Topolino’s Terrace Modified Character Meal Review
Breakfast Á la Art with Mickey & Friends at Topolino’s Terrace is one of a few physically-distanced character meals at Walt Disney World. In this WDW dining review, we’ll share photos & video of the modified experience, commentary as to whether it’s worth your time and money, pros & cons, food pics, and info. (Updated January 24, 2021.)
Before we delve into the particulars of the modified character meal, let’s quickly recap what Breakfast Á la Art with Mickey & Friends entails. (For more details, some of which have changed, see our Topolino’s Terrace Character Breakfast Review.) This is one of Walt Disney World’s new premium character meals, offered in the morning hours at Riviera Resort’s flagship Signature Restaurant.
This is a trio of upscale new character meals (the others being Bon Voyage Adventure at Trattoria al Forno and Storybook Dining at Artist Point), that offer prix fixe menus as opposed to family style or buffet meals. It’s a quality over quantity approach, which we generally prefer. While the dining style is not entirely why, this trio all rank among the top of our Best Character Meals at Walt Disney World List.
Another big reason why we love Breakfast Á la Art with Mickey & Friends is the character costumes: Poet Minnie, Ballet Dancer Daisy, Sculptor Donald, and of course Artist Mickey. They range from artistic blue collar to the fashionable socialites, but all look great, fit the venue perfectly, and are fresh & original.
Of course, the nature of the character “interactions” are different at the modified meal, but that’s something we’ll address later in this review.
Atmosphere is another advantage offered by Topolino’s Terrace — Flavors of the Riviera, which is light, airy, and inviting. As noted above, this rooftop restaurant is the resort’s Signature Dining, and it shows. The dining room and decor are all elegant and refined (but without pretension), and the views are breathtaking.
Topolino’s Terrace — Flavors of the Riviera is also a totally different experience for breakfast and dinner–both are highly recommended.
Now let’s discuss our experience with the modified character meal. Per our Topolino’s Terrace tradition, we arrived for the first seating on (re)opening day. In fact, we were the first guests at Disney’s Riviera Resort, and for a while, the only party in the restaurant.
Topolino’s Terrace — Flavors of the Riviera is one of the restaurants offering Mobile Check-In, and we opted to test that out. Mobile Check-In worked flawlessly for us…but was probably unnecessary. We were actually the first guests in Walt Disney World history to use it, and one of the managers took our photo next to the sign.
For the first 20 minutes, we were the only guests in Topolino’s Terrace. (There were a lot of Cast Members and management, so the restaurant never felt eerily empty.)
By the end of the meal, there were 2 other parties of guests in the restaurant. We were expecting it to be a bit busier since it’s the only character meal–perhaps it’ll get busier after the parks reopen.
As before, the meal begins with an artist’s palette of pastries. These include Chocolate-Chip Muffins, Croissants, Epi Bread plus Honey Butter, House-made Jam, Chocolate-Hazelnut Mousse.
Also as before, these are decent but we barely touched them. (In retrospect, we should’ve declined them.)
January 2021 Update: As with several other Walt Disney World restaurants during the reopening phase, Topolino’s Terrace returned with a scaled-back menu. Thankfully, the missing items have been restored, with the Wood-fired Butchers Steak and Spiced Sausage Hash–two of the best items–now back. This may sound like an insignificant change not warranting a review update, but one of our previous criticisms was about the value proposition of this modified meal.
These items offer the best bang for buck, and could definitely help tip the scales for those on the fence about breakfast at Topolino’s Terrace. Suffice to say, we’d highly recommend ordering those if they sound good (you can read our full Topolino’s Terrace review for food photos and more commentary on those dishes). We’ll head back at some point in 2021 for the sake of research to confirm they’re still delicious.
With the two most filling and high caliber options unavailable when we dined at Topolino’s Terrace, we opted to each order two entrees. This is something that is possible at all prix fixe character meals (there’s no charge), even though Walt Disney World doesn’t actively advertise it.
For her first pick, Sarah chose the Fruit Plate. What you see is what you get here.
She also ordered the gluten-free Sour Cream Waffle: Roasted Apple, Chantilly, Orange-Maple Syrup, and served with choice of Smoked Bacon, Ham, Sausage, or Plant-based Sausage.
This was fantastic. Sarah said it’s the best Mickey waffle she’s ever had (I disagree, but it was exceptional.) Note that the normal version of this dish is not Mickey-shaped, but apparently they can prepare it that way upon request.
For my first dish, I ordered the Quiche Gruyère: House-made Pancetta, Roasted Potatoes, Field Greens, Lemon Vinaigrette.
This was also really good. The quiche was decadent and rich, with the field greens providing a vesting and refreshing counterpart. I’d recommend this even when the menu is back to normal.
Finally, the Wild Mushroom Scramble: Spinach, Plant-based Eggs, Plant-based Sausage, Tomatoes.
This was fine–too light on mushrooms. There’s nothing wrong with it, just not a particularly ambitious or noteworthy dish.
Now, let’s move on to the character interactions, which is the main way the meal has been modified (aside from table spacing and the like).
When it comes to the character component of Topolino’s Terrace, a video probably tells the story best:
That’s the main character “parade” through the restaurant, which is not new.
In addition to this, there are introductions with each individual character making two laps around the seating area.
What’s new is that this is the only form of engagement with the characters.
Meaning, they don’t stop at each individual table for photos or autographs. Obviously, this is going to be a big blow for some families, and make the meal a non-starter.
The first couple of laps each character made, they didn’t pause their stroll around the restaurant for photos. On subsequent passes, they paused to pose for socially-distanced selfies. (We have our masks on in the photo above because we were getting ready to leave, but that’s not necessary when you’re at your own table.)
This is pretty clearly a work in progress and will evolve over time. We could tell the characters adapted pretty quickly to our attempts at selfies, and by the end of the meal it was much easier to obtain these than at the beginning.
For many families, selfies will still not be enough to justify booking Topolino’s Terrace. We know many people take photos of their kids interacting with, hugging, or getting autographs with the characters.
None of that is going to be possible here, even once Topolino’s Terrace finds its groove. Best case scenario is fun selfies, but even that may be tougher when the restaurant is busier (if that ever happens).
Overall, it’s difficult to offer a definitive thumbs up or down on the modified character meal at Breakfast Á la Art with Mickey & Friends. We had fun at this meal, but part of that was the high of being back at Walt Disney World. It also didn’t hurt that we already have photos with these characters from a previous visit to Topolino’s Terrace, had the restaurant practically to ourselves, and really savored the ‘top of the world’ atmosphere. Our experience and perspective is highly unlikely to be the norm.
Unless your family is character-obsessed, the modified Breakfast Á la Art with Mickey & Friends probably will not be worth it for most guests. If you have small children and you’re seeking those priceless photos and memories of your kids interacting with characters, Topolino’s Terrace isn’t going to live up to your expectations. Not only that, but it might be a hassle explaining to your kids why they can’t hug Minnie and Mickey Mouse.
However, if you’re not concerned about cost, there’s a lot to like about the Topolino’s Terrace character breakfast. The food is great, the atmosphere is refined, the views are superb, and the characters have unique costumes and elevate the atmosphere even further. It might not be worth every penny, but it’s a lot of fun and a great way to splurge. Hopefully this review offers enough insight into what the current experience is like so that you can make an informed decision and decide for yourself whether Breakfast Á la Art with Mickey & Friends is worth booking in modified form.
If you have questions about the closure, including policy changes and what we know thus far, please consult our Walt Disney World Reopening FAQ & Info, which should answer most inquiries. See our other WDW Closure & Reopening Updates for the latest news. If you’re planning a Walt Disney World trip, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know.
Does the modified character dining experience at Breakfast Á la Art with Mickey & Friends seem like it’s worth the money to you? Will you be booking an ADR for Topolino’s Terrace — Flavors of the Riviera? Is not being able to take photos with each character be a dealbreaker for you? Do you agree or disagree with our review? Other thoughts or concerns? 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!
Long time reader, first time poster. Wanted to share our experience at Topolino breakfast on 26 Feb 2021. We used the ‘my friend told us’ excuse and inquired about the multiple entrees. Our server was very open about the policy. Basically at any prix fixe dining you can order one full entree and request another entree as a ‘side’. For the second entree you basically just get the main part of the entree. For instance I ordered the Quiche which came with the salad and potatoes and my second entree was the Sour cream waffle (Mickey shape requested of course!) as an additional ‘side’. My wife got the steak and requested the fruit platter as her second entree/side. We also learned that all prix fixe allow kids under 3 to order a free full meal! So our son had his one serving rather than sharing with us. All in all it was still way too much food but fun to try multiple things! Hope that helps others.
I so excited to learn about this!!! I’m hoping to get a reservation there in May with my parents. We will be 6 adults.
You mentioned that you can order a second entree when dinning at a prix fixe meal. Does this apply to BOG? My husband is a meat and potatoes guy, nothing else. Would he be able to order two meat dishes?
We ate breakfast here on a crowded Tuesday before Christmas. Food and view were delicious, even if choices were slim. We actually booked early way back in Fall 2020 after seeing YOUR pictures of the characters (who were so close) and your review of The Terrace. It was a shock to not have any kind of a photo op! They walk on by and do not linger. One lady was so upset, she was yelling at the characters when they did not stop. As we left, said lady was really giving it to the manager. Given the $$$$ cost, I can see how she, and others would be upset. Of all the character meals available at DisneyWorld, and we did them all, Epcot’s Chip and Dale meal was the best for character photos (socially distant selfies).
This sounds like a fun restaurant to try during our trip the first week of March, but like you mentioned, I’m not sure how we could explain to our almost 3 year old she can’t go up to the characters… which just breaks my heart just thinking about her reaction to that possibility. Our 8 year old understands how different it will be, but of course for a toddler who her only other trip was 18 months ago, that’s just not a realistic expectation of her to comply with asking to keep distance.
Chip and Dale at Epcot is much better. Kids and adults were smiling, taking socially distant selfies. They stop close to your table and wave to everyone in your party. Terrace does not. It’s like a fashion show, they just keep walking.
We’ve had breakfast at Topolino’s Terrace several times during our last trip in mid-December. The breakfast quality was very good, as was the service and entertainment by Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Daisy. The price fixe is $27 (child 3-9) and $42 (adult) plus $6.00 for basic coffee. So for two adults and a child it would be $123.00 plus 18% gratuity or $22.14 + .065 tax equals $9.43,. So this basic breakfast would cost $154.57. Is it worth that price?: Well for the first time it was for the sake of the child. But not for the second visit. It’s a one-time experience.
Thank you for this cost breakdown. We have an upcoming reservation (family of 4) and this helps our cost/benefit analysis!
Is there outdoor seating for this?
Thank you Bricker Family for your efforts!! If you hear about anything relating to stitch with a character meet and greet, or stitch cake, please let me know before Valentine’s. We are coping with Covid with your marvelous posts and hope our 4th attempt to visit in Feb will be a success. My favorite post is the gluten free tips! That will make all the difference for my families experience, you’re the best!
Similar situation here. We went 1/27/2020 and I said to the waiter, “I can’t decide between the quiche or the waffle.” And he replied, “One is sweet, one is savory.” Zero mention of trying both. He did bring my son extra bacon, but still….maybe it depends on the day?
Tom, next time you eat at one of these prix fixes can you please clarify the multiple entree policy with the manager? We ate here in August–I tried to order the quiche and waffle and was told that I could only choose one entree. I mentioned I read blogs where the bloggers had been allowed to do so and the waiter said this was a big source of confusion with guests because known bloggers are given multiple entrees for review/publicity purposes but it is not an AYCTE restaurant and only one entree is allowed.
Sorry to hear that. I’ll ask, but I’m guessing I won’t get an definitive answer since it’s not officially spelled out on menus. You’ll find plenty of reports of this being the unofficial policy from other random guests, though.
I suspect your waiter is referring to free media events where multiple entrees are sampled. Our meal was not that–we paid for this and went as regular guests. (We also never ‘announce’ that we’re bloggers and play it coy if the waiter asks why we’re taking food photos; that doesn’t mean someone at the restaurant doesn’t recognize us, though.)
In general, when asking about unofficial policy, I’d always advise saying you heard from “my friend who was here the other day…” as opposed to bloggers. Lots of Cast Members dislike bloggers, whereas they probably don’t have any opinion on your friends. 😉
We really don’t know if you and Sarah are smiling. Great reviews but, lose the masks.
Haha, will take your advice and try the “friend” tactic next time (really want to try the steak, but that waffle was incredible). Had no idea there was some behind-the-scenes animosity towards bloggers. Hope you know we appreciate your reviews even if the restaurant staff doesn’t! For example, I was totally going to skip this given the price tag and modified experience, but since you gave it such a positive review we went and it was phenomenal and worth every penny (even without multiple entrees). Was not able to get a reservation at 60 days for our upcoming trip but am hoping something will pop up last-minute as people cancel/adjust plans.
For what it’s worth, I don’t blame some Cast Members for not liking bloggers. A few of us have soured the reputation for the whole group.
Glad to hear you enjoyed the meal! 🙂
Great point. We were there last month and double entrees were definitely off the menu! I was never led to believe that that was an option. We did get more pastries (party of 4 was given 2 mini muffins, 1 croissant and 1 maple caramel) because I told the waiter that we wanted enough to try them all. He asked me if I wanted coffee or juice and I said both! That was strange as I don’t know why they would want to be stingy with beverages? If you’ve been to Ohana, the price of Terrace is difficult to swallow for what you get. Btw, I have been to the Bon Voyage Breakfast and the portions are huge compared to Topolino’s. (Not to be a complete downer here, the view from the outdoor, penthouse style terrace is gorgeous. It is the best!)
Do you know when the steak was officially brought back? I was just there on the 13th and it wasn’t available and someone else said they didn’t see it either on the 17th. Definitely sad I just missed the return. This was the entrée I most wanted from the original review.
Overall, we enjoyed our meal. The food has so much flavor and is abundant. We even asked for more of the maple glazed pastries and were allowed to take them with us. We had fun with the characters. My 6 yo did really well at all the character dinners we did, understanding the distancing requirements, etc. Was still fun to draw air hearts and give air hugs/high fives/fist bumps to our favorite characters.
We did this as a finale to our trip, leaving from Topolino’s to go to the airport. A character meal on departure day is a great way to get one last Disney Magic hurrah out of the trip, especially a breakfast, which is always priced lower than a character dinner. I would definitely go back to Topolino’s.
“Do you know when the steak was officially brought back?”
I’m not sure when in-restaurant menus changed, but the official online one changed over the weekend. So it’s probably only been back a few days.
I figured that was the case. Missed it by that much! Oh well, gives me reason to plan another trip and another stop. The quality is top notch.
Wait- to confirm, you’re telling me I can order 2 entrees for no extra cost? I could get that steak AND the quiche? Ha. We’re going on a couple weeks!
Yes, that’s correct. I didn’t order a full extra entre, but I did order 1 entree that didn’t include eggs and potatoes, so I asked for those and got them. I didn’t think I’d eat a full entree that included those, so I kept it simple.
I’ve read if you order something as a ‘side’ they will give it to you. Like quiche and a side of waffles. Steak and a side of quiche. But I’ve also read many other blogs that mention you can order extra food at fixed price meals if you ask. They won’t necessarily volunteer that info. But it seems like it can also depend on the server? We will test it out in a little over a week!
You’ll have to let me know how that goes! I’ll be there in 3 weeks 🙂
Are kids that are under free still able to eat free?
You know what I think would be a good compromise for character meals, atleast ones that will be converted from buffets to family style…a stage with all the characters! Take out the buffet area or atleast clear out some space, set up a little stage and then after the “parade” have them go up on stage and put a rope around it at 6 feet. Then have a few tables at a time come up and take pics with all the characters on the stage behind them. Man I would love to have a pic with all all my faves in those adorable costumes! I have one pic of all the tusker house characters because we arrived at the restaurant just as it was opening up and its one of my most treasured photos ever!
I think we’ll wait until the insanity of the masses subsides before we do a crap character meal for the same money.
Wouldn’t have been a problem for us. Our kids were scared to death of the characters.
I want to know more about the GF Mickey waffle!! Are they available anywhere else?? Are they really better (or at least as good) as the traditional Mickey waffles??
Relieved to hear that our three year old won’t be the only kid in WDW history to have a character aversion. He doesn’t even like the plushes. Loves automobiles and machines however, so maybe the Cars section of Art of Animation is more his speed…no pun intended…or maybe it is. 😀
I received a plant based character waffle by mistake on my last visit. I’m a pretty adventurous eater, but *shiver*, I’m still having nightmares from that experience! So, no, if the plant based ones are also GF, then they are nothing like traditional character waffles. A character waffle is light and fluffy, with a crisp exterior, and a hint of vanilla flavor. These were incredibly dense, almost gummy at the centers, with a sandy texture, and a taste like malted cardboard. I can appreciate healthier options, but this was a deeply unappealing replica of an outstanding original. It’s best to stick with the traditional waffle if your diet can handle it. Otherwise, I would definitely choose a different GF option.
The plant based waffle we received was at Lands of Flavor, so it could have completely been a different recipe. But, yes, I think many Disney World restaurants carry plant based (I’m not sure if it is GF) character waffles.
Does anyone know if this is how they plan to do all the character meals, or are the ones that are suspended just now having them at all?
this was all cute and stuff but you should show a video with little kids and how they are going to be kept from running up to characters.
How do you keep them from running into oncoming cars? You are the parent you are in control. Do you talk to them why are you wearing masks? Mickey and Minnie might get sick. Before you go when you see a character wave and say hello. Otherwise you should put them on a leash!
People seem to be able to keep their kids from running up to the characters during the parades and shows just fine. Sounds like this dining experience is basically an indoor parade now so I’d suggest following whatever method works for you to keep your kids from running up to characters during the parades and shows.
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@Tom and Sarah – Thanks for sharing this. Not sure why I got tears in my eyes watching the video, but it happened just when Micky was closest to your camera. Darn allergies!
What? No cute Mickey and Minnie masks for you and Sarah?