Theme-park giant Disney has closed a guest-favorite dining spot — but it has a plan for a new restaurant in the space.
Disney World faces a sort of endless challenge.
No matter how dated any part of its theme parks, hotels and adjacent properties becomes, there’s a group of people who feel overly nostalgic about it. Yet in most cases, before the company can bring in something new, it has to get rid of something old.
And that always leads to a certain percentage of the audience being upset at any move. The company could close an incredibly dated ride like “Carousel of Progress,” where the progress ends somewhere in the 1980s, and a certain percentage of visitors will be upset because they remember the attraction in a certain way.
Walt Disney (DIS) – Get The Walt Disney Company Report thus is engaged in a perpetual battle of trying to keep its parks fresh while also preserving people’s memories. That battle gets harder when the company has to close something that’s popular and not dated in order to make way for something new.
That’s now happened at the company’s BoardWalk property. This Epcot-adjacent resort features a number of restaurants and bars, including the very popular Boardwalk Bakery. A site that makes many social-media-friendly baked treats, the bakery has been a favored destination for many Disney World visitors.
It’s not unique; most of its baked goods can be found elsewhere in the parks. But it’s a spot that many people remember fondly.
Now, Disney has closed this location permanently to make way for something new.
Disney’s New Plan for the Boardwalk Bakery
A bakery is more about snacks than serving full meals. Perhaps that’s why Disney has closed BoardWalk Bakery to make way for the new BoardWalk Deli.
“Do you love the classic flavors you can only get at a deli? If so, I’ve got some exciting foodie news to share with you,” the company said in a news release.
“Late this summer, the new BoardWalk Deli will be opening its doors at Disney’s BoardWalk. This location, previously the BoardWalk Bakery, is inspired by the delis of the Northeast region, with a menu that takes you on a road trip of classic sweet and savory flavors from New York to the Jersey Shore.”
The new eatery will serve a bagel-based menu including classic breakfast sandwiches. In addition to bacon and eggs and other ingredients, the eatery will also offer a plant-based ciabatta sandwich with “egg” florentine, plant-based cheese, tomato jam, and arugula.
At lunch, the restaurant will offer a selection of classic deli sandwiches.
“Choose from a variety of cold and hot deli sandwiches served on traditional marble rye, fluffy ciabatta, or soft and springy focaccia breads. As with the breakfast bagels, all breads are baked fresh in-house,” the company said. Vegetarian and vegan options also will be served at lunch.
BoardWalk Deli will also offer a selection of baked goods reminiscent of its predecessor.
“There is no shortage of desserts to try here,” Disney added. “The cannolis are filled to order – yes, you heard that right – in a crispy shell with a creamy blend of mascarpone cheese, ricotta, and shaved dark chocolate, with a hint of lemon zest and a touch of Mickey.
“The rich and delicate blueberry scone is made with crème fraiche and topped with pearl sugar for a melt-in-your-mouth experience”
Disney Balances Progress, Respect for the Past
While some Disney fans will lament the change — again, some people would get mad if the theme-park company got rid of anything they remember fondly — this change seems a positive one.
Disney World has taken a limited eatery and replaced it with something that meets a lot more needs while also retaining some of what made it popular in the first place.
BoardWalk Deli may not offer the full range of bakery items that BoardWalk Bakery did, but it’s retaining some of them, and that should keep fans of the original happy. This is Disney moving forward while being respectful of its past.