Special Dietary Needs

Service Review: Special Dietary Needs

Let’s say you’re in your hometown about to go out to eat, and someone in your party has a food allergy. What do you do? Bring your own food for them? Limit them to just one or two items to choose from? Or tell them where you’re going in advance so they have plenty of time to look at the menu and determine if they should just stay home?

Let me tell you a little about what it’s like to eat with Disney and have special dietary needs. You see, I can tell you not because I have special dietary needs, but because I was able to see first-hand the Disney treatment of that type of need.

On a recent trip, I was traveling with Debi, a fellow travel agent. Debi is allergic to nuts. At our first restaurant, Boma, we alerted the hostess staff at the front desk that one of our members had a food allergy. It ends there, right? Wrong!

Next thing you know, we were getting a personal visit from Chef Matt.

 Matt was ah-maze-ing! He asked Debi what she was allergic to, and didn’t just tell her what she *could* eat, he walked her up to the buffet and pointed every single side dish, main dish, and dessert out to her. And for those dishes that sat really close to a food with nuts on the bar, he brought out her very own dish of that food, specially prepared, and guaranteed to not have any wayward nuts from the dish next to it.

Not to mention he was just a sweetheart! He also stopped back at our table several times – almost as many times as our waiter – just to make sure we were okay and Debi was getting enough to eat.

Now Matt was a gem, for sure, and I thought surely this was special treatment and not all Disney table service restaurants are this way. Au contraire. We ate at Flying Fish the following day.

 Again, as we sat down, one of the fabulous chefs from back behind this counter came right out to us, advised Debi of everything she could eat, and then even made something special for her off the menu!

So rest assured if you have special dietary needs, Disney will be sure you do get to eat from their fabulous restaurants, and not have to bring your own food from home! It’s just another little-known sprinkle of pixie dust that Disney bestows upon their travelers to make every bit of a vacation truly magical.

Now that you know about this service, if you DO have special needs, please let me know! I can send a special form to the restaurant that lets them know you’re coming ahead of time, and they’ll already have special items ready and waiting for your arrival, prepared just the way you need them. I’m giving this magical Disney service review five magic wands for service, professionalism, and keeping guest safety number one.