Woody’s Lunch Box Review: Best Counter Service at Hollywood Studios

Woody’s Lunch Box is the new Toy Story Land quick service restaurant in Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World. This dining option serves mostly American comfort food with a better menu than other restaurants at DHS. It’s open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, with solid choices for each. In this review, we’ll share food photos, strategy for avoiding the lines, and our thoughts on dining at Woody’s Lunch Box.

As background, Woody’s Lunch Box is akin to many other Disney’s Hollywood Studios counter service restaurants in the sense that it’s just outdoor ordering windows with tables outside. Meaning that on a summer day, you get no reprieve from the heat or humidity when eating here. Unfortunately, there are no indoor air-conditioned spots in Toy Story Land (aside from the restrooms), so the umbrellas above tables at Woody’s Lunch Box are about as good as it gets.

Woody’s Lunch Box participates in the Disney Dining Plan as a counter service credit. Currently, it does not accept the Tables in Wonderland card for a 20% discount nor does it accept Disney Vacation Club or Annual Passholder discounts. As far as value goes, Woody’s Lunch Box is neither a good nor bad value on the Disney Dining Plan (see our ranking of the best value quick service restaurants here). It is, however, a strong value when paying out of pocket.

Let’s start with some strategy, which might seem like an odd (and excessive) thing to discuss when it comes to a counter service restaurant that’s nothing but an outdoor ordering window. However, on opening day, the lines for Woody’s Lunch Box exceeded 2 hours at some points. While this is unlikely to be the norm, we do expect long (30-45 minutes) wait times for lunch even on normal days going forward.

Hearing those long reported waits, we went in the middle of the afternoon shortly after Florida’s regularly-scheduled 2 p.m. thunderstorm. Expecting a long wait, Sarah grabbed some Ample Hills “for the walk” from Epcot. When we arrived in Toy Story Land, we found the area relatively cleared out, and had less than a 20-minute wait for Woody’s Lunch Box. On the one hand, this short wait was great. On the other hand, Sarah just ate ice cream and was almost full when we arrived, “forcing” me to eat two full meals basically by myself.

Our tip is not to avoid Ample Hills before eating at Woody’s Lunch Box (“avoid” and “Ample Hills” are words that never belong together), but rather, to go in mid-afternoon or during/immediately after it rains. The lunch rush from 11:30 a.m. until around 2 p.m. is going to be the worst time of day to hit Woody’s Lunch Box.

If at all possible, you’re going to want to use Mobile Ordering. We inquired with a manager about this, and they advised that Mobile Ordering would be disabled for Woody’s Lunch Box during peak times, as the kitchen is not equipped to handle the onslaught of guests, so keep that in mind if you see a “Restaurant Unavailable” message in the My Disney Experience App. It will likely work in mid-afternoon.

Another bit of strategy: order the sandwiches at Woody’s Lunch Box as “entree-only.” We know this is possible, as we did it. Some Cast Members may not know how to do this on the cash register, but it’s absolutely an option. Not that the sides are bad, but it’ll save you some money and, more importantly, room for sides and delicious dessert.

For our first entree, we ordered the BBQ Brisket Melt. From the menu: “Sliced Smoked Brisket, Pickles and tangy BBQ Sauce between melted Cheddar and Monterey Jack Cheeses on Grilled Sourdough.”

This is going to be my new go-to counter service entree at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The brisket is incredibly tender and juicy, with a light smoky flavor and equally light amount of BBQ sauce. The cheeses and buttery sourdough also work together to make this one really delicious sandwich. Great texture, not too greasy, and a generous helping of smoked brisket make this a big-time winner.

Next, we had the Monte Cristo. From the menu: “Thick-sliced Smoked Turkey Breast, Ham, Raspberry Marmalade, Dijon Mustard and Melted Swiss Cheese on Grilled Custard soaked Brioche.”

Disney fans are likely familiar with Monte Cristo sandwiches in the context of New Orleans Square at Disneyland, but this is a pretty significant departure from that. It’s still good, and the raspberry marmalade mixed with dijon mustard provide work as an interesting sweet and tangy juxtaposition. Neither of us thought this was nearly as good as the brisket, but it’s still far superior to 95% of the other counter service entrees at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. It’s a unique item and worth trying to form your own opinion.

Our final entree, which was really more of a side since we didn’t order those, was the Totchos. The menu describes these as “Potato Barrels coated with Beef and Bean Chili, Shredded Cheese and signature Queso with Tomatoes and Corn Chips finished with Sour Cream and a sprinkle of Green Onions.”

While technically an entree, we think these are more a shareable side as eating the entire bowl on your own before Slinky Dog Dash might be a recipe for disaster. We both really liked the Totchos, finding the quality really high and the potato barrels having a nice crunch despite all of the other ingredients piled on top.

For dessert, we had the Chocolate-Hazelnut Lunch Box Tart. From the menu: “Chocolate-Hazelnut stuffed Pastry coated in Maple Fondant and Candied Bacon.”

I was apprehensive about this, as Epcot has done similar Pop Tart inspired items at its festivals, and I’ve felt that those have missed the mark. Not even remotely the case here. The pastry here is clearly of a higher, flakier quality and the maple spread coupled with the Nutella inside was to die for. I could’ve used a more generous helping of bacon on top, but that’s a minor quibble for an otherwise excellent dessert. This and the brisket sandwich will be my go-to meal at Disney’s Hollywood Studios going forward.

In our full Toy Story Land Review, we expressed disappointment that Imagineering didn’t go all-out with a highly themed and immersive Pizza Planet restaurant. While we maintain that belief, when judging Woody’s Lunch Box on its own merits–a counter service ordering window comparable to other spots at Disney’s Hollywood Studios–it’s an absolute standout.

The details around Woody’s Lunch Box are clever and nostalgia-evoking, and even the heavy-handed Babybel cheese product placement is done in such a smart way that it’s tough to do anything but give a little golf clap. Like the rest of Toy Story Land, it’s interesting to see how different items from inside Andy’s lunch box form the restaurant’s structures and seating area. I found myself wanting more, but what’s there is really well done.

Overall, Woody’s Lunch Box easily claims the throne of best counter service restaurant at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. In a park that has been notoriously bad on the quick service side, Woody’s Lunch Box is a very welcome addition, and you should absolutely do a meal here (if you’re not following our prior strategy of two table service meals). Its “reign” might be short-lived, as we expect Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge to push the envelope on dining even further. Irrespective of that, Woody’s Lunch Box is a great option for a meal, and that would be the case if it were in another park, too–no grading on a curve here–we highly recommend it.

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!

Your Thoughts

Have you had the chance to dine at Woody’s Lunch Box in Toy Story Land? What did you think of your meal? Do you agree or disagree with our review? Looking forward to trying this new counter service spot? 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!

22 Responses to “Woody’s Lunch Box Review: Best Counter Service at Hollywood Studios”
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