Just how bad is Chef Mickey's?

I’ve been looking for a lunch booking for our last day. We’ll be in MK and I was hoping for CRT or Crystal Palace. No luck so far. (We’re doing BOG for dinner.)

I’m attracted to Chef Mickey’s because it’s in the Contemporary and near MK. We have no character interactions booked and CM features the best ones :rofl:

But I can find no love for the place here or elsewhere. Is it really that bad?

We’re both middle-aged adults with a sentimental side.

In my opinion the food is mediocre and the place is very noisy. The character interaction is great and the only reason I would go back.

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Maybe check out Skippers Canteen or Liberty tree tavern. They are not character meals but I enjoy both.

The reason to go is the characters. Food is ok - but I have to say the characters are great and our waitress was also wonderful. I hate buffets as a rule and this is really no exception. Yes it is loud - but that is a function of excited kiddies (as well they should be) and the location. Come on its in the middle of a HUGE atrium - of course it is going to be loud. However if you want to meet the characters and need something to eat - give it a shot.


It depends what you are looking for? Great food, quiet meal? Then no CM is not for you. If you are looking for a place your kids will love with great character interaction? Then yes, CM is great! We loved brunch, as my kids adore Mickey waffles and bacon, but they also have nuggets and Mac and cheese. I don’t even remember what I ate, but it filled my tummy. Do I remember the food, no. But I’ll never forget how excited my 7 year old was to meet Minnie. We did TH and Cape May, but for some reason she was giddy that day. Surprised all of us. Minnie and THE MOST adorable personality! Even my husband loved her.

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The food is just fine. It is not horrendous. I had the exact same question. If you know how to navigate a buffet, you’ll eat well. You go to Chef Mickey’s for:

PREMIUM character interaction.
A meal.
A break.

I’d suggest to go heavy on the:
Carved to order roast beef, and turkey.
Mashed potatoes
Short ribs
Fresh fruit

It’s overpriced if you are only going for food. It’s the CHARACTER INTERACTION that you are paying for. Have your camera ready. The characters will come to you, and pose for pictures with you if you’d like them to. More than likely, you’ll see them improv some lighthearted skits that involve some of the diners if you pay attention. I thought Chef Mickey’s was an absolute riot, and the food was a decent amount better than I was prepared for it to be. It is NOT a gourmet experience, and it is NOT a Michelin star rated restaurant. BUT IT IS NOT TRYING TO BE THAT.
Go for the character experience, not the food.


We have actually liked it and on each visit except the last we have been there. But you don’t go there because the food is the best on property. You go there for the fun and celebratory atmosphere and great character interaction.

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CM is the only character meal I’ve ever had that I wouldn’t do again in a heartbeat. The food isn’t good (dinner was actually bad, breakfast and brunch are okay because you can’t screw up Mickey waffles and sausage links and the buffet scrambled eggs are usually to moist for me… I’ve requested some that were “well done” at other WDW buffets and they made them, so it would be worth an ask), and I’ve found the character interaction to be lackluster and rushed compared to other character meals. I actually had 2 of the characters miss our table on the same night a few years back… it was my niece’s actual birthday, so that made it even more annoying that I had to remind our server at least 3 times that Minnie still hadn’t come to the table, despite passing twice. We were right next to the door to the kitchen, so we could have been either the first or last stop but somehow she missed our table twice in a row and we ended up completely finishing eating and seeing everyone else, and then waiting another 25 minutes.

I didn’t think the food was bad at all for dinner - definitely not signature, but the selection was broad and I enjoyed everything. I think the salmon and mashed potatoes I had there in 2013 was very good actually.

But, with all the bad reviews, I wonder if we just got lucky?

Ambiance can be loud, but with kids we thought it was fun - if your sentimental side takes over it is nice to just watch other peoples’ kids get excited and adults getting their photos with characters. The tables on both sides of us saw I carried a nice camera and guessed I wouldn’t mess up anything so enlisted me to take their full group photos with characters, which was fun too.

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I can only speak to the ‘loud’ issue. We stayed at the Contemporary on the 7th floor on the side of Chef Mickeys - and it was so loud we could hear the noise from the restaurant from the time they opened until the time they closed. And that is behind the closed door of a hotel room many floors up!

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We have been a few times and I think breakfast is better than dinner. We enjoyed what we ate, it’s a buffet, so you can always find something to suit. It is loud and boisterous, but the character meets are really good, you get the main four, so it saves you from doing M&G’s. On the whole we have really liked it.

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The food is pretty poor. The carver is the best of it but even that is over cooked and dry. I wouldn’t recommend it for anything other than characters. What about Wave? Or Ohana at the Poly? Still close and way better.

We have reservations for Chef Mickey the first week of August - it is my 7 year old nephews fav. We received an email that due to an “unexpected kitchen renovation” we would be dining in the contemporary convention center instead of the Chef Mickey restaurant. It will be the same food and characters, just a different location. This is not indicated under the reservations, but I’m not happy about it. Although it is loud and the food isn’t great, it is close to the park and right off the monrail. It is difficult to find another restaurant for a party of 10. Good luck!

Tusker house at AK is a good alternative if that works into your plan.

On past trips we ate there. The food was good, characters were great, but expect it to be noisy. There is nothing there to absorb the sound and its wide open.

We ate dinner there on Friday, June 23, 2017. I was disappointed. The selection of foods wasn’t as varied as it had been in the past. The amount of deserts was limited too, and often the trays were empty (i…e they didn’t keep up with people eating). Don’t get me wrong, the food they had was fine, but if you’re looking for a “fine dining” with character type meal, look elsewhere.

I second this…Super crazy busy/noisy…and food is “fine” but you get lots of the classic characters so that’s a plus, and as you said it’s proximity to MK. Have you thought about the Ohana breakfast instead? It features Mickey, Goofy, Pluto, Lilo and Stitch. More fun and better food IMO.
Just as close to MK too. :slight_smile:

The convention center might be better. It looks like it’s still in the Contemp, so the travel should be the same (walk or monorail.) Maybe they’ll have it set up better?

And maybe it won’t be so loud. We are keeping our reservations. Thanks!