Main Street Bakery
The simple and classic Main Street Bakery has been a staple of the Magic Kingdom park since its opening in 1971. Although offerings have continued to change and evolve throughout the years, the biggest change for the Main Street Bakery is scheduled for this year – with the addition of Starbucks. The Main Street Bakery closes January 13th to begin its big and somewhat controversial transformation.
Many Disney fans are upset about the change. In fact, in an effort to calm the fans, Disney announced three days after their official announcement on The Disney Parks Blog:
“Here’s some additional information about our Walt Disney World Resort Starbucks locations. The Main Street Bakery will keep its name and theming when it reopens in early summer. It’ll also continue to serve Disney favorites like cookies, brownies and seasonal cupcakes, in addition to Starbucks signature beverages and other items. And for those of you who asked in comments, the cinnamon rolls are available at Gaston’s Tavern in New Fantasyland, and the ice cream sandwiches are available at Plaza Ice Cream Parlor on Main Street, U.S.A.”
At first I wondered why the signature cinnamon rolls appeared in New Fantasyland also, but now we know why. Even though they are apparently the “same” cinnamon roll, the Gaston’s Taven version has some maple flavoring added to it and lacks the extra, warm and gooey icing on top. Personally. I will be waiting to enjoy them on Main Street, U.S.A., where they belong. The extra sugar intake from Gaston’s Tavern should be reserved for drinking Le Fou’s Brew. But it is great to see the Pastry Chefs will continue to be creative with their special cupcakes and the rest when the Bakery reopens.
Disney isn’t new to any corporate food partnerships. Disney has a long-standing relationship with Nestle. (Can anyone say Mickey Premium bar?) Besides being a corporate food partner, Nestle also sponsored attractions and offerings such as Epcot’s Living with the Land Boat Ride until 2009. The Starbucks change will reduce Nestle’s Nescafe product use in the parks. Other corporate food partnerships in Disney past or present include: Häagen-Dazs, EDY’S Ice Cream, Orville Redenbacher, and Stouffers. Besides Nestle, the best-known corporate food partnership was probably McDonald’s, which ended in 2006. It’s no secret that Disney made this change as a part of a healthy initiative as other partners continued to change their offerings (goodbye Nestle Toll House ice cream cookie sandwich and hello Pineapple Fruit bar.)
Although the Disneyland Resort already received their Starbucks treatment, the Florida parks will start to offer Starbucks in June of 2013. As I previously shared, The Main Street Bakery will be closed from January to May for the refurbishment. Epcot’s Fountain View will close in March and re-open with the Starbucks treatment in July. This won’t be the first transformation for Epcot’s Fountain View. Epcot’s Fountain View Bakery and Espresso, opened in 1994, is in the former location of the Sunrise Terrace Restaurant. Fountain View also shared a space with Pasta Piazza Ristorante until 2001. The space occupied by Pasta Piazza Ristorante remained empty until 2006 when it was converted into Epcot’s Character Connection, now Epcot Character Spot.
Before this classic icon closes, let’s talk about some of its amazing munchies and history at the Magic Kingdom.
Main Street Bakery: This genteel little tearoom, with its small, round tables and cane chairs, is a good place for a light breakfast, a midmorning coffee break, or a midafternoon rest stop. Assorted cakes, Danish, and a variety of other Sara Lee-made sweets are the temptations. (Breakfast, Snack)
Ever popular and always crowded, this old-fashioned bakery gives off a heavenly aroma and delivers with pastries pies, sandwiches and cookies. It’s possible to get a quick breakfast, here, too–from bagels and breakfast sandwiches to warm cinnamon rolls. the built-to-order ice-cream cookie sandwiches and the chocolate-chunk cookies are popular indulgences. You can also get low-fat milk and soy milk, yogurt, fresh fruit, granola and other cereal–that is, if your willpower holds out.
It’s clear to see The Main Street Bakery has slowly evolved over the years. Offerings have changed in response to guest demand, Chef’s creativity, The Disney Dining Plan, the volume of guests they serve today v. back in 1971.
One major component of Walt Disney World’s food and beverage offerings that each restaurant must take into consideration is the Disney Dining Plan. Disneyland’s Starbucks offers treats from both Disney and Starbucks. With the popularity of Walt Disney World’s Disney Dining Plan, it will be interesting to see how everything falls into place. The Main Street Bakery has been the home to a quick service (with sandwiches) and a popular snack location. Operating Participants have some choice as to whether or not they are a part of the Disney Dining Plan to a certain extent. However, for those operating inside of a theme park – it is pretty much expected. (Remember back when Rainforest Café didn’t accept the Disney Dining Plan, while the same Laundry’s owned and operated restaurant, Yak & Yeti did? However, due to guest demand, the Rainforest Café recently started to accept the Disney Dining Plan.)
Let’s take a look at some recent bakery offerings, including the signature cinnamon roll.
The fruit tart is a great bakery snack. Unlike many of the other offerings, it’s something with fresh fruit (which varies by the season) and allows you to feel a bit less guilty while enjoying it. Regardless of the guilt, the tart itself makes this treat difficult to eat. The tart needs to be a hard pastry, in order to hold the custard and fruit; however, it’s nearly impossible to cut with plastic cutlery. Not everything you eat needs to be clean and easy (especially in the a theme park!) so ignoring that aspect, it’s great treat.
Oh my cinnamon roll! How I adore you! I know you are not good for me, but I’m at Walt Disney World and I’m eating inside a theme park – it’s time to indulge. Easily a signature item of The Main Street Bakery (along with their Bread Pudding), the cinnamon roll really helps you stretch your Disney dough (pun intended.) These rolls are baked fresh daily and throughout the day, with lots of gooey frosting. As you order one, the Cast Member will carefully remove it from the warm pan on to your plate. They use the spatulas to get you that extra gooey frosting on top that you see here. This snack is very filling and can easily be shared.
Now that I’ve talked (and drooled) over some of the treats, let’s take a photo tour of The Main Street Bakery as it currently looks. (Photos are from the past few months.)
Here you can watch Cast Members serve guests their ice cream treats while others scoop waffle batter onto the irons to make that tasty waffle cone or waffle bowl to accompany the ice cream treats.
Queue up for your bakery items and drinks, select others from inside, and proceed to the cashier.
All specialty coffees and teas count as snacks on the Disney Dining Plan, for now. We will have to wait and see what Starbucks offerings, if any, will be offered as snack entitlements on the Dining Plan.
So many sweet treats to choose from! How do you make it through this line with making just one selection?
It’s here where they scoop your cinnamon roll onto the plate and add the extra layer of gooey icing. Yum!
At the other end of the counter, you can see the setup. Behind the counter, there are quite a few coffee and specialty machines. This entire area will definitely be changed to accommodate Starbucks .
Sadly, this ends our photo tour of The Main Street Bakery. The Main Street Bakery has closed as we currently know it. Their last day of operation was Saturday, January 12th 2013. We must now wait patiently until May as Starbucks moves in to see what sort of impact this will have on the nostalgia of the bakery on Main Street.
What are your thoughts on this change? Are you excited for this move? Have you tried some of these treats? Are you worried about the impact and lines that Starbucks will have on this already popular location?
Have questions about Disney dining? Are you seeking restaurant recommendations? Do you have Disney Dining Plan questions? Please send emails to [email protected]! You will get a response and they might be used in an upcoming article.