Breakfast with Character at the Cape May Cafe

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On my last trip my friends and I decided to take advantage of our stay at the Beach Club and had breakfast at the Cape May Cafe on our last morning.  This restaurant is located just off the resort’s lobby and serves a buffet character breakfast as well as a clam bake style buffet dinner without characters.  During morning hours Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck, and Goofy visit diners dressed in their finest beach attire.  When we arrived we had just a short wait since we had a large group.  Eventually, we were seated at a long table with one side having booth seating.  Some folks in my group thought this arrangement was a pain with a big group, since we’d want to get up to visit the buffet.

Photo by Deanna Simmons

Aside from the odd table configuration, the eatery is decorated with sand castles, brightly colored beach umbrellas, and other seaside items.  While I love seaside atmosphere in general, I do have a few problems with this restaurant.  You see, my family has a vacation home in Cape May, New Jersey (the real Cape May) so you’d think this restaurant would have appeal for me.  But instead I take issue with it!  The Beach Club Resort is themed with the New England coast style.  Despite New Jersey’s close proximity to New England tourist hot spots like Cape Cod, our shore is quite different.  I contend the Cape May Cafe should be at the Boardwalk Inn instead given its Jersey Shore theme.  It seems strange for Disney to make this swap when they are usually so detail oriented.

Photo by Deanna Simmons

Now that I’ve ranted about the restaurant’s location, I’ll also point out the decor inside the Cafe is not very reminiscent of my summer home.  The Cafe’s theme is continuous with the Beach Club’s with New English cottage architectural details and decor.  But, the actual Cape May is well known for its Victorian charm (like Main Street, USA).  In fact, the entire City of Cape May is a national historic landmark where its residents and visitors celebrate our seaside history.  While I enjoy the beachy and breezy atmosphere, I just don’t think they jive with the restaurant’s name since it is dedicated to a place I hold near and dear to my heart.

But not to worry, despite the interior design being a bit off (which I’m sure you wouldn’t even notice if you’d never been to Cape May) the food is still pretty good.  The variety of offerings on the buffet is more than substantial and provides options for everyone in your party.  The standard eggs, bacon, pancakes, and Mickey waffles (one of my personal favorites) are here, but there are some other foods I haven’t seen in other breakfast buffet locations around Walt Disney World.  How about some grilled asparagus with your eggs?  There is also an area dedicated to yogurt, fruit, and granola where you can create your very own yogurt concoctions.  Everything I ate was tasty and well prepared especially given the buffet setting.  It certainly wasn’t a gourmet experience, but for a fun breakfast it hit the spot.

The character interaction at the Cape May Cafe was a mixed bag.  My guess is the characters may have thought we wouldn’t be as into them since we were a table of about 10 adults with no kids in sight, but we were 10 Disney geeks.  We were paying for the character experience, and we sought out their attention.  We wound up getting some fun pictures of the whole group with Minnie Mouse on her second trip around the restaurant, but she pretty much ignored us during her first pass.  Mickey and Goofy both stopped to greet us, and take a couple pictures before moving on to the next table.  We had the best time with Donald Duck who hung out with our large table for a while taking pictures and being silly.

Posing with Minnie Mouse!

Overall, I had a great time goofing off with my friends and having some yummy food.  I’m actually heading back there again on my next trip since we had such a good time, and I’ll try to keep my grumbling about the restaurant’s decor to a minimum this time around.  My advice is to embrace the character meal experience whether you are dining with or without kids.  Obviously, if little ones are along for the ride, it’s easy to get swept up in the excitement of getting hugs and autographs.  However, if you’re having breakfast with a table full of adults, let your inner child out and don’t be afraid to be silly.  That’s what character breakfasts are all about!  And of course have a Mickey waffle or two!

What about you?  Have you dined here among the beach umbrellas and characters?  Let me know what you thought of your breakfast!

Next week I’ll be back to discuss my recent use of a touringplan during a busy day at the Magic Kingdom and to provide some advice to folks who may be heading down during the busy spring break season.

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Posted on April 5, 2011

19 Responses to “Breakfast with Character at the Cape May Cafe”

  • I ate here in December. I was not impressed by the food.

    • I liked the food for breakfast especially for a Disney buffet. It isn’t the greatest thing ever, but it does the job and I think my group was all satisfied. I’ve only done the dinner here once a while ago and I didn’t like that. So I might have to give it another try. Thanks for reading and commenting!

  • I also ate here for breakfast in Dec. I thought the food was pretty good, for a buffett. I really enjoyed the yogurt station and some of the chilled fruits (stewed plums!). If someone wanted the same food for breakfast, sans characters and a couple bucks cheaper, head over to Captains Grill at the YC. Same food, less money, no characters. Then again, if you want the interaction, Cape May works fine.

  • I think this character buffet was about the same as Chef Mickey’s. A little less hectic but the quality of food was about the same. I did like that Cape May had some different breakfast offerings. All in all it was fun and will be going back.

  • by Jennifer H. on April 6, 2011, at 4:40 pm EDT

    Thought only Minnie was there? If Mickey is now there I may have to change our reservations from Chef Mickey to Cape May!

  • Ive always wanted to try this place but have not gotten around to it. I am kind of interested in the odd decor and as long as the food is good, I can roll with it haha. Great review Kristen!

  • I love Cape May character breakfast! Like Jennifer though, I thought it was just Minnie, Donald, and Goofy. At least those were the only three there when I went in Dec. I’m sad I missed Mickey!

    • Hi Ellen! I’m sorry if I messed that up. I’m going to check into it, but like I said to Jennifer I was sure I saw Mickey. I could be losing my marbles though so I’m going to check into it for you guys!

      • What’s the word? Is Mickey there? I thought no, and so I have an ADR at Chef Mickey’s as well. But it’s at 7am with small kids and I think I’d rather let that one go if we can see the fab four at Cape May! Planning our trip for May and would LOVE to know! Thanks!

        • Hi Heather,
          We have only seen Minnie, Goofy and Donald. I just checked the Allears website and they only list those three, also. You might want to keep the Chef Mickey ADR to see Mickey – it is a really fun breakfast. Have a wonderful trip!

          • Apparently I had a lapse in sanity, but according to several sources Mickey does not appear at Cape May Cafe. Check Mickey’s is a lot of fun and I’m sure you’ll enjoy both experiences! Sorry for the mix up!

          • Thanks everyone! I think we’ll keep both for now. We have Cape May for our first morning which will be a great way to start our week. :) And I love Chef Mickey’s – we have that for our last morning…so maybe a nice bookend? :)

  • We love the Cape May Cafe Breakfast, it is our tradition to have an early breakfast at Cape May and head over to MK one more time on our last day. We have spent a week or two each summer in the real Cape May for the last 20 years and have also wondered why the Cafe wasn’t in the BoardWalk and about the decor. We love the food and the characters, so it doesn’t matter. Cape May NJ is our favorite vacation place next to WDW, too, Kristen! :)

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