Widerness Lodge - Roaring Fork - Review

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Roaring Fork is located on the ground level of the Wilderness Lodge, beyond the lobby to the left, just a stone's throw from the pool or the walkway to the boat launches. I suspect it might be named for a fast flowing stream within Great Smokey Mountain National Park in TN. The location is small with a good selection for each meal. We had lunch there on our arrival day. This had been planned in advance on our itinerary and I was really looking forward to my sandwich having read the reviews online.

This is my Roast Beef and Blue Sandwich, with chips (10.19). It was hearty and flavorful. The bread was fresh and delicious. The homemade chips on the side were amazing and Steve stole a few while I was busy gushing over how wonderful my sandwich was. I have a soft spot for blue cheese and this hit the spot. I was more than full until dinner. Look at the size of that sandwich! It was as big as my head!

 
Steve ordered a cheeseburger with homemade chips (9.99). He did not really enjoy his burger. He was starving from our long morning and a cheeseburger seemed like a good idea. In my opinion, burgers at WDW leave a lot of room for improvement. I should add here that despite his "ehhh" experience on day one, he went on to have several more cheeseburgers during our visit, with varied but mainly "meh" results.
 
Connor had a personal cheese pizza with grapes, applesauce and milk (5.99). In typical Connor fashion, he barely touched his pizza. "My belly hurts," which is code for, "I don't feel like eating this and I know if I tell you my belly hurts, you won't make me." Steve helped himself to a piece and though he said it was better than the burger, that isn't necessarily saying very much. The kids enjoyed the fruit and milk, which is all I could really ask of them after such a crazy morning and all that excitement over hurrying to the pool.
 
Caroline chose the Pasta Marinara minus the sauce with grapes, applesauce, and milk (5.99). She likes plain pasta with butter, so it was a kick in the pants to pay for sauce she wasn't eating. On the positive side,  at least it wasn't pre-mixed with sauce which she would have absolutely refused. We grabbed butter in the dining room and she was able to mix it up herself. She ate nearly all of her meal and most of her fruit.
 
To round it all out we added two regular sized fountain drinks for the adults who desperately needed caffeine (5.98) and a Magic Cookie Bar (3.59) for me because HOW COULD I NOT?!? We were quickly acclimated to the cost of eating at Disney with a lunch bill of $53.60. yowza.
 

This was our one and only visit to Roaring Fork, not because we were turned off, but because we had other plans and just didn't get back there. I had wanted to try one of the flatbread pizzas, but opportunity was just not on my side. We were there around 1PM and it was not overly busy, however I more than once caught myself wondering how hairy it would be to manage the kids and two trays of food in such a small place. There was not a lot of room to negotiate the fountain drinks or to cue up to the register. Coincidentally, this was our first use of the Magic Band to make a purchase and Steve's band didn't work right away. This is when we learned that our eager Magic Band user Caroline did not in fact have charging privileges, which was honestly a relief.  It took a tiny bit of finesse and we were off to find a seat in the limited, but clean dining area. The cast member managing the space was very friendly, helpful, and was the first person outside of concierge to wish the kids a happy birthday.
 
Overall, we enjoyed our meal at Roaring Fork. Everyone was able to find something they would enjoy and the side options for the kids were healthful and more importantly PORTABLE. We left with an applesauce and a bag of grapes for later. I'm looking forward to another Roast Beef and Blue Cheese Sandwich on our next trip to the Wilderness Lodge.

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