Everyone seemed to really enjoy my restaurant review for Liberty Tree Tavern in Walt Disney World, so I decided to do another restaurant review for one of my favorite experiences at Disneyland Resort: Blue Bayou. Due to my love of the place, I find it almost shocking how many times I’ve been chatting with people about Disneyland who know about Blue Bayou but have never opted to eat there! Simply not knowing about it is one thing, but knowing about it and still never trying it? Mind boggling. So I’ve decided to write this review in an effort to try and inform people on what they’re missing!
Note: if you’re looking for an overview of all the Disney reviews I’ve done (which can help provide context for scoring) give my review index a quick glimpse.
Theme & Ambiance: 9.5 out of 10 points
Ever drift along Pirates of the Caribbean at the beginning and wonder “is that a restaurant over there to our right?” The answer is yes, and that restaurant is Blue Bayou. I suspect many people may forget about sailing through this gem by the time the ride is over. But, if you’ve taken the time to follow up and dine here, you know it’s pretty cool watching the Pirates of the Caribbean boats sail by full of guests while you enjoy your meal.
The other great part of Blue Bayou is that no matter what time it is outside, it’s night time on the Bayou on the inside. You’ll feel like you’re enjoying a night time meal sitting on your plantation farm’s outside deck enjoying the trees, the stars, the colorful bayou lanterns, and if you’re lucky you’ll even see a few shooting stars.
All of this adds up to a truly memorable ambiance and the only reason Blue Bayou doesn’t get a full 10 out of 10 is because it’s not easy to get a table near the waterfront so you can watch the boats glide by. The best trick to accomplish this is to make reservations for within the first 30 minutes of opening. So, have a really light breakfast, then enjoy a big early lunch reservation when they open at 11.30 AM.
Menu & Food: 8 out of 10 points
Let me start out by saying that the food here is always delicious and the portions are usually very generous. I’ve never walked away disappointed. So, you may be wondering why I gave it an 8 out of 10? The answer is that while the food is delicious and the portions generous, it’s still a pretty expensive place to eat. For example, I’m sure you can find great Jambalaya elsewhere for less than (the current price of) $32.99. That being said, you can also enjoy a Surf & Turf for $45.99 or a Filet Mignon for $43.99. Both of which I would consider fair prices when compared to other fine dining establishments. So, at the end of the day, it may be best just to check out the menu online first and see what you think.
Price aside, I’d also say that the menu is a bit short, often only having 5-6 entree options. That said, I’ve always found something to enjoy and have always very much enjoyed the food here. The entrees do (usually) come with a small bowl of Gumbo which also helps offset the cost a bit.
The best way for you to decide if you’d want to come here I think would be this: if you judge a restaurant solely on the food you get for the money you pay, then you may want to avoid Blue Bayou. But, if you factor in things like service, ambiance, fun, and all the other variables into the price tag, then you should absolutely check out the Blue Bayou.
The Other Stuff: 5 out of 5 points
These things don’t deserve their own paragraph (usually) but could still be point-worthy tidbits. Each item here is worth up to 2 points but the total section is scored out of 5. This means 0 points is sub par, 1 point is on par, and 2 points is amazing (hence, the opportunity for extra credit).
- Service: The staff here is always exceptionally friendly and are eager to accommodate your dining needs. For example, I have some friends who went here and their small daughter didn’t see chicken nuggets on the menu. The chef came out of the kitchen to speak with my friends, and told them they’d be able to cut up some chicken, and use the Monte Cristo batter to create their daughter some custom chicken nuggets. Now that is service! (+ 2 points)
- Ideal environment for: Anyone! Your kids will be entranced with the ambiance and the Pirate’s boats passing by. But couples will also find the dark ambiance and shooting stars very romantic and enjoyable, too. (+ 2 points)
- Dessert: Definitely light on the dessert options here which may be due to the large portion sizes or their desire to get diners out a little bit quicker (since this place is always busy) (+ 0 points)
- Location: Somewhat central location near the Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean but not directly near other big attractions like Splash Mountain or Big Thunder. (+ 0 points)
- Will return on future visit: Personally, this is on my “must do” list every time we visit (+1 point)
Blue Bayou’s Total Score:
22.5 out of 25 points
Have you eaten at Blue Bayou? If so, we’d love to hear your feedback in the comments, too! And, if you’re craving more Disneyland insight be sure to check out these other fun articles:
- Five cool things you may not have known about the Disneyland Hotel
- Top five changes I’d like to see at Disneyland’s Tomorrowland