say it’s not cool–it definitely is–and perhaps that’s a distinction without a difference to many people, but I personally preferred the theming at several other restaurants over Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall. Still, it’s very fun and whimsical, and the food is excellent. We both have loved our meals here (Sarah calls this her favorite counter service/buffeteria at Tokyo Disney Resort) and recommend it to everyone, without any hesitation.
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What do you think of Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall’s theme? Have you dined here? If so, what did you like? If you have any questions or thoughts to share, please post them in the comments. We love hearing from readers!