Artist’s Palette is a counter service restaurant at Saratoga Springs, which is the largest Disney Vacation Club resort at Walt Disney World. Located within walking or boat distance of Disney Springs, Artist’s Palette is a solid option if there are just too few restaurants there for you. In this post, we’ll review Artist’s Palette, sharing some food photos and thoughts on this WDW dining spot.
If you’ve never stayed at Saratoga Springs, there’s a reasonable chance your first question might’ve been “where’s that?” when seeing the title of this post. We get that a lot around here, usually from Facebook commenters who are too lazy to click through and have their question answered in literally the first sentence of the post.
If you did click through, congratulations! You’ll actually care about this post (probably?), as it turns out Artist’s Palette is not some obscure eatery in Japan or France. Rather, this Saratoga Springs restaurant is a very good and unheralded dining option at Walt Disney World. In fact, it’s the best non-burger counter service restaurant in the Disney Springs area…
Despite being the largest DVC resort at Walt Disney World, there isn’t a ton of coverage of Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa. There’s minimal info online about Artist’s Palette, Turf Club Restaurant, Seabiscuit Saloon, and the Niles Natatorium Feature Pool, a brilliantly-themed homage to Saratoga Springs’ local son, David Hyde Pierce.
Obviously, that last one is a joke, but the point is that you might’ve believed it at first due to unfamiliarity with Saratoga Springs Resort. And if you’re proudly boasting that I didn’t fool you–well, Seabiscuit Saloon is not real either. But it should be!
Even if you have been to Artist’s Palette, you might not remember because the location is fairly forgettable, at least in terms of theme. (About a decade ago, we did a few consecutive stays at Saratoga Springs and I can’t remember for sure whether we dined at Artist’s Palette during any of those trips.)
The seating area vaguely resembles what you might find at a hospital, college, or workplace, with the only aspect giving Artist’s Palette any character is the glass light fixtures above. They’re pretty, but this still has to go down as one of the thematically dullest food courts at Walt Disney World. Even the All Star Resorts try harder.
Fortunately, what Artist’s Palette fails to do with its atmosphere, it delivers in spades with its menu…
As I was working on a Disney Springs update prior to heading over to Saratoga Springs, I arrived at Artist’s Palette around 30 minutes before Sarah was scheduled to arrive. Since she was coming via Disney bus, I figured that meant I had more like 45 minutes, so I decided to order the Italian Flatbread Sandwich while I waited.
This sandwich consists of ham, salami, mortadella, pepperoncini, lettuce, tomato, and provolone cheese with red wine vinaigrette mayonnaise, and wrapped in a flatbread. I found this sandwich to be really good, with a hearty amount of meat and cheese, plus the mayo providing any interest twist to make it unique. One of my favorite sandwiches at Walt Disney World.
A little over an hour later, Sarah arrived and we ordered our full meals. We started with the Bistro Buffalo Chicken Panini, which contains “Pulled Chicken tossed in a Buffalo Sauce on a Toasted Multigrain Roll, topped with a Blue Cheese Spread, Carrots and Celery.”
We both really enjoyed this. There was a generous portion of chicken, which was tender and flavorful; the buffalo sauce was also surprisingly spicy, and provided a nice kick. It also made the blue cheese spread a nice counterweight, giving the sandwich some nuance. I could’ve done with different bread, but all in all it’s a very strong option.
Next up was the Chicken, Spinach & Artichoke Thin Crust Pie. I really wanted the Cheeseburger Thin Crust Pie, which looks excellent, but I was outvoted.
All of these pizzas are cooked in a brick oven, which is refreshing as compared to the frozen “pizza” available at places like PizzeRizzo. The final product is something heftier (and better) than a flatbread, too. We really enjoyed this pizza, with my only complaint being that some of the chicken was dry–presumably the result of the brick oven. We’d absolutely order one of these pies again, but not this particular one.
We also made an impulse buy of this dessert. It was fine. Not something I’d order again, but not a regrettable purchase, either.
All things considered, we really enjoyed our meal at Artist’s Palette. I think the next time we dine here will be the next time we stay at Saratoga Springs; ideally a cooler month or for dinner, when we can dine outside to experience a better atmosphere than the blandness of the Artist’s Palette seating area. I’m a bit surprised to be typing this, but I’m actually enthusiastic about going back, as I really want to try the Cheeseburger Pie and Lobster Club Sandwich. Artist’s Palette exceeded our expectations, and while we wouldn’t recommend making a special trip here, if you’re at Disney Springs and don’t want to do D-Luxe Burger, this is your next-best best counter service option in the area.
Have you dined at Artist’s Palette? If you remember the experience, what did you eat? Do you agree or disagree with our take on Artist’s Palette? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!