I feel like we all know by now that I love everything about Walt Disney World’s Polynesian Village Resort. I can chant ‘Uh Oa’s’ with the best of them, and there’s nothing I enjoy more than kicking back in a hammock with a dole whip in hand. I think the Kona Cafe is the hidden gem of Disney, and Captain Cooks is my favorite quick service restaurant. With all the time we spend at The Poly, sipping cocktails, and eating sushi at Kona, it’s a surprise to everyone (ourselves included), that we’ve never been to Ohana before.
Ohana is on every ‘Disney’ list out there. People say it should experienced on your first trip, on the dining plan, with your kids, for couples, etc, etc. PEOPLE LOVE IT. They love it for breakfast, they love it for dinner, they love it all the time. We had a dinner reservation with friends on our last trip to Disney, and we were SO EXCITED to try Ohana for the first time.
We’ve heard horror stories about people having to wait forever after their check-in, even with reservations, to be seated – but after we were checked in, we were seated immediately by an incredibly friendly hostess. Soon, our server arrived to get our drink order and bring out bread service and salad. Ohana is a family style restaurant, so portions are served for the whole table to share.
The bread service is a soft pineapple bread – and I think we all know how strongly I feel about all the bread served at The Polynesian. You don’t want to fill up on this bread, as you have a lot of courses to come, but it would be wrong to not try it. The salad is good, with a south-seas flair, and honey-lime dressing, but it’s just salad, and if you’re going to skip something, this is the course to skip.
Next up, in lo-mein noodles (GUYS, THESE NOODLES ARE BOMB), pork dumplings, and chicken wings. If these appetizers had been the whole meal, I would have been happy. Our table, gluttons that we were, requested several servings of each, and I AM NOT ASHAMED.
After appetizers, they start making their way around with giant meat skewers. Can I just say, that I love anyone whose job it is to deliver endless amounts of delicious meat to a table? Shrimp, pork, and steak are all brought around, and it’s all delicious. We were with Ohana veterans, who recommended only taking a little at a time, especially with the steak, because some skewers came out cooked better than others. This was great advice. My first helping of steak was a little more well down than I liked, but my second go-around was perfect.
One of the most famous parts about dinner at Ohana is their dessert – a fabulous bread pudding, a la mode, with bananas foster sauce. It’s absolutely delicious, and since you’re paying for bottomless food, we recommend you get several helpings for the table.
We love our experience at Ohana – our only small complaint would be that our server was grumpy. As someone that worked in the service industry for YEARS, I totally get it – unfortunately, it seems that most servers we’ve encountered at Disney lately seem to be grumpy, which is the exception to the generally AMAZING Cast Members we meet EVERYWHERE else. I try to have a lot of grace for it, because I know how hard waiting tables is – but still, a little bit of happiness when interacting with your tables goes a long way.
Overall, we highly recommend Ohana, and totally understand what all the hype is about. We think you should go there, and eat until you hurt (or maybe that’s just us).