Lunar New Year Festival @ Disneyland, Day 2, Part 1

There really were no attractive dining options for breakfast at the Disneyland Hotel, so we decided to head into DCA and grab something there. On the way, we passed the Uva Bar at Downtown Disney and noticed people were enjoying breakfast there (I no longer see breakfast listed on the Disneyland App). So we hopped in.

We were seated and offered menus and the “Mimosa Flight” immediately caught our attention so we ordered that. Then Rich ordered the Breakfast Sandwich and I got the Chilaquiles.

Our Mimosa flight arrived quickly and we began sipping on that. Both of us liked the Peach Mimosa best. Rich then liked the Cranberry, Pineapple, and the Orange (not so much) in that order. After the Peach, I liked the Orange, and the Pineapple and Cranberry were tied for least favorite.

We were really enjoyed the atmosphere and so glad we’d made the choice to stop in for breakfast. Eventually, Rich got his Breakfast Sandwich while I waited and waited and waited. The Mimosas were going to my head and I desperately needed something to eat, which I may have managed to say more than once…

Our server apologized and said he’d check on it and when he came back, he mumbled something and said my meal would be comped. Rich was starting to vocalize about how he didn’t want to eat by himself so then the manager stopped by to explain that the runner had given my food to another table and it would be here shortly. When the food arrived, our server said the entire meal, including Mimosas, was comped, so we ended up with a tasty breakfast and drinks for free – plus a tip, of course, because it wasn’t our server’s fault. Overall, with that outcome, I would have to say it was a wonderful experience

We then headed for the front DCA entrance (remembering when you could enter through the GC no matter which Disneyland Resort hotel you were staying at), and we took our first walkthrough of Avengers Campus. We stopped in a gift shop for some Spidey merch, but Rich didn’t see anything he wanted.

We then walked around, taking a gander at the food booths, but we knew as soon as we had room in our stomachs, we would get the “Spicy Noodles” that CheezyPop deemed too spicy to eat (even though he claims to enjoy some spice). Of course, I took that as a challenge, because I was pretty sure I, a native SoCal girl could manage all the spice you could throw at me compared to this native New Yorker – lol.

For some reason, we found room for our favorite “Ocean Beach” (Sea Salt Caramel with Fudge) Ice Cream Sundae at Ghirardelli so we went over there and shared one of those. So delicious, as always!

Then we were ready for the Noodle challenge. Rich was interested in the Butter and Garlic Noodle dish so we got in line and got one of each and then found the usual trash can table to stand by. Btw, the line was not long at all, compared to what the Vloggers show you on opening day, of course.

Yes, it was spicy but nothing I couldn’t handle. I loved it!!! Rich enjoyed his noodles, too, and we exchanged bites. He also found the spicy noodles not too spicy to enjoy the dish, although he prefers a little less spice.

By this time we were quite stuffed, so we walked around a bit more, heading back toward Rushin’ River Outfitters for a quick look around, and then through the Grand Californian and out to Downtown Disney for the walk back to the Disneyland Hotel for our afternoon nap. By this time, my calves were really sore and we weren’t sure if we could make it back to the Craftsman Bar & Grill for our dinner reservation so we called and they let us cancel it.

We would have to play the evening by ear.


First Trip to #Disneyland with #MagicKey, Day 1

As a side note to yesterday’s drama, one of the recommendations the Disney Food Blog had made regarding getting in touch with WDW when call volume was high was not only email and text but social media. Yeah, right, I thought.

But I was ready to try anything so I went over to the Twitter account and sent WDW a private message and when I woke up this morning, there was a response. I was really surprised, but, thankfully, the chat had worked just last evening.

Anyway, on to our first trip to Disneyland with the Magic Key. The biggest question, when you’re not staying onsite, is how to get to Disneyland. The garage parking trams are not running yet and we’re not the only ones who are not a fan of that situation. Check out Adam the Woo’s Why I Regret Buying the Disneyland Magic Key video.

I don’t mind that too much – we used to walk it instead of taking the tram anyway. However, with the last trip in mind when my shins started cramping, I realize I need to use as much transportation as I can get. Note to self: use the boats getting to/from Epcot at upcoming WDW trip.

The biggest problem with the garage scenario is the confusing and ridiculous way they route you. So after driving the 4 hours, we checked into our hotel, unpacked, rested, and then drove over to the Disneyland parking garage, which requires making a u-turn – access is so unclear from the direction of our hotel or most hotels. It’s designed for exiting from I-5.

We parked the car, walked to the escalator, arrived at the bottom of the garage and headed toward the CM sitting there. He redirected us back into the garage to loop around and go into the second garage to go through security and then back to where he was sitting before even embarking on this mile-long walk. That’s two miles round trip not counting the miles you rack up inside the park.

Our usual hotel no longer has a bus stop (most hotels use the ART (Anaheim Resort Transportation) service, so we would have to either walk to a neighboring hotel, use Uber, or park in the parking garage for $25 (only the top-tier pass has full paid parking included – the second tier has parking at half price. We’re the third tier with no parking included).

We called the neighboring hotels for information but the ART app seemed confusing. We looked into Uber but it would cost $25 each way during the times we would need it. So off to the parking garage we went.

It wasn’t too bad once we were past the security maze, but I had to keep reminding myself not to walk too fast. We veered off when we reached Downtown Disney because we were headed for DCA and the former AlFresco Lounge (now specifically reserved for Magic Key holders). We hated being locked out of there when we didn’t have an AP! That alone would make the Magic Key worth it – lol!

But first, we were craving that “Ocean Beach” Sundae at Ghirardelli that we’d had at “A Touch of Disney” last April. Besides, it was hot out. The sundae was just as amazing as we’d remembered. Yum!!

Then we walked over to the Dia de los Muertos section of DCA, looking for their Halloween offerings. We were especially interested in the steak taco plate, which we shared. We enjoyed the entertainment while we ate.

Then it was getting close to our Magic Key Terrace ressie. We were a bit early but we decided to show up to see if we could be seated early. We had to wait for 5 minutes or so and then were seated.

It was so awesome sitting with other Magic Key Holders up on the Terrace. For cocktails, I had the “Stinger” and Rich had a gin flight, which I also tasted.

“The Stinger”

Dulce Vida Pineapple-Jalapeño Tequila, Cointreau and House-made Orange-Habañero Simple Syrup

“The Ultra Flight”

Trio of Gin-based Cocktails featuring flavors of Orange, Pine and Sea

Rich preferred the Pine and the Orange, while I liked the Sea the best.

We also ordered the Charcuterie board, rather reluctantly for me, but I absolutely loved it!

Bountiful Valley Charcuterie

Chef’s selection of Cheeses and Meats

By this time, we were pretty tired after the drive, so we walked around the park and darted into the GC to sit a bit in the lobby, admiring the Halloween decorations and treats.

Earlier in the evening, we thought I might have to wait for Rich at the GC while he hiked back to the parking garage but after the cocktail fortification and some relaxation in the GC, I was up for walking back with him. We actually enjoyed the walk back, taking our time, soaking up the nighttime atmosphere.

However, we would have to come up with a different plan for tomorrow.