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The hamburger is a favorite meal throughout the world, so it should come as no surprise that found within the boundaries of Walt Disney World it comes in many different forms. This serves to suit the needs of the many as everyone has varying tastes and likes. In fact, recently many of the burgers throughout WDW have been enhanced in many new and unique ways. However it can also become a point of contention among those within the Disney community as to just which of these variations is the best. I thought I’d discuss three of my favorites.
Le Cellier in the Canada Pavilion in Epcot is, without a doubt, one of the single most popular restaurants in Walt Disney World. On top of that, it has a very small dining room by comparison to other locations on property – so it is constantly full and booked 6 months in advance. On their lunch menu they offer the “Le Cellier House Burger” that is a burger served with mushrooms, cheddar, and pancetta. They also off a “Pan-Roasted Salmon Burger”, which is new and I’ve never tried it.
Like many burgers that I order, I need to get the “House Burger” modified. While I’m not strictly Kosher outside the house, I do follow some basic rules: no pig of any kind (bacon, ham, pork chops, etc.), no bottom feeders (shrimp, lobster, clams, etc.), and I do my best to not mix milk and meat. So I have them leave off the cheddar and the pancetta. While I want to say, “get this buger!” because this burger is very tasty, it does have some drawbacks. It’s not a very juicy burger, and natural juices are key to a great burger. Every time I have one I find it to be very dry, and in need of some type of sauce (e.g., ketchup) to compensate.
While the quality of the food used at Le Cellier is top notch I find two big problems still plague this restaurant even after the head chef changeover. First is their over-use of salt remains – the phrase is “salt to taste” not “salt for taste” comes to mind. They simply serve too many food items over salted, especially the side dishes, so I tend to avoid certain things here like french fries – thankfully the burger has an option of potato salad. Second is that they continue to have a problem with meat doneness level, which is a real shame for a steakhouse. The last time I visited I ordered my burger medium, and it clearly came out medium well. Other times it’s been on the rare side.
Another very popular spot at Walt Disney World that can be found in the Beach Club resort near Stormalong Bay is Beaches & Cream. The difference though is that unlike Le Cellier which is all about reservations, there are none at Beaches & Cream – all parties are walk up. However, there are very few seats inside the restaurant, less than Le Cellier, so you may have to wait a while to eat here. B&C is also a traditional style soda shop, so in addition to things like burgers and hot dogs, they also offer many ice cream sundae choices.
Personally I like the B&C burger more than Le Cellier. Its more juicy, and therefore requires less sauce. The fries also have very little salt on them, which makes them easier to tweak toward your own needs. There is one clear drawback, due to how it’s prepared, this burger tends to be quite a bit greasy. For me, this is what kills it as a great burger.
Because B&C is a soda shop, I often like to get ice cream for dessert. Doing so means I can’t have meat for my meal. Fortunately they also offer a simple yet tasty veggie burger and a veggie wrap. One thing I really like about the veggie burger is that you can see the vegetables and grains that comprise it right in the patty rather than it being a non-descript meat substitute. If its not something you normally eat, you may not like it. However, if you’re like me and you eat such things all the time it is quite tasty.
My third and favorite choice comes from the Turf Club located at Saratoga Springs. Like Le Cellier and Beaches and Cream, the Turf Club is on the small side and has a low head count. It does also offer outdoor seating as well, which can make for an incredible meal on a sunny day. Now it’s no secret that this is one of my favorite restaurants on property – in fact, I even suggest it as an alternative to the reservation madhouse that is Le Cellier, especially now that Le Cellier is considered signature dining for the Dining Plan.
On their lunch menu , the Turf Club offers three different burger choices: a basic burger, a “Bacon-Barbecue Angus Chuck Burger”, and a “Surf & Turf Angus Chuck Burger”. The Surf & Turf is also offered on the dinner menu. Again I stick with the basic because I’m unable to have the other two variations. What I love about this burger is it’s consistency in quality, flavor, presentation, and satisfaction. It also has some great options for toppings and side dishes – including fries, mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes, and some really awesome potato chips.
This is why, over the years, I’ve made the claim that this burger is the best on property. Several people have tried it based on my recommendation, and I’ve found that many end up agreeing. My feeling is that if you’re craving a awesome burger, and want a nice quiet meal that is away from the parks then this is the one to get. I’ve never had a problem with this burger in the 5+ years that the Turf Club has been opened.
What about you? What’s your favorite burger on property? Have you tried any of my choices? Will you now? What’s your least favorite and why? What do you think of the fast food burgers on property? How now brown cow?