Toledo Tapas, Steak & Seafood Review
Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood is the new rooftop restaurant in Gran Destino Tower at Coronado Springs Resort. In this Walt Disney World dining review, we’ll do that, but with a twist–analyzing all of the steaks on the menu.
Naturally, we’ll have food photos (but only the steaks), thoughts on the cuisine (but mostly the steaks), and a look at the themed design and atmosphere (not just the steaks) at Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood. If you’re interested in the tapas or seafood part of the restaurant name, it’ll probably be another few months before we do justice to Toledo with a full review.
With that said, our experiences thus far at Toledo and Gran Destino in general have been resoundingly positive. It’s no secret that we aren’t the biggest fans of this big box being plopped in the middle of Coronado Springs, and we think the rooms themselves aren’t for everyone. However, the service, quality, and value for money throughout Gran Destino have been exemplary, and that extends to the non-steak items we’ve had thus far at Toledo, as well…
Let’s start with the ambiance of Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood. I may not think Gran Destino hits the high notes thematically, but this restaurant design is pitch-perfect. It’s reminds me of a more elegant and Disney-appropriate version of STK, coupled with the elevation of California Grill (minus the view of Magic Kingdom).
The flooring, columns, chairs, and more have a variety of patterns to provide depth and texture. There’s a lot of this throughout Toledo, but not to the point that it’s visually busy or distracting. The level of detail is just right, and provides a nice contrast to the relatively plain wood tables.
Other highlights include the olive trees in the center of the restaurant, wine case along the wall, and the Gaudi-inspired ceiling overhead. As with the wall at Barcelona Lounge in the lobby, this is absolutely entrancing, with a beautiful design that mesmerizes as the colors change.
Floor to ceiling windows with views of Disney’s Hollywood Studios also impress, but not to the degree you might expect. You can see Tower of Terror, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and some other areas, but we prefer the booths along the wine-wall under the beautiful ceiling. (You can see the fireworks from window tables, but the pyro is so intermittent that this isn’t much of a selling point.)
As much as the two of us would’ve loved to have eaten this trio of all-star steaks by ourselves (well, one of us would’ve loved that), hibernating for a day or two afterwards, we were joined by our friends Ben and Ryan for this difficult task…
We’ll start with the Manhattan Filet with olive oil-potato purée, grilled onions, dates, and sherry vinaigrette.
From the best I can tell, the Manhattan Filet is essentially a new-ish twist on the New York strip steak, cut differently so that it’s leaner and thicker, but otherwise having the same qualities. That seems about apt here, which also puts this ahead of the normal Walt Disney World New York strip steak (a menu fixture for ages) in terms of taste and quality–at a lower price point.
Next, the Hanger Steak with crushed new potatoes, salsa verde, greens, charred peppers, and yellow pepper.
We all agreed that this presented the best bang for buck of the options. The lowest price point of the steaks, but with a sizable portion and tender, melt-in-your-mouth flavor.
Sarah and I opted for the ‘ChuletÃ³n’ 28 oz. Bone-In Rib-Eye for two with beef candle, tomato, onions, oregano, and choice of two house sides.
I’ve wanted to do one of these gigantic steaks for two at Walt Disney World for a while (a number of restaurants offer such an option, including Le Cellier and Yachtsman Steakhouse), but the price has never seemed right. At under $100 with two sides (each of which would’ve cost $8 on their own), Toledo’s option felt more reasonable.
I’m a big fan of ribeye steaks. Of normal cuts, it’s right up there with the porterhouse for me. Although in most situations, I’d probably give a slight edge to the porterhouse.
This will go down as one of my favorite steaks I’ve ever had–and not just at Walt Disney World. The ChuletÃ³n delivered perfectly in terms of tenderness, ideal marbling, a deeply meaty flavor, and impressive presentation. It perfectly melded meatiness with fattiness, great texture, and a bit of char.
Sarah was probably the worst (or best, depending upon the perspective) person to share this with, as ribeye is too fatty of a cut for her. She did really like the meatier bites she had and agreed with (almost) all of the above, but in general there was too much fat on much of this ChuletÃ³n for her.
The upshot to that was I got to enjoy about 20 ounces of the steak as she only had a smaller portion before moving on to the sides. They say marriage is all about compromise, and if that means I “have to” eat more of a shared steak and less of the communal cauliflower…well, I guess that’s only fair.
The beef candle is perhaps the most interesting aspect of the ChuletÃ³n. So naturally, I forgot to get a picture of just the candle (you can see it in several of the above photos–it looks just like a normal candle).
The idea here is that beef fat is cooked down, strained, and molded into candle. By lighting the wick, you then melt it again and use the ingredients for dipping or pouring. The flavor is exactly what you’d expect–meaty and salty, with a rich indulgence to it.
I preferred dipping other things, like bread (dipped in meat fat is literally the first time I’ve ever uttered the words “delicious cauliflower!”) into the fat candle. For me, it didn’t do much of anything for the ChuletÃ³n, which was already fantastic.
We’ve touched upon this with the individual steaks, but value for money at Toledo is very solid. That tends to be less surprising at restaurants in hotels and otherwise outside the Walt Disney World theme parks, but Signature Restaurants often buck that trend. While Toledo isn’t technically a Signature, it’s deserving of that distinction.
In terms of the Disney Dining Plan, Toledo is only a 1-credit table service restaurant, and it’s not an objectively good value as compared to alternatives because of more reasonable price points. That type of analysis sort of misses the point, though. If you’re using 1-credit instead of 2 for cuisine and atmosphere of comparable quality, aren’t you coming out ahead in the end?
Overall, our experiences thus far with Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood, and Gran Destino in general, have been superlative. I think I’ve written this elsewhere, but my theory is that Walt Disney World management recognizes convention-goers, its primary demographic at Gran Destino, have more exacting standards. Disney wants to exceed the expectations of this lucrative clientele, rather than disappointing them and running the risk that these groups will take their annual business to Las Vegas or wherever.
That theory could be entirely wrong, the whatever the explanation, Toledo feels a lot more like something you’d find in Disney Springs or even a major metro area than it does at a regular Walt Disney World resort or in the parks. It’s arguably better than most of the Signature Restaurants right now–definitely in the top 10 overall and potentially in the top 5. We intend upon revisiting Toledo in a few months to see if the “new restaurant smell” wears off and quality drops, at which point we’ll publish a full review. For now, we’re highly recommending Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood–and not just for the steaks covered in this review.
Planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help. For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!
Have you dined at Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood? Which menu items did you like or dislike? What did you think of the atmosphere/ambiance at Toledo? What about the views of Disney’s Hollywood Studios? How do you feel Toledo compares with Signature Restaurants or steakhouses around Walt Disney World? Do you agree or disagree with our review? 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!
As of today, there’s a new menu in effect. It’s been stripped back to an appetisers and mains presentation (for compatibility with the DDP? …) on a more “traditional” card, and the Pinxos are relegated to a single appetiser selection.
Luckily the food is as good as it has been on my previous visits – I think this is the best value meal (considering quality and environment) in WDW by a long long way.
Can me and the wife use our disney dining credits together (1 each) to move up to the tomahawk???
No reservations allowed????
And when you go to the menu only option is…. brunch, but can’t make reservations!
MicKay, I had the same experience yesterday. Went to the site today and was able to secure a reservation. My advice, try again.
We have reservations for February. Sounds like this was a website/app glitch!
Science is hard. Thank you for doing this difficult, taxing work on all our behalves. #blessed
Does this mean that there might be a “Top 10 Steaks of WDW” post in the next few months?
I was nervous and almost canceled after WDWNT’s poor review, but so glad we still went! I went here with a party of 10 in Sept. It was for a birthday and they gave us the large room in the back at no extra charge. If you have a large party or special occasion and they have the back room available I highly recommend this restaurant over just about all others, the privacy and intimacy alone were worth it! You can catch a firework or two if you book your reservation in the right time frame. As a group of all adults we loved just hanging out ordering and drinking, but this would be optimal for a large group that included children as well. Everyone was on the dining plan. We split bottles of wine and ordered a TON of tapas. We came out of pocket about $35 a person after tip which to me was a steal for the night we had overall. Absolutely good enough to make this a regular ADR on our future trips.
Did anyone else think of Fight Club during the beef candle bit? Just me? Oh. Okay.
We are really wanted to try this on our family trip in May. But our kids will be with us? I know it’s probably not kid friendly, but will it be frowned upon to bring our girls? Ages 6 and 4
We went there without our kids in October but wouldn’t hesitate to go back our 6 & 8 year old. There was one table there with 2 girls as well. It might be a stretch for the 4 year old but if you feel confident in them behaving throughout a longer dinner, then I don’t think anyone would think twice.
Thanks. That was my question also. Looks more like a date night place but I can’t dump the kids with grandma at Disney so glad to hear kids are Ok here Jessa.
Tom, so glad you didn’t eat the poison apple completely and go to the dark side! The discussion and pics made me salivate. I need steak now! Place looks great and for one credit if using the Disney dining plan seems like a home run as long as they provide a side with the steak.
Thank you, Sarah. As long as she has something to eat then she’s ok
Steve, Disney has great sitters, licensed etc. Hire one and take the DW out for a nice dinner.
Been waiting on this review. Sounds like my ADRs for Toledo will stand. Looking forward to a evening dinner here after spending the afternoon and early evening in AK.
We Were here in August while on the DDP and loved it as well. We, party of 8 had a great table, enjoyed a drink at the bar and a delicious/nice relaxing meal. We had an issue with the server that was later fixed by our hotel. We had 3 rooms on the DP at the table, and we let them know this aT the start.
When we were paying I helped my sons figure their tips and then did my tip as cash payment. 25% . Later when looking at my debit card I saw that it was more than I thought the bill was. Our front desk called rest. For me and it was discovered that the server added the tip for the table to my bill as a table for 6+. Even tho the others gave tips and I paid her cash tip . Taught us lesson to always check bill closely. Our hotel gave us a credit so we didn’t have to fight with the restaurant. Server was not honest- when this occurred at other on site rest. The servers always noted that the tip was included and we typically supplement.
Just a warning….
Despite this, We felt it was an excellent choice while on the DDP.
Tip is automatically applied at disney restaurants to parties if 6 or more. Your server did not “choose” to apply it.
Well actually, since we had 3 separate bills with tips not automatically applied and cash tips left on those, it was odd to apply the 18% tip to only my bill for 2 people. Most servers would have pointed that out.
I’m well aware of the ‘rule’ of 6 or more….
It’s still included regardless of how many different ways you pay the bill. 6 or more people sitting at one table is automatic gratuity.
But I agree that it’s odd to not include the gratuity to all the bills?????? Why was the gratuity put on one check? That’s odd and agree that it should have been either pointed out or applied to ALL the bills not just one.
Yes! That was the point of the original comment. When things like that occur it sometimes makes a good experience, bad. We hope to try this restaurant in January based on Toms review!!
We ate at both the Yachtsman and Toledo in the past two weeks, and I’d have to give the edge to Toledo as far as venue was concerned. Tom hits the décor and atmosphere spot-on in the review. We were seated promptly (w/ ADR) and the food was delicious. When it comes to service, my experience was not nearly as satisfactory as that described above. The waiter was inattentive to say the least, with drinks remaining empty, few stops to check on status, and an extremely slow bill delivery.
For food and venue, I would consider returning. However, until they develop a reputation as a solid performer for staff, I will not return.
as far as venue goes, the DW and I always wait for one of the tables in the bay window at the Yachtsman That gives us a feeling of intamacy that I don’t see in Toledo. How about food quality and selection?
Did Disney invite you as a guest. I love your posts, but you should be transparent!
If it’s a true review, you can’t be getting comped!
We were not comped–if we were, there would be a disclosure on this post.
We paid out of pocket for this meal.
we are Yachtsman Steakhouse fans from way back. In your opinion, how does this venue compare?
thanks for quick reply, Tom. I am new to this blog, but am enjoying it immensely. I really appreciate your upfront honesty and critical point of view. As a former TDS Cast Member I really like your blend of Disney Apprectiation and Realistic Expectation. Thanks for your steady communication!