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  1. #1

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    April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Avalon Cove must have seemed like a good idea before it opened. How could Avalon Cove miss? The big crowds who would fill Disney’s California Adventure would jump at the chance to dine at an excellent restaurant by the legendary Wolfgang Puck.


    Please discuss it here.
    Werner Weiss
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  2. #2

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    My wife ate there when Puck ran it and we were disappointed.

  3. #3

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Is the Cove Bar still open? From the one time I ate there, it was a nice place to kick back and have some appetizers (nachos with lobster, from what I remember).

  4. #4

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Why couldn't they have made the rest of DCA look like this? If the entire park was as beautiful and thoughtfully laid out as this restaurant, they wouldn't have had trouble with attendance. There was obviously a lack of rides at the park's opening, but creating a park in the same vein as Avalon Cove certainly would've inspired people's good faith in that the park was a work in progress.

    I never realized how beautiful this interior was...I had always just assumed it would've looked like the rest of the park's minimalist approach.

  5. #5

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    I was lucky enough to attend the DCA cast member preview one month before the park opened. That day some CM friends of mine and I ate lunch at Avalon Cove. It was quite good. We even saw Wolfgang Puck there that day. I was disappointed to see the restaurant close.

  6. #6

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Quote Originally Posted by Scarecrow View Post
    Is the Cove Bar still open? From the one time I ate there, it was a nice place to kick back and have some appetizers (nachos with lobster, from what I remember).
    Excellent point.

    The California Adventure map-guide doesn't list the Cove Bar. But I just did some Googling. It seems that the bar is still there, and it's still called the Cove Bar. (It makes sense that they didn't rename it to Teenage Princess Ariel's Full-Service Bar.)

    So, while Wolfgang Puck's Cove Bar, with bar food by Wolfgang Puck's kitchen, legitimately belongs in Yesterland, the Cove Bar itself is really still there.

    I'll probably tweak the article a bit today or tomorrow.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  7. #7

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    We ate there while it was still the cove. The mural was so beautiful. Is it still there?
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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Quote Originally Posted by ragrobyn View Post
    We ate there while it was still the cove. The mural was so beautiful. Is it still there?
    When researching the article, I was told that the Italian glass mural, artistic light fixtures, fancy bathrooms, and other expensive features of Wolfgang Puck's restaurant are still part of Ariel's Grotto.

    Can somebody who has been in Ariel's Grotto recently please confirm this?

    As someone who lives almost two thousand miles from Disneyland, it's hard for me to pop into the parks to verify the current status of things or to snap new photos.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  9. #9

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Restaurantuers and fusion menus that come and go faster than an heirloom tomato are another "true life" aspect of "The California Adventure".
    "As usual he's taken over the coolest spot in the house"- Father re: Orville 1963

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  10. #10

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Quote Originally Posted by Werner Weiss View Post
    Can somebody who has been in Ariel's Grotto recently please confirm this?
    Yep, was just in there a few weeks ago. When they changed it to Ariel's Grotto, they didn't do much to the inside or outside. The bathrooms, and the mural are still the same as it's long-gone Puck days.

    Personally, I think that Wolfgang was just too ahead of it's time. If it was Puck's place now, it would be packed. With the vast amount of APers that are going to DCA now, I think that a brand-name full service restaurants would be profitable. I know I'd eat there!
    -Monorail Man

  11. #11

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    ^ Agreed MM.

    I don't think a restaurant of that type is a good "Opening a park" restaurant. But as MM said, I think it could work now.

    And yes the cove bar is still open and making great drinks!!!


  12. #12

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    Sad Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    [quote=Werner Weiss;1605735]Excellent point.

    The California Adventure map-guide doesn't list the Cove Bar. But I just did some Googling. It seems that the bar is still there, and it's still called the Cove Bar. (It makes sense that they didn't rename it to Teenage Princess Ariel's Full-Service Bar.)quote]

    Personally, I think the "Come and get Blotto in the Princess Ariel Bar & Grotto" has a catchy ring to it (to say nothing of the "fresh Catch of the Day").

    Soon after DCA opened, I took my parents to the new Park for an Adult afternoon of Adventure and dinner: (my parents both being former CMs at Disneyland in the 50's and 60's, and having toted me around the Park a gazillion times...); we visited "It's Tough to be a Bug", soared over California, sampled Mondavi wine, and dined at the Wolfgang Puck eatery - and we had an amazing dinner. My mother (the owner of an Interior Design firm) was blown away by the italian glass mosaic WALL (which we were told cost in excess of $500,000), and the handblown glass sconces and chandaliers were all beautiful - giving the real feeling of being Under the Sea... the restaurant was the talk of the evening. We lunched the next afternoon at the Grand Californian - another delicious meal, and spent the rest of that afternoon taking in the beautiful mix of Craftsman, Art Nouveau, and Arts & Crafts workmanship of the Hotel - design details that you just do not see anymore. Everyone was dutifully impressed...

    Too bad that the low turn-out in the early year(s) of the new Park frightened away Mr. Puck; it truly was an experience (and the view at night was stunning... ); I somehow don't feel that the ambience will elevate a basket of Shrimp & Tater Tots to the level of the meal that we all shared that one evening... but I am so glad to hear that the decor, mosaic wall, and fixtures are all still intact.

  13. #13

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    For the record... Mondavi pulled out of the Golden Vine in part because it was in financial dire streights due to a downturn in the wine market... In fact the corporate management switched not too long after and a few short years later the company was sold to Constolation Brands (Franciscan)...

    It couldn't afford all the cultural outreach projects (of which the Golden Vine was one) Robert and his son Michael Mondavi wanted... Seasons of the Vine really is more about Robert's legacy than the wine industry... The company over reached, and took a big financial hit that started befor 9/11. After 9/11, the company was tanking fast - it turned out to be the coup de grase... So it was eventually sold.
    Last edited by cellarhound; 04-09-2007 at 03:39 PM.
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  14. #14

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    For several years Food Network would occasionally rerun an episode of Wolfgang Puck's show that featured Avalon Cove.

    There is still a page about the show at
    http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show..._20617,00.html
    but my database has the summer of 2005 as the last time the show was actually on.

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  15. #15

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    Re: April 9, 2007: Avalon Cove by Wolfgang Puck

    Thanks for the article, it was very enlightening. I've been an AP for several years, but have yet to step foot into what's now Ariel's Grotto. I'm not a big character-dinner type but someday I guess I'll join some friends who are. But I really need to visit that Cove Bar - I've heard nothing but great things about it and their lobster nachos.

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