My husband and I are the quintessential Disney couple. When we were dating, it was all about vacationing there. When we got married, there was no other place we wanted to honeymoon, than Walt Disney World.
Fast forward, 14 years and two children later, we’re still going to Disney, but our trips have shifted a little bit. Kids have the ability to change those things, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. When the occasional Disney date night presents itself, we channel our inner Coco and “seize our moment!”
This past trip, we placed the boys in the brand new, Captain Hook’s Pirate Crew (Be sure to look for our Captain Hook’s Pirate Crew review, coming soon!), and my husband I took off to Disney Springs.
Over the past few years Disney Springs has become a whole other destination in itself. The Disney Marketplace, as you might remember it, has doubled in size and been updated to meet the needs of Disney’s guests. Part of the new additions, have been adding more than enough restaurants for Walt Disney World guests to choose from. We decided to go with Paddle Fish. We had been there years ago, when it was Fulton’s, but Paddlefish opened two years ago and now was our chance to try it. I can easily describe its location to you, because if you’ve been to Disney Springs you already know, Paddlefish is in the charming faux riverboat (aka- The Empress Lilly). It’s directly in the middle of the old Disney Springs and the new part.
As you enter the riverboat, you will be wowed by its beautiful modern decor, which also manages to maintain the type of charm you would get from a small New England seaside town. Don’t let it’s sleek decor fool you, Paddlefish is a welcoming and warm environment, making it perfect for couples or families with children. It features 3 levels, each with its own decor theme. The top level is its rooftop deck. Here, where you can listen to live music, while sipping on one of their expertly crafted cocktails, all while overlooking Disney Springs.
We were seated on the main level, right next to a window. I was happy with our table location, but really, anywhere in the dining rooms is a great view. At Paddlefish, you are surrounded by windows and there really isn’t a bad seat in the restaurant. Our waiter came over immediately and was very attentive. He placed down a cutting board with a freshly baked pull apart bread (we couldn’t stop at just one piece). Before our waiter left, we did order a drink, because- date night. My husband chose from a Key Lime IPA (one of many choices they offer from local breweries) and I chose the house made red sangria.
Usually when we’re at a restaurant, we have our little ones. I’m not alone in this when I say, parents know there’s always a point where there’s no going back with kids. Once they are over being on best behavior, it’s time to leave. Which is usually why we are always in a rush. On this particular Disney Date Night, we took our time and staggered our ordering. When our drinks came back, we ordered an appetizer. It was an easy choice, as we saw the table next to us had ordered the Jump Lump Crab Fries, and they looked delicious. The fries did not disappoint and were more than enough to share between the two of us.
After we finished our appetizer, it was onto dinner. I have to admit, I was already quite full just from the house made pull apart bread they put on the table, and the crab fries. That being said, I decided to go with an entree salad. I ordered the full size (there is an option for a half size) Wedge Salad. My husband ordered the Linguine with Clams. We did the classic couple move, and each tried each other’s meal. Both were equally as delicious. The Linguine with Clams was unique, not your typical recipe, it had a smoked flavor to it. The smoked flavor only added to it, making it one of the best Linguine with Clams, I had ever tried and my husband agreed.
We were so full from our appetizer and entrees, that we decided to skip dessert. We still had some shopping to do, before picking up the kids, and because our food was so delicious- we literally finished every single bite of it. Before we left, we wandered upstairs to the rooftop deck. The views were, for lack of better words, magical. You could see not only Disney Springs, but Saratoga Springs and other surrounding resorts. Paddlefish did not disappoint we will certainly be returning. Maybe next time, less pull apart bread, and more dessert!
When booking your dining reservation, I recommend doing so when the booking window of 180 days prior to your arrival, opens up. All restaurants on Walt Disney World property fill up quickly, and some restaurants do require a reservation. Whether you are traveling with or without kids, I always would suggest making you reservations ahead of time.
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