Good Food Returns to Caribbean Beach Resort: Spyglass Grill Review
Spyglass Grill is a poolside counter service restaurant at Caribbean Beach Resort, which is presently one of Walt Disney World’s largest hotel construction projects. In this review, we’ll cover breakfast and lunch/dinner at Caribbean Beach, with photos and thoughts from our meals. (Updated April 7, 2022.)
It’s rare for us to review a restaurant at a quiet pool. It’s even more rare for us to review such a dining option with a menu that quite clearly has an expiration date. We’re also not particularly keen on the Trinidad section of Caribbean Beach, which is home to the Pirate Rooms, which we didn’t exactly give a glowing review during our stay there. Yet, here we are with Spyglass Grill.
After being closed for over two years, Spyglass Grill reopens on April 14, 2022. As you’ll read here, it’s one of three excellent dining options at Caribbean Beach Resort, a true ‘secret spot’ and under the radar gem. It returns to one of the best ‘sleeper’ culinary lineups at Walt Disney World alongside Sebastian’s Bistro, which serves a glorious family style meal that is the best value dinner in all of Walt Disney World!
As one of Walt Disney World’s most popular Moderate Resorts, many readers have taken a keen interest in Caribbean Beach since its reimagining wrapped up and the Skyliner debuted. Yes, Spyglass Grill is “just” a quiet pool restaurant. It also has an incredibly robust menu. The good news? Spyglass Grill absolutely delivers for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Since originally reviewing it for breakfast and lunch, we’ve dined at Spyglass Grill a number of additional times. Each visit has been fantastic. While it’s not necessarily destination dining, it’s not a bad pit stop while transferring at the Skyliner hub and it’s an absolute must-do if you’re staying at Caribbean Beach Resort–even if you’re not in this area of the hotel.
For those who are unfamiliar with Spyglass Grill, it’s located by the Trinidad quiet pool in a nondescript pink building, that could just as easily be confused for a simple picnic area. It’s essentially directly across the water from Walt Disney World’s main Skyliner gondola hub–the station where you transfer from the Pop Century/Art of Animation, Hollywood Studios, and Epcot lines.
Above is a look at the current menus as of our meals.
First, breakfast. We opted for the Breakfast Yuca Hash and Cream Cheese Guava-stuffed French Toast; we were really hungry and also wanted to try the Pineapple-Banana Pancakes, but since we knew we’d be returning for lunch shortly, we limited our order to only two items.
First up, the Breakfast Yuca Hash. This consists of “Roasted Yuca with Chorizo Redeye Gravy, Sunny-Side Up topped with Pico de Gallo, Cotjia Cheese, Cilantro and a Lime.”
This was phenomenal, and is my idea of a balanced breakfast. Hearty, rich, and filling, but refreshing and not too heavy. I would say this was the best counter service breakfast I’ve had at Walt Disney World, and it was for a couple of minutes…
The Cream Cheese Guava-stuffed French Toast was even better. This consists of “House-made Thick-sliced Brioche French Toast stuffed with Guava Cream Cheese and topped with fresh Strawberry Guava and Cream Cheese Sauces.”
This was like the perfect marriage of breakfast and dessert. The hearty French Toast was filling, while the filling inside kept things moist and delicious. I was concerned that it’d be a bit too syrupy, but the flavor was well-rounded, tasting both naturally fruity and sweet. Being the healthy eater, Sarah was less enthusiastic about this than me, but I loved it. Better than Tonga Toast–no joke.
The lunch dinner menu is even more ambitious, with a number of options we wanted to try. These included the Chorizo Burger, Cuban Sandwich, Caribbean Taco Trio, Chopped Jerk Chicken Salad, and variety of Crispy Yuca Bowls. There are also five different vegetarian options. Suffice to say (again), this is not your normal quiet pool bar!
Sarah had most of the Yuca Bowl for breakfast and wasn’t too hungry after that, so she ordered the Vegan Black Bean Caribbean Tacos with fruit.
These were exactly what you’d expect. Fine, but not exactly inventive or flavorful. The pickled slaw and Pico de Gallo did make this mildly interesting, but you’re still not going to want to go out of your way to order these tacos unless you’re vegan.
I ordered the Chorizo Burger, consisting of “Grilled 6 oz Chorizo Burger topped with Crispy Pork, Provolone Cheese, a Pink Sauce and Crisp Potato Straws nested on Iceburg Lettuce and Tomato in a Brioche Bun served with Plantain and Yuca Chips.”
I was a bit apprehensive about the price, but the quality here is far superior to normal counter service beef patties. Don’t be scared away by the Chorizo, as this burger is not spicy. It has a bit of a distinct punch to it, which can be attributed both to the meat and the sauce. The crisp potato straws provide some nice texture to this incredibly juicy meat, and ultimately, this scores very high marks. The Chorizo Burger rivals the best counter service burgers at Walt Disney World, and that includes the highly-regarded D-Luxe Burger at Disney Springs.
We also had the Passion Fruit Tres Leches. (“Yellow Cake flavored in Sweetened Condensed, Whole and Coconut Milks blended with Bacardi Rum and a generous layer of Passion Fruit filling topped with Meringue and a Chocolate Mickey Coin.”)
This dessert is also highly recommended. The passion fruit provides a sweetness to the cake that balances well with the rum flavor for something that is not too tart, bitter, or sweet. A pretty ambitious dessert for a pool restaurant, but that could be said about almost everything here.
Spyglass Grill is a great addition to this area of CBR.
Caribbean Beach is a huge, sprawling resort, and having a second option for breakfasts that doesn’t require a long hike to Centertown is appealing. As it’s clear the intent is to elevate the slate of amenities at Caribbean Beach Resort, perhaps more quality dining options is one such way to make that happen.
Ultimately, Spyglass Grill is a really big deal for guests staying at Caribbean Beach Resort in the near future. Saying that it’s going to be a game-changer for some travelers is not hyperbole. With the best counter service breakfast at Walt Disney World, the type of guest who does breakfast at their hotel and doesn’t return from the parks until nighttime, Caribbean Beach is suddenly more attractive.
Small as it might seem, this one restaurant alone will unquestionably matter to a lot of guests. Spyglass Grill significantly elevates the food quality at Caribbean Beach Resort and makes for a more convenient dining option to the Pirate Rooms. That’s going to be critically important for a lot of potential guests.
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Have you dined at Spyglass Grill? What did you try? If you haven’t dined here, does anything on the menu look appealing to you? Think this is truly a ‘secret spot’ worthy of my praise, or is it just an ordinary, poolside eatery at Walt Disney World?Planning on staying at Caribbean Beach anytime soon, or will you wait until work is done? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing feedback about your experiences is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!
Question! Is this one of the places you can sub your drink for an alcoholic drink? (hey I’m on vacation!) I’m trying to get the most out of my dining plan when I can 🙂
Any idea when Spyglass will reopen in 2021?
We’re considering staying at this resort next May. I am a lover of the Cuban sandwich. Can anyone comment specifically about that item? Thanks!
My family and I are staying at Caribbean beach resort in mid-December. Do you know if construction will be done by then? If so, which are do you recommend requesting to stay in? Thanks!
Thanks for the review and menu! Really appreciate Sarah trying the vegan taco for us too, good to know. 🙂
I’d love to see a post that covered “resort restaurants worth making a special trip for”. Obviously Sanaa and Jiko, Artist Point etc but it’s harder to know with counter service like this one.
We enjoyed Spyglass Grill when we were at the Caribbean 5/29-6/7 (we stayed at 2 different rooms in Aruba Building 55). The jerked chicken tacos from the Caribbean Taco Trio was also good, and I see you discovered the Chorizo Burger.
Spyglass Grill is a great counter service restaurant. However, while I have to say that Centertown’s lunch menu was decent, and I’d vote for Spyglass over it, one of the things I wish we’d done was try out the dinner buffet at Centertown. It really looked appetizing, had some tempting looking Caribbean twists to the buffet, all for the price of a Quick Service Meal on the dining plan or a substantial cash savings over similar buffets (we never did check out the breakfast buffet). But preplanned ADRs and the other desires of She Who Must Be Obeyed prevented my getting to sample it to see how the buffet compared to other Disney buffets.
We visited CBR in June 2017 for a dance trip [it’s not somewhere I would generally book] and I can tell you that the dinner buffet was really good. I was very impressed. Lots of appealing food with a Caribbean twist and the price was definitely right.