For the last several years, Walt Disney World has been trying to make Christmas at Disney Springs a thing. Special menus with holiday entrees, drinks, and desserts are one such way restaurants are trying to lure customers. Heck, Homecomin’ is going so far as to give away free cake to anyone who wears an ugly Christmas sweater in December!
We are total suckers for seasonal menus, and even bigger suckers for the holidays. From a culinary perspective, I’m the biggest sucker for the ‘Twin P’ seasons: pumpkin and peppermint. I don’t care how “basic” these flavors are–foods infused with these flavors make the months of September through December a pure delight for my taste buds.
These foods are not such a delight for my waistline, but after seeing the winter weight gain of Katmai National Park’s brown bears, I don’t feel quite so bad. All prepared for some pre-holiday hibernation gluttony, I perused the Christmas press releases from Disney Springs restaurants and found…pretty much nothing I wanted. Resigned to defeat, I changed out of my stretchy pants and prepared for another healthy meal of salad. Then, out of nowhere, D-Luxe Burger announced a new breakfast menu–another Festivus Miracle!
Okay, so you might wonder how we’re going to get from point A (a regular breakfast menu at D-Luxe Burger) to point B (Christmas food), which is a fair question. Just remember, nothing is more powerful than the imagination. Ask yourself: are the powers of Mickey’s Tom’s incredible imagination strong enough and bright enough to withstand the evil forces that invade Mickey’s dream find Christmas food at Disney Springs?
Okay, enough with the lame attempts at suspense and drama. In looking at the breakfast menu for D-Luxe Burger, I noticed the Holiday Turkey Burger on the lunch menu. There was probably no splashy announcement about this since it’s the second year of this offering, but I never had the chance to try it last year.
So, we set out to Disney Springs with the goal of having breakfast, that Holiday Turkey Burger, and perhaps a few Christmas-inspired desserts. Suffice to say, mission accomplished.
Let’s start with the breakfast options, which we’ll cover in short order since they’re a limited time offering and, judging by the lack of crowd when we visited, not something about which many people care:
We were joined for breakfast by our friends Jenny and Adam, the brains behind the cultural revolution that is Burke Head Toys.
Jenny ordered the Crispy Chicken Biscuit: Buttermilk Fried Chicken, Honey Butter, Chipotle Mayonnaise and Pickles on a Cheddar Biscuit.
Adam ordered the El Diablo Breakfast Burger: Chorizo-Signature Blend Patty, Pepper Jack Cheese, Smoked Bacon-Pepper Jam and Egg on a Cheddar Biscuit.
The general consensus with both of these is that they tasted great, but were undersized.
They also ordered the Fresh-cut Fries with Sausage Gravy.
These were incredibly delicious, and a good change-of-pace from the normal fries. Personally, though, I’d take a large order of regular fries plus the incredible dipping sauces for the same price.
Ever the healthy one, Sarah ordered the Egg White Frittata Sandwich: Egg Whites, Spinach, Hash Browns, Pico de Gallo and Avocado Crema on a Parker House Roll.
This was significantly larger and more filling than the previous two biscuit breakfast sandwiches, but it also didn’t have meat and was the exact same price.
Opting to punt on the breakfast offerings, I ordered the Holiday Turkey Burger. No, this is not a fried turkey leg inside a grilled hamburger, as delicious as that might sound. It’s grilled turkey burger topped with fried butternut squash and mozzarella risotto, bacon cranberry jam, lettuce, and tomato.
Look, a turkey patty is never going to be as good as beef. (In the immortal words of Ron Swanson, “why would anyone do that to themselves?!”) The operative question is whether it approaches beef territory, and it comes close.
The Holiday Turkey Burger works thanks in no small part to the toppings, which are an eclectic mix of (basically) mozzarella stick and cranberry jam with hints of bacon. That’s the prevailing flavor profile, and albeit unconventional, it largely melds together into something good.
With that said, this is not a burger I’ll rush out to order again. It’s inventive and would earn high praise if ordered from any other counter service restaurant at Walt Disney World. However, this is D-Luxe Burger, and by that establishment’s elevated standards (and prices), it’s fine. A very good burger…but not as delicious as the ‘Signature Blend Beef Patty’ burgers on the menu.
From D-Luxe Burger’s ‘Holiday Exclusives’ menu, we also ordered the Peppermint Cookies ‘n Cream Gelato Shake: Vanilla Gelato blended with Chocolate Cookies and Peppermint.
This was delicious, as their shakes always are, but there’s nothing about it that says ‘holidays.’ It’s a cookies ‘n cream milkshake with vague hints of peppermint.
Of course, no visit to Disney Springs is complete without a stop at Amorette’s Patisserie. If you’ve read our posts about Disney Springs, you know we love Amorette’s–it’s #2 on our Disney Springs Counter Service Rankings. We mention it out of the blue, in off-topic ways under the guise of letting you in on this secret. (It’s partly that, but we’re also don’t want this ‘hidden gem’ to become a ‘closed gem’ due to lack of business.)
With that said, one source of frustration with Amorette’s is that their online menu never states what their seasonal desserts are–just “seasonal cake” and “seasonal pastry.” Of course, this isn’t our first rodeo, so we know they do have Christmas-themed desserts.
Little did we realize that they’d have several different holiday options: character cookie ornaments, macaron lollipops, gingerbread cakes, and more. We opted for the Holly Wreath Petit Cake.
This struck the right balance of unique and photogenic. This is a 5 spice chiffon cake with honey mousse, plum pâté de fruit jelly, and feuilletine crunch.
This Holly Wreath Petit Cake was phenomenal. The spice of the chiffon cake was surprisingly sharp, giving the cake a nice punch to it. Whatever intensity this might’ve had on its own was cut by the sweetness of the honey mousse–the two struck a perfect balance. Likewise, the plum pâté added to the flavor profile, and the crunch rounded out the cake’s texture.
That just begins to scratch the surface on this superlative cake. There was a ton going on here, with balance and complement being the operative descriptors. We both agreed that this is one of the best desserts we’ve had at Amorette’s and, by extension, in all of Walt Disney World.
We actually have been postponing this post until we got another chance to return to Amorette’s and try more of the holiday menu. (Originally, this was going to be two separate posts–a ‘seasonal menu’ review of D-Luxe Burger and a ‘Christmas desserts’ review of Amorette’s.) However, that’s not going to happen in the immediate future, so we figured it was better to just get this out there so it’d be useful to more of you. We still need to do a post about the significantly-improved Christmas Tree Trail at Disney Springs, so perhaps we’ll sneak some additional dessert reviews into that.
Suffice to say, Disney Springs is a must-visit destination during your Christmas-time trip to Walt Disney World. The decorations are nice, the entertainment is improving, and Amorette’s is provides some of the best holiday treats you’ll find anywhere. D-Luxe is also a good option for its Holiday Turkey Burger, but the Wreath Cake and Christmas Tree Trail are the main reasons to make the trek to Disney Springs.
Finally, a few plugs. First, the 2018 edition of our freeVacation Kingdom at Christmas eBook is now available for download! This free eBook is 90 pages, with 100+ photos, and tons of great tips & info for the holiday season at Walt Disney World. For more details on how to get this totally-free ebook, click here. Did we mention that it’s free?! 😉
What do you think of Disney’s Yacht Club Resort at Christmas? Is my ‘case’ as airtight as I think it is? Which other resorts would you like to see us individually tour as part of this series? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!