Morimoto Asia in Disney Springs
A Walt Disney World Dining Reviewby Cheryl Pendry, PassPorter Featured Columnist
Last modified 12-15-2016
Over the last couple of years, Disney Springs has undergone an amazing transformation. In parts, it’s unrecognizable from what was there before when it was Downtown Disney.
That’s brought with it a huge number of new restaurants to the point when planning our most recent Disney trip that I really didn’t know which to include, except I knew I couldn’t include all of them!
Disney Springs - Morimoto Asia
Inside Morimoto Asia.
Morimoto Asia was on the list, and stayed there, because of our love of Asian food, and because of the good reviews we’d heard about it from others. Therefore, it’s fair to say we went in with quite high expectations of the place.
One thing we hadn’t seen much of were photos of the restaurant before our visit. The first thing that strikes you are the high ceilings in here, which allow for exotic light fittings dangling down above you. It gives the whole place a wonderful airy feeling, although we did also find it quite loud, and whether the shape of the building contributed to that, I don’t know. It’s certainly not the ideal venue if you want a romantic meal for two or if you want to catch up with people without the need to shout at each other.
I did feel as if they packed people in, as I had to excuse myself a couple of times when I passed other people’s tables heading for the restrooms. However, if I say this was a minor problem, given the quality of the food here, you get an idea of the experience we had.
If you haven’t been to Morimoto Asia before, be prepared for the size of the menu. It is absolutely huge! We were with friends, and it took us a good half an hour of examining the menus (we had a drinks menu, along with the main menu and a sushi menu), during which time someone would mention something and the others would say “where did you find that?” If you’re in a rush, you may want to check the menu out online beforehand to get an idea of what you like the look of.
The appetizer menu was surprisingly limited, and included more basic items such as edamame, and tuna pizza, although add in sushi, soups and salads (all listed separately), and there’s a very wide selection of items to pick from. We opted for California rolls, and shrimp tempura, both of which were very good, while my husband also tried the assorted dim sum. There were many other items you’d expect to find like miso soup, and hot and sour soup, and lo mein noodle salads. When it came to sushi, there were more unusual items, such as eel and avocado, spicy yellowtail, and the intriguingly named spider, made up of tempura soft shell crab, spicy mayo, and asparagus.
There were plenty of choices for meat eaters, including Menchi katsu sliders, Morimoto spare ribs, orange or kung pao chicken and Morimoto Peking Duck, although this is to share between two. During the time we visited, there was also a special set dinner menu, so my husband ended up with the l.a. bbq kalbi, marinated and grilled boneless short ribs, house kimchi, with gochujang sauce. I stuck with the main menu, and had the braised black cod, with signature sweet ginger soy glaze, one of my favorite Asian dishes, and the flavors in the dish were superb.
Vegetarians will find plenty to enjoy here from wok sautéed Chinese vegetables to their veggie tofu medley, veggie lo mein noodles, veggie pad Thai, and the Morimoto tofu fried rice, a very pleasant change from many restaurants.
Disney Springs - Morimoto Asia
Inside Morimoto Asia.
The main emphasis on the menu here is very much around rice and noodles dishes, and that’s where you’ll find the biggest selection of items on the main menu. Like ramen, lo mein or pad Thai? You’re on safe ground here.
Our only issue was when we came to desserts. I hadn’t seen any on the main menu, and apparently they have a separate dessert menu, only no-one could find a copy of it, something I’ve never encountered in all the meals I’ve had out at restaurants in my lifetime! Eventually, one of our friends logged on to the Disney website, and quickly found. There were profuse apologies from the management, but really it wasn’t good enough. In fact, despite the high quality of food, we weren’t overly impressed with this or the service we received. It took a long time to get our drinks, and we didn’t really see him in terms of checking if we were happy with everything, which was a shame, as it could have been so much better.
We finally got our dessert menu, and my husband tried the churro fondue with housemade churros, Nutella and vanilla cream. Don’t get me wrong, I like churros, but not after a big meal, but he still seemed to have room for it. I shared the chocolate cream and crunch, with Oreo tempura, mandarin orange jelly, dark chocolate gelato, and hazelnut chocolate crunchies. The gelato was beautiful, but after having summoned up courage to try the Oreos, I can safely say it was a one off thing for me! For those less courageous, there were some more traditional items, such as the gelato trio, and sorbetto trio, while more daring types can try the mochi mochi (annin tofu, coconut mango soup, fruit boba, frozen mango, and lemon-yogurt powder), or cream caramel with yuzu caramel sauce, black sesame whipped cream, and black sesame air cake.
All in all, we enjoyed our meal at Morimoto Asia, as the food was excellent, but sadly the service left something to be desired, and the acoustics didn’t contribute towards a relaxed dinner for friends who hadn’t seen each other for some time. Would we return? The quality of the food was high enough for a yes, but I suspect it will be a while, given there are so many other new places to try at Disney Springs in the meantime…
Updated 12-15-2016 - Article #1354
by PassPorter Travel Press, an imprint of MediaMarx, Inc.
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