Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Dining: Sci-Fi Dine-In

            Among the many things I love about Disney is their attention to detail.  For Disney, storytelling isn’t something that happens only on-screen, but with everything they do.  The parks themselves are setup to tell a specific story.  So are the attractions, restaurants, resorts, everything.  And, when Disney tells a story, everything speaks. 

Each detail relays something crucial to the story itself, right down to the pavement in the lands of the Magic Kingdom (more on that in a later post).  That detail and storytelling lends itself amazingly well to themed restaurants and resorts. 

One wonderfully themed restaurant that is fun for kids of all ages is located in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  The Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater gives the illusion of dining outside at a 1950s drive-in theater.  

Slip into the front or back seat of the booth and peer through the windshield at a series of science fiction movie clips from days gone-by.  Sip on an Oreo Cookie milkshake or vanilla Coke while you sit beneath the perpetual stars and take in this unique setting. 

The restaurant opens at 11am and remains open until normal park closing.  So, the timing allows me to eat here for lunch, which I prefer.  The meals are just the right proportion and it allows me to save room for a walk-up meal later in the evening.  Plus, I have the remainder of the day to walk-off any additional calories from the milkshake! 

Entrees range from $12 - $22, while appetizers are in the $7 - $10 range.  Using the Disney Dining Plan option will cost 1 Table Service Credit.  Depending on the plan you have, a Desert and possibly an Appetizer are included.  I like to use my desert option to get the milkshake, so I can also get a vanilla Diet-Coke.  This restaurant also accepts Tables in Wonderland for Florida residents and Annual Pass holders.

For lunch, I recommend the Crispy Onion Rings as an appetizer.  Along with the vanilla Coke, they add to the nostalgic feel of eating in a drive-in theater in the 50s.  The BLT Soup is quite nice as well.

Being from the Deep South, I see BBQ as an art, not to be trifled with.  As a result, I normally don’t order BBQ from a restaurant like this.  However, the Smoked Baby Back Ribs are actually very tasty. 

If you are not a BBQ fan, I suggest the Tofu - just kidding!  No real culinary fan would ever suggest that.  Instead, the Reuben is actually pretty good as is the Angus Chuck Burger.  The burger is much better than the normal patties you would get from walk-up service locations throughout the parks.  I recommend topping with cheddar, sautéed onions, mushrooms and bacon.  The cucumber melon salad is a better choice than fries, especially if you ordered onion rings as an appetizer.

Want to try making something at home?  Here’s the recipe for the BLT Soup:

1 8-ounce can Tomato Basil Soup
6 strips bacon, cooked and chopped
6 ounces shredded lettuce
3 slices white bread (toasted and cut in ½)

1.      Cook soup according to directions on can.
2.      Ladle into bowl.
3.      Place a half slice of toast on top of soup.
4.      Add 1 ounce of shredded lettuce on top of toast.
5.      And 1 ounce of chopped bacon on top of lettuce.
Yep, it’s that simple. 

If you have tried these dishes, would like to comment or have a different suggestion, please let us hear from you by placing them in the comments section below.  Want to share photos of your dining experience, send them to DLuminations@gmail.com, we will post them on our DLuminations Facebook Page.


  1. The soup was really great like my favorite apple soup at gourmandia, they both tasted unique and super yummy!

    1. Dorothy, glad to hear that you enjoyed it so much! Did you sample the dish at Sci-Fi or make it at home?