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Walt Disney World is not just a theme park; it's also a culinary experience to be harnessed and enjoyed. One Disney World park, Hollywood Studios, is rich in buffets, ethnic foods and themed dining experiences. With so many tempting choices, a you may want to try it all. However, in order to fully enjoy a tasty meal, you need to know where to go and when.
Look at the restaurants you wish to visit while visiting Disney's Hollywood Studios. Many of the restaurants are movie-themed, and the food served matches each theme. While at Hollywood Studios, there are buffet-style restaurants, home-cooking eateries and quaint coffee shops.
Obtain a Hollywood Studios map. Use your Disney Hollywood Studios map to locate the location of each restaurant. Hollywood Studios has a confusing layout, and guests have a tendency to walk in circles trying to find specific locations, especially since there are restaurants tucked away in the park. A map includes landmarks and directions, therefore relieving some of the confusion.
Call ahead to a restaurant you plan to visit. Although there is a good chance of getting a seat during a restaurant's busy period, priority seating at Hollywood Studios restaurants is a must.
Get priority seating if you are part of the Disney Dining Plan, which allows you priority seating for Fantasmic!, Hollywood Studios' nightly fireworks show. Mama Melrose's, the Brown Derby and Hollywood & Vine offer priority seating for Fantasmic!, but this is only if you call and make a reservation and let the hostess know you have the dining plan.
Eat at family-friendly dine-ins in order to please and excite the children in your traveling party. These eateries provide plenty of fun and memories for younger guests. At Hollywood Studios, these restaurants include Hollywood & Vine, the 50's Prime Time Cafe, the Sci-Fi Dine-In, Pizza Planet, the Hey Howdy Hey Takeaway and Dinosaur Gertie's.
Locate Hollywood and Vine at the Echo Lake portion of Hollywood Studios, a buffet-style restaurant that features characters from Playhouse Disney television shows, and enjoy breakfast there. Toddlers and young kids have a chance to interact with Jo Jo and friends from "Jo Jo's Circus" during breakfast, which is guaranteed to get the kids' morning started off right while visiting Hollywood Studios.
Visit the Sci-Fi Dine In or 50's Prime Time Cafe for lunch, if you would like children in your party to experience a time period gone by. The 50's Prime Time Cafe is designed like "mom's kitchen," with 1950's decor; while you eat, "mom," your waitress, will scold you for not eating your veggies and putting your elbows on the table. While you are eating, classic 1950's television shows--such as "The Little Rascals," "I Love Lucy" and "Father Knows Best"--play in the background.
At the Sci-Fi Dine-In, you can sit in a 1950s vehicle and have dinner at the drive-in theater. While you enjoy a cookie milk shake with grilled chicken, watch classic 1950s cult films like "The Creature from the Black Lagoon" for an authentic drive-in movie feel.
Have dinner at Pizza Planet, as it is sure to delight children in your traveling party, as the restaurant closely resembles the Pizza Planet from Disney-Pixar's "Toy Story." Children can play games and eat their favorite pizza. Best of all, during random days of the weeks, "Toy Story" characters are available outside the restaurant to take pictures and sign autographs.
Stop by many of the adult-friendly restaurants at Hollywood Studios, if you are traveling as a couple or leaving the kids at the hotel for child-related activities. These restaurants include The Brown Derby and Mama Melrose's, the latter providing a more romantic atmosphere.
Visit Mama Melrose's between noon and 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time for a cozy, romantic lunch. Since this restaurant is off Hollywood Studios' beaten path, it is not very crowded around this time. Take the time enjoy the appetizers comprised of Bruschetta and pizza bread, then follow up with a hefty pasta or pizza lunch that will fill you up and give you enough energy to survive the park.
Eat at the Brown Derby, if you like seafood and Hollywood celebrities. Celebrity caricatures grace the walls, and rich brown wood set the cozy tone. However, this restaurant gets extraordinarily loud and crowded, so reservations are a must. The best time to visit the Brown Derby is between 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time and 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, when the crowds are smaller before the dinnertime rush.