Since this week is Thanksgiving I thought I’d take a look at a Walt Disney World restaurant that may spring to mind when you think of turkey and other fall favorites: Liberty Tree Tavern located in the Magic Kingdom‘s Liberty Square. The colonial America-themed eatery features menu items you may associate with autumn in the Northeast. Seasonal staples like chowder and pot roast take center stage all year round here. Not only is the food tasty, but the atmosphere is a lot of fun for those of you who are history buffs (like me).
The decor here fits into its Liberty Square setting with the look of a colonial era house. The restaurant’s lobby looks like the kitchen of a large colonial home with a large cooking fireplace, candle chandeliers, and cooking utensils hung on the walls. The celebration of American history continues throughout the dining rooms. Historical figures are featured in each room throughout the restaurant; each is themed to the likes of George Washington or Benjamin Franklin. The spaces are intended to be cozy with beamed ceilings and pieces of furniture and artwork one may have found in a home of that time.
I had only been to the Liberty Tree Tavern one other time for dinner years ago when guests were greeted by Disney characters wearing bonnets and powdered wigs. Although the characters have gone, dinner here is still served family style with turkey and all the trimmings among other goodies. I thought it was pretty good, but not amazing, so I wasn’t sure what to expect of lunch. Lunch is a whole different story here since this meal is served a la carte, allowing guests to select their favorite items off the menu. Many dishes have kitschy colonial names such as the Liberty Lamb Stew. This is Disney, so everything is themed. Don’t let the cutesy names fool you–most of the entrees are hearty New England fare, so you should arrive hungry!
There are a few appetizers to choose from, including the Declaration Salad (your basic green salad) and New England Clam Chowder. On the day we dined here my normal eating schedule was a bit thrown off since I had been outside the main gate waiting for the park to open by 7 a.m. I had already had snacked on corn dog nuggets from Casey’s Corner, so I wasn’t ready for a big meal when we sat down to lunch. The solution to my problem was to order the Crab and Spinach Dip for Two as my entree. Crab is one of my favorite foods, so I was looking forward to giving this a shot, and it did not disappoint! It was warm, cheesy, and full of crab meat. If you were actually going to have this as an appetizer, I definitely recommend sharing, but it was great as an entree for me that day.
Since I ate with several friends we had a lot of different entrees served around our table. The New England Pot Roast looked delicious, and those who had it confirmed it to be yummy. The Pilgrims’ Feast (a.k.a. turkey) comes with stuffing, mashed potatoes, and a vegetable. The Freedom Pasta dish consists of fusilli, chicken, and veggies in a creamy sauce. Colony Salad was a hit with its grilled chicken, apple slices, pecans, cheddar, and dried cranberries. The Angus Chuck Cheeseburger (what, no cute name?) can be topped with bacon and cheddar or mushrooms and provolone cheese. We also had someone with us who has special dietary needs, so the chef was kind enough to come to our table and discuss her needs. She really enjoyed her quinoa burger with tofu-tzatziki sauce on the side. This is the standard vegetarian dish, but it was tweaked to her needs. I don’t think anyone in the bunch was disappointed with his or her selections!
The signature dessert at lunch time is the Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake, which consists of vanilla cake with a toffee filling and caramel sauce topped with vanilla ice cream. Some of my fellow diners decided to try it since they had heard good things. Unfortunately, they thought the dish was just okay, and probably wouldn’t order it again. Another sweet option is Martha Washington Cake, a chocolate cake with “liberating” chocolate-coffee icing. If you’d like a fruity finish to your meal, you may want to try Johnny Appleseed’s Cake or the Fruit Crisp.
I was pleasantly surprised by the Liberty Tree Tavern. I had usually heard it was just ok, but nothing to write home about. However, I really enjoyed my lunch and will make a point of returning in the near future. Not only was the food tasty, service was good, and the setting is fun way to get a glimpse into this country’s history.
How about you? Have you dined at the Liberty Tree Tavern lately? Let me know what you thought about this restaurant in the comments!
Happy Thanksgiving to all of our readers and their families!