Disney Dishes Details on New Carthay Circle, Cars Land Dining and Entertainment

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Yesterday, the Disneyland Resort offered up new details on its offerings in the new Buena Vista Street and Cars Land areas which will make their public debut on June 15.

‘If Main Street, U.S.A., is the romanticized version of Walt Disney’s hometown, Buena Vista Street is the next chapter of Walt’s life when he came to California,’ said Ray Spencer of Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI). ‘It’s an extension of where we started at Disneyland park… and now our guests can step across the plaza and get the rest of the story.’

A big part of that story was the premier of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937 at the Carthay Circle Theatre in Los Angeles, and that landmark building is the inspiration for the spectacular Carthay Circle Theatre that anchors Buena Vista Street. This new landmark for Disney California Adventure park becomes one of the premier dining locations at Disneyland Resort, the Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge.

The upstairs Carthay Circle Restaurant and downstairs Carthay Circle Lounge recall the grandeur of the original theater’s 1920s Spanish Revival architecture with custom tiles, plaster arches, custom woodwork and other historic touches. The cuisine is the star of this production with artisan ingredients, locally sourced produce and seafood and meats from throughout Southern California. Executive Chef Andrew Sutton from Napa Rose at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa created the restaurant’s seasonal menu, and Chef Gloria Tae, also from Napa Rose, is at the helm in the kitchen.

Located on the second floor, the 256-seat restaurant (200 inside, 56 on the terrace) is open daily for lunch and dinner.

The restaurant’s menu includes five varieties of sustainable fish, both wild and farmed, in dishes such as sushi-grade yellowtail, grilled with jerk spice and topped with tropical salsa, and Sierra Golden trout roasted with couscous, lemon and oil.  Lunch menu includes udon noodle bowl with red Thai curry broth and Angus burger with Tillamook cheddar cheese. The 68-seat Carthay Circle Lounge, located on the ground floor, features hand-crafted cocktails, California beers from smaller breweries, wines from around the world with a strong focus on California vineyards, and lounge cocktails based on popular drinks from the 1930s including martinis and classic punches.

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Each guest who orders an entrée and an appetizer, or an entrée and a dessert, will receive a ticket to a center-stage viewing area for the nighttime spectacular, ‘World of Color.’ The restaurant serves guests daily between 11 am and 10 pm.

The 178-seat Fiddler, Fifer & Practical Cafe (134 inside, 44 outside) will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and will offer Starbucks coffee drinks; signature sandwiches such as a turkey Rueben, paneer and roasted vegetable and salami with olive tapenade, and roast beef and cheddar, as well as savory soups including vegetarian cream spinach, chicken tortilla, classic chicken noodle and cheesy enchilada. Sweet rolls, pastries and breakfast sandwiches are on the morning menu along with specialty coffees. Baristas will wear uniforms inspired by the period.

Named for Mickey Mouse’s original name, to which wife Lillian objected, Mortimer’s Market is a fruit and beverage kiosk which will offer whole and cut fresh fruits, bottled water and juices, and soft drinks.

Clarabelle’s Hand-Scooped Ice Cream features Dreyer’s ice cream, including bars dipped in milk or dark chocolate that guests can finish with sprinkles, pop rocks and other fun toppings. Hot fudge and strawberry sundaes and other frozen delights round out the sweet offerings.

Entertainment offerings on Buena Vista Street include the Citizens of Buena Vista Street, a group of eccentric personalities who help bring the spirit of the 1920s and 1930s to life.  Among the citizens strolling the street and immersing guests in the period atmosphere are a fun-loving photographer, a misguided messenger, a dotty dog lover and a comic cop.

Inspired by the spirit and style of Disney’s movie and stage musical Newsies, the Red Car News Boys roll into Buena Vista Street aboard one of the street’s distinctive Red Car Trolleys, performing a variety of authentic period tunes such as ‘California, Here I Come.’  Mickey Mouse, the fun-loving, mischievous young cartoon star of the period, joins the boys for a high-energy street show.

The Five & Dime are an innovative sextet of maverick musicologists longing for their big break as they pass through Buena Vista Street in a makeshift jalopy. Dime, the female vocalist of the group, has charisma and a voice like a young Ella Fitzgerald, and the group enlists some ‘new musicians’ from among the spectators to perform side-splitting versions of ’20s and ’30s song standards.

With a nod to landmark diners along America’s historic Route 66, guests will feel as if they have stepped into the town of Radiator Springs at Cars Land, with a contemporary spin on classic tastes from the 1950s.

‘We started working nearly four years ago on the concepts,’ says Disneyland Chef Chris Maggetti. ‘For Cars Land, we’ve developed fast-casual restaurants with lots of fun tastes, from dill pickle popcorn to chili and cheese – we call it chili cone queso – in an edible bread cone.’

Flo’s V8 Cafe is inspired by timeless roadside diners and boasts ‘the finest fuel in the 50 states.’ To cater to the growing number of Route 66 visitors and race fans coming to Radiator Springs, Flo expanded her place by adding a ‘showroom’ dining area, the story goes.

‘The showroom is part of the 300-seat dining room that looks out directly over the Radiator Springs Racers attraction,’ says Chef Sean Layne, area chef for Cars Land. Layne developed the restaurant’s signature vegetarian dish, a veggie-tater casserole that’s sure to be a hit with guests.

Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the menu for Flo’s will change often, with the centerpiece of the restaurant an on-stage rotisserie where guests will see meats grilling, such as New York strip loin, citrus-marinated turkey breast and pork loin flavored with Coca-Cola barbecue sauce. Breakfast specials include brioche French toast with salted caramel and bananas and chicken tamales with scrambled eggs. Signature dish ‘veggie-tater bake’ is Chef Sean Layne’s vegetarian version of classic shepherd’s pie. California wines by the glass include Fess Parker Riesling, Silverado Chardonnay, Chappellet Mountain Cuvee Cabernet Sauvignon and Eppa Superfruit Red Sangria, while available beer includes Racer 5 IPA and Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co. in Healdsburg, California.

House-made pies are the recipes of Disneyland Pastry Chef Jean-Marc Viallet. The single-serving pies come in strawberry-rhubarb, Apple-Cheddar, chocolate mud, cherry and blueberry-peach, to name a few.

The cafe also is home to Flo’s personal memorabilia, collected during her glamorous career as a singer with the Motorama Girls.

Cozy Cone Motel is inspired by the quirky ‘wigwam’ motels along Route 66 with each of five teepees offering tasty cone-themed treats. Cone Number 1 offers churro bites with cinnamon-chocolate sauce, cinnamon-spiced hot cocoa and Ramone’s Pear of Dice Soda made with dessert pear syrup, mojito syrup and Sprite; Cone Number 2 features soft-serve ice cream and ‘route’ beer floats; Cone Number 3 offers savory bites all served in edible bread cones, such as a bacon-scrambled egg cone for breakfast, chicken verde or chili ‘cone’ queso for lunch and dinner. Specialty beverages are Fillmore’s Fuelin’ Groovy Ades, all-natural lemonade with wild berry foam, or pomegranate limeade with lemon-lime foam;  Cone Number 4 is pretzel bites with cheesy sauce and Red’s Apple Freeze, a fat-free, frozen concoction with apple juice, toasted marshmallow syrup and passion fruit-mango foam; Cone Number 5 features two flavored popcorns daily, such as dill pickle and sweet & spicy.  Other flavors include bacon and cheddar, nacho cheese, salt and vinegar. Specialty drink is Doc’s Wild Grape Tonic (Sprite with wild grape syrup and wild berry foam).

Fillmore’s Taste-In is home to resident hippie, Fillmore, where ‘natural fuels’ are on the shelves in his tie-dyed geodesic dome, including whole and cut fruits, bottled water and juices, and soft drinks.

In Cars Land, DJ, the ultimate party car – a big road-trippin’ mobile boom box with giant speakers, built-in disc changer and his very own party crew – takes to the street for DJ’s Dance ‘n Drive, a spontaneous, interactive dance party. Also at Cars Land is Red the Fire Truck who, with the help of his comic ‘Volunteer Fireman,’ recruits guests of all ages to join ‘Red to the Rescue!’ — helping water the flowers and clean up the town of Radiator Springs. (Prepare to get wet!)

Of course, Lightning McQueen and Mater, leading citizens of Cars Land, also are enjoying time on the streets of Radiator Springs, greeting and posing for photographs with guests near the Cozy Cone Motel.

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