How to Eat Well at Disney World: The New Skipper Canteen

by Kathryn Blanco / May 13, 2016 /

All Walt Disney World fans will understand the excitement of a new opening in the parks. While projects are still underway in Hollywood Studios and the Animal Kingdom, one new location, at least, is open for business. The Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen is as much an attraction as a dining experience. This new eatery will be a nostalgia-fest for all Disney park fans who remember the S.E.A., or Society of Explorers and Adventurers, at the Adventurers Club. Though the club has long since closed, this eatery contains plenty of the group’s memorabilia and revives the spirit of adventure. Guests can even walk through the founder, Dr. Albert E. Falls’, secret passageway. The story goes: when Alberta Falls took over her grandfather’s floundering shipping business, she transformed their boats into tourist vehicles – for a beloved ride known as the Jungle Cruise – and opened up the old offices as a restaurant. Here, hungry adventurers can consume a fusion of African, American, Asian, and Latin flavors while enjoying the “punny” humor of the skippers. 

How to Eat Well at Disney World: The New Skipper Canteen

The Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen (above and below). Courtesy of Walt Disney World News

How to Eat Well at Disney World: The New Skipper Canteen

I have to confess, I have no experience critiquing Asian-African-Latin food, and I can’t speak to its authenticity, but the House-Made Arepas I ordered may be my new favorite Disney dish! The drink menu is especially exciting since it includes two sodas featured at Club Cool – Guarana Kuat and Fanta Melon Frosty. Disney also continues the passion fruit theme they introduced in New Fantasyland with Schweitzer Slush, a frozen apple-passion fruit blend that contains green apple Boba Balls. Additionally, every table is provided with a wheat roll and honey dip to share.

I’ve always found eating at the Magic Kingdom frustrating. By mid-day the parks are packed and, while the cafeteria-style food was by no means bad, it was frustrating to know that right over in EPCOT I could be enjoying fabulous fare from around the world – yes, I know, I’m Disney-spoiled. The only other option was reserving character dining, a longer and more expensive affair which often requires a reservation far in advance. But since the introduction of Be Our Guest and the Skipper Canteen, eating in the Magic Kingdom is something I’ve looked forward to.

It’s nice to have an option somewhere in between fancy character buffet and cafeteria-style.

The Skipper Canteen has the added benefit of being, at least so far, less in demand than Be Our Guest, and thus both easier to get into and far quieter. I have to admit, though, the food – as with all food in Disney by this point – is pricey. When my family went we all just ordered appetizers, but the entrees range from $17-$34. So maybe the Canteen can’t quite be an everyday stop, but it’s definitely worth checking out! 

Here are a couple of dishes we ordered – for your viewing enjoyment.

 S.E.A. Shu Mai. From How to Eat Well at Disney World: The Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen

S.E.A. Shu Mai. Courtesy of Walt Disney World News

Falls Family Falafel. From How to Eat Well at Disney World:  The Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen

Falls Family Falafel. Courtesy of Walt Disney World News

Ginger’s “Croc” of Hot-and-Sour Soup. How to Eat Well at Disney World: The New Skipper Canteen

Ginger’s “Croc” of Hot-and-Sour Soup

 House-Made Arepas. How to Eat Well at Disney World: The New Skipper Canteen

House-Made Arepas

Sugar-crusted Congee Pudding. From How to Eat Well at Disney World: The New Skipper Canteen 

Sugar-crusted Congee Pudding . Courtesy of Walt Disney World News

Note: According to The Unofficial Guide Disney Dish podcast, due to relatively low interest in the restaurant’s more exotic fare, the Skipper Canteen menu may be undergoing some major changes and character dining may be introduced in the mornings. 

Pin for later:

 How to Eat Well at Disney World: The New Skipper Canteen

Courtesy of Walt Disney World News, adapted by Wandering Educators

 

 

Kathryn Blanco is the Disney Editor for Wandering Educators

 

All photos courtesy and copyright Kathryn Blanco, except where noted