REVIEW - Sebastian's Bistro at Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort

Oct 10, 2018 in "Sebastian's Bistro"

Sebastian's Bistro overview

Sebastian’s Bistro is now open at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, part of an extensive makeover at the center of the resort - Old Port Royale.

The previous table service offering at the resort, Shutters, was not very well received, so eyes are very much on the new Sebastian’s Bistro to see if it can succeed where its predecessor fell short.

Taking on the style of a beach-front home, Sebastian’s Bistro is located in in an all new building on the waterfront. The rear of the building faces the main poolside entrance to Old Port Royale, and the entrance to Sebastians is on the opposite side alongside the water.

Sharing the building is the all new Banana Cabana bar and lounge.

The place looks fantastic, full of some unique Caribbean styling, and it serves the full Sebstian’s Bistro menu alongside its own drink selections.

Although the restaurant is named after the Little Mermaid character, don’t expect to see much in the way of theming from the movie. Sebastian does make an appearance on the signage, the menu and in some artwork inside the restaurant, but that is where the Little Mermaid theming comes to an end.

Stepping inside, you find yourself in a small lobby and hallway with a check-in podium. The restaurant isn’t very big, and the space has definitely been used for the dining room with any waiting space kept to a minimum. The restaurant is unlikely to be very busy, with it being at a resort, so this shouldn’t prove to be an issue as it may be at other high traffic locations.

The interior is an L-shape, with two dining rooms. This helps to create a more intimate space, and it really does feel cozy.

The high vaulted ceilings and a large numbers of windows make the space feel very light and airy, even in the relatively small space.

The two dining areas are not significantly different, although some may prefer the look of one over the other. The first dining room offers some booths along with tables, and the second is tables only.

One of the first things we noticed was just how comfortable the dining room is. Plush comfy chairs, nicely set tables, and overall a very pleasant environment. Even when it became full, the noise level remained controlled, and it was very easy to have a conversation without shouting.

Having found the interior to be exceed expectations, it was onto the food - and this is really where the restaurant needed to shine - and we are happy to say, it did.

Menu items stay very true to the Caribbean - with things like Skirt steak “chimichurri” with crispy yuca, Citrus-stuffed sustainable whole fish with turmeric brown rice and cilantro-lime vinaigrette, Sautéed shrimp and tamales with roasted peppers and salsa verde, Arepa with slow-cooked pork and chili-mango barbecue sauce and Crispy avocado-and-bacon burger with chimichurri and pico de gallo.

There is a lot to choose from on the menu, and you could very easily just go with an assortment of appetizers and dessert, and skip the main dishes altogether.

We got started with the Caribbean Pull-apart Rolls - which were wonderful. The rolls are very buttery and flaky, and pull apart into about 8 strips of fine bread. They are served with Guava Butter, Mango Chutney, and Jamaican Jerk Oil - each of which you could easily just eat up with a spoon. It is a great dish for the table and highly recommended.

Next up was the Marauders Snack, which consists of Tostones, Arepas, and House-made Crackers with Black Bean Hummus, Guacamole, and Pico de Gallo.

Another good option for sharing, everything tasted great and seemed to have been prepared completely in-house.

Finally for the appetizers, we tried the Jamaican Meat Pies. You get two of these, so another good option for sharing. The pastry has a hint of curry to it, and the meat was very nicely seasoned. It comes with a Guajillo Chili Sauce - which really completes the dish.

Moving on to the main dishes, we tried the Grilled Skirt Steak “Chimichurri,” served with crispy Yuca. Again, it was very well prepared, cooked to a nice medium as requested. For beef lovers, this is a great option.

The dessert menu has some interesting options, with everything coming right from the region, and none of the typical brownie sundaes.

The Floating Island is a great option if you are looking for something light and refreshing. It comes with fresh Caribbean fruit and Meringue with guava and guanabana sorbet.

The Banoffee Tart was also an excellent choice with a Banana Custard, Chocolate Ganache, and Caramel Sauce.

Neither dessert was particularly large, and while could be shared, both would be fine as an individual dessert. Quality of quantity is the name of the game here.

A quick word on the kids menu, which is something that is often largely ignored by many restaurants. The options at Sebastian’s are excellent for kids. Create your own entrees includes a choice of Grilled Jerk Chicken, Slow-cooked Pork Shoulder, Beef and Mushroom Blended Burger, Grilled Shrimp Skewer. Then you get to pick two sections from items including Jerk-roasted Butternut Squash, Black Beans and Rice, Cauli-fries with Carrot Ketchup, Yellow Rice and Vanilla Gelato with Fruit and Chocolate Sauce.

The food is prepared to the same level as the adult menu, and that is something that is a definite plus at this restaurant.

Sebastian’s has some great cocktails, with Rum featuring heavily on the menu. The Jamaican Old Fashioned was one of our favorites.

And along with the alcoholic options, there are also some speciality non-alcoholic options.

Sebastian’s Bistro is in a different league to Shutters, and really stands out as a restaurant worthy of you trying, even if you are not staying at Caribbean Beach Resort.

The laid back casual atmosphere is a welcome break from the parks and some of the other busier restaurants, and the food is extremely well thought out and executed. Service was to a high level, as it should be at all Disney restaurants.

In terms of value, this is never something that you really get at a Disney restaurant, and the same is true here. Most appetizers are between $10 and $15, with the mains costing up to $30. Drinks and desserts are around the $10 to $15. So depending on what you drink, expect to pay at least $50 per head. It isn’t any better or worse value than other comparable restaurants at Walt Disney World, so value is largely a moot point.

Table Service restaurant have often struggled for business at moderate resorts, but with next year’s opening of the Riviera Resort within walking distance, and the addition of Disney Skyliner to the resort, Sebastian’s could prove to be a popular spot in the coming years.

Sebastian’s Bistro is open from lunch from 11am to 4pm, and dinner from 4pm to 10pm daily. Annual Passholders receive a 10% discount, and the Disney Dining Plan is accepted at 1 credit.

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Article Posted: Oct 10, 2018 / 2:08pm ET