Oga’s Cantina is a bar in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and the land’s most popular attraction—or at least the one with the longest line. We’ll review this lounge in Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World, with food & drink photos, thoughts on the atmosphere, and some strategy for what to order and how to approach Oga’s Cantina.
Aside from piloting the Millennium Falcon (check), visiting Mos Eisley Cantina ranks highly among the moments from the Star Wars universe that fans would want to experience themselves. Given that Mos Eisley Cantina exists on Tatooine and Galaxy’s Edge is set on the planet of Batuu, that was not possible. However, Oga’s Cantina is a good consolation prize.
The theme, level of detail, and immersion of Oga’s Cantina are all off the charts. This bar is cool, and feels like a dive bar for scoundrels and other notorious patrons straight from the Star Wars universe. In theory, it’s pitch perfect. However, the practical reality of visiting Oga’s Cantina is pretty far from that, and the location itself still left me wanting something more…
In terms of that something more, I’m still not entirely sure of what, but I have some ideas. While I’m not the most diehard Star Wars fan, Mos Eisley Cantina (of all things) is one thing that left an indelible impression on me when I was a kid. I’ve wanted to visit it ever since seeing Imagineering bring Sonny Eclipse to life at Walt Disney World.
Stepping inside that and Jabba’s Palace are things I’ve always wanted to do. I’m not sure why, but piloting the Millennium Falcon wasn’t even on my radar. I guess I was a weird kid. Not that they’re at all related, but to me, something like that or a show with the Max Rebo Band (or the unbuilt Plectu’s Fantastic Galactic Revue) with multiple creatures was what I envisioned when I thought of a Star Wars bar.
A big problem with Disney or Star Wars fandom (or any fandom, for that matter) is that we become fixated on things, and there’s a tendency to build a mental version of the story, attraction, etc., in our heads before that thing comes to fruition.
This can lead to disappointment when the real thing, invariably, doesn’t align with what we’ve crafted in our heads. It’s a personal problem, and one of the genesises of toxic fandom. It plays out with the Disney Parks all the time; I’ve been guilty of it myself plenty of times.
To the greatest extent possible, I try to avoid this, or at least discount my expectations. However, I’m sure it at least colored my first impression of Oga’s Cantina.
Seeing DJ R-3X and all of the detail around this energetic tavern was cool, but I nevertheless felt it could’ve been something more.
In looking back at Mos Eisley Cantina, it’s definitely not that the themed design or details of Oga’s Cantina are wanting. To the contrary, Oga’s Cantina is more lavish and ornate than its film counterpart. There’s more eye candy, and the static design itself feels more lived in.
The key difference is the patrons.
Mos Eisley Cantina is endlessly fascinating because of the eclectic lifeforms: bounty hunters, smugglers, rogue traders, curious travelers, and lively entertainers. It’s quite the motley crew that populates the tavern.
No offense to you all (or myself, I guess?), but random Disney tourists are obviously no substitute for all of these characters, and there’s no way to bring all of that to fruition in a functioning cantina that serves guests.
Nevertheless, I think having something more than just DJ R-3X would’ve given Oga’s Cantina a greater sense of vivacity. Don’t get me wrong, DJ R-3X is really cool, but the droid basically just bounces around and turns its head.
An Audio Animatronics figure (or three) of more elaborate creatures, or even a couple of performers mingling among guests would give Oga’s Cantina a sense of life and personality. For me, this is actually a missed opportunity, and not just a matter of my own preconceptions.
Again, this is not to diminish what does exist to establish a sense of place at Oga’s Cantina. You could spend hours exploring the bar, appreciating the details, hidden nods, and meticulous design. Imagineering did an excellent job with all of that, and the core, static elements of Oga’s Cantina are fantastic. For me, it just needs something more to give it an authentic energy.
Likewise, DJ R-3X, also known as REX, is awesome. The old Starspeeder 3000 pilot from Star Tours has been repurposed to provide travelers at the edge of the galaxy with interesting music, and REX fulfills that role admirably. This is a really cool feature that I appreciate, and it doesn’t come across as overly fan service-y.
To create a sense of intimacy, Imagineering made Oga’s Cantina really small. I get the desire to create an authentic, immersive experience, but it’s arguable that this bar does a poor job of balancing that with the operational realities of a theme park.
This is the same quibble we have with Savi’s Workshop for Handbuilt Lightsabers; we loved that experience, but so many guests will never have the chance to partake. Doubling the capacity by creating more rooms would allow more guests to be able to experience the bar.
For Oga’s Cantina, wait times were around 90 minutes during the limited capacity preview period. Disney has moved to a day-of reservations system with all availability ‘selling out’ in about the first hour of the day. It remains to be seen for how long this will continue, or what Walt Disney World will do for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
Inside, the experience at Oga’s Cantina is likewise chaotic. Move from your assigned seat and there’s a good chance it will be filled by other guests. We received this warning, disregarded it (because who isn’t going to wander the bar and look at all that eye candy), and had our spot filled.
We’d recommend not worrying too much about this or all the warnings. Order a single drink, grab it, and wander to your heart’s content once you receive it. If a Cast Member does fill your spot, oh well; exploring the bar and perusing its many intriguing details is the highlight of the experience, anyway.
The good news is that you probably won’t want more than a single drink…
Another thing to note is that the entire day’s ration of drinks is mixed in the morning, and these pre-made cocktails means that they’re obviously not hand-crafted or made-to-order. It also means that no substitutions or ordering off-menu is allowed.
We didn’t sample all of the drinks, but most of what we tried–alcoholic and non-alcoholic–was a disappointment. For better or worse, these are your typical fruity Disney Parks Generic Drink Menu concoctions.
That appeals to a lot of tourists, so you very well might like the libations at Oga’s. If sugary, fruity drinks that are light on alcohol don’t appeal to you, we’d suggest sticking to the solid beer menu.
There are a couple of exceptions to this. First, the Fuzzy Tauntaun, which is the yellow drink above. This features Cîroc Peach Vodka, Bols Peach Schnapps, and Simply Orange topped with tangerine and pure cane sugar. Most importantly, there’s Buzzz Foam.
The Fuzzy Tauntaun is definitely fruity, but the citrus flavor is not too sweet. Moreover, the Buzzz Foam contains a natural numbing agent, that will literally make your mouth tingle (or go totally numb, depending upon how much your have). This was a weird sensation at first, but we all found it “addictively interesting” and would recommend at least giving it a shot. It’s a lot of fun.
Second, the Yub Nub. This one is $42 (!!!) and is served in an awesome souvenir Endor mug. It features Malibu Pineapple Rum and Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum plus citrus and passion fruit juices.
It is the stereotypical fruity rum drink, but that’s not why we’re recommending it (the drink itself is fine). It’s for that mug, which is awesome. The $42 price is tough to swallow, but you figure this will be discontinued in a year or less, and will eventually sell for some astronomical sum on eBay. So consider this drink an investment.
Finally, there’s the Blue Bantha: “Blue Milk served chilled with Bantha-inspired Vanilla-Butter Sugar Cookie.”
As you’ve probably heard by now, the Blue Milk is highly divisive. Some people love it, some hate it. I happen to love it, but I think I’m in the minority on that one. Either way, you need to try it at least once to form your allegiances. The Blue Bantha presentation (and consistency) is superior to the Milk Stand version. Oh, and the thick cookie atop the drink is delicious.
All other non-alcoholic drinks are sugary and fruity, with several using Powerade or Odwalla as a base. Other than the Blue Bantha, I thought the Jabba Juice was serviceable.
The rest of the non-alcoholic drinks were downright bad. You’re better off with drinking fountain water or a Coke. (Disclosure: the only non-alcoholic drink we bought was the Blue Bantha; the rest I tried at the media preview. None of the alcoholic drinks were served at that event; all were bought.)
On the alcoholic drink front, other than the Fuzzy Tauntaun and Yub Nub, there are a few decent options. The Jet Juice is essentially a large shot, and is the strongest drink on the menu.
The Dagobah Slug Slinger is also not too sweet, but has an herbs-meet-citrus flavor that is definitely an acquired taste. (At least it’s interesting!) The Outer Rim is basically a margarita, and is a relatively safe choice if you don’t want too much fruitiness.
As for how you can have the best experience at Oga’s Cantina, our first recommendation would be starting across the Esplanade at Carthay Circle Lounge. This remains the undisputed champ of in-park bars in terms of drink quality (by a wide margin), and is a good place to have cocktails that are actually good before heading off to Galaxy’s Edge.
Once inside Oga’s Cantina, order only the Fuzzy Tauntaun, Blue Bantha, or beer. The former two are fun drinks that, at the very minimum, are also good ‘conversation pieces.’ Take them, wander the bar for 45 minutes, and don’t worry about anything else. From our perspective, this is the best way to an excellent Oga’s Cantina experience, and will help avoid some of the location’s current pitfalls.
At this point, I feel like this Oga’s Cantina review is a bit too harsh. To be sure, the drink menu isn’t good (aside from presentation), the way the location is operated to churn guests leaves a lot to be desired, and the energy of the cantina could be enhanced considerably with atmospheric entertainment. All of those qualms are easily addressable or ignorable.
I’m not here to be a Disney apologist–the Oga’s Cantina experience as it presently stands is far from perfect. The flip side of that, though, is that the crucial, baked-in elements of the experience (like the architecture, fundamental design, and details both little and big) are all exceptional. It could be even better with a few tweaks, but there’s a solid foundation in place.
Overall, Oga’s Cantina is a cool place to experience, and spending some time there can be satisfying. It’s not your typical relaxed lounge experience, but it has a lot to see and appreciate. The enthusiasm of other patrons is contagious, and the sick beats from DJ R3X will be felt in your bones. It ranks among the better things to do in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, which is saying something given that this is a land of highlights.
Have you visited Oga’s Cantina? What did you think of the theme and atmosphere? What about the drinks? Do you agree or disagree with our assessment? Looking forward to experiencing Oga’s Cantina, or is it low on your list of Star Wars Land priorities? Any questions? 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!